Ukranian Nihilist Sergei Stepniak’s compelling study of the Russian peasant. Published over 120 years ago in the time of Nicholas II (but mostly written in the time of Alexander III) it describes the social plight of the peasant in 19th century Russia and the collective forms of social organisation they adopted that could have provided the basis for the development of Russia as a free and egalitarian society. Perhaps more importantly from a contemporary perspective, it helps explains the influence of revived orthodox and non-orthodox religion that persists at the cultural and political heart of modern-day Russia. A timeless and powerful insight into the Russian psyche, national culture and rural history. Focusing on village life, agricultural labourers, the landed gentry, the churches and sects, Stepniak examines the social structures of the village and artisanal communes, and illustrates the intimate connection between patriarchal theocracy, the parochial clergy, popular religious faith and the Russian peasantry. Invaluable for anyone interested in — or wishing to understand — the roots of Vladimir Putin’s ultra-conservative nationalism and his territorial ambitions.
THE GUILLOTINE AT WORK. Vol. 2: Twenty Years of Terror in Russia (Data and Documents), Gregory Petrovich Maximoff. ISBN 978-0-904564-22-8 (347 pages – estimated) First edition published Chicago, 1940, by the Alexander Berkman Fund under the title: The Guillotine At Work: Twenty Years of Terror in Russia (Data and Documents). This, second (revised and corrected) Kindle eBook edition, published in 2013 by ChristieBooks. Cover illustration by the late Flavio Costantini. Jacket design by Simon Stern.
(See Vol. 1: The Leninist Counter-Revolution)
A searing indictment of Marxist-Leninist practice and the ‘slaveholding democracy’ that was Soviet Russia from April 12 1918 when the Communist Party* patricians launched their well-prepared and sustained bloody pogrom against anarchists and anarchist and anarcho-syndicalist organisations nationwide; a campaign beside which the deeds of the Tsar’s secret police pale into insignificance. This is a gut-wrenching, anger-inducing account of the blatant, power-led, betrayal of socialist principles and ideals by Lenin, Trotsky, Bukharin, and all the other organisation- and party-building apologists for Marxist-Leninism and ‘democratic centralism’. The next time someone stops you to purchase a copy of Socialist Worker or any other similar title damn their eyes and refer them to this ‘book of destinies’. With a bit of luck the angel Jesrad might be lurking nearby ready to poke out their eyes with a tightly-rolled-up copy of The Big Issue and cast them into the gorge…
THE GUILLOTINE AT WORK Vol. 1: The Leninist Counter-Revolution by Gregory Petrovich Maximoff; introduced by Bill Nowlin and Sam Dolgoff.
Cover illustration by the late Flavio Costantini. Jacket design by Simon Stern. ISBN 978-0-904564-23-5,
The Guillotine At Work develops the theme that the Stalinist terror of the 1930s-1950s, the bureaucratisation of Russian society, the imperialist escapades, through to the total disregard for human rights in the Soviet Union and other East European countries under its dominion were not aberrations in the development of a socialist society, but rather a logical development of Marxist philosophy which found its orientation in the writings and actions of Lenin (and Trotsky), had Stalin as one of its chief protagonists, and throughout its history had a host of faceless bureaucrats maintaining and bolstering its repressive regime with even more sophisticated control of the hearts and minds of the peoples of Eastern Europe. The Guillotine At Work serves one main purpose: “to dispel the aura which Lenin’s disciples have bestowed on him by showing that Lenin was primarily concerned with attaining power and holding on to it as a dictator by means of terror.” VOL 2 Available here