V. I.   Lenin


Written: Written on February 27, 1916
Published: First published in 1929 in Lenin Miscellany XI. Sent from Zurich to Geneva. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1971, Moscow, Volume 36, page 371.
Translated: Andrew Rothstein
Transcription\Markup: R. Cymbala
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive.   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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Dear Comrade,

It is impossible to lecture at the club about the conference which took place, because this will mean publicity, something the organisers of the conference fear more than anything, and specially asked to avoid in every possible way.[1] Consequently, the subject must be changed. I haven’t a clear idea of who will be present at the internationalist club,[2] and therefore find it difficult to choose a subject. I suggest the following: if it is essential to name the subject beforehand, choose some vague title (“Current Affairs” or “Urgent Problems of the Working-Class Movement”, etc.), so that everything could be brought under it. Meanwhile I shall take advice in Geneva, and will prepare for the morning of the 2nd a small report or opening to a discussion.

Au revoir,


[1] A reference to the enlarged conference of the International Socialist Commission held in Berne from February 5 to 9, 1916. Lenin took an active part in the work of the conference: he wrote the “Draft Resolution on the Convocation of the Second Socialist Conference” = and the delegation’s proposals on the terms of representation at the conference (see present edition, Vol. 22, pp. 121–22). Lenin criticised the false internationalism of the Mensheviks; spoke on the discussion of the draft appeal of the I.S.C., “To All Affiliated Parties and Groups”; tabled amendments to the draft of the appeal and made a statement on behalf of the Bolsheviks and the Territorial Executive of the Social-Democratic Party of the Kingdom of Poland and Lithuania against inviting Kautsky, Haase and Bernstein to the Second International Socialist Conference.

Soon after the conference, Lenin circulated among the Bolshevik groups abroad a brief about the meeting, instructing them to start immediate preparations for the forthcoming Second International Socialist Conference.

[2] The internationalist club was organised at Geneva in December 1915 by Left-wing internationalist émigrés.

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