Haymarket Books
Books for changing the world
A personal account of Lenin’s life and thought, written by the woman who knew him best.
Nadezhda Konstantinovna Krupskaya was a founding member of the Russian Bolshevik Party and the wife of Vladimir Lenin from 1898 until his death in 1924. As both his closest political collaborator and personal confidant, Krupskaya offers invaluable insights into the life and thought of the most important leader of the Russian Revolution. The portrait of Lenin that emerges is of a man unwavering in his convictions, but also—contrary to the mythology later woven around him—quick to laugh and tender in his affections.
  • "The nine years of his second emigration had not changed Ilyich a bit. He worked just as hard and as methodically, he took the same keen interest in every little detail, was able to put two and two together and had lost none of his ability to see the truth and face it, no matter how bitter it was. He hated oppression and exploitation as cordially as ever, was just as devoted to the cause of the proletariat, the cause of the working people, and took their interests just as closely to heart. His whole life was bound up with that cause. It came naturally to him, he could not live in any other way ... He was just as fond of nature, of the spring woods, the mountain paths and lakes, the noise of the big cities, the working-class crowd; he loved his comrades, movement, struggle, life in all its numerous facets."
    —From the Introduction

Related blog posts View all related posts

  • The Death Agony of the Monarchy: Russia on the Eve of Revolution

    Tsar Nicholas II of Russia abdicated a hundred years ago today, bringing to an end three centuries of Romanov rule. In this extract from his History of the Russian Revolution, Trotsky describes the final days of Imperial Russia. Incompetent, vain, and almost comically ignorant of the historic events unfolding around it, the Tsarist regime fell, in Trotsky's words, "like rotten fruit."

    Skobelev Square during the February Revolution, by A.M. Gerasimov. Open Source.

    The dynasty fell by shaking, like rotten fruit, before the revolution even had time to approach its first problems. Our portrayal of the old ruling class would remain incomplete if we did not try to show how the monarchy met the hour of its fall.

    Continue Reading