Shows that the communist system in science and higher education was created less by an intentionally-imposed Soviet model than by the pressures and agendas developed within communist societies to reshape science and learning in successive periods of upheaval and consolidation. The communist academic regime was considerably more complex and historically contingent than previously recognized, as the persistence of many of its features after the fall of communism demonstrates.
The latest archival research by an international team of scholars is brought together to produce the first comparative treatment of the periods of upheaval that shaped the rise and fall of the communist academic regime in Russia and East Central Europe. This volume sheds new light on the question of a Soviet model by examining how a particular Soviet system of science and higher education emerged, how it was exported and imported across varying local, national and international settings, and how key aspects of it outlived the political system that fostered it. The contemporary crises in science and higher education surrounding the demise of communism appear as a distinctive break from the patterns set into motion in the 1920s and 30s, but also as one more upheaval following a long line of previous reorderings throughout the 20th century that were conditioned by broader cataclysms in politics, society, ideology, and culture.