V. I.   Lenin

On the History of the Party Programme[1]

Published: Vperyod, No. 11, March 23 (10), 1905. Published according to the text in Vperyod.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Foreign Languages Publishing House, 1962, Moscow, Volume 8, page 245.
Translated: Bernard Isaacs and The Late Isidor Lasker
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive (2003). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as your source.
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By insisting that the draft programme was not written by me, Plekhanov is the first to carry our disputes over the matter into the open in the form of insinuations, rebukes, and reproaches. Unfortunately, he does not expound these disputes, but confines himself to gossip—to a statement, which though it may be piquant, is vague and unverifiable. Therefore, to my colleague’s article against Plekhanov I must add that I have documentary evidence concerning our disputes during the discussion of the draft programme and that I shall publish this evidence when occasion offers. The readers will then see: (1) that Plekhanov’s assertion that our relations cooled on account of What Is To Be Done? is absolutely untrue; they cooled because the Board of six, in the dispute over the programme, split into two halves; (2) that I advocated the thesis of the displacement of small- scale industry by large-scale industry and had it included in the programme. Plekhanov sought to confine himself to a nebulous expression in the nature of the famous “more or less”; (3) that I advocated and secured the substitution of the term “proletariat” for that of “toiling and exploited masses” in the passage dealing with the class character of our Party; and (4) that Plekhanov, when my adherents and I among the six on the Board criticised him for the fact that in his draft the proletarian character of our Party had not been brought out with sufficient clarity, parried with the counter charge that I understood the proletarian character of the Party the way Martynov does.


[1] This paragraph was printed as a footnote by Lenin to V. V. Vorovsky’s article “The Fruits of Demagogy” in Vperyod, No. 11, March 23 (10), 1905.

The materials dealing with the history of the Party’s Marxist programme were given in Vol. 6 of this edition.

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