Conspirator: Lenin in Exile [NOOK Book]

Overview

The father of Communist Russia, Vladimir Ilych Lenin now seems to have emerged fully formed in the turbulent wake ofWorldWar I and the Russian Revolution. But Lenin’s character was in fact forged much earlier, over the course of years spent in exile, constantly on the move, and in disguise.

In Conspirator, Russian historian Helen Rappaport narrates the compelling story of Lenin’s life and political activities in the years leading up to the revolution. As he scuttled between the ...

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Conspirator: Lenin in Exile

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Overview

The father of Communist Russia, Vladimir Ilych Lenin now seems to have emerged fully formed in the turbulent wake ofWorldWar I and the Russian Revolution. But Lenin’s character was in fact forged much earlier, over the course of years spent in exile, constantly on the move, and in disguise.

In Conspirator, Russian historian Helen Rappaport narrates the compelling story of Lenin’s life and political activities in the years leading up to the revolution. As he scuttled between the glittering capital cities of Europe—from London and Munich to Vienna and Prague—Lenin found support among fellow émigrés and revolutionaries in the underground movement. He came to lead a ring of conspirators, many of whom would give their lives in service to his schemes.

A riveting account of Lenin’s little-known early life, Conspirator tracks in gripping detail the formation of one of the great revolutionaries of the twentieth century.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Russia-specialist Rappaport (The Last Days of the Romanovs) has created a wonderfully thorough and highly interesting account of V.I. Lenin's purposeful wanderings in Europe before the Russian revolution. Lenin emerges as the quintessential fanatic, convinced of his own infallibility as a messiah of Marxism. Charismatic and driven, he captivates individuals and seizes control of the “Bolshevik” wing of the Russian Social Democratic Labor Party. Viewing himself as the embodiment of revolution, Lenin established underground operations in Munich, Geneva, London, Paris, and numerous other locations while feuding with anyone who dared question his approach (“We won't permit the idea of unity [with the Mensheviks] to tie a noose around our necks,” he said). His stoically loyal wife, Nadezhda Krupskaya provided her “Volodya” with constant support as he imposed his will on the Bolsheviks and, ultimately, on an entire nation. Too much attention is given to Lenin's affair with the beautiful, tragic Inessa Armand, but, on the other hand, some may find poetic justice in reading that Lenin very likely died of syphilis. (Mar.)
From the Publisher

Booklist
“Rappaport delivers a vital restoration of the real Lenin.”

Russian Life
“The period of Lenin’s life when he wandered Europe, impoverished and isolated, prior to the 1917 revolution is recounted in fascinating detail in this new book… This volume contributes immensely to our understanding of how Lenin forged his cadre, his leadership style and the worldview that all came to be so brutally reflected in the oppressive state he founded.”

Kirkus
“Remini revisits the Compromise of 1850 as an important, cautionary tale for today…. [He] skillfully presents the debates by the Great Triumvirate – Clay, John C. Calhoun and Daniel Webster – and decides that Clay’s compromise ultimately saved the Union by allowing the North ten years to prepare for war and to nourish the great leader it needed – Abraham Lincoln. A fresh look at the value of compromise in advancing the general interest.”

Seattle Times
“[A]n excellent account of Lenin’s formative years as a political exile from tsarist Russia that evokes the desperate scene of the European radical underground with nuance and in engaging detail…. Rappaport handles her subject with admirable objectivity, which makes the image of Lenin that emerges all the more damning.”

Foreign Affairs
“Never before have [Lenin’s] mind, habits, quirks, and passions been so well portrayed as in this book…. The events of these years have been recounted a thousand times, but Rappaport penetrates beyond them by trailing after Lenin, his utterly devoted wife, Nadezhda Krupskaya, and the sundry young Russian revolutionaries who collected about him in an endless succession of one-room furnitureless apartments, makeshift meeting places, and furtive printing centers.”

Richmond Times-Dispatch
“Helen Rappaport, in Conspirator, vividly describes the years that Nikolai Lenin, one of the century’s leading monsters, responsible for the reign of terror and the Gulag, spent in exile. Though the outcome – the Communist takeover of Russia – is familiar, Rappaport maintains such narrative tension that it does not seem certain.… [A] readable and always intelligent account of one of history’s most infamous monsters.”
 
Washington Times
“A well-written and…painstakingly researched story.”
 
Choice
“Instead of being a political saga, as have been most previous Lenin biographies, the fangs are missing in this one; it has become a story of obsession. Well written and researched, with a full and workable bibliography…. Recommended.”

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780465021079
  • Publisher: Basic Books
  • Publication date: 2/23/2010
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 660,348
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Helen Rappaport is a specialist in Russian history, as well as fluent in Russian. In 2002, she was Russian consultant to the National Theater’s Tom Stoppard trilogy, The Coast of Utopia. She has translated all seven of Chekhov’s plays and is most recently the author of The Last Days of the Romanovs. She lives in Oxford, England.
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Table of Contents

Introduction: Shlisselburg Fortress, 1887 1

1 Leaving Shushenskoe 9

2 Igniting the Spark 27

3 Konspiratsiya 45

4 Becoming Lenin 61

5 Dr. and Mrs. Richter 69

6 "The Dirty Squabble Abroad" 87

7 "Strong Talk and Weak Tea" 101

8 "On the Eve of Barricades" 117

9 Stolypin's Neckties 137

10 "The Congress of Undesirables" 151

11 On Thin Ice 171

12 "Why the Hell Did We Go to Paris?" 189

13 Inessa 207

14 "Almost Russia" 225

15 A Russian Spy in Galicia 245

16 "This Damned Switzerland" 257

17 "One Fighting Campaign After Another" 269

18 From the Spiegelgasse to the Finland Station 283

Epilogue: Good-bye Lenin 303

Acknowledgments 317

Notes 321

Bibliography 357

Index 371

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 15, 2012

    Conspirator

    Enjoyed the details and the flow. Well done!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 25, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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