V. I. Lenin


Written: Written in late September 1905
Published: First published in 1931 in Lenin Miscellany XVI. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1977, Moscow, Volume 41, pages 175.2-176.1.
Translated: Yuri Sdobnikov
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
Copyleft: V. I. Lenin Internet Archive (www.marxists.org) © 2004 Permission is granted to copy and/or distribute this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License.
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Dialogue Between an Osvobozhdeniye Man
[DOUBLE SQUIGLY.] and a Social-Democrat


1) impossibility of an up rising after the Potemkin. —The impossible becomes (werden) possible.
2) reappraisal of the forces. —“you are wretched,[1] and you are rich.”{3}
3) K. Kautsky on a provisional revolutionary government. —the uprising is connected with a provisional revolutionary government. Recognition of the uprising by the government=martial law.
4) unwisdom of the idea of boycott: failure to use the instruments. —Once again learn from your enemies, if you don’t believe sour friends. The government’s fear of a boycott.
5) the uprising and “elderly” workers. Trade unionism. “A class party.” —“non-combatants.” Indeed, it is correct to use them for trade unionism, but they will provide a rear guard.
6) parliamentary rule: support neighbours, other wise you will help Moskovskiye Vedomosti. —indeed, in parliament we shall support you against Moskovskiye Vedomosti, when such is the choice, but that is not the point just now. The struggle is not in parliament, but over a parliament. You are not fighters.


[1] Total “wretchedness” from the standpoint of military technique, etc. But have a look at the movement and its spontaneous growth: January 9—Riga—Poland—1.5-million-strong strike—Odessa—Caucasus—Moscow. September 1905. —Lenin

{2} This is a critique of the tactical line followed by the bourgeois liberals who, in the magazine Osvobozhdeniye (Emancipation) and other periodicals, sharply opposed the idea of an armed uprising, rejected the idea of boycotting the Bulygin Duma and called for participation in it.

Lenin criticised Kautsky’s stand on the provisional revolutionary government (point 3 of the “Note”) in his article “Two Tactics of Social-Democracy in the Democratic Revolution” (see present edition, Vol. 9, pp. 108–09).

The question of making use of “elderly” workers (point 5 of the “Note”) was elaborated in Lenin’s letter to S. I. Gusev of September 30 (October 13), 1905 (see present edition, Vol. 34, pp. 358–59).

Lenin elaborated the question of the Social-Democratic attitude to parliament (point 6 of the “Note”) in his letter to A. V. Lunacharsky of September 28 (October 11), 1905 (see present edition, Vol. 34, pp. 352–53). p. 175

{3} A quotation from N. A. Nekrasov’s poem Who Can Be Happy and Free in Russia; the whole stanza says:
Mother Rus!
You are wretched,
You are rich,
You are powerful,
You are powerless
p. 175

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