Ronald W. Clark Lenin

ISBN 13: 9780060158026

Lenin

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9780060158026: Lenin
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An account of Lenin's impact on the course of twentieth-century history, with recollections from Bertrand Russell, traces Lenin's beginnings, politicization, narrow escapes, life in exile, and orchestration of the Bolshevik revolution and subsequent civil war

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From Publishers Weekly:

Lenin approved of armed robbery and forgery to fund the Bolshevik cause. He was impressed by Stalin at their first meeting and helped the latter obtain a position of power. Far from being a supreme dogmatist, Lenin had a surprising talent for bending with the wind. Yet, as late as January 1917, he was obtusely pessimistic about the chances for political and social upheaval in Russia. These are some of Clark's findings in this brilliant, dispassionate biography that separates the man from the myths which cling to him. Biographer of Einstein, Freud, Darwin and Bertrand Russell, Clark (who died shortly after completing this book) argues that Russia might never have recovered form the ravages of WW I if Lenin had not imposed a ruthless reorganization on his country. But the Bolshevik leader's administrative ability, so rare in a revolutionary, must be measured against the bloody terror he endorsed, the author acknowledges. Though his tone is brisk and businesslike, Clark conveys the human side of a zealot whose strong attraction to comrade Inessa Armand apparently prompted his wife Krupskaya to suggest that they separate. Photos.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal:

Even though he has not made any great archival breakthroughs, Clark's posthumously published study holds up well against the most distinguished biography published in the last 20-plus years, Adam Ulam's The Bolsheviks ( 1965). His focus is more personal: He considers Lenin the human being, as well as Lenin the revolutionary thinker and strategist. There are no huge surprises here, and Clark concludes that Lenin "was certainly a genius in the concentration and ability that he devoted to the one single ambition of his life, the restructuring of Russian society. . . His success in Russia was beyond doubt." Some might feel Stalin was the more "successful" in this endeavor. This judicious work by the author of studies of Freud, Einstein, and Darwin should become a standard. R.H. Johnston, McMaster Univ., Hamilton, Ontario
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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