The Legacy of the October Revolution
This article discusses the lasting legacy for the Left today of the October Revolution and of the role played by the Bolshevik party. It argues that the October Revolution was motivated by a widespread popular determination to realize the goals of the February liberal-democratic revolution in the face of the imminent threat of counterrevolution at the hands of political forces allied with the propertied classes. The leadership provided in October by the Bolshevik party, a predominantly workers’ movement, was far from a criminal, ideologically motivated act, as often presented by historians. It provided the workers and peasants with the political leadership that they both needed and desired, and did so in full cognizance of the daunting odds that this new revolution faced.