John Reed: The Making of a Revolutionary

By Granville Hicks; John Stuart | Go to book overview
Save to active project

XIX
DISCIPLINE

REED'S resignation from the Liberator, his work as contributing editor of the Revolutionary Age, and his close identification with the leaders of the left wing were natural stages in the transition from the task of giving information about Bolshevism in Russia to the task of organizing Bolshevism in America. It was an easy transition because Russia was the touchstone that divided the right from the left in the Socialist Party. In the winter of 1918-19, Bolshevism was the great topic of debate, not so much between Socialists and one-hundred-percent Americans as between Socialists and Socialists.

Joseph Shaplen was one of the few right-wing Socialists who had been in Russia during the revolution, and the Revolutionary Age invited him to debate with Reed. He refused, on the ground that the Revolutionary Age was fighting the Socialist Party; he would, he said, debate under the auspices of a Socialist local. It made little difference to Reed who sponsored the meeting, and on March 6, in the Manhattan Lyceum, the debate took place. Shaplen, of course, argued that the Bolshevik regime was undemocratic. Reed replied, "The Bolsheviki believe in democracy of the working class, and no democracy for anybody else," and proceeded to show the sensitiveness of the soviets to the will of the workers and peasants. He cited Marx's views on the dictatorship of the proletariat, which Shaplen and other right-wing Socialists had contrived to forget, and offered statistics on the productivity of industry under working-class control.

In the heat of the debate Reed forgot the rules of parliamentary procedure and used the last five minutes of his rebuttal to

-342-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
John Reed: The Making of a Revolutionary
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 448

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?