Alliluyeva-Stalin, Nadezhda (1901–1932)

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Alliluyeva-Stalin, Nadezhda (1901–1932)

Soviet writer and wife of Joseph Stalin. Name variations: Nadya or Nadejda Alliluieva, Allilueva, or Allileyevna. Born in the Caucasus, Russia, in 1901; committed suicide in Moscow, USSR, on November 8, 1932; daughter of Sergei Alliluyev and Olga Fedorenko (a Georgian); younger sister of Anna Alliluyeva Redens ; married Joseph V. Stalin, in 1918 (his first wife was Ekaterina [Keke] Svanidze , who died in 1907 and gave birth to his son Yakov); children: Vassily and Svetlana Alliluyeva (1926—).

Joseph Stalin's second wife, Nadezhda Alliluyeva, was the daughter of a political colleague. Nada, as she was known, worked as a secretary in the Commissariat of Nationalities. Her mother was opposed to the marriage with Stalin because of his reputation for being cold and driven, but Alliluyeva married the rising political star, and they moved to an apartment on the grounds of the Kremlin. She worked briefly for the journal Revolution and Culture, and gave Stalin a son, Vassily (c. 1920), and a daughter, Svetlana (1926). As Stalin was rarely home, Alliluyeva began study at the Industrial Academy in 1930 as a means of battling depression and boredom.

In part influenced by her fellow students, she began to turn from Stalin's ideas and policies. On November 8, 1932, Stalin and Alliluyeva argued publicly at a formal dinner. The fight seems to have been politically motivated. "Hey, you. Have a drink!" Stalin yelled at her. "Don't you dare 'hey' me!" retorted Alliluyeva before she stormed out. On the morning of November 9, she was found dead in their apartment, apparently of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. She left a suicide note that was both personally and politically critical of Stalin. He viewed the suicide as treachery against him and did not attend the civil funeral ceremony. At the private ceremony, he approached the casket but made a dismissive gesture toward his dead wife and walked away.


Tucker, Robert C. Stalin in Power. NY: Norton, 1990.

Ulam, Adam B. Stalin. Boston, MA: Beacon Press, 1973.

Volkogonov, Dmitri. Stalin: Triumph and Tragedy. NY: Grove Weidenfeld, 1988.

Crista Martin , Boston, Massachusetts

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Alliluyeva-Stalin, Nadezhda (1901–1932)

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