Leon Trotsky, 1924
Lessons of October

In this document, written just months after the failure of the Communist Party to take power in Germany in the fall of 1923, Trotsky analyzes the struggle that unfolded within the Bolshevik Party from February 1917 through the October Revolution of 1917.

Just as the leaders of the October Revolution were steeped in the lessons of the Great French Revolution, the Revolution of 1848, the Paris Commune, and the 1905 Revolution in Russia, Trotsky urges that the international workers’ movement undertake a serious study of October 1917.

This history shows that the fundamental instrument of proletarian revolution is the party, and Trotsky analyzes the crisis that almost inevitably arises within the revolutionary party in the transition from preparatory revolutionary activity to the direct struggle for power.

This work was met with furious attacks by Stalin, Zinoviev, Kamenev and other Bolsheviks who were fighting against the Left Opposition led by Trotsky.