Gleb J. Albert, „The Charisma of World Revolution: Revolutionary Internationalism in Early Soviet Society, 1917–1927“

That the idea of world revolution was crucial for the Bolshevik leaders in the years following the 1917 revolution is a well-known fact. But what did the party’s rank and file make of it? How did it resonate with the general population? And what can a social history of international solidarity tell us about the transformation of Soviet society from NEP to Stalinism? This book undertakes the first in-depth analysis of the discourses and practices of internationalism in early Soviet society during the years of revolution, civil war and NEP, using forgotten archival materials and contemporary sources.

Translator: Zachary King

Gleb J. Albert, Dr. phil. (2014, Bielefeld University), is researcher and lecturer at the Department of History, University of Zurich. He is co-editor of The International Newsletter of Communist Studies and has published on early Soviet history, the Comintern and the international communist movement, and the history of software piracy and home computing.


Editorial Note

1 Introduction

2 ‘World Revolution’, the Bolsheviks and Soviet Society
 1 Bolshevik Internationalism through the World War and Revolution
 2 1918/19, 1923, 1926: Three World-Revolutionary ‘Windows of Opportunity’ in Their Soviet Reflection

3 Activists and the Charisma of World Revolution
 1 Activists, Opportunists and Functionaries: Types of Early Soviet Political Actors
 2 The World Revolution as a ‘Delightful Thing’
 3 Communist World Society or Russian Domination? Activists Imagine the Future

4 Internationalist Practices I: Charisma and Activism between the Revolution and NEP
 1 Informing, Performing and Intervening: Public Speech about the World Revolution
 2 Internationalist Greeting Messages and Their Authors
 3 The Bolshevik Provincial Press: From Activist Mouthpiece to ‘Mass’ Newspaper

5 Internationalism and the Soviet ‘Masses’
 1 Ways and Means of Transmitting Internationalist Knowledge
 2 Reactions of the ‘Masses’: Disinterest, Resistance, Appropriation

6 MOPR: The Institutionalisation of International Solidarity in the obshchestvennost’

7 International Practices II: Activism and obshchestvennost’ from NEP to Stalinism
 1 Donations and Fundraising: Class Solidarity, Philanthropy and Entertainment
 2 Objects and Subjects of ‘Shefstvo’: Comparing Two Types of International Sponsorship
 3 Internationalist Pen Pal Correspondence – Collective and Individual
 4 Banners Wanted: The Twists and Turns of International Flag Exchange
 5 Dealing with Comrades from Abroad: Foreign Representatives of the Labour Movement in the Soviet Union

8 A Practice Forestalled: Going Abroad for the World Revolution

9 Concluding Remarks