Leon Trotsky

On Audacity[1]

(March 1936)

Written: March 1936.
Publisher: From Revolutionary History, Vol.7 No.1.
Translated: Ted Crawford.
Online Version: Marxists Internet Archive, 2002.
Transcribed: Ted Crawford.
HTML Markup: David Walters.

30 March 1936

Dear comrade Dauge,

I have just got Action Socialiste Revolutionnaire of the 28 March with the sharp reply to the threats of Plumat. [2] That is to say the POB. The situation is becoming clearer – not only for the ASR but also for Godefroid. He cannot slip away. He must take a position.

I am sure that in every European country as in America and elsewhere there are numerous groups of friends who directly or indirectly follow your struggle and who will be proud of the courageous attitude of the ASR.

If prudence was needed until yesterday, today the overriding rule is the advice of Danton [3], who called for “de l’audace, encore de l’audace et toujours de l’audace” (audacity, more audacity and always audacity).


1. Letter to Dauge. Houghton Library Harvard (7667). Original in French

2. A Belgian weekly gives an account, from Dauge’s pen, of a meeting of the Federal Committee of the Borinage in the course of which the secretary of the federation, Plumat, had violently attacked Dauge’s candidature saying that it was incompatible with his role running the Action Socialiste Revolutionnaire. Dauge replied with great vigour that he would envisage subscribing to a party programme which had been democratically discussed and decided on but this was evidently not the case.

3. Georges Danton (1759-1794) had made his historic speech to the legislative assembly, 2 September 1792, on “the country in danger” and the necessity for audacity.

Trotsky on Belgium

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Last updated on: 22.2.2007