George Walford: Modesty

To Comrades Andreyev and Smirnova. I am decisively against publishing Tales of Stalin’s Childhood. The book is full of factual errors. But that’s not the main thing. The main thing is that the book has a tendency to instill in the minds of the Soviet people (and people in general) a cult of personalities, of leaders and infallible heroes. That is dangerous and harmful. The theory of “heroes” and the “crowd” is not a Bolshevik one but is SR [Socialist Revolutionary]. . . The people make better heroes, the Bolsheviks reply. I advise you to burn the book.

In February 1938. (Signed:) Stalin

(Quoted by David Remnick reviewing Stalin, Triumph and Tragedy, by Dmitri Volkogonov (Grove Weidenfeld) in NYR 30 November).


‘WHOEVER hugs me and calls me brother is a usurper and a tyrant; I declare them to be my enemy.’ (E. B. Funck in Anarchy #34)

from Ideological Commentary 59, February 1993.