Totalitarian Governments Although No Exact Term Paper

Download this Term Paper in word format (.doc)

Note: Sample below may appear distorted but all corresponding word document files contain proper formatting

Excerpt from Term Paper:

It is necessary to control the workers and make them dependent on the government. The policy also makes it possible for the government to direct all its resources on a single project -- typically the major "goal" of a regime such as war.

Complete government control on weapons, although not an exclusive characteristic of totalitarian governments precludes the chances of successful uprisings.

Case Studies: Specific Examples of Totalitarian Regimes

The Soviet Communist regime under Joseph Stalin, the fascist regime under Mussolini in Italy and Nazi regime led by Adolf Hitler are typical examples of totalitarian regimes.

Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin: As observed earlier, it is debatable whether Karl Marx had clearly envisaged the formation of totalitarian governments by the application of his Communist theory. However, the first country to adopt Communism, i.e., the Soviet Union soon degenerated into the worst type of totalitarian government imaginable under Joseph Stalin who ruled the country from 1929 to 1953 with an iron hand. Stalin's regime, typical of totalitarian governments, constantly identified a goal and before it was reached, announced a new one. This was done through the announcement of a series of Five-Year Plans -- the object being to keep the people mobilized in a state of "permanent revolution." (Kreis 2004) Stalin implemented the blueprint of a totalitarian regime ruthlessly. He issued a "party line" and anyone who, in his sole opinion, deviated from the line was terrorized through the use of his secret police -- either sent into exile or executed. In the beginning, the major target of the Stalinist pogroms were the kulaks (wealthy peasants) but later on, no including Communist party members, administrators or the ordinary people were exempt. Only the "great leader" -- Stalin himself was answerable to no one. Between 1935 and 1939 a great purge was carried out in which countless party members, former comrades of Stalin himself were put on public trials, confessions extracted from them and promptly executed. People were condemned to death or sent to the Gulag for 'crimes' as trivial as not clapping long enough after a speech by Stalin. The result was that by 1938 at least one million people were in prison, some 8.5 million had been arrested and sent to the Gulag and nearly 800,000 had been executed. (Ibid.) at the same time, a personality cult was built up around Stalin through the ubiquitous depiction of his portraits, statues, books, films and quotations, constantly reminding the people about the achievements of their 'beloved' leader.

The Fascist Regime of Mussolini: Possibly the first person to use the word "totalitarianism" was the Italian Fascist leader, Benito Mussolini who came to power in 1922 and later establishing a one-party dictatorship. The crux of the fascist doctrine and the totalitarian state is encapsulated in Mussolini's well-known phrase, "all within the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state." The fascist ideology is now believed by political scientists to be based on anticonservatism, a myth of ethnic or national renewal, and a conception of a nation in crisis. Mussolini, however, was ideologically shallow and supremely opportunistic. Once asked to define Fascism, he is said to have responded: "I am Fascism." (Blum, 1998) the rise of fascism in Italy was also the result of a fear of Bolshevism that had taken hold in Russia following the World War I and was threatening to spread to the rest of Europe, as well as an adverse reaction to the apparent failure of the laissez faire economics. Mussolini, after getting into power, soon set about establishing a totalitarian state by abolishing all political parties except his own, muzzling the press and establishing a special police force to curb all opposition. He presented himself as an inspired Duce (Leader) sent by providence to retain the past glories of Italy. Mass organizations were created to regiment and mobilize the people. Mussolini was successful in restoring the country's economy and pride over the next few years until, like all totalitarian regimes over-reached himself by embarking on the path of militarism and allying with Hitler.

The Nazi Regime in Germany: The Nazi regime that came to power in Germany under Hitler in 1933 is perhaps the worst example of a totalitarian government. The Nazi ideology had all the ingredients that typify totalitarianism and more. Hitler had outlined the philosophy in his book Mein Kempf much before coming to power-- German racial superiority, virulent anti-Semitism, the concept of "Lebensraum," (living space), pan-Germanism and the necessity of another war. After maneuvering himself into power, when he was invited to become the Chancellor of Germany in 1933, Hitler set about implementing his plan for establishing a ruthless dictatorship. The Nazis burnt down the parliament building themselves and blamed the Communists for it. Using the incident as an excuse, Hitler convinced the then President to declare emergency, abolished the freedom of speech and banned all political parties except the Nazi Party to make Germany a one-Party state. What followed is too well-known to be recounted again, but Hitler's regime is a classic case-study into the working of a totalitarian government.


Arendt, Hannah. (1966). The Origins of Totalitarianism. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World

Blum, G.P. (1998). The Rise of Fascism in Europe (R. M. Miller, Ed.). Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.

Characteristics of Totalitarianism." (n.d.) From: Totalitarian Dictatorship and Autocracy, by Carl Friedrick and Zbigniew Brzezinski. Retrieved on November 5, 2004 at

Kreis, Steven. (2004) "The Age of Totalitarianism: Stalin and Hitler." Lectures on Twentieth Century Europe: The History Guide. Retrieved on November 5, 2004 at

Scruton, Roger. (1998). "The Root of Totalitarianism." Centre for Political Thought Retrieved on November 5, 2004 at

Talmon, J.L. (1960). The Origins of Totalitarian Democracy. New York: Praeger.

Totalitarianism." (2003) Article in Encyclopedia Britannica, 2003

Mostly based on totalitarian concepts of fascism and communism

For example, the Nazis found their scapegoats in the Jews and the Russian Communists in the Bourgeoisie.

German-born American political scientist and philosopher known for her critical writing on Jewish affairs and her study of totalitarianism

Orwell's vision and warning of the potential dangers of totalitarianism have been graphically expressed in his famous and haunting novel, "1984."

The leader is built up as a larger than life figure through the pervasive use of propaganda and stylized images which is often the only party allowed by a totalitarian state

In Nazi Germany the Jews were demonized and singled out for prosecution and in the Soviet Union -- the kulaks (the landowning farmers) were targeted.

Use of modern technology in achieving pervasive control is one of the features distinguishing totalitarian regimes from the classical despotic governments of yester years when such technology had not been developed.

Before the Second World War the Secret Communist Police was known as NKVD

Most contemporary governments have a monopoly control over weapons

Other examples of totalitarian regimes are the Communist regime under Mao, the Pol Pot regime in Cambodia and Cuba under Fidel Castro

In 1934, Sergei Kirov, Salin's heir-apparent, was assassinated in Leningrad on Stalin's orders. His second wife who publicly rebuked Stalin committed suicide in 1932.


Cite This Term Paper:

"Totalitarian Governments Although No Exact" (2004, November 08) Retrieved October 25, 2016, from

"Totalitarian Governments Although No Exact" 08 November 2004. Web.25 October. 2016. <>

"Totalitarian Governments Although No Exact", 08 November 2004, Accessed.25 October. 2016,

Other Documents Pertaining To This Topic

  • Salinas Pri Carlos Salinas De

    This, of course, would represent one aspect of the resentment served to Salinas. The other aspect would be the significant impact of the economic crisis and the continued devaluation of the Peso. These things reflected on the ineptitude of a party seldom challenged as it should have been. To most, the failures effecting the whole of the nation had marked the need for a hastening of democratic reform, which would

  • Critical Thinking in the Aftermath of 9 11

    Critical Thinking for Homeland Security The capacity of a government to protect its citizens pivots on the ability of its leaders and high-placed specialists to think critically. Few times in history point so clearly to this principle than the 9/11 disaster. In 1941, the same year that the attack on Pearl Harbor occurred, Edward M. Glaser published a book titled, An Experiment in the Development of Critical Thinking. Glaser's practice of

  • Comparative Politics

    Politics Although it is not perfect, the presidential system of government, as typified by the United States (U.S.) is the best system of government ever conceived. By creating a system where the public can remove administrations, without changing the legal basis for government, democracy aims at reducing political uncertainty and instability, and assuring citizens that however much they may disagree with present policies, they will be given a regular chance

  • Business General Please List Sections According to

    Business (general) Please list sections according to instructions Exercise 1.1: Review of Research Study and Consideration of Ethical Guidelines Option 1: Stanford Prison Experiment Go to:, the official site for the Stanford Prison Experiment. What do you think the research questions were in this study? List 2 or 3 possible research questions (in question format) that may have been the focus of this experiment. What happens when you put good people in an evil place?

  • Utopia A Discussion on Utopia

    F. "A.F" stands for the absolute god of this new world, Ford, an obvious allusion to Henry Ford one of the greatest and most successful manufacturers in history. The main slogan of this world is however different from that of Nineteen Eighty-Four: "Community, Identity, Stability."(Huxley, 1) the "brave new world" is not based on terror as Orwell's world was, but on conditioning and effective suggestions. Thus, the main difference is

  • Role Islam Played in the

    According to Hiro (2001), "During the Iran-Iraq War it openly backed Baghdad, arguing that its defeat would lead to the spread of Islamic fundamentalism in the region which would hurt Western interests. It was the French corporations that were building two nuclear reactors near Baghdad which were bombed by Israel in June 1981" (75). Approximately 1,000 French companies were active in Iraq, and 6-7,000 French specialists were based there

  • Comparing Tyack and Cuban With Dewey on Social Change

    Tyack and Cuban with Dewey on Social Change David Tyack and Larry Cuban do share similar views to John Dewey about the nature of the traditional education system in the United States as well as its origins. Public education as it exists today is a product of the 19th Century industrialization and urbanization process, which created schools that resembled factories, timetables and schedules, and teachers who acted like bosses on

Read Full Term Paper
Copyright 2016 . All Rights Reserved