The Red Millionaire: A Political Biography of Willy Münzenberg, Moscow's Secret Propaganda Tsar in the West

The Red Millionaire: A Political Biography of Willy Münzenberg, Moscow's Secret Propaganda Tsar in the West

by Sean McMeekin
     
 

ISBN-10: 0300098472

ISBN-13: 9780300098471

Pub. Date: 11/28/2003

Publisher: Yale University Press

Willy Münzenberg-an Old Bolshevik who was also a self-promoting tycoon-became one of the most influential Communist operatives in Europe between the World Wars. He created a variety of front groups that recruited well-known political and cultural figures to work on behalf of the Soviet Union and its causes, and he ran an international media empire that churned…  See more details below

Overview

Willy Münzenberg-an Old Bolshevik who was also a self-promoting tycoon-became one of the most influential Communist operatives in Europe between the World Wars. He created a variety of front groups that recruited well-known political and cultural figures to work on behalf of the Soviet Union and its causes, and he ran an international media empire that churned out enormous amounts of propaganda and raised money for Communist concerns. Sean McMeekin tells Münzenberg's extraordinary story, arguing persuasively that his financial chicanery and cynical propaganda efforts weakened the non-Communist left, enraged the right, and helped feed a cycle that culminated in Nazism.
Drawing extensively on recently opened Moscow archives, McMeekin describes how Münzenberg parlayed his friendship with Lenin into a personal fortune and how Münzenberg's mysterious financial manipulations outraged Social Democrats and lent rhetorical ammunition to the Nazis. His book sheds new light on Comintern finances, propaganda strategy, the use of front organizations to infiltrate non-Communist circles, and the breakdown of democracy in the Weimar Republic. It is also an engrossing tale of a Communist con man whose name once aroused fear, loathing, and admiration around the world.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780300098471
Publisher:
Yale University Press
Publication date:
11/28/2003
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
410
Product dimensions:
6.14(w) x 9.21(h) x 1.06(d)

Table of Contents

Contents

Note on Transliteration and Translations....................vii
List of Initials of Organizations and Publications....................viii
Introduction: Who in the World Is Willi Münzenberg?....................1
PART 1. A Call to Arms 1. Erfurt....................7
2. Zurich....................18
3. Stuttgart....................74
4. Berlin....................86
5. Moscow....................91
PART 2. The Red Millionaire 6. Selling the Famine....................103
7. Building Socialism....................123
8. Germany Red or Black....................144
9. Follow the Money....................163
10. Hollywood East....................174
11. Preempting the Peace....................193
12. The Red Millionaire....................204
13. Tango with the Devil....................222
PART 3. Flight 14. The Fire This Time....................255
15. Reckoning....................270
16. A Paris Exile....................295
Notes....................309
Select Bibliography....................371
Acknowledgments....................381
Index....................385

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