Compare and contrast the economic policies of Stalin and Mao.
In Russia and China, both Stalin and Mao emerged as almost god-like leaders despite making their respective countries endure harsh programs of reform all economically, politically and socially. Mao can be seen to have adopted the policies of Stalin, both inspired by the Marxist ideologies of Lenin. Both Stalin and Mao recognized the economic backwardness of their respective countries and wanted to use industrialization and collectivisation as the primary means of increasing their economies. Although the original plans were very similar, the actual undertaking of the plans in addition to the results and how it helped consolidate both leaders may slightly vary. Comparing and
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Events after the two leaders’ first 5 Year Plans, is where a discrepancy between the economic policies of Stalin and Mao can be identified. Stalin continued on with the second and third 5 Year Plans in 1933 and 1938, respectively in addition to the economic policy of collectivization. However, Mao realized that the Soviet model for industrial development was not working in China due to China’s high ratio of people to resources and what first started off as Soviet aid had now turned into excessive loans and exploitation. Therefore, Mao modified the goals of the first 5 Year Plan and progressed towards the Great Leap Forward as his version of the second 5 Year Plan. While Stalin’s second and third 5 Year Plans set more realistic targets and focused on a greater production of machinery and arms for defence, they were considerably effective. Production of consumer goods and food was apparent however towards the third 5 Year Plan and the forthcoming of war, consumer production was once again put on hold. For Stalin’s economic policy of collectivisation, peasants were forced to collectivize farms and agriculture to accumulate more money towards industrialization which led to famine and mass death, not to mention a decline of both harvest and yield, which