V. I.   Lenin

Notes of a Publicist

Written: Written on August 22 (September 4), 1907
Published: Published in 1907 in the first symposium Voice of Life St. Petersburg. Signed: N. L.. Published according to the book text.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1972, Moscow, Volume 13, pages 62-74.
Translated: Bernard Isaacs
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive (2004). 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.README

After the dissolution of the Second Duma despondency, penitence, and apostasy became the outstanding features of political literature. Beginning with Mr. Struve, continuing with Tovarishch, and ending with, a number of writers supporting the Social-Democratic movement we witness a renunciation of the revolution, of its traditions, and its methods of struggle, an effort in one way or another to steer a course more to the right. To illustrate what some Social-Democrats are now saying arid writing, we shall take the first articles of theirs we come across in the cur rent periodical press—one by Mr. Nevedomsky in Obrazovaniye,[1] No. 7, and one by Mr. Vl. Gorn in Tovarishch, No. 348.

Mr. M. Nevedomsky begins his article with a scathing criticism of the Cadets in the Second Duma and a vehement defence of the Left-bloc tactics and behaviour of the Social-Democrats. He ends his article, however, as follows:

Speaking in the indicative mood, I will only say one thing, which should be obvious to every Social-Democrat, namely, at our present stage of political evolution, the ·activity of the socialist parties, in the long run, after all merely paves the way for the bourgeois parties and prepares for their temporary triumph.

The upshot, in the imperative mood, is this: that whatever this ‘mimetic’ (‘one minute a brunette, the next a blonde’) Cadet Party may be, it is for the time being the only opposition party, and the activities of the socialist party have to be co-ordinated with its activities. This is dictated by the principle of economy of strength.”... “On the whole, speaking without irony [Mr. Nevedomsky had to make this reservation because he cannot write without conceits and extravagances which mislead both the readers and the author himself], this phrase of Milyukov’s quite correctly defines, in their essential features, the relations between the parties ... [this refers to the following phrase of Milyukoy’s: ‘The threat of intervention   by the people may be put into effect only when the ground has been prepared for that intervention—and that is the object which all those who consider the powers of the Duma inadequate for the performance of its tremendous tasks should work towards’; let the Lefts prepare the ground and build up the movement—Mr. Nevedomsky rightly interprets this phrase—‘while the Cadets and the Duma would take account of that work’].... ‘Coming from the mouth of a spokesman of the accounting party that may not be devoid of cynicism, but when the question is formulated in that way by Plekhanov, for example, it is merely an exact and realistic definition of the line of conduct for the Social-Democrats and the method by which they are to utilise the forces of the liberal opposition.’"

We are willing to assume that Plekhanov experiences a certain sense of. ... well, to put it mildly, embarrassment, when such gentlemen as these kindly pat him on the back. But by his Cadet slogans, such as a single platform for Social-Democrats and Cadets or the safeguarding of the Duma, Plekhanov undoubtedly gave people the right to use his words in just that way.

Now listen to Mr. Vl. Gorn.

Clearly, in order to defeat it [the anti-democratic coalition of the landowners and big bourgeois created by the electoral law of June 3] two conditions are necessary. First, all democratic sections, including the proletariat, should act together to contrapose one coalition to the other, and, secondly, the struggle should be waged not by devising the most decisive slogans with a view to splitting off elements that, are not revolutionary enough and forcing the movement of the avowedly revolutionary minority [Mr. Gorn’s italics], but by a real concrete fight, in which the masses themselves are drawn in, against the concrete measures of the anti-democratic coalition. To create a democratic coalition we do not need a merger, but only an agreement, covering ways and the immediate aims of the struggle. And such agreements—if the conscious representatives of the masses—the parties—will adopt the basis of achieving real changes in the conditions of social life and not merely a propaganda standpoint—are quite possible.”

Is it not clear from these excerpts that both our heroes of fashionable Cadet phrase-mongering are, in substance, saying one and the same thing? Mr. Gorn is merely a bit more outspoken and has shown his hand a bit more, but he differs from Mr. Nevedomsky no more than Mr. Struve does from Mr. Nabokov or Mr. Maklakov.

Politics has its inner logic. How many times has it been pointed out that technical agreements between the Social-Democrats   and the liberals are possible without leading in any way to a political bloc, which has always been rejected by all Party Social-Democrats (we say nothing of the non-Party Social-Democrats or those people who play a double game, saying one thing within the Party and another in the “free” non-Party press). And life has invariably upset these fine statements and good intentions, for under cover of “technical” agreements ideas of a political bloc have steadily forced their way to the top. In a petty-bourgeois country, during a period of bourgeois revolution, where there are a lot of petty-bourgeois intellectuals in the workers’ party, the tendency towards political subordination of the proletariat to the liberals has a very real basis. And it is this tendency, rooted in the objective state of affairs, that proves to be the sum and substance of all quasi-socialist political chicanery on the subject of coalitions with the Cadets. Mr. Gorn, with the naïveté of an intellectual whose language only is Social-Democratic, but whose whole mind, whole ideological background, and entire “marrow” are purely liberal or philistine, simply advocates a political bloc, a “democratic coalition”—neither more nor less.

It is highly characteristic that Mr. Gorn was obliged to make a reservation: “we do not need a merger”! In doing so he merely betrayed the remnants of a guilty socialist conscience. For in saying: “we do not need a merger, but only an agreement”, he as good as gave a description of this “agreement”, a definition of its content, which reveals with the utmost clarity his Social-Democratic apostasy. It is not a question of a word, of whether the thing is called a “merger” or an “agreement”. It is a question of what the actual content of this “conjunction” is. It is a question of what price you are offering the Social-Democratic Labour Party to become the kept woman of liberalism.

The price is clearly defined. It is:

(1) To abandon the propaganda standpoint.

(2) To refrain from “devising” decisive slogans.

(3) To cease splitting off the elements that are not revolutionary enough.

(4) To refrain from “forcing” the movement of the avowedly revolutionary minority.

I would give a prize to anyone who was capable of formulating a clearer and more precise programme of down right and utterly vile apostasy. The only difference between Mr. Struve and Mr. Gorn is that Mr. Struve sees his way clearly and to a certain extent determines his own steps “independently”, while Mr. Gorn is simply held in leading strings by his Cadet mentors.

To abandon the propaganda standpoint—that is what the Cadets in the Second Duma were all the time telling the people to do. This means not to develop the political consciousness and demandingness of the working-class masses and the peasantry, but to diminish both the one and the other, to quell and suppress them, to advocate social peace.

Not to devise decisive slogans—means to do what the Cadets have done, namely, to give up the advocacy of slogans that the Social-Democrats had put forward long before the revolution.

Not to split ·off elements that are not revolutionary enough—means abandoning all public criticism of Cadet hypocrisy, lies, and reactionary views, it means taking Mr. Struve to one’s bosom.

Not to force a movement of the avowedly revolutionary minority—means, in effect, rejecting all revolutionary methods of struggle. For it is absolutely indisputable that those who participated in the revolutionary movement throughout 1905 were the avowedly revolutionary minority: it was because the masses who were fighting were in a minority—they were nonetheless masses for being in a minority—that they did not achieve full success in their struggle. But all the successes which the emancipation movement in Russia did achieve, all the gains it did make, were wholly and without exception the result of this struggle of the masses alone, who were in a minority. That in the first place. Secondly, what the liberals and their yes-men call “forced movements”, was the only movement in which the masses (although on this first occasion, unfortunately, in a minority) took part independently and not through deputies—the only movement which was not afraid of the people, which expressed the interests of the masses, and which, had the support (as was proved by the elections to   the First and especially to the Second Dumas) of the vast masses who did not take part directly in the revolutionary struggle.

In speaking about “forcing the movement of the avowedly revolutionary minority”, Mr. Gorn is guilty of a very widespread exaggeration of a purely Burenin type. When Burenin’s newspaper[2] warred with Alexinsky during the period of the Second Duma, it always tried to make out that its hostility towards him was due not to his fight for political freedom, but to the fact that he wanted freedom in order to ... smash windows, climb lampposts, and so on. The same Black-Hundred preparations are made by the publicist of Tovarishch. He tries to make out that the only thing that prevents an agreement between the socialists and the liberals is not that the socialists have always stood and will continue to stand for the development of the revolutionary consciousness and revolutionary activity of the masses in general, but the fact that the socialists are forcing, that is precipitating, artificially whip ping up the movement, that they are fomenting. movements which are avowedly hopeless.

Our reply to these tricks will be brief. The whole social ist press, Menshevik as well as Bolshevik, during the period of both the First and Second Dumas condemned the “forcing” of the movement in any way.... It is not on account of the forcing of the movement that the Cadets fought the Social-Democrats during both the First and the Second Dumas, but because the Social-Democrats develop the revolutionary consciousness of the masses, their readiness to put forward demands, and expose the reactionary nature of the Cadets and the mirage of constitutional illusions. These well-known historical facts cannot be disposed of by any newspaper acrobatics. As regards the form of Mr. Gorn’s statement, it is highly characteristic of our times, when “educated society” turns away from the revolution and seizes upon pornography. A person who considers himself a Social-Democrat betakes himself to a non-Party newspaper in order to address the public at large in the manner of Novoye Vremya on the subject of the workers’ party “forcing” the movement of the “avowed” minority! Renegade moods among us create also renegade morals.

*     *

Now let us examine the question from another angle. The views of the Nevedomskys and Gorns, which arouse such disgust when put forward by quasi-Social-Democrats, are, beyond question, the highly typical and natural views of wide circles of our bourgeois intelligentsia, liberal-mind ed “society”, disaffected civil servants, etc. It is not enough to describe these views as an expression of the politically spineless, flabby, and wavering petty bourgeoisie. They must be explained also from the standpoint of the existing state of affairs in the development of our revolution.

Why is it that certain circles of the petty bourgeoisie develop such views just now, on the eve of the Third Duma? Because these circles, who meekly change their convictions with every shift in government policy, believe in the Octobrist Duma, i. e., they consider its mission practicable and hasten to adjust themselves to the “Octobrist reforms”, hasten to find theoretical reasons justifying their accommodation to Octobrism.

The mission of the Octobrist Duma, as envisaged by the government, is to consummate the revolution with a direct deal between the old regime and the landlords and biggest bourgeoisie on the basis of a definite minimum of constitutional reforms. Speaking in the abstract, there is nothing absolutely impossible in this, since in Western Europe a number of bourgeois revolutions are being consummated by the consolidation of “Octobrist” constitutional systems. The only question is whether Octobrist “reforms” capable of stopping the revolution are possible in present-day Russia. Are not these Octobrist “reforms”, owing to the deep roots of our revolution, doomed to the same failure as the Cadet “reforms”? Will not the Octobrist Duma be as brief an episode as the Cadet Dumas were, an episode on the road towards re-establishing the rule of the Black Hundreds and the autocracy?

We lived through a period of direct revolutionary struggle of the masses (1905), which resulted in certain gains of freedom. Then we experienced a period of suspension of this Struggle (1906 and half of 1907). This period gave reaction   a number of victories and not a single victory to the revolution, which lost the gains of the first period. The second period was a Cadet period, one of constitutional illusions. The masses still believed, more or less, in “parliamentarism” under the autocracy, and the autocracy, realising the danger of, pure Black-Hundred domination, sought to come to terms with the Cadets, experimented, tried on various types of constitutional costumes, tested what measure of reforms the “masters” of Russia, the biggest landlords, were capable of adopting. The experiment of the Cadet constitution ended in failure, although the Cadets in the Second Duma behaved in a perfectly Octobrist manner and not only refrained from attacking the government or stirring up the masses against it, but systematically soothed the masses, combating the “Left”, i. e., the parties of the proletariat and the peasantry and openly and vigorously supporting the existing government (the budget, etc.). The experiment of the Cadet constitution failed, in short, not because the Cadets or the government lacked good will, but because the objective contradictions of the Russian revolution proved to be too deep-seated. These contradictions proved to be so profound, that the Cadet bridge was unable to span the gulf. The experiment showed that even with the mass struggle completely suppressed for a time, even with the old regime having a completely free hand in rigging the elections, etc., the peas ant masses (and in a bourgeois revolution the outcome depends. most of all on the peasantry) made demands which no art of diplomacy on the part of the Cadet go betweens was able to adjust to the domination of the privileged landlords. If Mr. Struve now bears malice against the Trudoviks[3] (not to mention the Social-Democrats), and if Rech[4] wages a regular campaign against them, this is no accident, no mere annoyance on the part of a bourgeois advocate whose services have been rejected by the muzhik. It is an inevitable political step in the evolution of the Cadets: they failed to reconcile the landlords with the Trudoviks, consequently (for the bourgeois intelligentsia this is the only possible conclusion) what is necessary is not to rally still broader masses against the land lords, but to lower the demands of the Trudoviks, to make   more concessions to the landlords, to “discard revolutionary utopias”, as Struve and the Rech say, or to stop inventing decisive slogans and forcing the movement, as Mr. Gorn, the new servant of the Cadets, says.

The government accommodates itself to the landlords by placing the elections entirely in their hands and virtually depriving the peasantry of the suffrage. The Cadets accommodate themselves to the landlords by attacking the Trudoviks for their revolutionariness and uncompromising attitude: The non-party politicians, like the contributors to Tovarishch in general and Mr. Gorn in particular, accommodate themselves to the landlords by calling upon the proletariat and the peasantry to “harmonise” (“co-ordinate”, as Mr. Nevedomsky puts it) their policy with that of the Cadets, to enter into a “democratic coalition” with the Cadets, to renounce “decisive slogans”, and so on and so forth.

The government is acting systematically. Step by step it is taking away what has been gained by the “forced movement” and what has been left defenceless during the lull in that movement. Step by step it is trying to find out what “reforms” the landlords could be induced to agree to. Could not the Cadets have done this? Is it owing to interference from the Lefts that the Cadets could not, despite their sincere desire and vain efforts? In that case, the franchise of the “Lefts” will have to be curtailed and the decision placed in the hands of the Octobrists: only if this experiment, too, should fail, will it be necessary to place ourselves entirely in the power of the “Council of the United Nobility”.[5]

There is sense, method, and logic in the actions of he government. It is the logic of the landlord’s class interests. These interests have to be protected; after all, the bourgeois development of Russia has to be safeguarded too.

To carry out these plans the government requires that the interests and movement of the masses should be forcibly suppressed, that they should be deprived of the suffrage and handed over to the tender mercies of the 130,000. Whether it will succeed in carrying out these plans no one can say at present. This question will be answered only by struggle.

We Social-Democrats are answering this question by our struggle. And the Cadets are answering it by struggle ... against the Left. The Cadets are fighting for the government’s solution of this question: they did this systematically in the Second Duma in the parliamentary field. Now, too, they are doing it systematically by their ideological struggle against the Social-Democrats and the Trudoviks.

Of course, to the ordinary Russian intellectual, as well as to any half-educated petty bourgeois, this sounds paradoxical; the Cadets, who call themselves democrats and make liberal speeches, fight for the government solution of the question! It is so obviously incongruous! If they are democrats, then the place for them is the “democratic coalition”! This is such an obvious conclusion for political simpletons, whom even two years of the Russian revolution have not taught to seek the true basis of both the government s measures and the liberals’ spate of talk in the struggle of the different classes. We have any amount of “Marxists” from the intellectual camp who profess the principles of the class struggle while in reality they use purely liberal arguments when talking about the Cadets, about the role of the Duma, and about the boycott! And how many more Cadet votings for the budget will these political simpletons need before they can digest what has long been a familiar sight in Europe, namely, that of a liberal making speeches against the government and sup porting it on every important issue.

The replacement of the Second Duma by the Third is the replacement of the Cadet, who acts in the Octobrist manner, by the Octobrist who acts with the help of the Cadet. Predominant in the Second Duma was the party of the bourgeois intellectuals, who called themselves democrats where the people were concerned and supported the government where the bourgeoisie was concerned. Predominant in the Third Duma will be the landlords and the big bourgeoisie, who hire the bourgeois intellectuals for a make-believe opposition and for business services. This simple truth is borne out by the whole political behaviour of the Cadet Party and by the Second Duma in particular. Even the man in the street has now begun to grasp this simple truth; we shall refer to such a witness as Mr. Zhilkin, whom   it would be absurd to suspect of Bolshevik, sympathies or of prejudiced and uncompromising hostility towards the Cadets.

In today’s issue of Tovarishch (No. 351), Mr. Zhilkin conveys the impressions of a “cheerful” (sic! Mr. Zhilkin understands “cheerfulness” in much the same way as Gorn or Nevedomsky) provincial in the following words:

The Octobrist landlords I spoke to argue as follows: ‘It’s all right to vote for the Cadets. The good thing about them is that they are tractable. In the First Duma they wanted too much. In the Second they hacked down. They even made cuts in their programme. In the Third they’ll give way still more. I daresay they’ll come to some arrangement. Besides, to tell the truth, there isn’t any Octobrist whose election we could ensure.

“‘Letthe Cadets get elected. The difference between us isn’t very great. They are sure to go to the right in the Third Duma.... We’re friendly with the Octobrists out of necessity.... What public speakers or big men do they have?’"

Those who judge of parties by their names, programmes, promises, and speeches, or are content with crude Bernsteinised “Marxism”, which consists in reiterating the axiom about support for bourgeois democracy in a bourgeois revolution, may cherish hopes in regard to a democratic coalition of the Lefts and the Cadets, in the Third Duma. But those with the slightest revolutionary flair and thoughtful attitude towards the lessons of our revolution, or those who are really guided by the principle of tile class struggle and judge of parties by their class character, will not be in the least surprised to find that the party of bourgeois intellectuals is fit only to perform flunkey services for the party of the big bourgeois. The Gorns and Nevedomskys are capable of believing, that the Cadets’ differences with the democrats are an exception, and their differences with the Octobrists a rule. It is exactly the other way round. The Cadets are, true kin to the Octobrists by their very class nature. Cadet democracy is sheer window-dressing, a temporary reflection of the democracy of the masses, or a downright hoax, which the Russian Bernsteinians and petty bourgeois, especially those from the newspaper Tovarishch, fall for.

And so, if you view the matter from this angle, if you grasp the true historical role of the Cadet—that bourgeois   intellectual, who helps the landlord to satisfy the muzhik with a beggarly reform—the whole infinite wisdom of the Gorn and Nevedomsky gentry, who advise the proletariat to harmonise their activity with that of the Cadets, will stand revealed to you! The picture of the Octobrist “reforms”, which we are promised, is quite clear. The landlord “sets up” the muzhik, sets him up in such a manner that the population cannot be induced to accept the reforms without punitive expeditions, without floggings of the peasants and shootings of the workers. The Cadet professor registers opposition: he proves, from the standpoint of the modern science of law, the necessity of constitutionally en forcing the regulations governing punitive expeditions, while blaming the police for being over-zealous. The Cadet lawyer registers opposition: he argues that, according to the law, sixty strokes per man should be given and not 200, and that money should be assigned to the government for birch rods, while stipulating that the law should be observed. The Cadet physician is prepared to count the pulse of the victim of flogging and write a research about the necessity of reducing the upper limit of strokes by half.

Was not the Cadet opposition in the Second Duma of just this kind? And is it not clear that for the sake of such an opposition the Octobrist landlord will not only elect a Cadet to the Duma, but will agree to pay him a professorial or some other kind of salary?

A democratic coalition of socialists and Cadets in the Second Duma, after the Second Duma, or during the Third Duma would in fact, by virtue of the objective state of affairs, only mean turning the workers’ party into a blind arid wretched, adjunct of the liberals, complete betrayal by the socialists of the interests of the proletariat and the interests of the revolution. Very likely, the Nevedomskys and Gorns do not realise what they are doing. With such people convictions are very often not more deeply seated than the tip of their tongues. In effect, their endeavours amount to putting an end to the independent party of the working class, putting an end to Social-Democracy. The Social-Democrats, who understand the tasks confronting them, should put an end to these gentlemen. Unfortunately, among us the concept of bourgeois revolution   is still interpreted in a one-sided manner. We overlook, for example, the fact that this revolution should show the proletariat—and it alone can be the first to show the proletariat—what the bourgeoisie of a given country is in actual fact, what the national peculiarities of the bourgeoisie and the petty bourgeoisie are in the given national bourgeois revolution. The real, definitive, and mass separation of the proletariat as a class, in opposition to all the bourgeois parties, can only occur when the history of its own country reveals to the proletariat the entire character of the bourgeoisie as a class, as a political unit—the entire character of the petty bourgeoisie as a section, as a definite ideological and political unit revealing itself in some open, broadly political activities. We must incessantly explain to the proletariat the theoretical truths about the nature of the class interests of the bourgeoisie and petty bourgeoisie in capitalist society. These truths, however, will be driven home to really broad masses of the proletariat only when these classes will have visible, tangible experience of the behaviour of the parties of one class or another, when the clear realisation of their class nature is supplemented by the immediate reaction of the proletarian mind to the whole character of the bourgeois parties. Nowhere else in the world, probably, has the bourgeoisie revealed in the bourgeois revolution such reactionary brutality, such a close alliance with the old regime, such “freedom” from anything remotely resembling sincere sympathy towards culture, towards progress, towards the preservation of human dignity, as it has with us—so let our proletariat derive from the Russian bourgeois revolution a triple hatred of the bourgeoisie and a determination to fight it. Nowhere else in the world, probably, did the petty bourgeoisie, beginning with the “Popular Socialists”[6] and the Trudoviks and ending with the intellectuals who have wormed themselves into the Social-Democratic movement, display such cowardice and spinelessness in the struggle, such a shameful epidemic of renegade moods, such toadyism towards the heroes of bourgeois fashion or reactionary outrages—so let our proletariat derive from our bourgeois revolution a triple contempt for petty-bourgeois flabbiness and vacillation. No matter how our revolution   may develop, no matter what severe trials our proletariat may at times have to go through,this hatred and this con tempt will help it to close its ranks and rid itself of worth less offshoots of alien classes; it will increase its forces and steel it for dealing the blows with which it will overwhelm the whole of bourgeois society when the time comes.


[1] Obrazovaniye (Education)—a literary, popular-scientific, social and political monthly published in St. Petersburg from 1892 to 1909. In 1906-08, the magazine published articles by Bolsheviks. Issue No. 2 for 1906 contained Chapters V-IX of Lenin’s book The Agrarian Question and the “Critics of Marx” (see present edition, Vol. 5, pp. 103-222).

[2] Burenin’s newspaper—the name given by Lenin to the Black Hundred-monarchist newspaper Novoye Vremya (New Times). Burenin, who contributed to the newspaper, hounded the representatives of all progressive trends.

[3] Trudoviks (from trud—“labour”)—a group of petty-bourgeois democrats, formed in April 1906 from the peasant deputies to the First Duma.

The Trudoviks demanded the abolition of all restrictions based on class or nationality, the democratisation of the Zemstvos and urban self-government bodies, and universal suffrage in the Duma elections. Their agrarian programme was based on the Narodnik principles of “equalised” land tenure; the establishment of a national stock of distributable land, formed from state, crown, and monastery lands, as well as from privately owned lands where they exceeded an established labour standard; compensation being envisaged in the case of alienated private lands. Lenin pointed out in 1906 that the typical Trudovik was a peasant who “is not averse to a compromise with the monarchy, to settling down quietly on his own plot of land under the bourgeois system; but at the present time his main efforts are concentrated on the fight against the landlords for the land, on the fight against the feudal state and for democracy” (see present edition, Vol. 11, p. 229).

In the Duma the Trudoviks vacillated between the Cadets and the Social-Democrats, their vacillations being due to the class nature itself of peasant petty proprietors. Nevertheless, since the Trudoviks represented the peasant masses, the tactics of the Bolsheviks in the Duma were to arrive at agreements with them on individual issues with a view to waging a joint struggle against the Cadets and the tsarist autocracy. In 1917, the Trudovik group   merged with the “Popular Socialist” Party and actively supported the our bourgeois Provisional Government. After the October Socialist Revolution the Trudoviks sided with the bourgeois counter revolution.

[4] Rech (Speech)—a daily newspaper, the central organ of the Cadet Party, published in St.Petersburg from February 23 (March 8), 1906, under the actual editorship of P.N. Milyukov and I.V. Hessen and with the close co-operation of M.M. Vinaver, P.D. Dolgorukov, P.B. Struve, and others. The newspaper was closed down by the Revolutionary Military Committee of the Petrograd Soviet on October 26 (November 8), 1917. It was eventually reissued (up to August 1918) under various names: Nasha Rech (Our Speech), Slobodnaya Rech (Free Speech), Vek (Century), Novaya Rech (New Speech), and Nash Vek (Our Century).

[5] Council of the United Nobility—a counter-revolutionary organisation of reactionary landlords founded in May 1906 at the First Congress of Delegates of the Gubernia Societies of the Nobility; it existed up to October 1917. The chief aim of this organisation was to defend the autocratic regime, landlordism, and the privileges of the nobility. The Council was headed by Count A. A. Bobrinsky, Prince N. F. Kasatkin-Rostovsky, Count D. A. Olsufyev, V. M. Purishkevich, and others. Lenin called the Council of the United Nobility a “council of united feudalists”. The Council virtually became a semi-government body which dictated to the government legislative proposals aimed at defending the interests of the feudalists. During the period of the Third Duma many of its members sat on the Council of State and held key positions in the Black-Hundred organisations.

[6] Popular Socialists—members of the petty-bourgeois Trudovik Popular Socialist Party, which separated from the Right wing of the Socialist-Revolutionary Party in 1906. The P.S.’s stood for partial nationalisation of the land on a redemption basis and the distribution of the land among the peasants according to the “labour standard”. They were in favour of a bloc with the Cadets. Lenin called them “Social-Cadets”, “petty-bourgeois opportunists”, and “Socialist-Revolutionary Mensheviks” who vacillated between the Cadets and the S.R.’s, and he emphasised that this party “differs very little from the Cadets, since it has discarded from its programme both the Republic and the demand for all the land”. The party’s leaders were A.V. Peshekhonov, N.F. Annensky, V.A. Myakotin, and others. After the bourgeois-democratic revolution of February 1917 the Popular Socialist Party merged with the Trudoviks and actively supported the bourgeois Provisional Government, in which it was represented. After the October Socialist Revolution the P.S.’s participated in plots and armed acts against the Soviets. The party went out of existence during the period of foreign military intervention and civil war.

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