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Witness to the German Revolution
In 1923 history stood at a cross roads. Serge unapologetically lent his pen to those fighting for international workers' revolution.

"Serge searingly evokes the epochal hopes and shattering setbacks of a generation of leftists."—Bookforum

Following in the wake of the carnage reaped across Europe by world war, German workers undertook a struggle that would prove decisive in determining the course of the entire twentieth century. In 1923 the fledgling Comintern dispatched Victor Serge, with his peerless journalistic skills, to Berlin to expedite the German Revolution and write these moving reports from the battlefront.

Victor Serge is best known as a novelist and for his Memoirs of a Revolutionary. Originally a participant in the anarchist movement, Serge became a committed bolshevik upon arrival in Russia in 1919 and lent his considerable talents to the cause of spreading the revolution across Europe. An eloquent critic of tyranny no matter its form, Serge was a leading member of the Left Opposition in its struggle against Stalin, a cause which ultimately resulted in his exile from Russia.

Reviews
  • "The novels, poems, memoirs and other writings of Victor Serge are among the finest works of literature inspired by the October Revolution that brought the working class to power in Russia in 1917. But young radicals often have only a vague sense of him -- and sometimes not even that. The appearance of two collections of his work in Haymarket editions is a welcome development. It's never too late for activists to discover Serge, but when you do, it feels like a revelation ...

    His articles -- like the work of John Reed, his American friend -- let us follow revolutionary events as they unfold, as seen through he eyes of an exceptionally alert journalist ... Serge is sensitive to the shifts in mood and outlook among people that take place during social upheaval. Such transformations, while very rapid, are also very deep.

    With Serge, you feel that. And he had the talent, as well as the courage, to record the changes within himself that happened along the way."
    — Scott McLemee, socialistworker.og
  • "The novels, poems, memoirs and other writings of Victor Serge are among the finest works of literature inspired by the October Revolution that brought the working class to power in Russia in 1917. But young radicals often have only a vague sense of him -- and sometimes not even that. The appearance of two collections of his work in Haymarket editions is a welcome development. It's never too late for activists to discover Serge, but when you do, it feels like a revelation ...

    His articles -- like the work of John Reed, his American friend -- let us follow revolutionary events as they unfold, as seen through he eyes of an exceptionally alert journalist ... Serge is sensitive to the shifts in mood and outlook among people that take place during social upheaval. Such transformations, while very rapid, are also very deep.

    With Serge, you feel that. And he had the talent, as well as the courage, to record the changes within himself that happened along the way."
    — Scott McLemee, socialistworker.og

Related blog posts View all related posts

  • Victor Serge, The Unconquered

    William Giraldi for The Baffler

    Some writers are destined to have two deaths—the first in life, and the second in memory. The lucky ones can be resurrected from that second death by cultural circumstance and the aid of overseeing angels, irked by injustice, believing these Lazaruses should be helped from their tombs. In 2004, Susan Sontag opened her essay “Unextinguished” with this query, much to the present case: “How to explain the obscurity of one of the most compelling of twentieth-century ethical and literary heroes, Victor Serge?”



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Other books by Victor Serge

  • Life and Death of Leon Trotsky

    A biography of Leon Trotsky by two of his close friends and collaborators
  • Year One of the Russian Revolution

    Serge exposes the heart of the vital first year of the most important working class revolution in history.
  • Revolution In Danger

    Assailed by counter-revolution from within and without, Victor Serge brings to life the unwavering revolutionary commitment of red Petrograd.