Behind The Urals : An American Worker

1477 Words Dec 8th, 2014 6 Pages
In general, primary sources are the original materials of history or the original documents and substances that were created at the time, either by a first-hand experience, picture, etc. To make the primary source, reliable and respectable, the source should be as unbiased as possible, objective, and state the facts of the time. Behind the Urals: An American Worker in Russia’s City of Steel is a book written as a firsthand account on writer John Scott’s life in Soviet Russia. First-hand accounts are generally biased to some extent but it is not hard to separate true facts and opinions. Behind the Urals is a good primary source and the author’s opinion, ideals, and beliefs are glossed over through the memoir, and his efforts to remain objective were recognized.
The details in the memoir have biases that are balanced, and understandable in many instances; when one is passionate about a certain thing, it is hard to take a truly objective view. John Scott’s beliefs about America are unmistakable and it is important to realize that he was considered to be ranked higher than the average Russian peasant in Behind the Urals, nevertheless, he does make an unbiased stand on the true cost of industrial accidents, the overwork of the workers, the hyper-industrialization of the five year plans enacted by Stalin, the peasants pushed out of their land in the collectivization program to be forced into becoming industrial laborers, and the severity of the Stalin’s political purges.
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