a comparatively wealthy peasant who employed hired labor or possessed farm machinery and who was viewed and treated by the Communists during the drive to collectivize agriculture in the 1920s and 1930s as an oppressor and class enemy.
(before the revolution of 1917) a prosperous, ruthless, and stingy merchant or village usurer.
(in Russia after 1906) a member of the class of peasants who became proprietors of their own farms. After the October Revolution the kulaks opposed collectivization of land, but in 1929 Stalin initiated their liquidation
C19: from Russian: fist, hence, tightfisted person; related to Turkish kol arm