Trotsky’s intention is "far away from any thought of defending terrorism in general". Rather, he seeks to promote an historical justification for the Revolution, by demonstrating that history has set up the ‘revolutionary violence of the progressive class’ against the ‘conservative violence of the outworn classes’. The argument is developed in response to the influential Marxist intellectual Karl Kautsky, who refuted Trotsky’s ‘militarisation of labour’ and Lenin’s wholesale rejection of a ‘bloodless revolution’. The introduction, written for the second edition of 1935, presents Trotsky’s reflections on the similarities between Kautsky and the burgeoning British Labour Party: specifically, it recapitulates Trotsky’s belief that revolution conducted according to the norms of Parliamentarianism is no revolution at all.
The History of the Russian Revolutionto Brest-Litovsk was written immediately after the events it describes, when Trotsky was attending the negotiations that extracted Russia from the First World War; The Lessons of October, an answer to his opponents in 1924, matches Lenin in power of analysis; and Stalin Falsifies History, written in 1927, presents the beginning of the distorting process by which Stalin secured his position, and defeated a range of attitudes, many more benign than his own, towards the future of the Revolution. This is a fascinating reissue that will be of value to students with an interest in early-twentieth century Russia, the Russian Revolution and the writings of Trotsky more generally.
Including a sympathetic, but nonetheless astute, introduction to Trotsky’s argument by the translator, The Real Situation in Russia will prove to be of value to all students of twentieth-century Marxism, and in particular to those interested in the Russian Revolution – not only its origins and early development, but also, perhaps, the reasons for its ultimate failure.
Wage Labour and Capital
Karl Marx’s Wage Labour and Capital contains many important insights into the workings of the capitalist system and the way in which labour is exploited. With an excellent introduction by Frederick Engels.
Value, Price and Profit
Value, Price and Profit was first delivered as a speech delivered by Marx in June 1865, while he was working on the first volume of Capital that was published two years later.
“Left-Wing” Communism: An Infantile Disorder
In “Left-Wing” Communism we have Lenin’s exposition of the necessity to combine theoretical firmness with tactical and organizational flexibility in order to win the masses.
In Defence of October
Leon Trotsky’s work In Defence of October is the title of a speech delivered to a meeting of Social Democratic students in Copenhagen advancing the cause of the Russian Revolution.
Stalinism and Bolshevism
By contrast, in Stalinism and Bolshevism Trotsky examines the revolution’s bureaucratic degeneration which finally resulted in the Stalinist antithesis of the democratic workers’ state.
This volume includes classic essays by Engels, Lenin, Trotsky, Plekhanov, as well as contemporary analysis by Alan Woods, Phil Mitchinson and others, on an array of topics related to anarchism. Among them are: the Occupy movement; Marx vs Bakunin; Engels on authority; Michael Albert and Parecon; why Marxists oppose individual terrorism; direct action; anarcho-syndicalism; Kronstadt; the Makhno rebellion; the Spanish Revolution.
On the bicentennial of his birth, Karl Marx’s ideas are more relevant than ever. While he is perhaps best known for his writings on economics and history, anyone who wishes to have a fully rounded understanding of his method must strive to master dialectical materialism, which itself resulted from an assiduous study and critique of Hegel.
Dialectical materialism is the logic of motion, development, and change. By embracing contradiction instead of trying to write it out of reality, dialectics allows Marxists to approach processes as they really are, not as we would like them to be. In this way we can understand and explain the essential class interests at stake in our fight against capitalist exploitation and oppression.
At every decisive turning point in history, scientific socialists must go back to basics. Marxist theory represents the synthesized experience, historical memory, and guide to action of the working class. The Revolutionary Philosophy of Marxism aims to arm the new generation of revolutionary socialists with these essential ideas.
Vladimir Lenin (speaking Russian) was the main theoretician and practical leader of the Bolsheviks. He was voted the Chairman of the Council of People's Commissars of the USSR.
Leon Trotsky was a Communist theorist, prolific writer, and leader in the 1917 Russian Revolution. Josef Stalin (speaking Russian) was the General Secretary of the Russian Communist Party and a key leader in World War II.