The Bolshevik Poster Essay Research Paper The — страница 2

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graphic was mass produced after its drawing by Bolshevik employed artist, A. Apsit and used as propaganda. Apsit worked exclusively for the Bolsheviks, from 1918-1919, simply to produce artwork to be used as propaganda. The Bolsheviks, a party believing in the theories of Karl Marx, a German communist, was led by Lenin. Their intent was to implement the strategies of Marx and lead the people towards a new life in a country led by the general population. Lenin and his second in charge, Trotsky, lead the Bolsheviks and strongly believed that not only should Bolshevism, or communism, be the new leadership style of Russia but that in order for this to occur, an armed takeover by the Proletariat was required. The Bolsheviks believed that the Soviet was to lead Russia into the new day.

This is demonstrated by Lenin’s statement ‘All Power To The Soviets’2, a piece of primary evidence used to persuade the people to follow him. He also stated, shortly before his return to Russia, that ‘History will never forgive us if we don’t take power now.’3 Lenin’s other promise to the people was that of peace, bread and land which was made during a speech delivered to attack and discredit the Provisional Government in which he stated ‘The people need peace; the people need bread; and the people need land. And they ( the Provisional Government) give you war, hunger…. and leave the landlords on the land.’4 ‘This was part of Lenin’s ‘April Theses’ – a collection of Lenin’s statements and Bolshevik policies collated on Lenin’s return to Russia in

April, 1917 after years of exile in Germany. As much as the Bolshevik’s may have been liked, they were also strongly disliked. In a statement made by a German official in charge of transporting the Bolshevik leader back in to Russia, Lenin’s journey was compared to ‘the transportation of a deadly virus in a test tube. Once safely arrived in Russia, the test tube was broken, releasing the fatal germ to infect the body politic of Russia.’5 This representation shows that Bolshevism was not seen in a good light by all. It isn’t a reliable piece of evidence as it is quoted by someone who would be prejudiced against Russians and communism due to the effect of Russia’s role in WW2 against Germany. A photograph taken in 1923 supports this point. It depicts a male and female

peasant, both miserable, standing behind a table on which rests and array of body parts ranging from half a young boy to a mans head. The caption below this representation states ‘Russian Peasants Buying And Selling Human Flesh’6. This representation of starvation and cannibalism contradicts the Bolsheviks view of life at that time with the photograph being more reliable as a source of evidence and one which presents more difficulty in regards to manipulation. Propaganda was often used to persuade the Russian people as it was easily understood and interpreted. Due to the illiteracy of the common people, the exact group Lenin was trying to attract, all propaganda was graphical with as little text as possible so that the function of the work was successful as demonstrated by

the following statement, ‘circumstances of major illiteracy… meant that particular emphasis had to be placed upon visual rather than printed or textual forms of communication or persuasion’7 Of course Lenin’s views and the ideologies of his party were not supported by all. Using the same technique as the Bolsheviks themselves, others published propaganda in order to end the growing support for this mad man and his ravings as well as to make it clear that it was indecent to support him. A rather effective representation of the argument against the Bolsheviks is the poster published at around the same time, date unknown, showing Lenin to be a psychotic leader and the policies of his party as evil. This graphic, presented in cartoon form, depicts a sacrificed woman laying

before Lenin and other Bolsheviks at whom they laugh and mock. In addition to this portrayal of sadistic excitement is the worshipping of the image of Marx before them. The woman is used to symbolise the sacrifice of the Old Regime and the common people in favour of the evil Bolshevik party. Again, this piece of evidence is only as reliable as the Bolshevik poster in that both represent the biased views of opposing political parties. The problems with using available evidence to support or disprove history is that the evidence may be biased, outdated, manipulated, censored or simply obviously untrue as is demonstrated by the presence of happy, healthy people in the poster even though Russia was at war and starvation ran rife.words.