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The Russian Revolution was the first victorious socialist revolution in history, accomplishing what the Paris Commune could have only dreamed of. In the century-plus since then, the meaning of October 1917 has been debated endlessly by scholars and activists, Communists and anti-Communists. Did Bolshevism contain the germs of Stalinism within it from the beginning, as liberals, as well as Lenin’s left-wing critics, contend? As democratic socialists, how can we reconcile the upsurge of popular democracy that marked the revolution with the bureaucratic and oppressive reality of the later Soviet state? Join Philly DSA night school as we look back on a watershed moment in the history of socialism, drawing from both historians and Lenin’s own writings on spontaneity and the revolutionary party.
* Background: Entry on Bolshevism (Bottomore - Dictionary of Marxist Thought)
* Smith - The Russian Revolution - A Very Short Introduction (Chapter 1)
* Lenin, Lih, & Draper on Bolshevism
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