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Considerations on Bolshevism Before Stalinism
Sat, December 5, 2020 @ 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM$50.00 – $80.00
Worker’s Control and Trade Union Independence, Freedom of The Press, Repression and Socialist Legality
with The MEP’s Revolutions Study Group
This group has been organized around the reading of Samuel Farber’s Before Stalinism: The Rise and Fall of Soviet Democracy, (Verso, 1990) that critically looks at the Bolshevik rise to power, their attitude towards the soviets, ideas on bourgeois and proletarian democracy, factory committees and worker control of production. There will also be readings from a wide variety of writes (some very critical of Farber) such as David Mandol, Eric Marot, Alexander Rabinowitch, Paul LeBlanc, Lars Lih, Kevin Murphy, Steve Smith, and if time, participant contemporaries to the Russian Revoution such as Victor Serge. On January 9 we begin examining from Chapter 2 of Farber’s book. The book is organized and written in such a fashion that there is no problem joining the group for the reading and discussion from that point forward.
While considering questions such as: Were the Bolsheviks inherently authoritarian? What was ‘democratic centralism’? Is the Bolshevik type organization necessary for revolutionary change? What exactly was the role of the Bolsheviks in the revolution? What were the Soviets? How did the soviets come into being? Did soviets represent a higher form of democracy? What was the attitude of the Bolsheviks towards them? Should the left today strive towards building similar institutions? What was dual power? What does worker control of production mean? We are now meeting for 10 to 12 more sessions. All should feel free to join.
10 to 12 Sessions: January 9 through at least March 13. Admissions are sliding scale. No one is turned away for inability to pay. Write firstname.lastname@example.org for the zoom link and you will receive within 24 hours. Books are available from Verso. Those who prefer a new copy of the book please write to email@example.com for a discount code from Verso.
- The Revolutions Study Group