J.V. Stalin: The Discussion with Sergei Eisenstein on the Film ‘Ivan the Terrible’

Ivan the Terrible - in the film

Ivan the Terrible – in the film

More on the USSR – including other writings of JV Stalin

J.V. Stalin: The Discussion with Sergei Eisenstein on the Film ‘Ivan the Terrible’

Introduction

So far on this blog, when it comes to Socialist Realism, the emphasis has been on how it manifested itself in the People’s Socialist Republic of Albania. This has through an analysis of the distinctive (and often very impressive) Albanian lapidars but there have also been articles addressing paintings, art in general as well as looking at architectural representations such as mosaics and bas relief on and in buildings.

There have also been posts about how Socialist Realism was seen in the People’s Republic of China during its socialist period (which tragically ended very soon after the death of Chairman Mao in 1976).

A beginning (small at the moment) has also been made on the country which was the first to develop the Socialist Realist theory and practice, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR). So far this has been quite limited to a start on a look at the magnificent decorations of the metro stations – in reality the biggest art galleries in the world (especially in Moscow and Leningrad).

An equally small contribution has also been started in the public art of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

All these projects related to the above countries are ongoing.

However, so far, there has been little presented on the most important technological development in the field of arts of the 20th century – cinema.

VI Lenin, the first leader of the first Socialist State, realised from the very beginning the importance of literature and art in the development of the dictatorship of the proletariat, without which a workers state wouldn’t be able to exist. He also understood the importance of the moving image in this task.

As did JV Stalin and the article below shows that he took a very active interest in how the Soviet Cinema industry was developing – what messages and values it was trying to transmit in the socialist education of the Soviet working class and peasants.

Anti-Communists constantly distort events to twist them to fit into their anti-working class agenda. Not surprising as capitalism and imperialism will do and say anything which they think will strengthen their hold on the majority of the people of the world and to undermine anyone who seeks to challenge their political and economic control.

Many people might have heard/read about Stalin’s intervention regarding Shostakovich’s opera Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District in 1934. This criticism was accepted by the composer – and even today the work isn’t considered to be one of Shostakovich’s best. What probably isn’t widely known is that Stalin’s criticism came from a very deep understanding of Russian folk culture and he considered it important for Soviet artists (in all fields) to create artistic works to which the majority of the Soviet population could relate.

His intervention with Eisenstein about the two films of Ivan the Terrible primarily concerned historical accuracy – to which Eisenstein was playing fast and loose. In a socialist society artists have obligations to the people which do not exist in a capitalist society. After all, Eisenstein’s ability to have the luxury of following his artistic ideas was paid for by the working people. Stalin in this interview was reminding the film maker (and by implication all other artists) about his obligations.

Ivan the Terrible - sketch by Eisenstein

Ivan the Terrible – sketch by Eisenstein

Introduction by Revolutionary Democracy

One of the consequence of the anti-Stalin campaign initiated by the CPSU in 1953 has been that a number of facets of Stalin’s interventions on cultural questions are virtually unknown in the Communist movement. It is a telling commentary on this state of affairs that Paresh Dhar in his review of Asok Chattopadhyaya’s book Martiya Chirayat Bhabana – Silpa Sahitya Prasanga (in Bengali) can write that ‘what is most striking is that by a special research work, Asok has unveiled Stalin’s numerous involvements with art and literature of which we never heard before’, (Frontier, May 24th, 1997).

This discussion took place between Stalin, Zhdanov and Molotov from the political leadership of the CPSU(b), and S.M. Eisenstein and N. Cherkasov at the end of February, 1947. It was an integral part of the attempt by the Bolshevik party in the post-war period to raise the artistic level of Soviet culture and to eliminate weaknesses in ideological and political content.(1) Prior to the discussion the Central Committee of the CPSU(B) had, on September 4th, 1946 taken a decision on the film Glowing Life. Parts of the decision which bear on Ivan the Terrible are cited here:

‘The fact of the matter is that many of our leading cinema workers – producers, directors and screen writers – are taking a light-hearted and irresponsible attitude to their duties and are not working conscientiously on the films they produce. The chief defect in their work is failure to study subject matter… Producer Eisenstein betrayed ignorance of historical facts in the second series of Ivan Grozny, depicting Ivan Grozny’s progressive army, the oprichniki, as a gang of degenerates reminiscent of the American Ku Klux Klan. Ivan Grozny, a man of strong will and character, is shown as a spineless weakling, as a Hamlet type… ‘

‘One of the fundamental reasons for the production of worthless films is the lack of knowledge of subject matter and the light-hearted attitude of screen writers and producers to their work.’

‘The Central Committee finds that the Ministry of Cinematography, and primarily its head, Comrade Bolshakov, exercises inadequate supervision over film studios, producers and screen writers, is doing too little to improve the quality of films and is spending large sums of money to no useful purpose. Leading officials of the Ministry of Cinematography take an irresponsible attitude to the work entrusted to them and are indifferent to the ideological and political content and artistic merits of the films being produced.’

‘The Central Committee is of the opinion that the work of the Ministry’s Art Council is incorrectly organized. The council does not ensure impartial and business-like criticism of films for production. It often takes an apolitical attitude in its judgement of film and pays little attention to their idea-content. Many of its members display lack of principle in their assessment of films, their judgement being based on personal, friendly relations with the producers. The absence of criticism in the cinema and the prevalent narrow-circle atmosphere are among the chief reasons for the production of poor films.’

‘Art workers must realise that those who continue to take an irresponsible, light-hearted attitude to their work, may well find themselves superfluous and outside the ranks of progressive Soviet art, for the cultural requirements and demands of the Soviet theatregoer have developed and the Party and Government will continue to cultivate among the people good taste and encourage exacting demands on works of art.’ (Decisions of the Central Committee, C.P.S.U.(B) On Literature and Art (1946-1948), Moscow, 1951, pp. 26-28.)

1. An earlier criticism of the films of Eisenstein (Strike, The Battleship Potemkin, October, and The General Line) was published in 1931: I. Anissimov, ‘The Films of Eisenstein’. This has been reprinted in Bulletin International, 64-67, April-July 1983, pp. 74-91. (In French).

J.V. Stalin: The Discussion with Sergei Eisenstein on the Film ‘Ivan the Terrible’

We were summoned to the Kremlin at about 11 o’clock [In the evening – Ed.]. At 10.50 we reached the reception. Exactly at 11 o’clock Poskrebyshev came out to escort us to the cabinet.

At the back of the room were Stalin, Molotov and Zhdanov.

We entered, exchanged greetings and sat around the table.

Stalin. You wrote a letter. The answer got delayed a little. We are meeting late. I first thought of giving a written answer but then I decided that talking will be better. As I am very busy and have no time I decided to meet you here after a long interval. I received your letter in November.

Zhdanov. You received it while still in Sochi.

Stalin. Yes, yes. In Sochi. What have you decided to do with the film?

Eisenstein. We are saying that we have divided the second part of the film into two sections, because of which the Livonsky March has not been included. As a result there is a disproportion between the different parts of the film. So it is necessary to correct the film by editing the existing material and to shoot mainly the Livonsky March.

Stalin. Have you studied History?

Eisenstein. More or less.

Stalin. More or less? I am also a little familiar with history. You have shown the oprichnina incorrectly. The oprichnina was the army of the king. It was different from the feudal army which could remove its banner and leave the battleground at any moment – the regular army, the progressive army was formed. You have shown this oprichnina to be like the Ku-Klux-Klan.

Eisenstein said that they wear white cowls but we have black ones.

Molotov. This does not make a major difference.

Stalin. Your tsar has come out as being indecisive, he resembles Hamlet. Everybody prompts him as to what is to be done, and he himself does not take any decision… Tsar Ivan was a great and a wise ruler, and if he is compared with Ludwig XI (you have read about Ludwig XI who prepared absolutism for Ludwig XIV), then Ivan the Terrible is in the tenth heaven. The wisdom of Ivan the Terrible is reflected by the following: he looked at things from the national point of view and did not allow foreigners into his country, he barricaded the country from the entry of foreign influence. By showing Ivan the Terrible in this manner you have committed a deviation and a mistake. Peter 1st was also a great ruler, but he was extremely liberal towards foreigners, he opened the gate wide to them and allowed foreign influence into the country and permitted the Germanisation of Russia. Catherine allowed it even more. And further. Was the court of Alexander I really a Russian court? Was the Court of Nicolaus I a Russian court? No, they were German courts.

The most outstanding contribution of Ivan the Terrible was that he was the first to introduce the government monopoly of external trade. Ivan the Terrible was the first and Lenin was the second.

Zhdanov. The Ivan the Terrible of Eisenstein came out as a neurotic.

Molotov. In general, emphasis was given to psychologism, excessive stress was laid on internal psychological contradictions and personal emotions.

Stalin. It is necessary to show the historical figure in correct style. For example it was not correct that in the first series Ivan the Terrible kissed his wife so long. At that period it was not permitted.

Zhdanov. The film is made in the Byzantine style but there also it was not done.

Molotov. The second series is very restricted in domes and vaults, there is no fresh air, no wider Moscow, it does not show the people. One may show conversations, repressions but not this.

Stalin. Ivan the Terrible was extremely cruel. It is possible to show why he had to be cruel.

One of the mistakes of Ivan the Terrible was that he did not completely finish off the five big feudal families. If he had destroyed these five families then there would not have been the Time of Troubles. If Ivan the Terrible executed someone then he repented and prayed for a long time. God disturbed him on these matters… It was necessary to be decisive.

Molotov. It is necessary to show historical incidents in a comprehensive way. For example the incident with the drama of Demyan Bedny Bogatyp. Demyan Bedny mocked the baptism of Russia, but in reality acceptance of Christianity was a progressive event for its historical development.

Stalin. Of course, we are not good Christians but to deny the progressive role of Christianity at that particular stage is impossible. This incident had a very great importance because this turned the Russian state to contacts with the West, and not to an orientation towards the East.

About relations with the East, Stalin said that after the recent liberation from the Tatar yoke, Ivan the Terrible united Russia in a hurried way so as to have a stronghold to face a fresh Tatar attack. Astrakhan was already conquered and they could have attacked Moscow at any moment, The Crimean Tatars also could have done this.

Stalin. Demyan Bedny did not have the correct historical perspective. When we shifted the statue of Minin and Podzharsky closer to the church of Vasily Blazhenova then Demyan Bedny protested and wrote that the statue must be thrown away and that Minin and Podzharsky must be forgotten. In answer to this letter, I called him ‘Ivan, do not forget your own family’. We cannot throw away history…’

Next Stalin made a series of remarks regarding the interpretation of Ivan the Terrible and said that Malyuta Skuratov was a great army general and died a hero’s death in the war with Livonia.

Cherkasov in reply said that criticism always helped and that after criticism Pudovkin made a good film Admiral Nakhimov. ‘We are sure that we will not do worse. I am working on the character of Ivan the Terrible not only the film, but also in the theatre. I fell in love with this character and think that our alteration of the scenes will be correct and truthful’.

In response to this Stalin replied (addressing Molotov and Zhdanov) – ‘Let’s try?’

Cherkasov I am sure that the alteration will be successful.

Stalin. May god help you, – every day a new year. (Laughs.)

Eisenstein. We are saying that in the first part a number of moments were successful and this gives us the confidence for making the second series.

Stalin. We are not talking about what you have achieved, but now we are talking about the shortcomings.

Eisenstein asked whether there were some more instructions regarding the film.

Stalin. I am not giving you instructions but expressing the viewer’s opinion. It is necessary that historical characters are reflected correctly. What did Glinka show us? What is this Glinka? This is Maksim and not Glinka. [They were talking about the film Composer Glinka made by L. Arnshtam. The main role was played by B. Chirkov.] Artist Chirkov could not express himself and for an artist the greatest quality is the capability to transform himself. (Addressing Cherkasov) – you are capable of transforming yourself.

In answer to this Zhdanov said that Cherkasov was unlucky with Ivan the Terrible. There was still panic with regard to Spring and he started to act as a janitor – in the film In the Name of Life he plays a janitor.

Cherkasov said that he had acted the maximum number of tsars and he had even acted as Peter 1st and Aleksei.

Zhdanov. According to the hereditary line. He proceeded according to the hereditary line.

Stalin. It is necessary to show historical figures correctly and strongly. (To Eisenstein). You directed Alexander Nevsky. It came out very well. The most important thing is to maintain the style of the historical period. The director may deviate from history; it is not correct if he simply copies from the historical materials, he must work on his ideas but within the boundary of style. The director may vary within the style of that historical period.

Zhdanov said that Eisenstein is fascinated by the shadows (which distracts viewers from the action), and the beard of Ivan the Terrible and that Ivan the Terrible raises his head too often, so that his beard can be seen.

Eisenstein promised to shorten the beard of Ivan the Terrible in future.

Stalin. (Recalling different actors from the first part of the film Ivan the Terrible) Kurbsky – is magnificent. Staritsky is very good (Artist Kadochnikov). He catches the flies excellently. Also: the future tsar, he is catching flies with his hands! These type of details are necessary. They reveal the essence of man.

…The conversation then switched to the situation in Czechoslovakia in connection with Cherkasov’s participation in the Soviet film festival. Cherkasov narrated the popularity of the Soviet Union in Czechoslovakia.

The discussion then touched upon the destruction of the Czechoslovakian cities by the Americans.

Stalin. Our job was to enter Prague before the Americans. The Americans were in a great hurry, but owing to Koniev’s attack we were able to outdistance the Americans and strike Prague just before its fall. The Americans bombed Czechoslovakian industry. They maintained this policy throughout Europe, for them it was important to destroy those industries which were in competition with them. They bombed with taste.

Cherkasov spoke about the album of photographs of Franco and Goebbels which was with Ambassador Zorin at his villa.

Stalin. It is good that we finished these pigs. It is horrifying to think what would have happened if these scoundrels had won.

Cherkasov mentioned the graduation ceremony of the Soviet colony in Prague. He spoke of the children of emigrants who were studying there. It was very sad for these children who think of Russia as their motherland, as their home, when they were born there and had never been to Russia.

Stalin. It is unfortunate for these children. They are not at fault.

Molotov. Now we are giving a big opportunity to the children to return to Russia.

Stalin pointed to Cherkasov that he had the capacity for incarnation and that we have still the capacity to incarnate the artist Khmelev.

Cherkasov said that he had learnt a lot while working as an extra in the Marine Theatre in Leningrad. At that time the great master of incarnation Shaliapin acted and appeared on stage.

Stalin. He was a great actor.

Zhdanov asked: how is the shooting of the film Spring going on?

Cherkasov. We will finish it soon. Towards spring we are going to release Spring.

Zhdanov said that he liked the content of Spring a lot. The artist Orlova played very well.

Cherkasov. The artist Plyatt acted very well.

Zhdanov. And how did Ranevskaya act! (Waves his hand.)

Cherkasov. For the first time in my life I appeared in a film without a beard, without a moustache, without a cloak, without make-up. Playing the role of a director, I am a bit ashamed of my appearance and I feel like hiding behind my characters. This role is a lot of responsibility because I must represent a Soviet director and all our directors are worried: How will a Soviet director be shown?

Molotov. And here Cherkasov is settling scores with all the directors! When the film Spring was called into question, Cherkasov read an editorial in the newspaper Soviet Art regarding Spring and decided the film was already banned.

And then Zhdanov said: Cherkasov saw that all the preparations for Spring had perished so he took on the role of a janitor. Then Zhdanov spoke disapproving of the critical storm which had come up around Spring.

Stalin was interested to know how the actress Orlova had acted. He approved of her as an actress.

Cherkasov said that this actress had a great capability of working and an immense talent.

Zhdanov. Orlova acted extremely well. And everybody remembered Volga-Volga and the role of the postman Orlova had played.

Cherkasov. Have you watched In the Name of Life?

Stalin. No, I have not watched it, but we have a good report from Kliment Efremovich. Voroshilov liked the film.

Then that means that all the questions are solved. What do you think Comrades (addresses Molotov and Zhdanov), should we give Comrades Cherkasov and Eisenstein the opportunity to complete the film? – and added – please convey all this to Comrade Bolshakov.

Cherkasov asked about some details in the film and about the outward appearance of Ivan the Terrible.

Stalin. His appearance is right, there is no need to change it. The outward appearance of Ivan the Terrible is fine.

Cherkasov. Can the scene about the murder of Staritskova be retained in the scenario?

Stalin. You may retain it. The murder did take place.

Cherkasov. We have a scene in which Malyuta Skuratov strangles the Metropolit Philip.

Zhdanov. It was in the Tver Otroch-Monastery?

Cherkasov. Yes, is it necessary to keep this scene?

Stalin said that it was necessary to retain this scene as it was historically correct.

Molotov said it was necessary to show repression but at the same time one must show the purposes for which it was done. For this it was necessary to show state activities on a wider canvas and not to immerse oneself only with the scenes in the basements and enclosed areas. One must show wide state activity.

Cherkasov expressed his ideas regarding the future of the altered scenes and the second series.

Stalin. How does the film end? How better to do this, to make another two films – that is second and third series. How are we planning to this?

Eisenstein said that it was better to combine the already shot material of the second series with what was left of the scenario – and produce one big film.

Everyone agreed to this.

Stalin. How is your film going to end?

Cherkasov said that the film would end with the defeat of Livonia, the tragic death of Malyuta Skuratov, the march towards the sea where Ivan the Terrible is standing, surrounded by the army, and says, ‘We are standing on the sea and will be standing!’

Stalin. This is how it turned out and a bit more than this.

Cherkasov asked whether it would be necessary to show the outline of the film for confirmation by the Politburo.

Stalin. It is not necessary to present the scenario, decide it by yourselves. It is generally difficult to judge from the scenario, it is easier to talk about a ready product. (To Molotov.) You must be wanting to read the scenario?

Molotov. No, I work in other fields. Let Bolshakov read it.

Eisenstein said that it was better not to hurry with the production of this film.

This comment drew an active reaction from everybody.

Stalin. It is absolutely necessary not to hurry, and in general to hasten the film would lead to its being shut down rather than its being released. Repin worked on the Zaporozhye Cossacks Writing Their Reply to the Turkish Sultan for 11 years.

Molotov. 13 years.

Stalin. (with insistence) 11 years.

Everybody came to the conclusion that only a long spell of work may in reality produce a good film.

Regarding the film Ivan the Terrible Stalin said – That if necessary take one and a half, two even three years to produce this film. But the film should be good, it should be ‘sculptured’. We must raise quality. Let there be fewer films, but with greater quality. The viewer has grown up and we must show him good productions.

It was discussed that Tselikovskaya acted well in other characters, she acts well but she is a ballerina.

We answered that it was impossible to summon another actress to Alma-Ata.

Stalin said that the directors should be adamant and demand whatever they need. But our directors too easily yield on their own demands. It sometimes happens that a great actor is necessary but it is played by someone who does not suit the role. This is because the actor demands and receives the role while the director agrees.

Eisenstein. The actress Gosheva could not be released from the Arts Theatre in Alma-Ata for the shooting. We searched two years for an Anastasia.

Stalin. Artist Zharov incorrectly looked upon his character without any seriousness in the film Ivan the Terrible. He is not a serious Army-General.

Zhdanov. This is not Malyuta Skuratov but an opera-hat.

Stalin. Ivan the Terrible was a more nationalist tsar, more foresighted, he did not allow foreign influence in Russia. Peter 1st opened the gate to Europe and allowed in too many foreigners.

Cherkasov said that it was unfortunate and a personal shame that he had not seen the second part of the film Ivan the Terrible. When the film was edited and shown he had been at that time in Leningrad.

Eisenstein also added that he had not seen the complete version of the film because he had fallen ill after completing it.

This caused great surprise and animation.

The discussion ended with Stalin wishing them success and saying ‘May god help them!’

They shook hands and left. At 00.10 minutes the conversation ended.

An addition was made to this report by Eisenstein and Cherkasov:

‘Zhdanov also said: ‘In the film there is too much over-indulgence of religious rituals.’

Translated from the Russian by Sumana Jha.

Courtesy: G. Maryamov: Kremlevskii Tsenzor, Moscow, 1992, pp. 84-91.

This text is taken from one of the pages on the Revolutionary Democracy website, specifically J.V. Stalin: The Discussion with Sergei Eisenstein on the Film ‘Ivan the Terrible’

We thank those comrades for permission to reproduce the interview here.

More on the USSR – including other writings of JV Stalin

Vladimir Ilyich Lenin – individual works, compilations and biographies

Lenin in the Smolny

Lenin in the Smolny

More on the USSR

The Great ‘Marxist-Leninist’ Theoreticians

Vladimir Ilyich Lenin – individual works, compilations and biographies

This page will include individual pamphlets of the works of VI Lenin as well as a more information about his life and work. Available elsewhere on the site are the Collected Works – a total of 47 volumes – which is the most extensive resource in the English language of the ideas of the leader of the Bolshevik Party and the first Socialist State.

(This is an on going project and other material will be added as and when it becomes available in a digital format. If you are after a particular pamphlet and it is not here at the moment then it might appear in the future.)

The War and the Second International, (London, Martin Lawrence, 1931), Little Lenin Library, Volume Two, 63 pages.

The April Conference, (N.Y., International, 1932), 62 pages. Little Lenin Library, Volume Ten. The Conference actually took place from 7th to the 12th May, 1917 (the backward Tsarist state used the Julian calender which was – in 1917 – 13 days adrift from the Gregorian calender used in most of Europe, hence the ‘April’ Conference of 24th to the 29th Old Calender took place in May).

Lenin on Religion, (London, Martin Lawrence, N.D. 1930s), Little Lenin Library, Volume Seven, 56 pages.

State and Revolution, (London, Martin Lawrence, 1933), Little Lenin Library, Volume Fourteen, 96 pages.

The Paris Commune, (London, Martin Lawrence, 1935), Little Lenin Library, Volume Five, 62 pages.

The Teachings of Karl Marx, (London, Martin Lawrence, 1937), Little Lenin Library, Volume One, 47 pages.

Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism, (London, Lawrence and Wishart, 1939), 127 pages. Little Lenin Library, Volume Fifteen.(My copy is seriously damaged, particularly in one place, and so it was impossible to scan pages 82 and 83. In their place I have scanned the missing text from pages 709-711 from ‘The Essential Lenin in Two Volumes, Volume 1, London, Lawrence and Wishart, 1947’. It’s not exactly the same but the closest to the 1939 text I have been able to find.)

War and the Workers, (N.Y., International, 1940), 32 pages. Little Lenin Library, Volume Twenty Four. A reprint of a lecture delivered by VI Lenin in Petrograd on May 27th, 1917, about a month after his return from exile. The manuscript was not discovered until twelve years afterwards and was published for the first time in the Moscow Pravda on April 23rd, 1929.

The Tasks of the Proletariat in our Revolution (London, Lawrence and Wishart, ND, 1940?), Little Lenin Library, Volume Nine, 52 pages.

On Britain, (London, Lawrence and Wishart, 1941), 316 pages. Marxist-Leninist Library, Volume Eighteen, with two Prefaces by Harry Pollitt (1934 and 1941).

The Deception of the People by the Slogans of Equality and Freedom (London, Lawrence and Wishart, 1942), Little Lenin Library, Volume Nineteen, 47 pages.

A Dictionary of Terms and Quotations – Compiled from the Works of VI Lenin by Thomas Bell, (London, Lawrence and Wishart, 1942), Little Lenin Library, Volume Twenty Five, 45 pages.

The Immediate Tasks of the Soviet Government, (Moscow, FLPH, 1951), 79 pages.

The National Pride of the Great Russians, (Moscow, FLPH, 1951), 15 pages.

In commemoration of the 90th anniversary of the birth of VI Lenin the Foreign Languages Press in Peking produced a series of books with quotations from the extensive works of the leader of the October Revolution and First Socialist State on various topics pertinent at the time of the struggle against Soviet Revisionism and the restoration of capitalism in the USSR.

This approach to the works of Lenin, where significant quotations were taken from longer works, was the principal that was followed later with the production of the ‘Little Red Book’ of quotations from the works of Chairman Mao at the beginning of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution.

We are aware of six volumes in this series.

On War and Peace, 2nd ed., (Peking, October 1960), 84 pages.

On Proletarian Revolution and Proletarian Dictatorship, 2nd ed., (Peking, FLP, October 1960), 89 pages.

On the National Liberation Movement, 2nd ed., (Peking, FLP, October 1960), 58 pages.

On the Struggle Against Revisionism, 2nd ed., (Peking, FLP, October 1960), 98 pages.

On Imperialism, the eve of the Proletarian Social Revolution, 2nd ed., (Peking, FLP, October 1960), 91 pages.

On the Revolutionary Proletarian Party of a New Type, 2nd ed., (Peking, FLP, October 1960), 79 pages.

Lenin’s Fight Against Revisionism and Opportunism – compiled by Cheng Yen-shih (Peking, FLP, 1965), 275 pages

On War and Peace – Three articles, (Peking, FLP, 1966), 108 pages.

Karl Marx, (Peking, FLP, 1967), 63 pages.

On Youth – Selection of articles from VI Lenin’s Works, (Moscow, Progress, 1967), 298 pages.

The Right of Nations to Self-determination, (Moscow, Progress, 1967), 80 pages.

Socialism and War, (Moscow, Progress, 1967), 55 pages.

Lenin’s Prediction on the Revolutionary Storms in the East, (Peking, FLP, 1967), 15 pages.

On the National and Colonial Questions – Three articles, (Peking, FLP, 1967), 40 pages.

On the so-called Market Question, (Moscow, Progress, 1968), 51 pages.

Socialism and Religion, (Moscow, Progress, 1968), 7 pages.

May Day. May Day action by the Revolutionary Proletariat, (Moscow, Progress, 1968), 31 pages.

Lecture on the 1905 Revolution, (Moscow, Progress, 1968), 19 pages.

Revolutionary Adventurism, (Moscow, Progress, 1969), 40 pages.

The Tasks of the Youth Leagues, (Moscow, Progress, 1969), 19 pages.

Party work in the masses, (Moscow, Progress, 1969), 170 pages.

The State, (Peking, FLP, 1970), 25 pages. A lecture delivered at the Sverdlov University, July 11th, 1919.

Lenin on Ireland, (Belfast, Irish Socialist Library, New Books, 1970), 35 pages.

Letters on Tactics – a Collection of Articles and Letters, (Moscow: Progress, 1970), 104 pages.

‘Left-wing’ Communism – An infantile Disorder, (Peking, FLP, 1970), 133 pages.

On the Paris Commune – Selection of articles from VI Lenin’s Works, (Moscow, Progress, 1970), 141 pages.

Where to Begin. Party Organisation and Party Literature. The Working Class and its Press – 3 Articles. (Moscow, Progress, 1971), 54 pages.

Can the Bolsheviks Retain State Power, (Moscow, Progress, 1971), 63 pages.

The Third International and its place in history, (Moscow, Progress, 1971) 51 pages.

Speeches at the Eighth Party Congress, (Moscow, Progress, 1971) 86 pages. Held in Moscow from 18th – 23rd March, 1919.

Marxism on the State, (Moscow, Progress, 1972), Preparatory material for the book ‘The State and Revolution’. 134 pages.

The State and Revolution, (Peking, FLP, 1973), The Marxist teaching on the State and the Tasks of the Proletariat in the Revolution. 151 pages.

How Lenin wrote for the Masses, Three articles, including one from Chairman Mao Tse-tung and one from Nadezhda Krupskaya and one from VI Lenin, (New Era Books, London, 1974), 26 pages.

A caricature of Marxism and Imperialist Economism, (Moscow, Progress, 1974) 61 pages.

Economics and Politics in the era of the Dictatorship of the Proletariat, (Peking, FLP, 1975), 14 pages.

The Tasks of the Youth Leagues, (Peking, FLP, 1975), 22 pages. Speech delivered at the Third All-Russian Congress of the Russian Young Communist League, October 2nd, 1920.

Differences in the European Labour Movement, (Moscow, Progress, 1976), 11 pages.

A Great Beginning, (Peking, FLP, 1977), 32 pages. Heroism of the Workers in the Rear, ‘Communist Subbotniks’.

The Three Sources and Three Component Parts of Marxism, published in March 1913, (Peking: FLP, 1977), 18 pages.

On the Slogan for a United States of Europe. The Military Programme of the Proletarian Revolution, (Moscow, Progress, 1980) 29 pages. Two articles.

Lenin versus Trotsky and his followers, (Moscow, Novosti, 1981), 127 pages. A late Revisionist compilation of quotes from VI Lenin attacking the ‘enemies from within the Party’.

Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism, (Moscow, Progress, 1983), 127 pages.

For those who find 127 pages too much here are some selected quotes from this edition of ‘Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism’.

On Religion, (Moscow, Progress, 1984) 83 pages.

About the Younger Generation, (Moscow, Novosti, 1985) 55 pages.

On Socialist Ideology and Culture, (Moscow, Progress, 1985), 223 pages.

Some selected quotes from ‘On Socialist Ideology and Culture’.

On Lenin’s ‘The State and Revolution’, V. Gavrilov, (Moscow, Progress, 1988). A revisionist interpretation of one of Lenin’s most important works. 106 pages.

On Lenin’s ‘Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism, I Rudakova, (Moscow, Progress, 1988). A revisionist interpretation of one of Lenin’s most important works. 106 pages.

The Life of VI Lenin

Lenin, by R Palme Dutt, (London, Hamish Hamilton, 1933), 96 pages. A short biography by a British Communist.

Lenin – A Biography, (London, Hutchinson, ND, early 1940’s), 204 pages. Prepared by the Marx-Engels-Lenin Institute, Moscow. Published by authority of ‘Soviet War News’. Issued by the Press Department of the Soviet Embassy in London. The closest to an official Soviet biography of VI Lenin available.

Fine Drawings of Lenin, a collection published by the Communist Party of Germany on the 100th anniversary of the birth of Lenin (1970). 12 pages (missing two drawings).

Lenin – Life and Work, by V. Zevin and G. Golikov, (Moscow, Novosti, 1975), 228 pages. A revisionist biography of VI Lenin.

The Central Lenin Museum, Moscow – a guide. (Moscow, Raduga, 1986), 160 pages. A guide to the now destroyed Museum dedicated to the life and work of VI Lenin.

On the so-called ‘Lenin Testament’. A pamphlet produced by W.B. Bland (then of the Communist League UK) of a presentation given to the Stalin Society (UK) in 1991. The ‘Lenin Testament’ was a document that was used by Trotskyites and other anti-Bolsheviks in an attempt to usurp the leadership of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (Bolshevik) after the death of Comrade Lenin in 1924. In an effort to maintain Party unity the document was presented to 13th Party Congress in May 1924 where it was overwhelmingly rejected as having no importance in the choice of the Party leadership, with not even Trotsky voting for it.

Compilations from the works of VI Lenin with other great Marxists

Strategy and Tactics of the Proletarian Revolution, (N.Y., International, 1936), 95 pages. Consists of a series of brief extracts mostly from the works of Lenin, Stalin and from some reports of the Comintern.

The Dictatorship of the Proletariat, articles and extracts from the works of Marx, Engels, Lenin and Stalin, compiled and arranged by V. Bystryansky and M. Mishin, ‘Readings in Leninism’ series, (NY: International, 1936), 132 pages.

Lenin and Stalin on Youth, (London, Lawrence and Wishart, 1940), Little Lenin Library, Volume Twenty One, 48 pages.

Lenin and Stalin on The State, (London, Lawrence and Wishart, 1942), Little Lenin Library, Volume Twenty Three, 48 pages.

Selections from V. I. Lenin and J. V. Stalin on the National and Colonial Question, (Calcutta, 1970), 244 pages.

Marx, Engels and Lenin: On the Dictatorship of the Proletariat, a collection of quotations, (Peking: FLP, 1975), 52 pages. (Some underlining.) This collection also appeared in Peking Review on February 28, 1975.

More on the USSR

The Great ‘Marxist-Leninist’ Theoreticians

VI Lenin – Collected Works – Indexes

VI Lenin

VI Lenin

More on the USSR

VI Lenin Collected Works – Indexes

There were two volumes of Indexes for the 45 Volumes of the Collected Works of VI Lenin.

Lenin Collected Works - Index of Works and Names

Lenin Collected Works – Index of Works and Names

 

 

 

The comprehenisve list of Lenin’s writings and the names of individuals referred to in those works.

 

 

 

 

Lenin Collected Works - Subject Index

Lenin Collected Works – Subject Index

 

 

 

A comprehensive subject index of the Collected Works of VI Lenin

 

VI Lenin – Collected Works

VI Lenin – Collected Works – Volumes 1 – 5

VI Lenin – Collected Works – Volumes 6 – 10

VI Lenin – Collected Works – Volumes 11 – 15

VI Lenin – Collected Works – Volumes 16 – 45

 

More on the USSR