V. I.   Lenin




Published: First published in 1964 in Collected Works, Fifth (Russian) Ed., Vol. 47. Sent from Kuokkala to St. Petersburg. Printed from the original. Translated from the French.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, [1977], Moscow, Volume 43, pages 174-175a.
Translated: Martin Parker and Bernard Isaacs
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive (2005). 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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March 1(14), 1907

Dear M. Avenard,

Thank you for your letter.

I would ask you to make the following corrections:

(1) Page 6 (No. 1). You quote me as saying: “not to work for the bourgeois revolution which would dupe the working class”.

This is most inaccurate. We Social-Democratic revolutionaries must not only work for the bourgeois revolution but we must lead it, direct it, together with the peasantry, against tsarism and against the liberals.

Perhaps it would be better to say: “... in joint work, not with the liberal bourgeoisie, who want to put an end to the revolution, but with the democratic peasantry, against the baseness and treachery of the bourgeoisie, who are day by day becoming more and more counter revolutionary”.

We Bolsheviks also stand for the participation of the proletariat in the bourgeois revolution. But we believe, with Karl Kautsky, that it is precisely together with the peasants and by no means with the liberals that the proletariat can carry the bourgeois revolution to a victorious conclusion.

(2) Pages 3–4.

Stolypin’s article in Novoye Vremya[2] appeared on January 4 (old style) and not on January 6.

(3) It is necessary to add that Milyukov visited Stolypin on January 15.

(4) The last words of your article: “... countless masses of peasant proletarians.”

Not “peasant proletarians” but “democratic peasants”. In the social (socialist) revolution we can count only on the proletarians of the cities and the proletarians of the countryside. At the present time, however, we have not a social revolution in Russia, but a bourgeois revolution. And it is only the proletariat together with the peasants, together with the democratic peasantry, together with the broad masses of the peasantry, who can bring such a revolution to victory.

N. Lenin

P.S. I received your letter very late. I have only a few minutes to spare. Forgive this hurried reply.


[1] Etienne Avenard was a correspondent of l’Humanité who had interviewed Lenin on February 17 (March 2), 1907, on the subject, “Tactics of the R.S.D.L.P. in the Election Campaign”, and sent the text of the interview for Lenin to look over.

As can be seen from the interview as carried by l’Humanité all of Lenin’s corrections and comments were taken into account by the correspondent (see present edition, Vol. 12, pp. 145–51).

L’Humanité—a daily founded in 1904 by Jean Jaurès as the organ of the French Socialist Party. During the imperialist world war (1914–18) the newspaper took a social-chauvinist position.

In 1918 Marcel Cachin, the prominent leader of the French and international working-class movement, became its political director. Since December 1920, after the French Socialist Party split and the French Communist Party was formed, the paper has been the Central Organ of the latter.

[2] Novoye Vremya (New Times)—a daily published in St. Petersburg from 1868 to 1917. At first moderate liberal, it turned into a mouthpiece of reactionary groupings of the nobility and the bureaucratic officialdom after A. S. Suvorin became its publisher in 1876. From 1905 it was the organ of the Black Hundreds.

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