Майофис М. Л. «Решающий рецепт»: проект автономизации школьной системы в позднесталинском СССР // Вестник ПСТГУ. Серия IV: Педагогика. Психология. 2014. Вып. 2 (33). С. 65-82. DOI: 10.15382/sturIV201433.65-82
The main purpose of this paper is to demonstrate that special place the secondary school held in the Soviet social and educational politics of the late 1940s, as well as to introduce a very interesting and rather underinvestigated type of primary source, the so-called verbatim shorthand records of the Boards of the Soviet People's Commissariat and Ministry of Public Education. These sources help to reconstruct the history of decision-making and the struggle of the elites within the Soviet administrative machine. The paper explores the premises and contradictions of the Soviet school politics in the 1948–1949 when Alexander Voznesensky, an administrator and an academic economist, became the Minister of Public Education. Voznesensky undertook an attempt (that was uncharacteristic for the Stalinist period) to minimize the inﬂ uence of the political and social organizations onto the school life. While trying to implement this idea, he obviously expected to ﬁnd a social basis for his project in the directors’ corps, as the school directors had enjoyed considerable independence during the WWII. One of the regulatory instruments that was supposed to launch a new trend in the school politics was a “Resolution on the school students being overburdened with social and other extra-curricular activities.” In order to discuss the draft of this Resolution a special conference of the ministerial board was convened. However, the directors’ corps was not ready to support Voznesensky in its entirety. Some directors happened to think that overcoming the acute crisis within the secondary education system would only become possible after a cardinal revision of the school curriculum was performed and an 11-year term of school training was introduced, and that just by cutting down social activities one could not hope to achieve the desired result. At the same time, there were several directors who immediately caught up on his idea. Thus, a director of the Moscow school № 446 Ekaterina Chernysheva performed a real “public confession” and admitted that she had been systematically violating the Charters of both the Komsomol and Pioneer organizations to lighten the unsustainable burden of social activities her students had been suﬀering under. This “confession” did not have any consequences, as Chernysheva demonstrated the very model that Voznesensky considered to be the only acceptable one under the existing conditions. All in all, Voznesensky’s policy can be interpreted as an attempt to make the Soviet school autonomous from the other Soviet institutions. This attempt was blocked by the Komsomol and party oﬃcials, but the traces of the attendant discussion were preserved in the verbatim shorthand records of the Board meetings. The author bases her research on the previously unpublished materials as well as on the recent studies by the Russian and foreign historians that provide a new context for the history of the Soviet school policy. The data presented here can be used both in the academic research and as part of the university courses on the history of education.
history of Stalinism, autonomy, history of secondary school education, genres of Soviet publicity, A. A. Voznesensky, A. G. Kalashnikov, I. K. Novikov, E. A. Chernysheva, “Leningrad aﬀair”, struggle with cosmopolitism, struggle with “overcharges
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