Stalin's Successors; Soviet Leadership in Transition

In This Review

Stalin's Successors

By Seweryn Bialer
Cambridge University Press, 1980
356 pp. $19.95

Soviet Leadership in Transition

By Jerry F. Hough
Brookings, 1980
175 pp. $11.95

By coincidence, two well-known specialists on Soviet politics have written on the same subject at the same time. Both deal with the coming transition in leadership as a generational change, and both discuss future economic and foreign policy problems. While the two books invite comparison, each has its special merits and both deserve a wide reading. Bialer's is a more ambitious study grounded in analysis of the evolution of the Stalinist system since Stalin; Hough's is more freewheeling in its advice on how America should try to cope with and influence the Soviet Union of the future.