V. I.   Lenin



Written: Written on December 2, 1921
Published: First published in 1959 in Lenin Miscellany XXXVI. Printed from the original.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, Progress Publishers, 1976, Moscow, Volume 45, pages 392b-393a.
Translated: Yuri Sdobnikov
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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Members of the Politbureau


Having now fully read the platform “We Are Collectivists” (Vperyod-ites, Bogdanov-ites, Proletcult people, etc.),[1] I have finally come to the conclusion that it would be unquestionably useful for us and necessary to print it as a pamphlet in 2,000–3,000 copies, with the most circumstantial critique, with an addition of an article on Bogdanov’s political statements in 1917, etc.

I propose that a number of authors should be asked to write a pamphlet under the editorship of Bukharin, who should be authorised to share it out between the authors, obtain their manuscripts within two weeks and show the Politbureau in proof, (This is also necessary for foreign countries.)

1) C.C. circulars about Proletcults.

2) “We Are Collectivists”.

3) Bukharin’s article from Pravda.

4) A few more articles analysing the platform.



[1] This platform was an anonymous document expressing the views of some intellectuals, and was issued for the Second All-Russia Proletcult Congress held in Moscow in November 1921. They cast doubt on the socialist character of the October Revolution and came out against the policy of the Communist Party and the Soviet Government; in philosophy they stood up for Machist and Bogdanovite “theories”, and in politics adopted the views of the opportunist Workers’ Opposition. The communist group   of the Second Proletcult Congress condemned the “collectivist” platform, and dissociated itself from it.

Proletcult (Proletarian Culture Organisation) was set up in September 1917 as an independent workers’ organisation. Proletcult, whose direction was in the hands of A. Bogdanov and his supporters, continued, even after the October Revolution, to maintain its “independence”, thereby setting itself up in opposition to the Communist Party and the proletarian state. It was not a homogeneous organisation: alongside bourgeois intellectuals, who dominated many of its organisations, there were young workers who were sincerely desirous of taking part in cultural construction. In a number of his works, Lenin sharply criticised Proletcult’s erroneous views. Proletcult organisations were most widespread in 1919, but declined in the early 1920s and were dissolved in 1932.

Lenin’s proposal for a pamphlet exposing the “collectivist” platform was adopted by the Politbureau of the R.C.P.(B.) C.C. on December 3, 1921.

The “C.C. circulars” mentioned in the text are the R.C.P.(B.) C.C. letter “On the Proletcults” (see Pravda No. 270, December 1, 1920) and the Politbureau’s decision on the Proletcults of November 22, 1921, published in Izvestia R.C.P.(B.) C.C. No. 38 for 1921.

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