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Vanguard of the revolution : the global idea of the Communist Party

Author: A James McAdams
Publisher: Princeton : Princeton University Press, [2017] ©2017
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
The first comprehensive political history of the communist partyVanguard of the Revolution is a sweeping history of one of the most significant political institutions of the modern world. The communist party was a revolutionary idea long before its supporters came to power. In this book, A. James McAdams argues that the rise and fall of communism can be understood only by taking into account the origins and  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Electronic books
History
Additional Physical Format: Print version:
McAdams, A. James.
Vanguard of the revolution.
Princeton : Princeton University Press, 2017
(DLC) 2017941546
(OCoLC)974676721
Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: A James McAdams
ISBN: 9781400888498 1400888492
OCLC Number: 999727747
Language Note: In English.
Description: 1 online resource (xvii, 564 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates) : illustrations
Contents: Cover; Title; Copyright; Dedication; CONTENTS; Preface; Note; Abbreviations; 1 Introduction; 2 A Revolutionary Idea; 3 A Revolutionary Party Emerges; 4 Internationalizing the Party Idea; 5 Creating the Leninist Party; 6 A Different Type of Party; 7 Monolithic Socialism; 8 Rediscovering the Leninist Idea; 9 The Charismatic Leader and the Party; 10 The Revolution Returns; 11 The Party Comes Back; 12 The Party in Peril; 13 The Party Vanishes; Photo Credits; Notes; Suggested Readings (Books in English); Index.
Responsibility: A. James McAdams.

Abstract:

The first comprehensive political history of the communist partyVanguard of the Revolution is a sweeping history of one of the most significant political institutions of the modern world. The communist party was a revolutionary idea long before its supporters came to power. In this book, A. James McAdams argues that the rise and fall of communism can be understood only by taking into account the origins and evolution of this compelling idea. He shows how the leaders of parties in countries as diverse as the Soviet Union, China, Germany, Yugoslavia, Cuba, and North Korea adapted the original ideas of revolutionaries like Karl Marx and Vladimir Lenin to profoundly different social and cultural settings. Taking readers from the drafting of The Communist Manifesto in the 1840s to the dissolution of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, McAdams describes the decisive role played by individual rulers in the success of their respective parties--men like Joseph Stalin, Mao Zedong, and Fidel Castro. He demonstrates how these personalities drew on vying conceptions of the party's functions to mesmerize their followers, mobilize their populations, and transform their societies. He also shows how many of these figures abused these ideas to justify incomprehensible acts of inhumanity. McAdams explains why communist parties lasted as long as they did, and why they either disappeared or ceased to be meaningful institutions by the close of the twentieth century. The first comprehensive political history of the communist party, Vanguard of the Revolution is essential reading for anyone seeking to understand world communism and the captivating idea that gave it life.

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"McAdams wrestles with a . . . profound puzzle: How was it, given the failure of Marx's prophecies, that his ideas continued to animate communist parties and eventually led them to power in 24 Read more...

 
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