The Fall of Communism in the Soviet Union

After the coup of 1991, Communists in The Soviet Union had hoped to gain control and bring back the old system they had known. Instead, the system changed from being Communist to the opposite of their goal- the system was dissolved and a President, Boris Yeltsin, was put into place. Video footage (Communists on October Square (1991)) shows that the Communists were very upset about the changes that were being made. It cannot be understated what a huge change this really was. The world would change at a political level to what many would say is a unipolar primacy system. For the Communists, this change was unacceptable and their meeting shows that they were not going to stop trying to get their ‘nation back.’

The changes began relatively quick. Another video shows that reparations were attempted to the former hero of the Soviet people, Joseph Stalin. From this, the viewer would surmise that the new system of the former Soviet Union wanted to change its image and appeal to more people (Prayers on Lubianka (1991)). The goal was to be more inclusive and to mourn the loss and repression of those who had been affected by Stalin’s policies.


Getting rid of the symbols of the Soviet Union – The Old Soviet Union


The changes also extended to official naming structure. One of the biggest was the change of the former capital, Leningrad, back to St. Petersburg (Leningrad Back to St. Petersburg). It was a spectacle, and event put on by the city, in which the mayor gave a passionate speech dedicating the name and explaining the historical context as well as the future, and many people turned out to witness the event.

So, after the events of the 1980s and the aggressive nature of negotiations, the Soviet Union finally fell, and the changes were swift, and for some, unexpected. The actions taken by people within the Soviet Union wishing for change alongside the Allies who wanted the Soviet Union dissolved, as well as the general weakness of the Soviet Union late in its history provided the conditions which led to the ultimate end of that global power. The specific changes were symbolic, often, in nature, which led to the hope that the nation could be re-branded to the world for the future.



Yeltsin and the new nation – (Collapse of the Soviet Union)



2 thoughts on “The Fall of Communism in the Soviet Union

  1. There came a point when Soviet collapse was imminent, especially when you consider how many people wanted the USSR to dissolve. Various states within the USSR (i.e. Ukraine) aspired for and claimed independence, and as you mentioned several people within Russia and numerous Western states wanted to see the USSR collapse. So much opposition combined with the amount and severity of numerous problems (including economic troubles and political instability) spelled disaster and ultimately death for the Soviet Union.


  2. It’s very interesting how quickly the dissolving and change was made to the Soviet Union. More people were in favor of the USSR failing or being dissolved and it eventually happened almost unexpectedly to some. Great blog post! I learned a lot about the fall of the Soviet Union in just this one post!


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