The Red Flag : A History of Communism

English language

Published Nov. 20, 2009

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5 stars (1 review)

3 editions

Bird's eye history of the 20th century

5 stars

Priestland is a great storyteller. I learned a lot from this book. It's a history of communist movements and communist rule, not a history of communist ideas as I originally expected. Since the scope of the book is extremely broad, some things are simplified, which is fine. The basic idea is that Marxism has three facets: Romantic, Radical, and Modernist (synthesized from Fourier, Babœuf and Saint Simon respectively) and the history of communism is depicted as a dance between these three. This model works very well I think.