What Is to Be Done? in Context
Lars T. Lih
This substantial new commentary, based on contemporary Russian- and German-language sources, provides hitherto unavailable contextual information that undermines these views and shows how Lenin's argument rests squarely on an optimistic confidence in the workers' revolutionary inclinations and on his admiration of German Social Democracy in particular. Lenin's outlook cannot be understood, Lih claims here, outside the context of international Social Democracy, the disputes within Russian Social Democracy and the institutions of the revolutionary underground.
The new translation focuses attention on hard-to-translate key terms. This study raises new and unsettling questions about the legacy of Marx, Bolshevism as a historical force, and the course of Soviet history, but, most of all, it will revolutionise the conventional interpretations of Lenin.
Irwin T. Sanders
The major articles in this issue derive from a colloquium on The Social Stratification of the Balkan Town held at Boston University, May, 1978. Since very little work has been done on this topic it was necessary for the authors to present material which has not been previously assembled and systematized. Of course, a few papers cannot adequately cover a theme so broad and for an area as diversified as the Balkans. Yet, it seems appropriate to ask what these studies in combination tell us about stratification in the urban areas of Southeastern Europe. Have they advanced our knowledge? Do they point to any useful conclusions? At the risk of taking some statements out of context or even of over-generalization I shall set forth what seem to me to be some useful findings, particularly about various social strata.*