INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF
ISSUE NO. 3 ( 2014/2 )
MIKHAIL AFANASIYEVICH BULGAKOV, HIS LIFE AND HIS BOOK
The Master and Margarita is a masterpiece of world literary production. Thus, the question is how the author managed to survive under the Communist regime he abhorred. The answer is to be found in Stalin’s personality and more general in the way by which the Bolsheviks seized the power and exercised it. Another point, nonetheless, is the stance of the Orthodox Church. In spite of the numerous clergymen murdered by the Communists, the Church in Russia in practice recognised the atheist regime; and this very fact is essential in order to understand Bulgakov’s work.
Keywords: Christ, Devil, Marxism, Russia, Ukraine, Lenin, Stalin, Russia, peasants, Patriarch Tikhon.
“The Master and Margarita? The most beautiful novel ever written!”
This is an opinion deeply rooted in the mind of the Russian Folk – especially the youth. And, of course, this is mine, too.
The novel describes the drama of a
good, honest writer who is compelled to spend his life under an atheist, i.e. communist regime. The
Novel is set in
To understand, nonetheless, not only the masterpiece of Bulgakov but the milieu in which he spent his life, it is necessary to have in view two points: a) The Bolsheviks in general and Stalin in particular; b) the fate of the Ukraine during the last stages of the First World War and the opening stages of the Communist regime.
Let us embark, therefore, on the exploration of these chapters in Russian and World History, which have so far been so poorly studied. For the moment, there is only one promise that can be made: that this will be a fascinating journey.
Marxism and Russia
Such an assertion by Marx was an
intellectual legerdemain comparable to that of St Thomas Aquinas: As the latter
had managed to marry up the thinking of Aristotle, a virtual materialist, with
the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church, so Marx changed the “stupid
peasantry”, abhorred by him and Engels, into
the blunt instrument of World
Revolution. Needless to say, such a radical change was the fruit of cunning rather
than of scholarship, such as was the one
achieved by St Thomas Aquinas. Still, the repercussions of the Marxian sleight
of hand were spectacular and far-reaching; for now the target of Communist subversive activity was –tacitly- rural
* * *
Tsarist Russia was marked out as the victim of the Marxist Revolution-to-come thanks mainly to the rural character of her society. Actually, the formation of the Russian Social-Democratic Party, a part of which was to evolve into the Communist party, was trumpeted in 1898. Yet no real Party was then created. For there were no party programme or party rules. Its Central Committee was arrested by the Tsarist police and never replaced, “for there was nobody to replace it”. What is more, “the ideological confusion and lack of…[Party] cohesion” became more and more marked from that fatal year on. Still, the economic and social postulate was to change speedily.
The end of the nineteenth century, in fact, was marked in several
European countries by an industrial crisis, that spread to
Here is to be found one more ‘pirouette’,
worthy of Marx on the subject of the reoccurrence
of the Peasants’ War in
As for the Revolution itself, two points deserve detailed attention. The first is that the sole paradigm among the Bolshevists who were neither a “Russian chauvinist” nor with a “Christian past” was Lenin. For –as it is now well established- he was of mixed Judeo-German-Mongolian stock. His father, Ilya Ulyanov was Kalmuk, viz. Mongol by origin, and his mother of mixed stock, namely Jewish and German. It was ‘hoped’ therefore, that he was competent enough to lead his “chauvinist” Bolsheviks to the ultimate victory, that is to the triumph of an internationalist Revolution that was intended to dismember the Russian Empire.
The second is the role of Stalin. It was vaguely and is still generally alluded to that Lenin died without political issue; and that Stalin, thanks to his “bureaucratic talents”, managed to usurp the supreme power within the Russian Communist to Trotsky’s detriment. For –it ran- the latter was too “intellectual”, too “brilliant” to “pick a quarrel” with the “vulgar” Stalin. Yet History repudiates all of these.
In point of fact, and unlike Trotsky,
the “inane, diffuse and hypocrite” Menshevik,
Stalin was Lenin’s enfant chéri. Not only did the “young man from
That is how the Bolsheviks came to
power and maintained themselves in it. Immediately after the
Thus the “foolish peasants”, the “useful idiots” of the Russian
Revolution, rushed ‘happy as kings’ into taking possession of the landed
property of the aristocracy and the Church. They cherished the illusion that the seized
property was their own “for ever”; and accordingly they backed the Reds in
After the Civil War was over, the Russian peasantry prospered thanks to the New Economic Policy (N.E.P.) initiated by Lenin himself in 1921. The peasants felt no nostalgia for Tsarist autocracy. And to cap it all, as early as 1919 Mikhail Ivanovich Kalinin, a typical offspring of Russian peasants, was given the –purely honorary- dignity of President of Soviet Russia. His ‘rural physiognomy’ was soothing the Russian peasants.
And almost everybody was happy in
the “happiest of worlds”, namely Communist
…Until the comedy was over. The compulsory collectivisation ordered by
Stalin in the 1930s had millions upon millions upon millions of victims among
the peasants of the
…And unlike Dostoyevsky, our case study, Mikhail Afanasiyevich Bulgakov, was prompt to grasp not only the depth of the trickery wherein the peasants of Russia were ensnared but also the psychological reasons for their illusion. “These peasants, in whom Dostoyevsky sees the spirit of God, but they can easily crack your head as well…”, he stated in The White Guard. And he was right.
Still, he was secretly admired by Stalin who, magnanimous in everything save politics, was always prompt to appreciate literary talent. And Bulgakov, in turn, cherished the ambition of writing a “romantic play about the young Stalin”. Such a high ambition was never realised; but the inner, psychological bond between the Writer and the godlike Despot remained so strong, that some people saw in the Yoshua ha-Nozri, viz. the Christ, as depicted in The Master and Margarita, a resemblance to Stalin.
* * *
There is one point more to make, before closing this chapter on Soviet Russia, where Bulgakov spent his whole life: the atmosphere that prevailed during the late 1920s and the 1930s. This is an important point because without taking into consideration the moral and economic ambience of those years, it is not possible to understand Bulgakov’s supreme satire.
As aforementioned, N.E.P. was
proclaimed as early as 1921; yet it was revoked merely a year later.
Thanks to a string of measures adopted in February, March and April, 1924, the issue of the old (Soviet) paper roubles was discontinued, the roubles themselves withdrawn from circulation, and replaced by “treasury notes” expressed in golden roubles. In addition, small silver and copper coins were put into circulation. Nonetheless, the issue of the “treasury notes” was limited; for it had to correspond to the “demands of trade”. Further, on the of 1st May, 1925, the firm cover, i.e. gold, platinum and stable foreign currencies, amounted to “exactly 40% of the nominal value of the Soviet currency put into circulation”. So, late in the 1930s, i.e. a couple of years before Bulgakov died, the official (not the black market) exchange parity of the rouble was as follows:
1 U.S. dollar = 5.30 roubles
100 German Marks = 212.17 roubles
100 Italian lire = 27.86 roubles
100 French Francs = 14.44 roubles
100 Japanese Yen = 150.20 roubles
to stress that the Soviet rouble had only “internal” buying capacity. Aged
people of the ‘old school’ and peasants in particular kept running down the
“Communist money”, and purchasing golden coins of the “old days” with the
effigies of Tsars on them.
Regardless of the abolition of ration coupons’ in 1935, moreover,
and the subsequent everyday significant betterment of life , the Soviet
government was in anguish over attracting foreign currency. Of course,
individuals had no right to import either
gold or foreign currency into the
The Ukraine and Ukrainians
Afanasiyevich Bulgakov was Russian by birth but Ukrainian by adoption. He was
Afanasiy Ivanovich was a man of
crystallised opinions. He believed that the Modern World had been spared the
catastrophe suffered by the “Ancient Civilisations”, because the former, unlike
Pontius Pilate, had recognised the “moral and spiritual height” of the
Christian Religion. As a
matter of fact, Afanasiy Ivanovich saw in the Roman governor of
Such a conviction was typical of
Afanasiy Ivanovich’s own experience and time. From the provincial, obscure town
Afanasiy Ivanovich’s world collapsed utterly in 1917, that is after he himself died…
…And, consequently, it was his son,
Mikhail Afanasiyevich, who experienced
the ‘inner’, the ‘full’ meaning of the
soldiers’ tramp on the deserted streets of
It was quite natural, therefore, to seek out the guilty; and having as
the starting point in his thinking his late father’s own view, he blamed
Pilate. For he was the incarnation of the mortal sin, the worst sin to him,
namely cowardice. The corollary was the espousal of his experience of living in a
* * *
his father passed away, the widow, Varvara Mikhailovna, turned to becoming their offspring’s
educational overseer. She was an intelligent and well-bred person; and it was
chiefly thanks to her that Mikhail Afanasiyevich had a good literary and dramatic
culture. Nonetheless, he studied medicine at
Just prior to the outbreak of the First World War he took in marriage
Tatiana Lappa, his first wife. After the commencement of hostilities between
As to his addiction to narcotics, opinions are divergent. The ‘official’ view is that he stopped injecting himself with morphine towards the end of the First World War. According to widespread rumours in Russia, nevertheless, he never quit taking the drugs – and thanks to this addiction lies the cause of his death –allegedly blind- as early as 1940.
Be that as it may, the point is that early in 1918 Mikhail Afanasiyevich
came back to
Mikhail Afanasiyevich Bulgakov’s two brothers joined the White Guard,
i.e. the troops of the White Confederation that was struggling against the
Bolsheviks. He himself was drafted as a military doctor to Petliura’s force. The times were harsh and sanitary
conditions were terrible throughout
And Bulgakov concluded: Life is not good for sensitive people. But what is a person of feeling supposed to do in order to escape from the misery of our earthly life?
Most likely inspired by
And that is what he did during his entire time in
Yet, while he was gazing at the stars (either literally or metaphorically), the Days of the Turbins, i.e. the dramatisation of his White Guard, turned out to be the favourite play of Stalin. The evidence? The “Red Tsar” saw it fifteen times!
Bulgakov under the Stalin’s rule
Bulgakov abhorred Communism; it is curious, therefore, how he managed to cheat death until 1940. There are three explanations for such a paradox, namely:
Stalin admired and protected him. When Mikhail
Afanasiyevich was jobless, Stalin used to phone the appropriate people and at
once… the miracle was accomplished! Though a dissenter, Bulgakov was amply
hired again… and all the more in posts for which he was suited. He was never refused
permission to live in
b) As explained in The Master and Margarita, life-beyond-the- tomb is not a matter of course. Only people that prove themselves to be worthy of it during their earthly life, are entitled to look forward to a splendid afterlife in Heaven. And Bulgakov strove during his martyr’s life in Communist Russia to be worthy of such eternal survival. He spoke the truth and only the truth – as Jesus Himself did. He did not see in himself, nonetheless, somebody deserving the Light that Jesus Christ actually is and diffuses. Still, he anticipated that he would be given the never-ending happiness that only Satan dispenses. No matter that Satan occupies a lesser position than Jesus. Wearied by living under a Communist regime he did not aspire to the Light; he just wanted peace – and he anticipated it in his Woland, viz. the literary embodiment of the Devil.
c) In all likelihood, the Margarita of his novel (in spite of her superhuman grace) is patterned upon his second wife, Yelena Sergeyevna; and the manuscript on Jesus’s life is modelled on his own novel The Master and Margarita. In point of fact, he was full of angst regarding the manuscript of his novel. He wanted it to survive him. By all means Yelena loved him. She was fearless due to her love; and it was thanks to her that Bulgakov passed away no sooner than 1940. His novel was not printed under Stalin; nor under Khrushchev; and it was not published until the 1960s under Brezhnev. Still, it was available in the West before being so in Soviet Russia. Be that as it may, in the 1970s Bulgakov was recognised as a Russian classic. By the 1980s he had become the cult author of the Soviet reading public. And it was in the Glasnost era that his detailed biography, written by Yelena, was published.
Yes, Bulgakov was “sternly and neurotically” afraid of being put to death under Stalin. Still, harsh reality proved that Stalin was not his deadly foe. For his conduct vis-à-vis Mikhail Afanasiyevich proved at least that the motto of the Master answers to reality: “Manuscripts do not burn.” In other words, the suppression of literary merit is not within the bounds of possibility. As a matter of fact, it was not Stalin but Solzhenitsyn who tried to extinguish the splendour of Bulgakov’s masterpiece. He emphasised that Christ’s story as narrated in The Master and Margarita does not chime together with the Gospels. Instead it is Jesus’s earthly life and death as correlated by the Devil, Solzhenitsyn announced. Of course, he was right…
…So what? Bulgakov never claimed he was a conventional Christian (as his father was). For he did not trust the Orthodox Church; and in his very unconventionality is to be found the spring of his grandeur.
The Orthodox Church
The Russian Orthodox Church, instead of responding to the Communists’ atheism, seemed to be tacitly approving of it. Tikhon, the 1917 elected Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia (his secular name being Vasily Ivanovich Bellavin) was born in 1865; and, as a layman, studied in the Theological Academy of Saint Petersburg. In 1891 he took the monastic vows and was given the name Tikhon (from the Greek: Tychon<tyche=fortune). He taught in several ecclesiastical schools, and in 1897 was consecrated Bishop of Lublin, Poland. Merely a year later, he was made Bishop of Aleutians and Alaska, i.e. head of the Russian Orthodox Church in America. He spent several years in the United States and –what is more- was given American citizenship.
In 1907 he was appointed Bishop of Yaroslavl, Russia, and in 1913 was transferred to Vilnius, Lithuania. In 1917, the first revolution was triggered off in Russia, and the Emperor Nicholas II abdicated. Even today the idea that the Russian Church was in favour of the Romanov Monarchy is widespread. It is quite the contrary that occurred: the relief among the Russian clergy was deep and sincere. Paradoxical as it may appear, the Russian Church was, in fact, the foe of Russian Autocracy. The reason is simple and clear: Peter I the Great had abolished the Moscow Patriarchate.
The Patriarchate of Moscow was created in 1589 by Jeremias II, the Greek Patriarch of Constantinople, in full legitimacy, i.e. by means of the publication of a Synodical Tome. The arguments that Jeremias II used in defence of his action were important: The First Rome, the “Papist” one, had fallen because of heresy, i.e. the 1054 Schism; the Second was captured by the Turks in 1453. Moscow, therefore, capital of a Kingdom “more pious than the previous Christian Kingdoms”, was undeniably the Third Rome. This was an assertion harmonized with the prophecy of Philotheus, hegumen in 1511 of the Yelizarov Monastery, Pskov: Instead of Rome and Constantinople, Moscow was now the “shining light in the firmament of Christendom”. For the two previous Romes had fallen, “but the Third one was standing and a Fourth one would never rise”. It was a somewhat apocalyptic Weltanschauung which had a considerable impact not only on Russian intellectual and spiritual life but on the Greek ones as well.
Ironically enough, it was a Russian Emperor and not a Papist or Moslem one to deliver a severe blow to the Third Rome. Actually, in the beginning of the eighteenth century Peter the Great abolished the Moscow Patriarchate, because he saw in the Patriarch a danger to his Crown. The populace thought of the Patriarch as a “second Tsar”; and, of course, only one Tsar could exist in Russia. A Synod was accordingly established which run the Russian Church under the “strict surveillance” of an Imperial Commissioner. The Orthodox Church was the main pillar of Tsarist autocracy; but it considered itself, too, to be subjugated to the despotism of the Romanovs.
It was not accidental, therefore, that the 1905 workers’ uprising in Saint Petersburg was engineered by an Orthodox priest, the famous Georgy Gapon. It is well-known that “Father Gapon” escaped from the massacre of the “Bloody Sunday” (9th of January, 1905 [Old Style]) thanks to his friend Pinhas Rutenber. He fled abroad shortly after and contacted Lenin, with whom he had several important talks.
Lenin was impressed by him and, accordingly, assimilated some of Father Georgy Gapon’s ideas. For Gapon was hostile to both Romanovs and the “hierarchy”, i.e. Metropolites, Archbishops and Bishops, of the Russian Church. Such feelings were shared by the vast majority of his fellow-clergymen.
In 1917, however, it was the turn of the ecclesiastical “hierarchy” to openly side along the foes of the Russian Monarchy. Bishops, Archbishops etc. saw in Nicholas’ abdication a unique opportunity for the Moscow Patriarchate to be restored. The head of the Synod therefore, Archbishop of Vladimir Sergius, summoned a Pan-Russian Synod in Moscow, the works of which began on August 15, 1917. On the 30th of that same month the re-establishment of the Moscow Patriarchate was decided and Tikhon was elected Patriarch.
The Russian Church somehow had the naïve idea that, after the fall of the Monarchy, it could itself assume the spiritual power in Russia –and to a certain extent the secular one as well. For the “Pope” of the Orthodox People during the Romanov reign was not a clergyman but the Emperor himself. Yet Lenin was a convinced atheist; and in early 1918, by means of a decree, the separation of Church and State was promulgated. During the Civil War, a lot of Russian clergymen were ill-treated by the Reds; the peasants, nonetheless, who thanks to Lenin’s astuteness were supporting the Communist regime, saw in Patriarch Tikhon all but a guarantee that Old Russia was not to die. As a result, after the Emperor Nicholas II and his family were put to death, few were the Russians who felt nostalgia for the monarchy. Especially peasantry, happy with the NEP and the neo-NEP of the 1920s, saw in Tikhon its national leader. The Tsar was dead but the Patriarch did exist. So everything was OK.
As foreseeable, this “religious-rural comedy” was to end in a bloody drama. After Stalin seized hold of the State and Party machinery in late 1927, a free, prosperous peasantry was tolerated no longer in Soviet Russia. In the early 1930s, therefore, millions and millions of peasants were exterminated – and those who survived were compelled to toil only in the framework imposed by the Communist regime. For the industrialization of the country should be accelerated. The Old Russia peasant was not compatible with Stalin’s USSR.
Meantime, Tikhon had passed away. In his Testament, delivered to the Soviet and foreign Press by two Russian Metropolites, namely Peter of Krutitshky and Tikhon of Urals, he admonished his flock to co-operate with the Communist regime and repudiate any kind of anti-soviet propaganda. Resistant clergymen would be brought before the Synod of the Russian Church. The Workers and Peasants regime, i.e. the Communist one, was unshakable; it must be recognized, therefore, by the Christian Orthodox Flock in Russia. With regard to the Orthodox Faith, the problem was not the Communists but the… Catholics, Old Believers, and Protestants.
Nonetheless, Stalin kept watch on the Russian Church. It was no sooner than the 4th of September, 1943, that he allowed a successor to Tikhon to be elected. The new Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia was Sergius, the former Archbishop of Vladimir and Metropolitan of Nizhny Novgorod. Being advanced in age he died the following year; his successor was Alexius I. Alexius had no major problems to cope with. For the Russian Orthodox Church was now the pillar of the communist regime. The Testament of Tikhon was fulfilled ad litteram.
As an Epilogue
believe that Solzhenitsyn was right? Do you prefer conventionality to
originality? Well, if you do, the next time you are in
Testament of Patriarch Tikhon English Translation 
By the grace of God, we, Tikhon, Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia, send you out a blessing of our Lord Jesus Christ. In the years of civil collapse, the Soviet government was placed at the head of the Russian state by God, without the will of Whom nothing can be done on earth; it [=the Soviet Government] took upon himself the arduous charge of liquidating the dire consequences of war and a terrible famine.
Upon taking power, the representatives of the Soviet regime in January 1918 issued a decree recognizing the full religious freedom of citizens. Thus the principle of freedom of conscience [was] recognized by the constitution to any religious congregation and to our Orthodox Church as well: we are given the opportunity to lead our lives according to [the] rituals of our faith as they are not contrary to freedom of other citizens and to the established order. That's why we in time recognized the new order of things in our letters to our flock and pastors [priests] and we sincerely and publicly acknowledged the Worker-Peasant Government of the People.
It is time for the faithful to recognize the Christian point of view that says "everything works out for the divine" and adopt all that happened as God's will. While admitting no compromise with our conscience and not yielding nothing with regard to our religion, we must be sincere towards the government and the work of the USSR for the good of everyone and arrange our religious life in accordance with established order, condemning any reconciliation with the enemies of the government and the overt or covert propaganda against it.
Praying God to bless the work of the people, we call for all our flock well-loved to join [us] in our fervent prayer to help the Soviet government in its work for the good of everyone. We call on all our parishes not to allow anti-Soviet propaganda attempts to ill-intentioned people, not to toy with the hope of the monarchical government being restored and understand that the Soviet government is truly the government of the people and is, therefore, strong and unwavering. As far as the elections in the parishes are concerned, we recommend people not involved in politics and really sympathetic to the Soviet government. The activity of our Church has nothing to do with politics; for involvement in politics is totally unsuitable for her spirit. Our Church aims at fortifying the Orthodox faith; for the enemies of our Holy Church, [such as] the sectarians [Old Believers], Catholics, Protestants, atheists and their ilk are trying to take any time to hurt Her [the Church]. The enemies of the Church resort to all kinds of deceptive means, [even] to the seductions to reach their goal. Let us take a look at Poland where there are [now] only 50 of 350 Orthodox churches: the rest is closed or changed into Catholic churches - not to mention the persecution endured by our Orthodox clergy.
Now that, after having recovered from illness, we return to the settlement of the matters of our Church, we condemn once more all rebellion to the [Soviet] authorities. We can not fail to mention those who, taking advantage of their status as clergymen, too often enter into harsh and even criminal politics; that is why we have a special committee summoned. [This committee] will examine these cases and, if necessary, will remove by canonical means [the] bishops and priests who persist in their error and refuse to bring their repentance to the Soviet government: these bishops and priests will be brought before the Synod [of our] Orthodox [Church].
It is pitiful for us to know that some sons of Russia, even bishops and priests, who have left the country for various reasons, are involved in matters that do not concern them and, and in all cases, harmful to our Church. By taking advantage of our own name and our [patriarchal] authority, they develop a counter-revolutionary and pernicious activity. We declare openly: contrary to what our enemies argue, we have nothing to do with them. [For they] are strangers to us; therefore we condemn their activities. They are free in their opinions, but they abuse against the laws of our Church – albeit they say that they act for the sake [of our Church]. The conclave [synod] in Karlovitz was not for the good of the Church and laity; thus, we reiterate our condemnation of them, and we declare that all similar attempts will result in severe measures [against them]: [we shall not hesitate] to prohibit them to celebrate the [Holy] Mass and bring them before the Orthodox Sobor [Council].
To avoid such punishments, we call on the bishops and priests who are abroad to break with the enemies of the people and to have the courage to return and tell the truth about themselves and the Church. Their actions must be investigated, they must clear [of their actions] before the conscience of the Orthodox Church. We entrust to a special committee to study especially the actions of the Metropolites Anthony and Plato, who fled abroad, and provide immediate assessment of their conduct. Their refusal to submit to our call will force us to judge them in absentia.
Our enemies, who would separate us from our well-loved flock, spread false rumours about us, saying we are not free in our job, [that] we can not talk freely, that our conscience is chained up, [and that] we are oppressed by the so-called enemies of the people. We declare that all this [is] false, as there is no power on earth can chain our patriarchal word and conscience.
By asking God's blessing for our priests and our flock, we ask them to submit to the Soviet government sincerely without fear of sinning [in doing so] against our Holy Religion.
We think also that the establishment of a clear and sincere relationship [with the Soviet regime] will bring about the full confidence of the authorities to us; [so] we shall be given the opportunity to teach [our] religion to our children, to open [ecclesiastical] schools, and to publish books and newspapers for the defence of our Holy Orthodox faith.
Signed: Patriarch Tikhon
April 7, 1925
See Anil Çiçek, « Moscow : More than a capital - The central place of Moscow in Russian Culture », International Journal of Russian Studies, 2013/2.
Lénine, Karl Marx (Pekin : Éditions en langues étrangères, 1970), p. 44.
Karl Marx-Friedrich Engels, The Manifesto of the Communist Party. Translated into Greek by Giōrgos Kottēs (Athens: Themelio, 1982), p. 48.
History of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (Bolsheviks), Moscow: Foreign Languages Publishing House, 1939, p. 30.
Ibid., p. 27.
Ibid., p. 39.
Ibid., p. 43.
Robert Service, Lenin. A biography (London: Pan Books, 2002), p. 156.
History of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, p. 43.
Adam B. Ulam, The Bolsheviks: The Intellectual and Political History of the Triumph of Communism in Russia. Translated into Greek by M. Peros and D. Karatzas (Athens: Neoi Horizontes [no date given]), p. 123.
Ibid., p. 215.
See mainly Simon Sebag Montefiore, Young Stalin (London: Phoenix, 2007), p. 50ff.
Ibid., p. 22; Adam B. Ulam, The Bolsheviks, p. 10.
R. Service, Lenin, p. 23; S. S. Montefiore, Young Stalin, pp.18-19.
Adam B. Ulam, The Bolsheviks, p. 201.
S. S. Montefiore, Young Stalin, p. 166.
Ibid., p. 163.
Adam B. Ulam, The Bolsheviks, p. 246.
History of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, p. 209.
Expression established thanks to Kerry Bolton. See his book Revolution from Above. Manufacturing ‘Dissent’ in the New World Order, London: Arktos, 2011.
Parliamentary Archives (London), LG/F/206/4/10; Isaac Deutscher, Staline. Translated into French by Jean-Pierre Herbert (Paris : Gallimard, 1953), p. 273.
Otmar, « La réalité soviétique exposée par les tchékistes », published in the Warsaw newspaper Gazeta Polska, January 24, 1938. (The French translation in the Archives of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs [hereafter: AYE], 1938, B/2/P .)
1925, A/5/VII (1), I. Kokotakēs to the Foreign Ministry of Greece, dispatch No. 2961, Moscow, November 20, 1925.
Cf. I. Deutscher, Staline, p. 309.
See mainly V. – A. Kravchenko, J’ai choisi la liberté! La vie publique et privée d’un haut fonctionnaire soviétique. Translated into French by Jean de Kerdéland, Paris : Éditions S.E.L.F., 1947.
S. S. Montefiore, Young Stalin, p. 100 (note).
S. S. Montefiore, Stalin. The Court of the Red Tsar (London: Phoenix, 2004), p. 101.
S. S. Montefiore, Young Stalin, p. 100 (note).
See Slavic Review, vol. 56, No. 2 (Summer 1997), p. 200. (Review of the work of Judith Mills.)
AYE, 1925, A/5/VII (3), Report (not signed) entitled « La nouvelle politique économique du gouvernement des Soviets ».
AYE, 1924-1925, A/5/VII (1), “La néo-NEP”. (Memorandum; not signed; no date given; written most likely early in April, 1925.)
Dimitris Michalopoulos, « Peasants and Banks under Communism: Some early Soviet experiments according to the Greek Diplomatic Service», Anuarul Institutului de Istorie “A.D.Xenopol” (Bucharest), vol. XLVIII (2011), p. 346.
AYE, 1928, 65.3, I. Kokotakēs to the Foreign Ministry of Greece, dispatch No. 2778, Moscow, October 30, 1925.
AYE, 1928, 65.3, I. Kokotakēs to the Foreign Ministry of Greece, dispatch No. 2706, Moscow, October 20, 1925.
The State Bank of the U.S.S.R. (Moscow, 1925), p. 3.
Ibid., p. 9.
Ibid., p. 11.
AYE, 1938, B/2/P (2), Spyros Marketēs, Greek minister at Moscow, to the Foreign Ministry of Greece, dispatch No. 1742, Moscow, November 8, 1938.
AYE, 1935, A/13/2/1, Iōannēs Stephanou, chargé d’affaires of the Greek Legation at Moscow, to the Foreign Ministry of Greece, dispatch No.1850, Moscow, November 28, 1935.
AYE, 1928, 65.3, “L’U.R.S.S. en
Edythe C. Haber, “The Lamp with the Green Shade: Mikhail Bulgakov and his Father”, The Russian Review, vol. 44 (1985), p. 333.
Ibid., p. 344.
Ibid., p. 343.
Ibid., p. 346.
Ibid., p. 346.
Ibid., pp. 347, 349.
Varvara, a Greek name, from the word varvaros (= barbarian). For there are several Saints in the Orthodox tradition, who were of “barbarian” stock.
Edythe C. Haber, “The Lamp with the Green Shade…”, p. 334.
Ibid., pp. 333, 334.
Literally: behemothian. See Soljénitsyne, Lénine à Zurich. Translated into French by Jean-Paul Sémon (Paris: Seuil, 1975), pp. 89, 90.
Pronounced in Russian: Gelfand.
Alexander Kerensky, Russia and History's Turning Point. Translated into Greek by Angelos Nikas (Athens: Papyros, 1972), pp. 256-257; Soljénitsyne, Lénine à Zurich, p. 127ff.; AYE, 1917, A/5/II (2), Kōnstantinos Rentēs, chargé d’affaires of the Greek Legation at Stockholm, to the Foreign Ministry of Greece, ciphered cable No. 66, Stockholm, December 3, 1917.
Soljénitsyne, Lénine à Zurich, pp. 93-94.
Ibid., p. 94.
His biographical details are drawn on the Greek editions of his novels, White Guard and Heart of a Dog.
Information gathered by the author in Moscow during the late 1990s.
Richard Luckett, The White Generals. An Account of the White Movement and the Russian Civil War (New York: The Viking Press, 1971), p. 112.
AYE, 1919, A/5/IV (5), “À tous les peuples et leur gouvernement”. Proclamation of the Ukrainian Directorate, Kiev, December 28, 1918 ; Isaac Deutscher, Staline, p. 244.
R. Luckett, The White Generals…, p. 194.
 AYE, 1920, 20.1, « Copie du télégramme adressé aux Puissances alliées et associées par le Président du Directoire ukrainien et Commandant en chef de l’Armée ukrainienne, S. Petlioura », Paris, January 21, 1920.
AYE, 1920, 20.1, “À Son Excellence Monsieur le Président de
A. Kerensky, Russia and History's Turning Point, p. 413.
Eleutherios Venizelos Papers (Athens), I/39/1-2.
R. Service, Lenin, p. 415.
Vladislav Zubok and Constantine Pleshakov, Inside the Kremlin’s Cold War. From Stalin to Khrushchev (Harvard University Press, 2003), p. 176.
AYE, 1920, 20.1, « Copie du télégramme adressé aux Puissances alliées et associées… ».
Cf. V. Zubok and C. Pleshakov, Inside the Kremlin’s Cold War…, p. 177.
S. S. Montefiore, Young Stalin, p. 100 (note).
AYE, 1917, A/5/II (2), Dēmētrios Kaklamanos, Greek minister at Petrograd, to the Foreign Ministry of Greece, ciphered telegram No. 1906, Stockholm, November 10, 1917.
S. S. Montefiore, Stalin. The Court of the Red Tsar, p. 101.
Information gathered by the author in Moscow during the late 1990s.
Edythe C. Haber, “The Mythic Structure…”, p. 397.
Ibid., p. 406.
Vladimir Lakchine, Réponse à Soljénitsyne. Translated into French by Annie Sabatier (Paris: Albin Michel, 1977), p. 35.
Stephen Lovell, “Bulgakov as Soviet Culture”, The Slavonic and East European Review, vol. 76, No. 1 (January, 1998), p. 28ff.
Edythe C. Haber, “The Mythic Structure…”, . ., p. 407.
V. Lakchine, Réponse à Soljénitsyne, p. 35.
Cf. D. Michalopoulos, “The Testament of Patriarch Tikhon”, in Ab Aeterno (New Zealand), No. 7 (April-May- June 2011), p. 32ff.
Metropolitan Nestor, Anamnēseis apo tēn Kamtsatka (=Recollections from Kamtsatka). Translated from Russia into Greek, Ōrōpos, Attica, Greece: Monastery of the Paraclete, 19952), p. 300 (note 25).
D. Michalopoulos, “The Icon of Strategos Protector in the Capital of Russia”, Mnemosyne (Athens), vol. XVII (2006-2009), p.133.
Metropolitan Nestor, Anamniseis apo tin Kamtsatka, p. 288.
History of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, p. 57.
R. Service, Lenin., pp. 172-173.
Ibid., p. 8.
Ibid., p. 173.
Metropolitan Nestor, Anamnēseis apo tēn Kamtsatka, p. 289.
Carl, prince de Suède, Je me souviens… Souvenirs d’une longue vie (Brussels : La renaissance du livre, 1936), p. 72.
AYE, 1920, 20.3, General Staff of the Greek Army, II Bureau, to the Foreign Ministry of Greece, Bulletin No. 504, Athens, January 20th, 1920.
On October 26, 1917 (Old Style), the Second Congress of Soviets adopted the « Decree on Land ». Private ownership of land was abolished forever, without compensation, and it was to be replaced by State or public ownership. The lands of the landlords, the Imperial Family and the monasteries were turned over the “toilers” for their free use. (History of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union [Bolsheviks], p. 209.)
Otmar, “La réalité soviétique exposée par les tchékistes”.
NEP= New Economic Policy, adopted by the Tenth Congress of the Communist Party, which opened on March 8, 1921. The point was that a tax in kind was substituted for the surplus-appropriation system. All produce over and above the amount of the tax was to be entirely at the disposal of the peasant, who would be at liberty to sell these surpluses at will. (History of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, p. 256.)
AYE, 1924-1925, A/5/VII (1), the Press Office of the Greek Legation in Sweden to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Stockholm, January 14th, 1925 (no number, no signature).
AYE, 1924-1925, A/5/VII (1).
The English translation was edited by D. Michalopoulos and K. R. Bolton. (D. Michalopoulos, “The Testament of Patriarch Tikhon”, pp. 38-39.)
P r i m a r y S o u r c e s
Archives of the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affaires (AYE), Athens
1917, A/5/II (2); 1920, 20.1; 1920, 20.3; 1924-1925, A/5/VII (1);1925, A/5/VII(1); 1925, A/5/VII (3); 1938, B/2/P (2); 1938, B/2/P (3).
Eleutherios Venizelos Papers, Athens
Parliamentary Archives, London
History of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (Bolsheviks), Moscow:
Foreign Languages Publishing House, 1939.
Karl Marx-Friedrich Engels, The Manifesto of the Communist Party.
Translated into Greek by Giōrgos Kottēs, Athens: Themelio, 1982.
Lénine, Karl Marx, Pekin : Éditions en langues étrangères, 1970.
The State Bank of the U.S.S.R., Moscow, 1925
S e c o n d a r y S o u r c e s
Bolton, Kerry, Revolution from Above. Manufacturing ‘Dissent’ in the New
World Order, London: Arktos, 2011.
Carl, prince de Suède, Je me souviens… Souvenirs d’une longue vie,
Brussels : La renaissance du livre, 1936.
Çiçek, Anil, « Moscow : More than a capital - The central place of Moscow in Russian
Culture », International Journal of Russian Studies, 2013/2.
Deutscher, Isaac Staline. Translated into French by Jean-Pierre Herbert,
Paris : Gallimard, 1953.
Haber, Edythe C., “The Lamp with the Green Shade: Mikhail Bulgakov and
his Father”, The Russian Review, vol. 44 (1985), pp. 333-350.
Kerensky, Alexander, Russia and History's Turning Point. Translated into
Greek by Angelos Nikas, Athens: Papyros, 1972.
Kravchenko, V. – A., J’ai choisi la liberté! La vie publique et privée d’un haut
fonctionnaire soviétique. Translated into French by Jean de Kerdéland,
Paris : Éditions S.E.L.F., 1947.
Lakchine, Vladimir, Réponse à Soljénitsyne. Translated into French by Annie
Sabatier, Paris: Albin Michel, 1977.
Lovell, Stephen, “Bulgakov as Soviet Culture”, The Slavonic and East
European Review, vol. 76, No. 1 (January, 1998), pp. 28-48.
Luckett, Richard The White Generals. An Account of the White Movement and
the Russian Civil War, New York: The Viking Press, 1971.
Metropolitan Nestor, Anamnēseis apo tēn Kamtsatka (=Recollections from
Kamtsatka). Translated from Russia into Greek, Ōrōpos, Attica,
Greece: Monastery of the Paraclete, 19952.
Michalopoulos, Dimitris « Peasants and Banks under Communism: Some
early Soviet experiments according to the Greek Diplomatic Service»,
Anuarul Institutului de Istorie “A.D.Xenopol” (Bucharest), vol. XLVIII
(2011), pp. 345-350.
Idem, “The Testament of Patriarch Tikhon”, Ab Aeterno (New Zealand), No. 7
(April-May-June 2011), pp. 32-37.
Montefiore, Simon Sebag, Stalin. The Court of the Red Tsar, London: Phoenix,
Idem, Young Stalin, London: Phoenix, 2007.
Service, Robert, Lenin. A biography, London: Pan Books, 2002.
Soljénitsyne, Lénine à Zurich. Translated into French by Jean-Paul Sémon,
Paris: Seuil, 1975.
Ulam, Adam B., The Bolsheviks: The Intellectual and Political History of the
Triumph of Communism in Russia. Translated into Greek by M. Peros
and D. Karatzas,Athens: Neoi Horizontes (no date given).