Size: 17.25 x 23 inches
About The Poster: A vintage Russian propaganda poster highlighting Lenin imploring the masses to revolution. An interesting article on investors.com summarizes some of Lenin's early successes thusly,
Propaganda was decisive in the victory of the Bolsheviks in the Russian Revolution of 1917. From its very beginning, "The Soviet state was more permeated with propaganda than any other," wrote University of California historian Peter Kenez in "The Birth of the Propaganda State: Soviet Methods of Mass Mobilization, 1917-1929."
It was astonishing that a ragtag, uncouth band of conspiratorially inclined communists, led by V.I. Lenin, managed to topple the mighty czar of Russia and the weak social democratic government that followed him, decisively taking power in the October 1917 revolution.
But much of it can be explained by their mastery of propaganda, which was stronger, simpler, more centralized, more national and more quickly delivered than that of any of their socialist rivals.
The Bolshevik fascination with propaganda was influenced above all by the propaganda of the French Revolution, particularly the violent rhetoric of Jean-Paul Marat. It also had origins in the mind of Lenin, the man who founded the Communist Party, arising from a single traumatic incident in his life as a 17-year-old in 1887.
Young Lenin's older brother, Alexander Ulyanov, age 21 and a star university student, was caught by the police trying to hurl a bomb into Czar Alexander III's carriage in St. Petersburg, and swiftly tried and hanged in 1887. The event shocked — and within two years radicalized — the younger brother who, rejecting any possibility of sharing that fate, reportedly said:
"No, we will not go that way."
Historian Dmitri Volkogonov, in his 1995 "Lenin: Life and Legacy," derived from a rare examination of the Politburo and Communist Party archives that were opened briefly and promptly shut in the early 1990s, wrote that the event influenced Lenin strongly:
"His remark 'We will not go that way' meant ... that he realized it was not necessary to be a bomb thrower oneself, like the unfortunate Alexander, nor was it necessary to man the barricades oneself, or to put down rebellion oneself, or to go to the front in a civil war oneself. And he would never do any of these things himself. ... The main thing was to command huge, virtually unwitting masses."
And so propaganda to rouse the unwitting masses became key to Lenin's winning the revolution."
Poster is in very good condition, with obvious folds. From a private collection. RARE.