ChapterPDF Available

Commemorating an Event That Never Occurred: Russia’s October in Soviet Ukraine in the 1920s

Authors:

Abstract

In Ukraine, the Bolsheviks faced a real challenge in promoting their revolution in the 1920s. As the Party History journal wrote in its first issue in 1922: ‘There was no October in Ukraine in the real meaning of the word’ for the main events occurred in Russia. Thus there was a pressing need to legitimate Bolsheviks’ power once the Civil War ended in 1921. They could not avoid using October, as it was the central motif in the new power’s mythology throughout the Soviet Union. However, on the other hand, they also had to carefully consider how to make this a date both politically and nationally appropriate for Ukrainians, and how to make it a popular Ukrainian holiday.
Echoes of October
International Commemorations of the
Bolshevik Revolution –
:
Jean-François Fayet, Valérie Gorin
and Stefanie Prezioso
Lawrence & Wishart
London 2017
Echoes of October.indd ii-iii 11/09/2017 08:45:26
Contents
Series Editors’ Foreword 000
Jean-François Fayet, Preface 000
1. Eric Aunoble, Commemorating an Event  at Never
Occurred: Russia’s October in Soviet Ukraine in the 1920s 000
2. Ottokar Luban, e Echoes of the Russian October under
the State of Siege in Germany, October/November 1918 000
3. Kasper Brasn, Celebrating October:  e Transnational
Commemorations of the Tenth Anniversary of the Soviet
Union in Weimar Germany 000
4. Daniel Kowalsky, Exporting Soviet Commemoration:  e
Spanish Civil War and the October Revolution, 1936-1939 000
5. Anastasia Koukouna, Commemorating the October
Revolution in Greece, 1918-1949 000
6. And Liebich, e Mensheviks Commemorate October 000
7. Stephan Rindlisbacher, e Echoes of the Echoes:
Refl ecting the International Commemoration of the
October Revolution in the Newspaper Pravda, 1918-91 000
Lawrence and Wishart Limited
Central Books Building
Freshwater Road
Chadwell Heath
RM8 1RX
© Lawrence & Wishart 2017
Individual articles © author
e authors have asserted their rights under the Copyright, Design
and Patents Act, 1998 to be identifi ed as the authors of this work.
All rights reserved. Apart from fair dealing for the purpose
of private study, research, criticism or review, no part of this
publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or
transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, electrical,
chemical, mechanical, optical, photocopying, recording or
otherwise, without the prior permission of the copyright owner.
ISBN 9781910448960
British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data.
A catalogue record for this book is available from the British
Library
Typesetting: e-type
Cover design: Andrew Corbett
Cover image: Bibliothèque de Documentation Internationale
Contemporaine (BDIC): France-URSS, 1967 R.
Echoes of October.indd iv-v 11/09/2017 08:45:26
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
quence, the problems of Ukraine resonated far more widely than
those of other places. Even though the Bolsheviks were leading
workers protests in Ukraines east and south-east (Donbass),
their legitimacy in the region remained weak. Not all the Soviets
had supported their October coup d’état, even in the east. In the
all-Russian elections for the Constituent Assembly on 12 (25)
November, while overall Lenin’s party gained an average of 24
per cent of the vote, in Ukraine only 10 per cent of voters took
their side. This shed light on the pressing need for the Bolsheviks
to legitimate their power once the Civil War ended in 1921.
They could not avoid using October, as it was the central motif
in the new power’s mythology throughout the Soviet Union.
However, on the other hand, they also had to carefully consider
how to make this a date both politically and nationally appro-
priate for Ukrainians, and how to make it a popular Ukrainian
holiday. On the basis of the Ukrainian Soviet press and archival
materials of the central committee of the Communist Party of
Ukraine, we will trace here the evolution of this phenomenon,
focusing on those years when the preparation of the October
holiday generated the most documents: 1921, 1922 and 1927.
OCTOBER I N THE UKRAINIAN SOVIET PANTHEON
e ending of the Civil War clearly had an impact on the way
that o cial holidays were celebrated. As an internal memo-
randum for the preparation of the First of May celebrations in
1921 says: e hard armed struggle left an indelible imprint on
the character of proletarian holidays, but [now] the joyful force
of toiling masses is beating its way out from under the armour of
wartime’.3 Indeed, looking at the offi cial Soviet calendar, holi-
days appear to have ourished at the beginning of the 1920s
and one may be surprised to discover that October is only one
holiday among many others. Using almanacs and other contem-
Commemorating an Event That
Never Occurred: Russias October
in Soviet Ukraine in the 1920s
Eric Aunoble1
In Ukraine, the Bolsheviks faced a real challenge in promoting
the October revolution in the 1920s. As the editors of Letopis
Revolyutsii ( e Chronicle of Revolution:  e Ukrainian journal of
Revolution and Communist Party History Studies) wrote in its fi rst
issue in 1922: ere was no October in Ukraine in the real
meaning of the word’.2 In fact, the only events that occurred in
October-November 1917 were a failed red insurrection in Kiev
(11-13 November, or 29-31 October, old calendar) and then the
proclamation of the Ukrainian People’s Republic by the moderate
left-wing nationalists of the Central Rada on 7 (20) November.
This relative quietness is not surprising. The October
Revolution consisted less of the spectacular occupation of various
public buildings than of a general process of rank-and-file
empowerment in factories, villages and regiments, which did also
take place in Ukraine. It was not only Ukraine that seemed calm,
but every region in the former Russian empire except for the two
capital cities, Petrograd and Moscow, where Bolshevik uprisings
did take place.
But Ukraine was no ordinary region. A national movement
was trying to raise high the new yellow and blue flag and to
advocate autonomy, if not at first independence. As a conse-
Echoes of October.indd 26-27 11/09/2017 08:45:28
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
internal memoranda that it issued, each holiday was seen to be
legitimised by a political agenda considered in an educational
way. On 9 January 1905:
Unconscious and uncontrolled [stixijnye] St. Petersburg
workers went out in the street with faith in God and the Tsar,
under the leadership of an adventurer and provocateur, priest
Gapon … the task of mourning speeches and meetings on
this day [of commemoration], is to illuminate the long road
towards eradicating illusions and to take the same path in
memory again. Even now the tenacious remnants of these illu-
sions persist in backward layers of the workers and peasant
masses, the remnants of religious belief, of political conscious-
ness, in the form of anarchism, Menshevism and syndicalism,
which still burden the consciousness of those workers who are
not members of the communist party.
Apart from the ‘assessment of historical significance of the
revolution of 1905’, the aim of the holiday was thus to ‘struggle
against the remnants of religious faith’ and to ‘fight against
political illusions, especially against Menshevism, and to evaluate
rightly the harm brought to the proletariat by these illusions’.6
Regarding the Lena massacre, agitators were to explain how
the workers’ movement had acted at that time, highlighting
the role played by the party and its newspaper Pravda, and to
emphasise the improvement of labour legislation since 1912. The
February revolution was to be depicted ‘as a prologue for October’
and ‘the role of the Party within it’ was to be clearly insisted
upon. Similarly, the ‘content of the agitation and propaganda on
18 March, day of memory, is to explain the Paris Commune as
the first experience of proletarian dictatorship, to consider [the
importance] of this experience and its failures, to oppose them
with the achievements of the proletarian revolution in Russia.7
porary sources, a chronological list of anniversaries and other
occasions is: in January, Bloody Sunday (9 January 1905); in
February, the foundation of the party (27 February 1898); in
March, the abolition of serfdom (4 March 1861), the founda-
tion of the ird International (4 March 1919), International
Working Women’s Day (8 March), the February revolution
(12 March 1917) and the Paris Commune (18 March 1871); in
April, the Lena Massacre (17 April 1912); in May, International
Workers’ Day (1 May) and the foundation of Pravda (5 May
1912). In the second half of the year, there is then only ‘Youth
Day’ (6 September) and the ‘Day of the Proletarian Revolution
(7 November) as dates to be feted.4
The signi cance of political holidays: usefulness vs meaning
As one might guess, if only from the accumulation of dates in
March, not all the holidays were celebrated equally. Except for 1
May and 7 November, most were only an opportunity for polit-
ical education through a lecture or an exhibition. Even so, jubilees
could be emphasised, as for example those of the Paris Commune
in 1921 (fi ftieth anniversary), the foundation of Pravda in 1922
(tenth anniversary), or the party’s foundation in 1923 (twenty-
fth anniversary).5 e October Revolution itself was particularly
feted on the fi fth and tenth anniversaries in 1922 and 1927. To
this extent, institutions could therefore make their choice of what
to emphasise between the diff erent events.
All of the dates were linked with memorials, and this was
also true of the First of May. This was still something quite
novel for people in the Soviet Union, and was linked to illegal
meetings such as the first ‘Mayovka’ in Kharkov in 1900.
Nevertheless, the guidance given by the communist party’s
central committee section for agitation and propaganda went
a long way beyond purely historical concerns. In the various
Echoes of October.indd 28-29 11/09/2017 08:45:28
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
this four-year development of the revolution took place in
a very particular situation [svoeobraznaja obstanovka]. e
meaning of each moment of struggle was constantly covered
by the upcoming events.  e task of Party propaganda during
the October festival week is to restore these events in their
strict continuity and in their historical richness of meaning.10
So, in order to fulfil this claim, we will look at the historical
discourse in which the October revolution was explained to the
Ukrainian masses and see how the events were organised.
COMMEMORATION AS A WAY TO DEFINE A HISTOR ICAL
OBJECT: AN IDEOLOGICAL AND CHRONOLOGICAL
FRAME FOR OCTOBER
e second of these quotations indicates that ‘revolution’ is to be
understood in an extended way, as a ‘four-year period of revolution
in Ukraine’. In this long process, beginning with the overthrow
of tsarism and ending with the Civil War, the events of October
were indeed only an episode, the importance of which was not
factual but rather symbolic and ideological.  e issue was not
therefore whether something occurred in Ukraine on 25 October
or not, but which side you had taken in those years.  e meaning
of the whole phenomenon was rooted in the social and political
realities of the time: on one side stood the Bolsheviks and the
proletariat, while on the other side one would fi nd the reactionary
parties and classes.
The division between friends and enemies was based on
Marxism, but it also relied on wider cultural references. These
are very evident in the ‘List of theatre plays recommended by
the Scientific council for repertoire … for staging on the day of
the fifth anniversary of the October revolution’.11 These seventy-
five plays deserve study in their own right, but for the present
Essentially, this saw the fiftieth anniversary of the Commune as
a way of popularising support for the Red Army.
The October anniversaries were thought of in the same util-
itarian way. For 1921, the first slogan was ‘in the fourth year
of the October Revolution, no proletarian in any party except
the communist party’. As the countryside was starving, another
motto proclaimed ‘October is a struggle against hunger and
cold: collect grain, chop wood’.8 Clearly, historical events were
interpreted from a present-day perspective. The same approach
also prevailed at an all-union level. Thus, the manifesto issued
for 1922 by the central section for agitation and propaganda in
Moscow was focused on the international and internal ‘situation
of the Soviet republic’ and barely mentioned what had happened
five years earlier.9
As the directions for these revolutionary jubilees appeared to
combine a liturgical calendar with useful hints and suggestions
for the day, one can understand why there was not much place
for a potential local aspect. A certain date had to be commem-
orated as a part of a global scansion of time and as a means
to promote current priorities: the fact that one was located in
Moscow, Kharkiv, or Chukotka did not have not much impor-
tance. Ukraine merited a place in this discursive system only
as an element of context. For instance, manifestos for the 1921
festival stated:
After a long period of Civil War, which had Ukraine for
its arena … we have a break and we can switch to peaceful
building work.
e revolution is not a sudden jump into the joyful kingdom
of toilers. It is the beginning of a years-long worldwide revo-
lution. …  is understanding demands a deep approach to
assess this four-year period before the masses. … In Ukraine,
Echoes of October.indd 30-31 11/09/2017 08:45:28
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
lutionaries with no place they could identify as ‘home’ did not
help to root their discourse in Ukrainian soil. Neither did their
ideology help. The 1922 Theses for the celebration of the fifth anni-
versary of the October Revolution offers an interesting insight into
the significance of national factors for Ukrainian Bolsheviks:
e Russian [rossijskij] proletariat appears as a part of the world
proletariat.  e victory of the Russian proletariat is possible
only [by achieving] union with the workers of all countries.
e anniversary of the October Revolution appears to be an
international holiday, a day of international solidarity. For the
fth anniversary of the October Revolution, the proletariat of
the Soviet republics will welcome the representatives of prole-
tarian parties coming to Petrograd for the fourth congress of
the Communist international.17
The choice of words is rather interesting.Rossijskij clearly
refers, not to a nationality as a cultural entity, but to the sense of
belonging to the former Russian empire, and hence the ‘rossijskij
proletariat’ is that now organised in various ‘Soviet republics’,
including the Ukrainian one. But fundamentally, these matters
were not considered very important, for it was the international
essence of the exploited class that was brought to the fore.
The issue was not only whether or not to talk about Ukraine,
but also how to talk about it. In Five Years of Revolution in Ukraine
1917-1921, which was planned for publication in 1922,18 analysis
did not rely on a national scheme at all. The ‘National Question’
was the focus of only one of the fourteen chapters. Specifically
Ukrainian topics (such as the Rada and the Autocephalous
Church) represented only a fifth of the project. What appears to
us as the Ukrainian specificity of those years, its national move-
ment, was only marginal to the volume as planned. Local political
parties appear, for instance, to have been of no more importance
time it is sufficient to notice that they portray the entire history
of humanity’s movement for emancipation. For example, the list
included Spartacus by Vladimir Volkenstein, The Jacquerie by
Prosper Mérimée, set in the middle ages, The Death of Copernicus
by A. Terek (Olga Forsh’s pseudonym), and four plays about the
Paris Commune by the Russian-Soviet authors Borisov, Galin,
Lvov and Arsky. There were also four plays devoted to the French
revolution of the eighteenth century.12 Along with the left-wing
playwrights Romain Rolland (The Storming of the Bastille) and
Andrey Globa (The Day Marat Died), it is surprising to find
among the plays somewhat reactionary authors like Paul Bourget
(Christmas Night During the Terror, adapted by Sarah Bernhardt’s
husband Maurice)13 and Paul Claudel (The Hostage). The fact that
Claudel’s play was renamed The Avenger leads one to imagine
that the ideological content of the play was inverted: the cruelty
of the revolutionaries was to be seen as a virtue.
Framing the October Revolution within such a long-term
narrative allows us to understand why the particularities of
Ukraine might seem an accessory to the wider commemora-
tions, as a detail that could be either included or disregarded in
a presentation. For instance, a curriculum of political literacy
for technical and professional schools in 1921 totally ignored
Ukraine and dealt with the revolution as a whole, from the point
of view of the empire’s capital cities, Petrograd and Moscow.14
This curriculum was copied from a textbook edited in Soviet
Russia and was used nevertheless in Kharkov, the new capital
city of Soviet Ukraine. One should not necessarily see in this
a malicious attempt to erase everything Ukrainian. Kharkov’s
population was overwhelmingly, not Ukrainian, but Russian and
Jewish, as in most Soviet Ukrainian towns.15
Similarly, many Bolshevik cadres were not locals, as they had
arrived in Ukraine after drifting along the powerful streams of
the Civil War since 1918.16 Their situation as professional revo-
Echoes of October.indd 32-33 11/09/2017 08:45:28
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
… The second step is to develop the productive forces in agricul-
ture and industry’.19 The following year, in 1922, an exhibition
for the revolution’s fifth anniversary was to ‘illustrate the revolu-
tionary development in Ukraine and also the five-year experience
of social construction by workers under the leadership of the
communist party’.20 In the same fashion, a book to be issued by
the womens section under the title of Daughters of October was
divided into the following chapters: ‘1) An overview of the last
five years. 2) Working class and peasant women on the war front.
3) Working class and peasant women on the work front.21
It would be provocative to speak of ‘permanent revolution, but
nevertheless the events of 1917 or even of 1917-1921 were in this
way dissolved into a process which was still ongoing. The efforts
to set up a powerful Soviet economy were assimilated into the
hardship of revolutionary struggle in a way which would bear
rich dividends until the very end of the Soviet system.
COMMEMORATION AS ACTION
From the point of view of the central committee archives, the
October commemorations were m ade up not so mu ch of di scour ses
but of action. Various state and party institutions were busy plan-
ning meropriyatiya [arrangements] for what was to be done and by
whom. From 1921, special commissions were set up to organise
and implement the commemorations.  e initiative lay in the
hands of the communist party, more precisely in its section for
agitation and propaganda. At a provincial level, the section asked
for representatives from the trade unions and from the political
leadership of the Red Army.22
This was the usual architecture for political-educational work
in the 1920s and it was finally headed by the Politprosvet, the
state institution dealing with mass campaigning.23 This implied
that the mobilisation of material and human resources should rely
than all-Russian Mensheviks or social-revolutionaries (SRs). We
should exercise caution here, for there is more than a grain of
truth in this. The national movement became historically impor-
tant retrospectively, as Ukraine finally gained its independence
after 1991. In marked contrast, for the nationalist supporters of
the early 1920s, the fate of their purely ‘Ukrainian revolution
between 1917 and 1921 appeared to be a complete failure. One
could hardly expect a more positive point of view on nationalism
from the winners in this contest, the Bolsheviks!
No more surprising is the emphasis that the Bolsheviks put on
the role of their own party. At this point, the utilitarian approach
we outlined earlier became combined with a general conception
of the revolution, in which the mass mobilisation of the poorest
layers of the population eventually gave birth to a new society
only thanks to the leadership of the Communist Party. While
this Leninist stance is not surprising, the absence of reference to
the economic and social basis for revolution is more unexpected.
Revolution was clearly shown as the result of a struggle for power
and not as an abstract historical necessity. But if, on the one
hand, the communist party was depicted as the creator of history,
on the other hand there was praise for the first achievements of
Soviet Ukrainian socialism, which represented more than half of
the planned book. This justified the whole path the country had
followed since 1917 and was portrayed as the best reason to keep
moving forward.
This tendency appears in various documents of the period. As
early as 1921, the communist party’s women’s section (zhenotdel)
magazine Kommunarka Ukrainy entitled its opening article
Assessments’. Although it recognised the appalling state of the
country after the Civil War ended, it saw in the survival of Soviet
power a decisive achievement which opened ‘the way to commu-
nism … through two steps. The first step – the victory against
internal and external counter-revolution – is already completed
Echoes of October.indd 34-35 11/09/2017 08:45:28
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
1923 was to become the first historian of the Communist Party
of Ukraine.29 For Mikhail Rubach the commemoration and the
Istpart would also be the path to a career as a historian. Planning
the 1921 October commemoration in the Ekaterinoslav prov-
ince as head of the communist party’s section for agitation and
propaganda, he would contribute to Letopis Revolyutsii (1924), be
in charge of archives (1927), and then become the head of the
Ukrainian Istpart in 1929.30
From its founding in 1922, the first task of the central Istpart
was to set up an all-Ukrainian network to organise archival
material and assume control of it. Lacking sufficient financial
resources, the Istpart quickly seemed to have reached an impasse,
as it had to ask the central executive committee – i.e. the state
to fund archival repositories as soon as it had taken control
over them.31 Professional archivists from the Tse nt rar khi v resisted
the hegemony of the Istpart, resulting in bureaucratic conflicts
between the two institutions. The problem was finally solved in
1925, when the Tse nt ra rk hiv became responsible for pre-revolu-
tionary material and Istpart for the documents dating from after
1917. Nevertheless, inspired by the Soviet diarchy between spetsy
(bourgeois specialists) and red commissars, it was stipulated
that Istpart would control the political use of all material, while
Tsen tr ark hiv would be responsible for the conservation of revolu-
tionary and post-revolutionary documents.32
The need to keep a grip on the documents of the revolution had
two aspects to it. On the one hand, the communist party acted as
a controlling body, fearing that every leak could be used against
its policy. In 1921, it asked the ‘bourgeois’ historian Bagaley to
write an article for a commemorative book.33 Soon, however, only
party members were authorised to investigate the archives, while
the Istpart was in touch with the GPU (political police) about
the documents’ circulation.34 At the same time, the Istpart devel-
oped a real historiographical effort to collect and utilise these
essentially on the communist party, the army, and the unions.
The army organised street demonstrations, while the unions
provided their clubs near the working places and the working-
class areas.24 For wider gatherings, state-controlled theatres were
necessary, and the party sent speakers to all of these events.25
The Istpart, a new institution to take control of the past
Although the activitie s of these commissions is worth studying,
they represented only a temporary merging of pre-existing institu-
tions. One of these was specifi cally linked with the commemorative
process, namely the Istpart. is Commission for the History of
the October Revolution and of the communist party was a perma-
nent one. In Soviet Russia, it was founded in September 1920 as a
state institution, and was transferred to central committee control
in late 1921. In Ukraine, it was created in early 1922 directly as a
party organation.26 It did not really become active until the spring
of th at y ea r, t hou gh e ven t hen it st il l h ad org an is ationa l problem s.27
The first issue of its journal, Letopis Revolyutsii (The Chronicle
of Revolution), was published ‘For the fifth anniversary of the
October Revolution, as it stated on the cover. Although the
editorial stated that ‘There was no October in Ukraine in the
real meaning of the word’,28 the issue featured eighteen arti-
cles about the revolutionary events of 1917 in various places in
Ukraine, Kharkov, Kiev, Donbass, Ekaterinoslav, Elizavetgrad,
Nikolaev, Chernigov, and not forgetting the war front. Among
the authors, who included leading Ukrainian Bolsheviks such
as Petrovsky, Kviring, Pokko, and Ryappo, you could also find
Ravich-Cherkassky, who was one of the leaders of Istpart and the
chief editor of Letopis Revolyutsii. By this means, the seasoned
activist, who was fighting against autocracy already in 1905,
confirmed his movement towards becoming a historian: he had
already published about Makhno’s movement in 1920, and in
Echoes of October.indd 36-37 11/09/2017 08:45:28
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
about the international situation of Soviet Ukraine. For those who
doubt the political and institutional signifi cance of it bearing such
a signature, it is suffi cient to say that the chapter about women was
written by Filatova, the head of the women’s section within the
central committee.40 Having one’s name in the list of contributors
to such a book, indicated a high status within the organisational
hierarchy of the Soviet apparatus.
We have no information about the actual audience of these
journals and books. We only know that producing them for
the October commemorations was considered a key priority. In
1921 for instance, the central committee’s section for agitation
and propaganda asked the Kommunist, the party daily news-
paper, to print an extra 2000 copies to send to all provinces
on 7 November.41 Given that 2000 copies is not a significant
number for a country of 25 million people, we still do not know
anything about the actual readership of these materials. This
gives the impression that commemoration priorities were some-
what self-referential.
This hypothesis can be verified by checking some of the
celebration plans prepared by various commissions for the organ-
isation of the October Revolutions anniversary. The template
was well-established and the same arrangements are to be found
in a local project for Ekaterinoslav in 1921 as in an all-Ukrainian
circular for 1922. Members of the communist party and trade
unions were summoned to an organisational meeting before the
holiday. Institutions for children such as schools and orphanages
were also required to prepare their own celebrations. On the day
itself, street parades would be a joint enterprise of the Red Army,
the party, and the trade unions. However, ‘the Red army parade,
as a demonstration of its readiness to fight, should not obscure
the popular character of the celebration; it should emphasise its
unity with the masses of workers and peasants’ (1922). A solemn
session of the local Soviet would complete the agenda, and in the
materials. Local party branches and individual activists were
firmly requested to send to the central Istpart documents of ‘all-
Ukrainian character’ for the fifth anniversary.35 The Istpart also
collected documents issued by the former state apparatus (from
governors, police and gendarmerie) ‘although they [were] largely
not objective’.36
These documents were mainly used to prepare commemora-
tive exhibitions and collections of documents to be published for
the anniversaries. Activists also wrote articles of either a purely
memorial or wider historical character, but they were often late
with their papers, just as they were reluctant to send their own
documents.37 In talking about the exhibition and publication
of such materials, we have already moved from the institutional
organisation of the commemoration to the action implemented
by the institutions.
What is to be done
Publishing was indeed one of the main ways to celebrate October,
as we saw wi th the fi rst issue of Letopis Revolyutsii and the book
Five Years of Revolution in Ukraine 1917-1921. ese rather high-
brow publications had real importance for authors. As mentioned
above, leading Bolsheviks participated in the launching of Letopis
Revolyutsii, and a special issue of Kommunisticheskaya Mysl’ ( e
Communist Idea) involved two veterans of revolutionary battles,
Zatonsky and Primakov, among other party offi cials.38 e list
of contributors to Five Years was even more impressive. Leading
historians and intellectuals such as Ivanov (Istpart), Ryappo,
Ravich-Cherkassky, and Yavorsky played their part, but the
history was mainly told by renowned participants in the Civil War
such as Zatonsky (again), Kossior, Skrypnyk, and Blakytny, the
‘national communist’.39 It was the head of the Ukrainian council
of people’s commissars, Rakovsky himself, meanwhile, who wrote
Echoes of October.indd 38-39 11/09/2017 08:45:28
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
The only physical appearance of participants in the revolution
was achieved through the valorisation of heroes. At the solemn
session of the Soviet planned in Ekaterinoslav a ‘march of the
heroes of the army and the revolution’ was scheduled, following
which they were to receive as prizes ‘books, banners and equip-
ment’. In memorial evenings, the audience was a selected one,
and consequently all were treated as equal, in dignity if not in
status. With heroes, the case was quite different, as they were
shown to the public and rewarded. They were also clearly sepa-
rated from the masses by this display, and it is interesting to note
what actions led to someone being defined as a ‘hero’: revolution,
army, activism, and work. From 1921, the expression ‘hero of
labour’ was commonplace and induced a confusion between high
personal productivity and revolutionary heroism. For instance,
an account of the 1922 commemoration in one of the districts of
Kharkov states ‘For some days, memorial evenings were organised
at workplaces, honouring veterans of labour at the same time’.46
The study of the October commemorations helps us under-
stand how a number of features of the fully developed Soviet
system were born. The radical separation between a mass of
admirers and an elite of heroes and leaders could be seen as a
mechanical effect of the strengthening of a new bureaucratic
power. Some documents shed a different light on this phenom-
enon, however, such as a ‘Scheme for mass demonstrative action
for the day of the fifth anniversary of the October revolution
in Kharkov’. ‘Union processions’ and ‘processions through work-
places’ with a ‘theatricalised element’ were planned. In one plant,
artists, disguised as ‘pre-revolutionary policemen’ would disrupt
workers’ meetings; in another, artists would act as former bosses
and capitalists and judge the misbehaviour of workers with the
help of representatives of the ‘foreign community’. In other
factories, plays about bureaucratism and bribery, quizzes with
prizes, or choral singing were to take place. These were meant to
evening theatres and clubs would offer free shows with singing
and acting, but only on revolutionary themes.42
Is a working class hero something to be?
Another interesting point in the commemorative plans is the p lace
allocated to the main forces of the revolution: workers and activists.
e way workers’ activism during the revolution was emphasised
is rather paradoxical. For instance, the Ekaterinoslav commission
for the October commemoration encouraged the organisation of
‘memorial evenings’ (večer pamjati) on 6 November 1921.  e
‘memorial evenings’ bore close resemblance to the ‘evenings of
memories’ (večer vospominanij) which were organised by the Istpart
to collect testimonies by gathering together people to collectively
recall what they had done for the party.43 Political control over
these evenings was visible in the selection of speakers by the local
party committees or by the trade unions. ey were organised as
private events, open only to those who had received an invitation,
whether communists or non-party members.  ey were meant to
have a ‘purely family character’.44
The impression created is that the living memory of revolu-
tionary events was not intended to be transferred to the public
sphere. Instead, the press preferred to talk about ‘Martyrs and
Heroes’, as Kommunarka Ukrainy, the communist party’s
womens periodical, did in its 1921 commemorative special
issue.45 This described women who died for Soviet power, from
the most famous to the previously anonymous. First, there were
biographies of Ines Armand, Lenin’s close friend, and Konkordia
Samoilova, a Bolshevik woman who was active in Ukraine before
the war and the founder of Rabotnitsa, the first communist
womens magazine in Russia. After them followed the portraits
of six Ukrainian peasant women who died during the Civil War
fighting against ‘bandits’, i.e. rural insurgents.
Echoes of October.indd 40-41 11/09/2017 08:45:28
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
that the radical Proletkult activists, just like party potentates,
took for granted the fact that the working class was essentially
passive and should be taught how to celebrate its own revolution
by the exhibition of leaders and heroes.
1927, A STR AINED COMMEMOR ATION
e year 1927, about which we have ample documentary evidence,
was a crucial one, not only for Ukraine but for the whole Soviet
Un ion. e symbolic tenth anniversary of October was the back-
drop to the last political struggle before Stalin took over complete
control of the party and state apparatuses by vanquishing the
‘United opposition.  e public anti-Stalinist demonstrations at the
October commemorations in November ended in defeat. A month
later, the fi fteenth party congress decided to ‘cleanse the party
of all clearly incorrigible elements of the Trotskyist opposition’.52
Meanwhile, history and its representations remained a major issue:
October, the fi lm made for the occasion by Sergei Eisenstein, shed
little light on Trotsky’s role, and where it was informative, it was
only negatively so.
The systematisation of memorial policing
From the point of view of Soviet Ukrainian periodicals, this
background of political and ideological struggle seems as if it
was completely absent, or at least separated, from the memo-
rial concerns. Quite the contrary, the systematisation of all
the processes for 1921-2 is striking, as highlighted.  e central
committee’s section for agitation and propaganda was no longer
obliged to send typewritten circulars to local party committees,
for it now published its own periodical, Agitatsia i propaganda. In
the October issue, there was an article explaining once and for all
‘ e historical signifi cance of the October Revolution. It insisted
create a ‘festive mood’ among workers, so that the masses would
‘receive from the artistic awakeners all the significance and the
ideological content of the holiday’. Processions from all these
various workplaces would then gather, and ‘the masses who had
been previously trained’ would meet actors disguised as leaders
(including Lenin) and rebuff a group of masked figures repre-
senting starvation and disease.47
This document is not inspired by some cold-blooded and
short-sighted bureaucratism. On the contrary, it expresses real
enthusiasm and a solid theoretical ground, both in politics and
aesthetics. The production of collectivist art was the aim of
this project, based on the artistic unity and consistency of the
celebration.48 This ambitious programme of Gesamtkunstwerk,
mixing philosophical-religious vocabulary with political
goals, was typical of the Proletkult (proletarian culture) move-
ment. Although in Soviet Russia this movement was in 1920
almost abolished by forced integration in the Narkompros (the
Commissariat for Enlightenment), it was formally founded in
Ukraine only in late 1922 by communists who already worked
at the Narkompros as officials.49
One of the key elements of the movement was the emphasis on
the ‘creative autonomy of the masses’ [tvorčeskaja samodejatel’nost’
mass]. However, this does not seem well-founded either from an
artistic or a political point of view. The actions planned for the
October commemorations were to be implemented bytheat-
rical circles at [workers’] clubs and studios under the leadership
of professional artists and stage directors’.50 Fundamentally,
the workers were considered as an inert material that would be
impressed and shaped by those who knew how to master collec-
tive psychology, aesthetics, and revolutionary politics. Although
this grandiose project might not have been fulfilled – it seems
that Proletkult eventually organised its own celebration in a very
traditional way with poetry readings and speeches51 – it shows
Echoes of October.indd 42-43 11/09/2017 08:45:28
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
since 1917 and, especially in 1927, to denounce the attitude of the
capitalist aggressors surrounding the first socialist state.57
We could find only one attempt to accommodate a developed
historical narrative of these events intended for a larger audi-
ence. The weekly Vsesvit, a stronghold of the so-called ‘national
communists’, presented its special issue with a cover showing the
first sovnarkom (Council of People’s Commissars) where Trotsky’s
portrait was directly to the left of Lenins.
58 Inside, the issue
covered all the revolutionary years from 1917 until the end of the
civil war, in Russia and Ukraine, and both in the towns and in
the countryside. Among the rich illustrative material, there were
even photographs of nationalist leaders with the logotype of the
Ukrainian People’s Republic. Quite modern in its presentation,
and not too narrowly focused either historically or ideologically,
the example of Vsesvit’s special issue is a rare one.
But the issue was also remarkable in its willingness to discuss
the Ukrainian aspect of the revolution along with the all-Russian
narrative. We have seen how Ukrainian issues were almost absent
in 1921-2. Four or five years after the revolution, the Bolsheviks’
discourse was mainly self-referential, as if there were no need
to justify October in any other terms that those of Marxism-
Leninism. It was implied that the revolution was essentially the
same wherever it happened, and it was therefore unnecessary to
focus on local specificities. Only those Bolsheviks who had a
special biographical link with Ukraine emphasised this aspect,
but seemingly as a means to justify their own importance: as
for example Skrypnyk (Lenin’s Ukrainian), or the former leftist
nationalist Blakytny. Although the latter did participate in the
Istpart initiatives and had the opportunity to express their views
publicly, their absence from the internal material issued by the
central committee of the Communist Party of Ukraine regarding
the October commemorations is striking. It is as if the organisa-
tional grafting of the Ukrainian revolutionary bough onto the
on international issues and internal economic ones, emphasising
the priorities of Soviet power in 1927.  e November issue printed
forty-six ready-to-use slogans with the same purpose. In addi-
tion, Kultrabotnik, the organ of the trade unions’ cultural section,
proposed a complete survey of the preparation of the commemora-
tion in various places and types of industry.53
With historiographical focus, both Kultrabotnik and Letopys
revolyutsii offered their readers select bibliographies.54 The selec-
tions were in both cases made in the same spirit of political
rectitude, but they nevertheless reveal important differences. The
trade union periodical presented works on the Russian revolu-
tion more generally, i.e. about the revolution in Russia, and it
classified books by how difficult they were (‘popular’ / ‘medium
difficulty’ / ‘for well-versed readers’). The Istpart journal, in
contrast, chose only books about the events in Ukraine and
compared the strengths and weaknesses of various texts, all of
them party leaders, many of whom had written on these themes
for the fifth anniversary. It also provided nearly thirty articles in
three sections: the revolution in various towns and regions, the
role of the union movement, and to the memory of those who had
died. This special issue reflected the organisational improvement
of the work of the Istpart. It was now supervising a network of
nineteen groups of veterans, comprising 500 people. It collected
personal memories and accounts from memorial evenings, organ-
ised conferences and seminars, and provided material, not only
for the journal, but also for exhibitions.55
These journals aimed at activists could not reach many people.
The most successful exhibition might have 10,000 visitors, which
again is not many in a country of 25 million people.56 More
popular periodicals did dedicate an issue to the October anniver-
sary, but the event had virtually become a cliché of revolutionary
heroism. The commemoration was just one more way of popu-
larising the regime’s obsessions: to demonstrate its achievements
Echoes of October.indd 44-45 11/09/2017 08:45:29
from
from
from
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
It was eventually completed by Alexander Dovzhenko, the only
Ukrainian filmmaker of the same stature.62
On reading the central committee’s documents for 1927, it
is apparent that the promotion of the January 1918 uprising at
this time was not viewed as the main way of rooting Bolshevik
history in Ukrainian soil. What most interested party leaders was
the creation of a new memorial date commemorating the ‘ten
years of existence of Soviet power in Ukraine’. A special commis-
sion was set up and held its first meeting on 14 December 1927
with members of the all-Ukrainian executive committee, repre-
sentatives of the Peoples Commissariats of Justice and Internal
Affairs, the Kharkov regional party committee, the main
Ukrainian newspaper (Visti), and the archives. Their first deci-
sion was to ‘acknowledge the date of 25 December 1927, marking
ten years since the beginning of Soviet power in Ukraine’. Then
they planned this new commemoration on the very model that
had been developed for the celebration of October.63
The date that was chosen corresponded to the proclamation
of the Ukrainian Soviet republic by the all-Ukrainian congress
of the Soviets. As the moderate Central Rada had proclaimed
the Ukrainian People’s Republic in late November, Lenin’s
sovnarkom issued an ultimatum against the Kiev authorities at
the very beginning of December.64 Consequently, Kharkov’s
congress of the Soviets might have appeared only as an episode
in an impending Russian-Ukrainian war. For instance, the new
Ukrainian historiography following independence in the 1990s
immediately denied its ‘all-Ukrainian’ character, calling it the
‘Donets and Krivoy Rog Basin’s congress of soviets’.65 However,
it did anchor Ukrainian Soviet power in the country’s far east, in
Russian-speaking regions, close to Russia.
The date of 25 December 1917 in Kharkov is neither politically
symbolic nor heroic, in contrast to 7 November in Petrograd,
or January 1918 in Kiev. It did however mark the founding of
Bolshevik tree had had no influence, not only externally, but
even on its inner system of ideological exposition.
A UKRAINIAN SUBSTITUTE FOR OCTOBER?
Some of the documentary evidence relating to 1927 leads us to
believe that certain changes were afoot. Still, there was no rele-
vant event that might h ave taken place in Ukraine in October/
November 1917, and so there was a need to valorise what happened
locally as a consequence of October more broadly.  e insurrections
in the Kiev Arsenal factory had been genuine workers’ uprisings
and were therefore quite suitable for this purpose.  e rst one had
started fi ve days after the Petrograd coup d’état, on 29 October (12
November) 1917, and had been celebrated on the fi fth anniversary
when the press announced the erection of a monument that was
realised a few months later.59 is was a decision of the city Soviets
and was one of the attempts of Kievian communists to defend the
revolutionary honour of their city, usually surpassed by Kharkov
or Donbass.60 Nevertheless, what was actually a real Ukrainian
October did not become a national memorial event.
Conversely, the insurrection of January 1918 did become a
symbol. Here, workers were opposed to the nationalist-orientated
Central Rada, with fierce fighting and damage to the factory
building where the fighting took place. When, in the following
month Bolsheviks took over Kiev, they immediately reburied the
750 victims in a mass grave. In 1927, a monument was erected of
which only a commemorative plaque now survives. The inscrip-
tion on the bas-relief reads: ‘Eternal remembrance for the freedom
fighters – 10 October 1917-1927’. It thus explicitly commemo-
rates October 1917 and not January 1918. This superimposition
of the Russian October onto the Ukrainian January seems
present in other spheres. The idea of a film on this subject was
already present in 1927, as a counterpart to Eisenstein’s project.61
Echoes of October.indd 46-47 11/09/2017 08:45:29
th
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
Were other revolutionary commemorations still possible in the
early years of the USSR? If so, they took place far from the top
party leadership. In Volokhovka, a village fifty kilometres from
Kharkov, people gathered in 1929 to celebrate ten years of the
commune Chervona Zorya (Red Dawn), founded as an attempt
to realise communism at the worst point of the Civil War.69 This
local proletarian dictatorship in the village endured violence
and hunger until 1921. There then began the New Economic
Policy, which meant an official lack of interest, if not active
disregard, for collectivism. The commune nevertheless survived,
and communards were proud to display their achievements over
these ten years. Visible on a contemporary newsreel, there were
of course official speeches and propaganda,70 but we can also see
youngsters furiously dancing with elders applauding as signs of
spontaneous joy and popular participation.
NOTES
1. is research was carried out as a part of the project ‘Divided
memories, shared memories. Ukraine / Russia / Poland (twentieth-
twenty-fi rst centuries): an entangled history’, headed by Prof. Korine
Amacher (Universi ty of Geneva) and supported by the Swiss National
Science Foundation (SNSF).
2. ‘K pjatiletiju Oktjabr’skoj revoljucii’, Letopis’ Revoljucii, Žurnal po
izučeniju Istorii Oktjabr’skoj revoljucii I Kommunističeskoj partii
Ukrainy, No. 1, 1922, p5, ‘Ot Isparta’.
3. Central State Archive of Public Organisations of Ukraine (CDAGO-
U), f. 1, op. 20, d. 748, l. 59 (undated, but probably 16 April
1921). Unless otherwise stated all quoted archival material is from
CDAGO-U.
4. See especially f. 1, op. 20, d. 1481 (1922); Sputnik rabočego na 1925
god [Almanac], Priboj: Leningrad, 1925, pp9-80.
5. F. 1, op. 20, d. 748, l. 63, ‘O prazdonovanii godovščiny sverženija
samoderžavija i dnja parižskoj Kommuny’ (28 February 1921); f. 1,
op. 20, d. 1773, l. 13 (June 1923).
6. F. 1, op. 20, d. 748, l. 151-ob (26 December 1921).
the legitimacy of the Ukrainian Soviet government, even though
this was firmly established only in 1919-20. It was definitely not
a revolutionary holiday valorising mass mobilisation but a state
holiday promoting ‘proletarian statehood’ [proletarskaja gosu-
darstvennost].66 Incidentally, one of the first initiatives of the 1927
commission was to ‘address the sister republics, asking them to
take part in the jubilee celebration’ and to send their own repre-
sentatives. Telegrams received from institutions all over the USSR
were duly kept.67 Soviet Ukrainian leaders were looking for inter-
national recognition, even if this were limited to the boundaries
of USSR.
CONCLUSION: IS A TRUE REVOLUTIONARY COMMEMO
RATION POSSIBLE?
e instrumental character of this new holiday became obvious
in 1929 when a new tenth anniversary of Soviet power in Ukraine
was defi ned, correspondin g this time to the defeat of Denikins
white troops in Ukraine.68 Between 1921 and 1927, Ukrainian
issues, which had been absent at the beginning, became a concern
for Soviet leaders. But this process was a paradoxical one. It meant
that commemoration would place great reliance neither on the
popular masses nor on a political or cultural background that was
purely Ukrainian. On the contrary, it emphasised the bureaucratic
aspect of the celebration, praising the essence of power. It meant
that leaders considered their legitimacy in an abstract way, the
words ‘Ukrainian’ or ‘Proletarian’ not requiring any living content.
If one can appreciate that ‘nationally conscious’ Ukrainians utterly
disliked the Bolsheviks, what is more astonishing is the lack of
concern of the Bolsheviks themselves for feelings among the
workers. One could say, as Debord does in La société du spectacle
(1967), that ‘All that once was directly lived has become mere
representation’.
Echoes of October.indd 48-49 11/09/2017 08:45:29
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
25. F. 1, op. 20, d. 772, l. 38 (12 October 1921): the communist party’s
Ekaterinoslav city committee asked all district committees to send
the list of speakers no later than 18 October.
26. Frederick Corney, Telling October: Memory and the Making of the
Bolshevik Revolution, Cornell University Press: Ithaca, New York
and London, 2004, pp100 sq; Nataliâ Moskovčenko, ‘Dvoznačnist’
ponjattâ “édynyj deržavnyj arxivnyj fond” (rol’ Istpartu v rozvitku
arxivnoï spravi Ukraïni)’, Studiï z arxivnoï spravi ta dokumentoz-
navstva, Kiev, Vol. 13, 2005, www.archives.gov.ua/Publicat/Studii/
Studii_2005.13.01.php, 28 July 2017.
27. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1449, ll. 16-17, 25, 34-5, 39 (March-August 1922); f.
1, op. 20, d. 1773, ll. 6-11 (April 1923).
28. ‘K pjatiletiju Oktjabr’skoj revoljucii’, Letopis’ Revoljucii, Žurnal po
izučeniju Istorii Oktjabr’skoj revoljucii I Kommunističeskoj partii
Ukrainy, No. 1, 1922, p5, ‘Ot Isparta’.
29. Mojsej Ravič-Čerkasskij, Maxno i maxnovščina, Ekaterinoslav,
192 0; Istorija kommunističeskoj partii (b-ov) Ukrainy, GIZ: Xar’kov,
Ukrainy, 1923.
30. F. 1, op. 20, d. 772, l. 19 (6 October 1921); f. 1, op. 20, d. 2498,
ll. 22-26 (25 March 1927); f. 1, op. 20, d. 2919, l. 1 (27 November
1929). As such, he would publicly correct the political ‘mistakes’ of
his colleagues in the early 1930s before being arrested in 1935. But
contrary to Ravich-Cherkassky who died in custody, Rubach was
released and came back to university in 1940 (M. A. Rub, ‘Proty
reviziï bilʹšovycʹkoï sxemy rušijnyx syl ta xarakteru revoljuciï 1917
roku na Ukraïni (Krytyka nacional-demokratyčnoï platformy ta
dejakyx uxyliv vid leninsʹkoï sxemy istoriï proletarsʹkoï revoljuciï)’,
Litopys revoljuc, No. 5, 1930, pp8-17; O. J. Ščusʹ, ‘Rubač Myxajlo
Abramovyč’, Encyklopedija istoriï Ukraïny, Naukova Dumka: Kiev,
2003).
31. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1449, ll. 1 (6 March 1922), 3 (4 September 1922), 54
(27 December 1922).
32. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1773, l. 8 (April 1923); f. 1, op. 20, d. 2022, ll. 1-5 (22
May 1925), 11 (9 June 1925), 12-14, 20-21.
33. F. 1, op. 20, d. 760, l. 99 (19 October 1921).
34. F. 1, op. 20, d. 2498, l. 1 (marked ‘Confi dential’, 9 February 1927);
f. 1, op. 20, d. 1857, l. 27 (letter from the GPU plenipotentiary in
charge of the movie industry, 6 September 1924).
35. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1449, l. 2 (1 July 1922).
7. Ibid., ll. 31 (c. April 1921), 63.
8. Ibid., ll. 123-6 (28 September 1921).
9. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1451, ll. 1-5 (Agitpropotdel CKRKRP, ‘Tezisy dlja
agitatorov k pjatoj godovščine Oktjabr’skoj revoljucii’, c. September
1922).
10. F. 1, op. 20, d. 748, ll. 13 (15 January 1921), 123 (28 September 1921).
11. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1451, ll. 45-8 (c. summer 1922).
12. About the appeal of the French revolution in Soviet Russia, see
the seminal work of Tamara Kondratieva, Bolcheviks et Jacobins
Itinéraires des analogies, Payot: Paris, 1989.
13. Maurice Bernhardt et Henri Cain, Une nuit de Noël sous la terreur :
comédie en 1 acte, éâtre Sarah Bernhardt: Paris, 1912; Paul Bourget,
Une nuit de Noël sous la terreur, H. Daragon: Paris, 1907.
14. F. 1, op. 20, d. 748, ll. 15-16 (c. February 1921).
15. Still in 1933, after years of Ukrainisation and forced rural exodus
induced by collectivisation and famine, Ukrainians represented only
48 per cent of the capital’s population. See Arakčeev, Magnickij and
Bekendorf, ‘Xar’kov’, Bol’šaja Sovetskaja Enciklopedija (1oe iz da nie),
Vol. 59, 1935.
16. For instance, there were only 10 per cent of locals among the cadres
of the Kharkov Party militia (ChON) in 1920. See Éric Aunoble,
‘“Communistes, aux armes !” : les unités à destination spéciale
(TchON) au sortir de la guerre civile en Ukraine (1920-1924),
Hispania Nova, No. 13, 2015, p244.
17. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1451, l. 13 (c. 6-23 September 1922).
18. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1516, l. 153 (c. 12 July 1922).
19. ‘Itogi’, Kommunarka Ukrainy, No. 7-8, July-October 1921, p4.
20. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1449, l. 2 (1 July 1922).
21. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1516, l. 154.
22. F. 1, op. 20, d. 772, l. 19 (6 October 1921).
23. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1489, l. 26 (2 August 1922); f. 1, op. 20, d. 1482,
l. 6 (15 August 1922); more generally, on the organisation of such
activities, see Alexandre Sumpf, Bolcheviks en campagne. Paysans et
éducation politique dans la Russie des années 1920, CNRS Éditions:
Paris, 2010, pp36-42.
24. For the former, see also Régis Gayraud, ‘Les actions de masse des
années 1920 en Russie : un nouveau spectacle pour la révolution,
Annales historiques de la Révolution française, No. 367, janvier-mars
2012, p177.
Echoes of October.indd 50-51 11/09/2017 08:45:29
ECHOES OF OCTOBER COMMEMOR ATING AN EVENT TH AT NEVER OCCU RR ED
 
‘Ohljad literatury do Žovtnja na Ukraïni’, Letopis’ Revoljucii, No. 5-6,
September-December 1927, pp409-17.
55. F. 1, op. 20, d. 2498, ll. 2-14 (account of the Istpart’s activ ity for
1927).
56. In 1922, the exhibition about the revolution drew a little more than
2,000 visitors, and the one that was set up for the Party’s twenty-fi fth
anniversary, 8000 visitors (f. 1, op. 20, d. 1773, l. 8 ob. (April 1923);
f. 1, op. 20, d. 1857, l. 20 (2 March 1924)).
57. See for instance Molodyj bil’š’šovyk, No. 20, October 1927.
58. Vsesvit, No. 45, November 1927.
59. Proletarskaja Pravda (Kiev), No. 370, 7 November 1922; No. 500, 18
April 1923.
60. For instance, Kievian party historians tried to prove that their city
was ‘the centre of Ukraine’s political life’ in 1917 (f. 1, op. 20, d. 2498,
l. 19 – c. 27 September 1927).
61. F. 1, op. 20, d. 2492, ll. 68-73 (letters from N.S. Natlax, a veteran
who wrote a scenario, 3 May-26 October 1927).
62. Arsenal, VUFKU, 1928.
63. F. 1, op. 20, d. 2492, ll. 75-76.
64. V. I. Lenin, ‘Manifesto to the Ukrainian People with an Ultimatum to
the Ukrainian Rada’, Collected Works, Progress Publishers: Moscow,
Vol. 26, 1972, pp361-3.
65. O. M. Dzûba, V. F. Repryncev & V. F. Verstûk, Ukraïna vid
najdavnišyx časiv do s’ohodennâ – Xronolohičnyj dovidnyk, Naukova
Dumka: Kiev, 1995, p251.
66. F. 1, op. 20, d. 2461, l. 25 (27 December 1927).
67. F. 1, op. 20, d. 2492, ll. 81 (17 December 1927), 83 (19 December
1927); f. 1, op. 20, d. 2461, ll. 15-24.
68. F. 1, op. 20, d. 2919, l. 21 (Istpart’s ‘Explicative note for the celebration
of the 10th anniversary of the defeat of Denikin and the establishment
of Soviet power in Ukraine’, 1 November 1929).
69. See Éric Aunoble, ‘Le Communisme tout de suite !’ Le Mouvement des
communes en Ukraine soviétique (1919-1920), Les Nuits rouges: Paris,
2008.
70. Central State Film, Photo, and Sound Archive of Ukraine
(CDKFFA-U), No. 1406 – III (Kinožurnal, No. 30/125, 1929).
36. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1773, l. 6 (April 1923).
37. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1449, ll. 4 (19 December 1922), 8-16, 28-9 (9 June
1922); f. 1, op. 20, d. 1773, l. 8 ob. (April 23); f. 1, op. 20, d. 1857, l.
20 (2 March 1924).
38. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1451, l. 78 (3 October 1922).
39. Blakytny was a former left-wing Ukrainian socialist-revolutionary and
one of the founders of the Ukrainian Communist Party of Borotbysts
(UKP-b) in 1918, a party which eventually merged with the KP(b)U
(Communist Party of Ukraine – Bolshevik) in 1920.
40. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1516, ll. 156 sq (c. summer 1923).
41. F. 1, op. 20, d. 760, l. 193 (3 November 1921).
42. F. 1, op. 20, d. 772, l. 48 (20 October 1921); f. 1, op. 20, d. 1451, ll.
24-6 (6 September 1922), 42-3. See also Emilia Koustova, ‘Les fêtes
révolutionnaires russes entre 1917 et 1920. Des pratiques multiples et
une matrice commune’, Cahiers du monde russe, Vol. 47 No. 4, 2006,
pp684-94.
43. Bjuleten’ Istparta (Russia), No. 1, 1921, p37.
44. F. 1, op. 20, d. 772, l. 48 (20 October 1921); f. 1, op. 20, d. 760, l. 196
(4 November 1921).
45. Kommunarka Ukrainy, No. 7-8, 1921, pp5-14.
46. F. 1, op. 20, d. 772, l. 48 (20 October 1921); f. 1, op. 20, d. 1482, l.
119 (c. 1 December 1922).
47. For the solemn session of the Soviet, the intrusion of fake enemies is
also planned... F. 1, op. 20, d. 1451, ll. 37-40 (c. September 1922).
48. Ibid., l. 40.
49. Lynn Mally, Culture of the Future: the Proletkult Movement in
Revolutionnary Russia, University of California Press: Berkeley, 1990,
p226; R. Pel’šše, ‘Proletkul’t’, ŠŠljax do Komunizmu, Vol. 4 No. 4,
1924, p73.
50. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1451, l. 38.
51. F. 1, op. 20, d. 1482, ll. 114-115.
52. XV s’ezd Vsesojuznoj Kommunističeskoj partii (b). Dekabr´ 1927 goda.
Stenografi českij otčët, Gosizdat: Moskau-Leningrad, 1928, p1247.
53. N. Semenov, ‘Istoryčne značinnja Žovtnevoï revoljuciï’, Ahitacija j
propahanda, žurnal ahitpropu CK KP(b)U ta ahitpropu Xarkivs’koho
OPK, Vol. 10 No. 1, 1927, pp9-16; Kul’trabotnik, No. 20, 31 October
1927, pp18-23.
54. ‘Naučno-političeskaja literatura k 10-letiju Oktjabr’skoj revoljucii’,
Kul’trabotnik, No. 20, 31 October 1927, pp6-9; O. Karpenko,
Echoes of October.indd 52-53 11/09/2017 08:45:29
ResearchGate has not been able to resolve any citations for this publication.
Article
Full-text available
En menant l'enquête au plus près des acteurs, cette thèse étudie toutes les formes de communes autour de la première capitale de l’Ukraine soviétique. En 1919, les communes sont des formes de mobilisation politique et sociale des plébéiens ruraux en interaction avec l'État soviétique. Cette « Kommuniâ » provoque une cruelle réaction pogromiste dans les campagnes. Sous la NEP, des communes urbaines apparaissent sous la direction d’étudiants, d’artistes, de pédagogues... Ce « Nouveau Mode de vie » est aussi un laboratoire du contrôle social pour le pouvoir et les élites. Les communes paysannes n'occupent par contre qu'une place marginale socialement et idéologiquement. Cela prépare la subversion de l’utopie par le pouvoir après 1929. « Collectivisation complète » et famine ont raison des communes rurales. L’opposition des communards ruraux et urbains est réelle mais peu audible. Grâce à la rhétorique révolutionnaire de la guerre civile, le pouvoir empêche toute expression des classes pauvres.
Dvoznačnist' ponjattâ "édynyj deržavnyj arxivnyj fond" (rol' Istpartu v rozvitku arxivnoï spravi Ukraïni)', Studiï z arxivnoï spravi ta dokumentoznavstva
  • Frederick Corney
Frederick Corney, Telling October: Memory and the Making of the Bolshevik Revolution, Cornell University Press: Ithaca, New York and London, 2004, pp100 sq; Nataliâ Moskovčenko, 'Dvoznačnist' ponjattâ "édynyj deržavnyj arxivnyj fond" (rol' Istpartu v rozvitku arxivnoï spravi Ukraïni)', Studiï z arxivnoï spravi ta dokumentoznavstva, Kiev, Vol. 13, 2005, www.archives.gov.ua/Publicat/Studii/ Studii_2005.13.01.php, 28 July 2017.
Žurnal po izučeniju Istorii Oktjabr'skoj revoljucii I Kommunističeskoj partii Ukrainy
  • K Pjatiletiju Oktjabr'skoj Revoljucii
  • Letopis' Revoljucii
'K pjatiletiju Oktjabr'skoj revoljucii', Letopis' Revoljucii, Žurnal po izučeniju Istorii Oktjabr'skoj revoljucii I Kommunističeskoj partii Ukrainy, No. 1, 1922, p5, 'Ot Isparta'.
Rubač Myxajlo Abramovyč
  • O J Ščusʹ
O. J. Ščusʹ, 'Rubač Myxajlo Abramovyč', Encyklopedija istoriï Ukraïny, Naukova Dumka: Kiev, 2003).
Une nuit de Noël sous la terreur : comédie en 1 acte
  • Maurice Bernhardt
  • Henri Cain
Maurice Bernhardt et Henri Cain, Une nuit de Noël sous la terreur : comédie en 1 acte, Th éâtre Sarah Bernhardt: Paris, 1912; Paul Bourget, Une nuit de Noël sous la terreur, H. Daragon: Paris, 1907.
); more generally, on the organisation of such activities, see Alexandre Sumpf, Bolcheviks en campagne
F. 1, op. 20, d. 1489, l. 26 (2 August 1922); f. 1, op. 20, d. 1482, l. 6 (15 August 1922); more generally, on the organisation of such activities, see Alexandre Sumpf, Bolcheviks en campagne. Paysans et éducation politique dans la Russie des années 1920, CNRS Éditions: Paris, 2010, pp36-42.
Les actions de masse des années 1920 en Russie : un nouveau spectacle pour la révolution', Annales historiques de la Révolution française, No. 367, janvier-mars 2012, p177
For the former, see also Régis Gayraud, 'Les actions de masse des années 1920 en Russie : un nouveau spectacle pour la révolution', Annales historiques de la Révolution française, No. 367, janvier-mars 2012, p177. 'Ohljad literatury do Žovtnja na Ukraïni', Letopis' Revoljucii, No. 5-6, September-December 1927, pp409-17.
Manifesto to the Ukrainian People with an Ultimatum to the Ukrainian Rada
  • V I Lenin
V. I. Lenin, 'Manifesto to the Ukrainian People with an Ultimatum to the Ukrainian Rada', Collected Works, Progress Publishers: Moscow, Vol. 26, 1972, pp361-3.
Les fêtes révolutionnaires russes entre 1917 et 1920. Des pratiques multiples et une matrice commune
f. 1, op. 20, d. 1451, ll. 24-6 (6 September 1922), 42-3. See also Emilia Koustova, 'Les fêtes révolutionnaires russes entre 1917 et 1920. Des pratiques multiples et une matrice commune', Cahiers du monde russe, Vol. 47 No. 4, 2006, pp684-94.