In the Transitional Programme, written in 1938, Leon Trotsky explained that, “The world political situation as a whole is chiefly characterised by a historical crisis of the leadership of the proletariat.” Capitalism is ripe for overthrow, but the present stock of reformist leaders are damming up the struggle of the working class. In order to overthrow capitalism, the workers’ movement must be equipped with a revolutionary leadership that is up to the task.
In the following talk from Revolution Festival 2021, leading Socialist Appeal activist Ben Gliniecki, looks at the vital question of how we can build revolutionary leadership today, drawing from many examples of previous attempts to do so, most notably the example of the Bolshevik party – the only party to ever lead the working class to power.
Prepare for the International Marxist University 2022!
This year the International Marxist Tendency (IMT) is holding its second International Marxist University (#IMU22), a four day school with thousands of comrades participating from over 100 countries around the world. You too can join – online or at one of numerous watch parties happening on every continent. [Click here to register.]
There will be 15 sessions running over the four days, from 23 to 26 July inclusive. The closing session, from 17:30 (BST) on 26 July, will be precisely on this all-important question: “The Building of the Revolutionary Party”, with editor of marxist.com, Hamid Alizadeh.
Our epoch is characterised by a groundswell of desire for revolution amongst the masses around the world. In many instances we have seen the masses have taken to earth-shaking action to achieve change. Again, however, as Leon Trotsky explained: “Without a guiding organisation, the energy of the masses would dissipate like steam not enclosed in a piston-box.” The guiding organisation that can channel the steam of the masses is the revolutionary party, and it needs to be built ahead of decisive events.
The depth of the capitalist crisis through which we’re living makes revolutionary leadership more urgent than ever. It’s up to us to build it.
To prepare for this discussion, we recommend comrades read the article “Why has there not been a revolution? The need for revolutionary leadership” by Alan Woods in issue 37 of In Defence of Marxism magazine [Click here for your copy]. Above all, we urge all our readers to get in touch, to sign up to #IMU22 and come along to a watch party if you can, and to join the International Marxist Tendency in order to help us build a revolutionary organisation today!