M. M. KORONEN. Lenin and the Finnish Revolutionaries
The article vividly describes the interrelations between V. I. Lenin and the Finnish revolutionaries in the period preceding the October Revolution in Russia. The working people of Finland rendered a truly inestimable service to the Bolshevik Party and the entire international revolutionary movement by their selfless efforts to protect V. I. Lenin from the grave danger threatening his life throughout the period of the preparation and carrying out of the Great October Socialist Revolution. All in all, Lenin visited Finland on twenty six occasions and spent more than three years in that country, fleeing from persecution by the tsarist police, emigrating there or coming back to Russia. V. I. Lenin closely followed the development of the revolutionary movement m Finland. O. A. Engberg, A. V. Shaiman, V. I. Borg, J. Sirola, G. Rovio, E. A. Rahja, K. Ahmala and many other Finnish revolutionaries repeatedly met Lenin and helped him as much as they could in the difficult conditions of the underground.
K. L. SELEZNEV. New Documents from the History of the Communist League
Examining the present state of research into the history of the Communist League in the period between the First and Second Congresses (June-November 1847), the author points out that many important aspects of activity of this first proletarian party have remained unknown to this day owing to the almost complete absence of documentary sources. That explains the first-rate scientific significance attached to last year's discovery in the Manuscript Department of the State and University Library in Hamburg, among J. Martens' papers, of a number of extremely important documents of the League (a draft copy of the Communist Symbol of Faith and the Rules adopted by the First Congress, as well as three circular letters of the Central Committee highlighting the proceedings of the First Congress and the League's activity from the spring to September 1847) and to their recent publication.
The author carefully analyzes the significance of these five documents, comparing them with the previous documents of the League of the Just and with the subsequent "Principles of Communism" by Frederick Engels and the Rules endorsed by the Second Congress, while at the same time emphasizing the role of Karl Marx and Frederick Engels in reorganizing the League, in cementing its ranks and formulating its ideological and organizational Communist principles.
M. I. IS AYE V and O. B. GOBETI. The Development of National Languages in the U.S.S.R. as Reflected by Bourgeois Authors
The article exposes the falsification by bourgeois scientists of historical facts concerning the Soviet Union's policy of promoting the development of the national languages. One of the trend that is being subjected to gross distortions comprises numerous questions connected with the introduction of the Latin alphabet in the written languages of many Soviet peoples and nationalities. In the early years of Soviet power many peoples and nationalities in the U.S.S.R. voluntarily adopted the simple Latin alphabet as the basis of their written languages, which largely contributed to the spread of literacy, cultural
advancement and general progress of the formerly backward peoples of Russia. Many bourgeois critics deliberately ignore this objective fact and try to allege that what actually took place in the U.S.S.R. was the forcible replacement of many alphabets with the aim of "divorcing peoples from their cultural heritage." Another problem of major significance consists in correctly interpreting the fact of adopting (also on the initiative of the peoples concerned) the Russian alphabet as the basis of most of the written languages existing in the U.S.S.R. Here too the bourgeois critics deliberately overlook the vast progressive significance of this step and go out of their way to distort the truth.
M. I. Isayev and O. B. Gobeti make it abundantly clear that the attempts of bourgeois authors to distort the objective facts connected with the practical implementation of the Leninist policy of promoting the development of the national languages are doomed in advance. The Soviet Union's achievements in evolving and developing national written languages are gaining ever wider recognition; our experience in solving national and language problems is being closely studied by the working people and progressive leaders of all countries.
E. N. KOMAROV. Mahatma Gandhi and the Russian Revolution
The 1905 - 1907 revolutionary events in Russia, the victory of the socialist revolution in October 1917 and the building of socialism in the U.S.S.R. made a powerful impact on Mahatma Gandhi and greatly influenced the formation of his socio-political views.
The first Russian revolution of 1905 - 1907 brought Gandhi close to the idea of launching a mass political struggle against British domination in India. A useful role in India's national-liberation movement at the beginning of the 20th century was played by certain critical elements in the teaching expounded by Leo Tolstoy, who reflected the powerful liberating surge of the rising revolution in Russia in his own peculiar way. Leo Tolstoy's appeals to the people of India and to Gandhi himself contained above all a call to struggle against the colonial oppression, and his preachment "to refrain from resisting evil by violence" merely suggested definite forms of this struggle which, for a number of reasons examined in the article, appeared to Gandhi as the only acceptable ones.
The influence of the Great October Socialist Revolution and of the achievements of socialism in the U.S.S.R. found its manifestation primarily in the progressive evolution of Gandhi's social views. While continuing to share in many respects the ideological and political positions of bourgeois nationalism as a representative of an oppressed nation, he proposed in 1946 - 1947 a series of measures aimed at effecting a democratic transformation of Indian society which went far beyond the bounds of bourgeois interests.
A. P. PRONSTEIN. The Problem of Interpreting Historical Sources
The article examines the question of interpreting historical sources, disclosing their meaning, constructions, formulas, symbols and texts. Citing concrete examples,' the author graphically proves that interpretation is an important element of the process of investigating historical sources. Grammatical research must be complemented by bringing out the content of diverse terms, legal norms and clausules, by disclosing the concrete direct or figurative meaning of one or another historical monument, especially in cases admitting several interpretations.
Although the methods of interpretation may vary widely depending on the form and content of the given sources, this work can prove successful only if they are examined in close connection with the specific historical conditions attending the emergence of these sources. And lastly, the significance of interpretation is determined by the fact that only on its basis is it possible to establish the exactness and authenticity of the information contained in a given source, or, in other words, to proceed towards inner criticism of the sources.
A. Y. SHEVELENKA The Geographical Factor and European Society in the 5th-10th Centuries
The social role of natural environment is very limited; the chief factor determining mankind's development is the mode of production of material values. But geographical environment is the natural basis of labour activity. The farther a society advances, the weaker becomes its direct dependence on Nature. During the early feudal period in Europe geographical environment played an essential role. The mountains preserved the traditional mode of life of the Highlanders, the islands caused isolation of the island population, the general warming of the climate in the first millennium of our era prompted many tribes to change their geographical environment and move to other places, the disappearance of the ice from the North Atlantic contributed to the settlement of Iceland and Greenland, the spread of the steppelands attracted Asian nomads to Europe, the vast tracts of forest-steppe land were conducive to the development of agriculture among the Slav peoples, the abundance of mineral resources stimulated social progress. Man's contacts with Nature manifested themselves in the establishment of different socio-ecological systems in which the geographical factor played the role of limiter and regulator. This influence of Nature was complicated by the counterinfluences of the economic basis and the political-ideological superstructure. The class struggle likewise introduced essential correctives. The interaction of all the forces operating in Europe during that period exerted a decisive influence on the sphere of agriculture, contributing to the progress of farming. There appeared a number of new domestic animals and plants. Important changes also occurred in wild flora and fauna. Certain modifications took place in the human organism. Men's reverse influence on Nature substantially altered European landscapes. On the whole, people in the 5th-10th centuries made a big step forward in gaining control over Nature, thereby contributing to the development of the feudal mode of production. The author cites a number of convincing examples to illustrate the points discussed in the article.
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