V. I.   Lenin

Draft Letter of the Bolshevik Centre to the Council of the School on Capri[1]

Written: Written between August 5 and 17 (18 and 30), 1909
Published: First published in 1933 in Lenin Miscellany XXV. Published according to the manuscript.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1973, Moscow, Volume 15, pages 470-471.
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

The Executive Commission of the Bolshevik Centre is extremely glad to receive the statement of the “Council of the Party School on Capri” of August 16, 1909, that it has no objection to “ideological control” by the B.C.

But in order to decide whether the B.C. can undertake this control and make it effective, whether it can give help to the school in the form of lecturers and funds as the Council writes, it is necessary to know in detail all about the school. But the B.C. knows nothing in detail about it.

While the Council of the school could discuss (as it writes) the attitude of the school to the B.C., knowing the B.C.’s views from printed resolutions and from Proletary, knowing the composition of the B.C. from its former members, the B.C. itself is not in a position to discuss the question of its attitude to the request from the Council of the school: for the B.C. knows nothing about (1) the Council of the school, (2) the executive commission of the school, (3) the school’s curriculum (the executive commission of the school promised to send it, but did not do so), (4) the present composition of the lecturers at the school and (5) students at the school, (6) the present funds of the school, (7) how long the course is expected to last, (8) to what extent the students are tied down to the particular place in which the school is being held, i. e., the Island of Capri, (9) whether the students of the school could come to Paris (about which three members of the B. C. wrote to them in their own name), for what period, etc.

Without possessing such information, the B.C. at the present stage can only say one thing: the B.C. is ready to give   every help in the form of literature and lectures to all members of Social-Democratic organisations functioning in Russia, as well as to all comrades delegated by those organisations, in acquiring a Social-Democratic outlook on the world; and it does not refuse financial aid within the limits of its possibilities, and after discussion of this question in connection with aid to local organisations.

The B.C. herewith officially forwards to the Council of the school (1) a file of Proletary, Nos. 39-46, (2) the B. C.’s letter about the school (printed), (3) the resolutions of the B.C.

With Social-Democratic greetings, The Executive Commission of the Extended Editorial Board ofProletary


[1] Lenin wrote this draft letter in reply to that of the Council of the otzovist-ultimatumist school on Capri addressed to the Bolshevik Centre (the extended editorial board of Proletary) soliciting aid for the school in the form of lecturers and funds.

The manuscript has no heading. The present heading has been given by the Institute of Marxism-Leninism.

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