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Writings of Leon Trotsky (1936-37)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 18, 2003

    Economic crisis, war and working-class leadership

    This is one of a 14-volume series of writings by Leon Trotsky, who along with V.I. Lenin was a central leader of the 1917 Russian Revolution. These volumes cover the years 1929-1940, when Trotsky led the political fight world-wide to maintain the continuity of Bolshevik¿s revolutionary perspective and leadership against the reactionary policies imposed by the Stalinist regime in the Soviet Union. Reading Trotsky carefully, one can learn a lot about history and about today¿s world, as well as how to apply Marxist methods to orient oneself for working-class political action. This volume includes more than 100 articles and letters. They cover topics ranging from the economic depression and the rising inter-imperialist tensions leading to World War II, to the Stalinist frame-up trials in the Soviet Union, the Spanish Civil War, and detailed leadership questions posed in workers movements in different countries at the time. These volumes are lively, pointed and have extensive notes and chronologies to aid the reader today. I¿d also recommend some other titles written by Trotsky at this time, including The History of the Russian Revolution, The Fight Against Fascism in Germany, Trade Unions in the Epoch of Imperialist Decay, and The Transitional Program for Socialist Revolution, all available from the same publisher, Pathfinder Press.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 18, 2003

    fight vs. fascism and war--lessons for today

    The years 1936-37 were decisive in the struggles of working people to defeat fascism and prevent the holocaust that was called World War II.The Great Depression was devasting the working people round the world. In this book, the co-leader with Lenin of the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917, Leon Trotsky, exposes the Moscow witch hunt trials, through which the bureaucrat-dictator Stalin ( NOT a communist ! ) began the process of the final rubbing out of communist opposition to his regime. The civil war in Spain raged and was in its crucial phase: would the workers and peasants of Spain defeat the fascists through revolutionary means or would the coalition of liberals, 'democratic' socialists ( read: pro-capitalist 'socialists' ), Stalinists, and sadly, anarchist leaders who sold themselves and their powerful unions to the reform-ist coalition ¿ the Popular Front-open the gates to the fascists, making World War II inevitable ? How could working people help out the fight of the Chinese people against in Japanese invasion of 1937: the opening guns of World War II? How to build a revolutionary leadership, both in the countries mentioned above, around the world, and in the U.S. itself? In this valuable book and two others-'The Spanish Revolution' and 'Leon Trotsky on China', also published by Pathfinder Press, the great revolutionist poses these question and attempts to answer them in terms of action. As world capitalism sinks into a new depression, and as world imperialism, Yankee imperialism in the first rank, drives us working people towards fascism and a new world war, those who fight for a new and human world in the streets and on the strike picket lines need this book BAD.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2002

    Courage Reason and Hope in a Hell-Black Night

    This volume begins with Trotsky's writing on board the ship Ruth the Norwegian government used to deport him to Mexico. His "In Socialist Norway," is a humorous well-written account of how the Social Democrats who ruled Norway in the thirties, buckled under to the pressure of native fascists and Stalin to first restrict Trotsky's right to defend himself against the slanders of the Moscow trials, and then placed him under house arrest until he was invited to Mexico. I found his analysis of Kamenev, Zinoviev, and Stalin himself, in his articles written in Mexico explaining the Moscow trials to be interesting studies in how personal character is a factor in revolutionary leadership and retreat from that leadership. Also very interesting is the correspondence and proposals Trotsky wrote around building the commission led by American philosopher John Dewey that investigated the Moscow trials. As always with all of the Trotsky Writings Volumes, there is a week-to-week, sometimes day-by-day, chronicle of world events, and of Trotsky's struggle to build a revolutionary movement.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 14, 2002

    Moving and scientific pieces

    The article on the death of his son, Leon Sedov, is heart-rending and inspiring - a father who must write his child's obituary, a leader who salutes another leader and faces his loss. As always with Trotsky's writings, a rich mixture of political clarity - like the article explaining the difference between the economic foundations of the Soviet economy and its perfidious government - and nuggets of insight - such as the single page on art and revolution. Includes simple, short exposés of the Moscow Trials. Gives the reader a feel for deep, historical truths learned during the Russian revolution that drove Trotsky to keep fighting as the world crumbled into World War II.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 28, 2002

    Lessons of 1930s grow ever more relevant

    This volume contains many gems, including Trotsky's introduction to the first Afrikaans version of the Communist Manifesto and his memorial to his son, murdered by Stalin's agents: 'Leon Sedov - Son, Friend, Fighter'. But there is something else the reader can gain from reading through this and the other 'miscellaneous' Trotsky Writings collections, that you don't get from Trotsky's major books of the 1930s: the picture of a revolutionary leader dealing day by day with every challenge, with issues big and small ranging from world politics to party organisation, providing a political lead in response to revolutionary opportunities and other explosive events as world war II approached. In the early 21st century, with depression conditions and class polarisation extending relentlessly, these lessons from the 1930s become ever more relevant to class conscious fighters seeking a way out of capitalism's terminal crisis.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2002

    Revolutionary writings on the eve of World War II

    This is a powerful volume of political writings-- 100 articles and letters by Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky written between September 1938 and July 1939. The Great Depression; the bitter competition between the American, German, British, French and Japanese empires and the resulting drive towards world war; fascism and how to fight it; colonial exploitation from Latin America to India and China; the reactionary degeneration of the Russian Revolution and the Stalin-Hitler pact-- its all here in these writings. Although exiled from the Soviet Union by Stalin and his henchmen, Trotsky worked tirelessly to rebuild the international working class movement along the lines charted by Marx and Engels and put in practice by Lenin and the early Bolshevik leadership. His writings here aim at arming and preparing militant youth and workers for decisive political struggles at this time of world crisis. They include material on the founding of the Fourth International and the challenges faced by its different national parties, trade union policies and struggles, the debate over individual terrorism, the need for a revolutionary youth organization and much more. This is part of a 14-volume Writings of Leon Trotsky collection. Read this and you¿ll want the whole series!

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