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The Rise and Fall of Communism in Russia$
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Robert V. Daniels

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780300106497

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300106497.001.0001

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Revolution from the Inside

Revolution from the Inside

Trotsky's Conception of the Process

(p.83) Chapter 7 Revolution from the Inside
The Rise and Fall of Communism in Russia

Robert Daniels

Yale University Press

One reason why Russian radicals were interested in Marxism at the turn of the century was the attraction of its quasi-scientific laws of progress towards utopia, even though the doctrine was difficult to apply to a country that seemed unprepared for proletarian revolution and socialism. Leon Trotsky articulated a broad theory of the nature of revolution, but the events which he tried to understand and in which he was involved actually led to his downfall. For Trotsky, revolution was a long but interconnected process of political and social struggle. This chapter explores Trotsky's conception of the process of revolution in the context of the Russian Revolution of 1917. It discusses Marxism in Russia and its flawed notion of revolution, Karl Marx's theory of revolution, the connection between revolution and capitalism, Trotsky's “theory of permanent revolution” or “uninterrupted revolution,” Thermidor and the rise of postrevolutionary dictatorship in Russia, and Trotsky's view of the War Communism.

Keywords:   revolution, Marxism, Leon Trotsky, Russian Revolution, Russia, Karl Marx, theory of permanent revolution, Thermidor, dictatorship, Communism

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