Few political figures of the twentieth century have aroused as much controversy as the Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky Trotsky s extraordinary life and extensive writings have left an indelible mark on revolutionary conscience, yet there was a danger that his name would disappear from history Originally published in 1954, Deutscher s magisterial three volume biographyFew political figures of the twentieth century have aroused as much controversy as the Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky Trotsky s extraordinary life and extensive writings have left an indelible mark on revolutionary conscience, yet there was a danger that his name would disappear from history Originally published in 1954, Deutscher s magisterial three volume biography was the first major publication to counter the powerful Stalinist propaganda machine In this definitive biography Trotsky emerges in his real stature, as the most heroic, and ultimately tragic, character of the Russian Revolution This second volume of the trilogy, first published in 1959, is a self contained account of the great struggle between Stalin and Trotsky that followed the end of the civil war in Russia in 1921 and the death of Lenin From the narrative of Trostsky s uncompromising opposition to Stalin s policies emerge character studies of the important Soviet leaders a brilliant portrait of Trotsky the man of ideas, the Marxist philosopher and literary critic and a new assessment of the causes of defeat which led to his expulsion from the party, his exile, and his banishment from Russia.
The Prophet Unarmed Trotsky Few political figures of the twentieth century have aroused as much controversy as the Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky Trotsky s extraordinary life and extensive writings have left an indelible mar
I came away with five things from the second volume of Isaac Deutscher s incomparable Trotsky biography The Prophet Unarmed Some of these thoughts are new to me, some of them are solidifications of ideas or opinions I already had, but they are what I leave this book with and, I think, worth sharing.5 Stalin destroyed the promise of Engels, Marx and Lenin He stained communism And he provided capitalism with the ugliness it needed to vilify communism in the minds of their own, potentially dangerou [...]
This was as great as expected, recommended from a generation of writers and thinkers who cut their teeth on this one It is not really a biography but historical drama, with politics as its focus, and Trotsky the main star It would be a mistake to avoid this, feeling that you need to have a position on communism It is not necessary at every step of the way Deutscher pitches his story at the level of monumental stakes where millions of lives are concerned, and how one brilliant man came to terms t [...]
As riveting as a biography can get Deutscher bests his effort in The Prophet Armed by sympathetically giving Trotsky his due without prostrating himself before the revolutionary s legacy He manages to frankly address Trotsky s inconsistencies and shortcomings both as a political theorist and as a man while also extolling his many virtues This balance allows the reader to comfortably come to their own conclusion about Trotsky s most turbulent period, feeling that they are evaluating a three dimen [...]
The Prophet Unarmed Trotsky 1921 1929This is the middle volume of Isaac Deautscher s magisterial political biography, a fascinating account of ideology vs Realpolitik Trotsky was by my lights an evil genius considering the system he had a hand in creating who got creamed by an incomparably brutal evil genius and thus becomes a sympathetic figure Stalin was no aberration the revolution was not betrayed, it just devoured its own Dated, of course, but for that very reason it remains trenchant near [...]
Reading The Prophet Unarmed is a bit like watching a horror movie in which the protagonist a man taking his family on vacation continues to drive down an ominous country road despite repeated warnings that a dangerous madman may be on the loose You want to scream at the screen, What the fuck are you doing, man Don t you know he s going to kill you He s going to kill ALL of you While reading Deutscher s excellent biography, it s important to keep in mind that the personal tragedy of Leon Trotsky [...]
In 1984 when I and Linda Harrington went to visit Mother and her new husband, Egil, we stayed for a while at their home on a mountain lake north of Oslo Hilly farm country, she told me that there was still one farmer up there who remembered when Leon Trotsky lived briefly in the area during his exile from the Soviet Union, after Turkey and before Mexico At my insistence, she introduced me to the fellow, their neighbor, but his English and my Norwegian were so bad that not much was exchanged beyo [...]
I continue to be amazed at how well written and fascinating this biography of Trotsky is.Even the relatively tedious details of variouspolitical differences are made interesting andimportant in this life I have to find other biographical works by the author scholar when I ve finished this trilogy.
Full review to come at Volume 3.
The second volume of Deutschler s monumental Trotsky biography tells the story of the power struggle between Trotsky and Stalin following Lenin s death, the clash of economic and political theories as much as a series of inner party wire pulling and shameless public propaganda, which eventually lead to Trotsky s exile This was the real life game of thrones.I am not a fan of biographies, but this gripping thrilling exciting book was love for the first sight from the moment I read the first page i [...]
Also an incredibly dramatic biography In the Prophet Armed we see the masses of Russia deafen history with their voices Trotsky manages to hit their resonating frequency and is thrust into the fore front of history By the end of the first book war and famine have taken their toll and the masses fall silent This is the context for Trotsky s defeat within Russia I should say, one gets a kind of nuance from reading these biographies as with other classics on the Russian revolution Ten Days that Sho [...]
I just finished reading The Prophet Unarmed Trotsky 1921 1929 Great book by Isaac Deutscher Trotsky denounced the bureaucratic degeneration of the workers state and he confronted Stalin s monolithic and infallibly led party with the demand for freedom of expression, debate and criticism, believing that on these alone could and should voluntary and genuine communist discipline be based Love the analogy with the French Revolution and the Thermidorian reaction that was threatening the Russian Revol [...]
This is Volume II of Deutscher s three volume of Trotsky, covering the middle period of his political life, culminating in his exile to Constantinople An amazing story filled with giants and eminently readable, it tracks all the alliances and machinations of a huge cast over the period from 1921 to 1928 An excellent and instructive book.
Deutscher displays the precise amount of sympathy needed for understanding His recurring theme of trotsky as a prophet is well supported, so well supported that it has almost become the dominant interpretation of Trotsky by those not determined to depict him, Lenin, and others as demonic.
So far the most interesting part of Trotsky s career is not as a revolutionary and at his best, but why he stood silent at with hindsight key moments At Lenin s death, at a major committee meeting, etc And here you can also see Stalin sowing the seeds for future destruction.
What an amazing man.
this was my fault i grabbed the middle volume in a set Trotsky still had one hell of a life, tho i just don t know how it began or ended.
Really interesting history by the master of Trotsky If you like history and want to understand some of the torturous history of modern day Russia, this is essential stuff Heavy, but interesting.
like i said, the gentle spirit of karmic retribution visits all even those with principles.