Maria Todorova – Imagining Utopia: The Lost World of European Socialists at Europe's Margin

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Maria Todorova – Imagining Utopia: The Lost World of European Socialists at Europe's Margin

Good evening everyone and thank you for coming. My name is Angelina Ilieva and I am an instructional professor of South Slavic Literature in the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures. It’s a great honor for me to introduce to you Maria Todorova Edward William and Jane Marr Gutgsell Professor of History and the Center of Advanced Study at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. First, I need express my sincere thanks to the organizers of this event, the Center for East European Russian and Eurasian Studies, and especially Esther Peters who handled all the logistics, the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, the Department of History and the Hellenic Studies Center Without their support this event would not have been possible Professor Todorova is the author of many monographs, edited collections, and over 200 articles and book chapters. Her work is marked by intellectual rigor, theoretical breadth and depth, and at the same time meticulous attention to historic specificity. She is best known for rethinking the multiple intellectual coordinates, historic, narrative, epistemological, and geographic that surround the production of knowledge and therefore the production of concepts of European center and periphery in particular in the balkans, and for coining the term balkanism in her book “Imagining the Balkans” from 1997. The intellectual rigor of the work is accompanied by real moral urgency responding to critical questions concerning harrowing events of the violent dissolution of the Yugoslavia in the 1990s “Imagining the Balkans” provided the historical paradigm and theoretical paradigm for the intellectual engagement with the region and has profoundly influenced more than one generation of scholars. It remains the definitive work on South East European studies and has been translated into 13 languages and is in its updated edition. Professor Todorova’s work also grapples with questions of national identity memory ownership of history and the production of history and national identity. The main titles I need to mention here are her edited volume “Balkan Identities: Nation and Memory” from 2004 and her monograph “Bones of Contention: The Living Archive of Vasil Levski and the Making of Bulgaria’s National Hero” from 200. A third cluster of writings interrogates the relation of the present moment with the communist period, acts of remembering commemorating. Most notable here are her three edited volumes “Post-communist Nostalgia” with Zsuzsa Gille in 2010, “Remembering Communism: Genres of Representation” for which she was the sole editor in 2010, and “Remembering Communism: Private and Public Recollections of Lived Experience in Southeast Europe,” which she was the co-editor in 2014. With her new book Professor Todorova turns to a fourth nexus of concerns, the socialist imaginary around the Second International and at the same time continues her inquiry into the relationships of center periphery This is a forthcoming book from this year. Her talk tonight will introduce us to this fourth nexus, it is entitled “Imagining Utopia: The Lost World of European Socialists at Europe’s Margins.” Please join me in welcoming Professor Todorova -Thank you, thank you so much. Thank you all for this opportunity and thank you all for coming. And Angelina you should be my first reviewer. Let me start by saying that in a memorable quip the German sociologist Werner Sombart argued more than a century ago that widespread prosperity would forestall the development of socialism in the United States and this is what he said, “on the shoals of roast-beef and apple-pie, all socialist utopias flounder.” Yet surprisingly a hundred years later socialism is no longer a dirty word, as we know today, and it is as popular as capitalism,

especially among young people until the age of 39 and people over 70 This was not the case when I started working on different aspects of socialism so in fact it is the same cluster but moving back in the past almost three decades and I just completed this book, which is coming out any time in the next couple of months with Bloomsbury in London. I finished it last summer in the ivory tower of the Remarque Institute of NYU and ironically the book’s subtitle could have been “socialist on fifth avenue.” That sounds like imagining utopia but why not. So what I’m going to do today is give you an idea about the book by zooming in on some of its aspects but so that you can then engage other aspects in the question and answer period. So let me begin with this New Year’s card, which is also on the poster, it was sent in December 1910 by one fourteen-year-old girl to another fourteen-year-old girl from the town of Tirnovo to the village of Obchelare and obviously you can see it is executed in the Jugendstil which was fashionable at the time and of course the allegory of the Graces was known since antiquity — in Greek mythology they were beauty, charm, and grace and then they went through a Christian hypostasis of faith, hope, and charity until they became, of course, the French slogan of liberty, fraternity, and equality. In the three corners you see the cameo portraits of Karl Marx, August Babel, and Ferdinand Lassalle Writing at the close of the 20th century Jacques Attali lamented that the French Revolution is a sequence of failed utopias, but at the beginning of the 20th century these utopias were very much alive and they inspired young girls. So this is the obverse of the of the postcard and the second girl to whom it was sent These girls would not call call their dreams utopias, especially not if they were inspired by the then dominant Marxism, which liked to think of itself as non-utopian. Although of course it was a utopia in the guise of non-utopia. The addressee of the New Year’s card is Maria Krusheva, the second girl from the from from the left ,who wrote later, and I quote, “I don’t remember what we read but we considered our selves Socialists. I only recall that the following year when the teacher in Bulgarian assigned to us an essay about a great personality in the world in world history Stanca (the girl who sent the card) wrote about Karl Marx and I wrote about Wilhelm Liebknecht But by then, I had already liberated myself from religion and demonstrated it openly.” Much to the consternation of her of her mother. So my goal here is to recuperate something of the appeal of the socialist ideology and the utopia implicit in it. I’m doing this by going back to the experience of people who thought and dreamt of utopia and struggled to achieve it and it doesn’t matter how they called their dreams they could be liberty, equality, fraternity, justice, happiness, hope, socialism, communism, social democracy, the important thing is that they were involved in a movement— and it is the movement which is the focus here—which worked toward their ideal. So I’m using different scales of observation and so I shift the focus form large-scale things about center and peripheries, so the large scale movements, to closer pictures and then finally to close-ups on individuals I’m always joking that nowadays we have to do history bottom-up so this is history top-down then there is digital humanities, top-down but transnational digital humanities, and bottom up but national. So the study is looking at different intersections spaces, generations, genders, ideas and feelings, and different flows of historical time Chronologically I am restricting this roughly to the half century of what

Leszek Kołakowski called the golden age of social democracy, namely from the 1870s until the 1920s. Utopian visions and emancipatory movements in this era were obviously not restricted to socialism and I deal with some of them, but Marxist socialism especially with the Second International after the 1890s was the hegemonic one. I am ending with the aftermath of the October Revolution not because I want to gloss over it—and here I will insist that twice—let alone smear the interwar period of communism by insisting that it had an earlier and nobler less militant prehistory, which is the usual stereotype—I don’t want to do that—this would be an entirely different project but also a non-historical one displaying little sensitivity to the specificities and contingencies of the historical moment. I do think, however, that there is a qualitative difference between a utopia of the future and a utopia on earth and it has to do with the effects of generational shifts encompassing everything from approximate demographic clusters and specific social habitus to the consequences of singular dramatic events that are serving as a rupture. And in this case it would be the Great War and the Bolshevik Revolution. It was especially the Bolshevik Revolution that allows for the distinction of utopia in the future from utopia on earth, insofar as contemporaries believed that they had brought their strivings to fruition in 1917 even as they continued to strive for the final construction of their utopia. For them the future was no longer desirable and nebulous it had just arrived and had to be defended. So the selection of the European periphery on the other hand as the space of my account is not simply because it is less known but also because I have a goal and the goal is to fracture and to recalibrate the dominant narrative of social democracy, which is confined mostly to Western Europe and particularly to Germany, and it insists on the exclusive authenticity of industrial environment and working-class milieu so this is what I want to attack. Within this periphery, of course, I’m choosing a topos that is even less known, Bulgaria, which had on the other hand one of the largest, if not the largest, and most influential social democratic movements in Eastern Europe in this period with a unique relationship both to Germany and to Russia. What was socialism’s unique appeal in a young nation state with an overwhelmingly rural population and a very incipient proletariat? These are the questions that I’m asking. And just to give you an illustration about the strength of this movement the elections in 1912 gave the German Social Democratic Party, the strongest one, 34% it was followed by Bulgaria, Italy, and Belgium with over 20% the Netherlands 18%, France 16%, industrial Britain 7%, and rural Finland 43% so again you already have this upset. Center and peripheries, focuses on the intersection between center and periphery by looking at the history of social democracy from the positive margin of Europe. I really want to display these mottos because in the book they told me you cannot do a motto from a living person so the Dalai Lama is not quoted in the in the book but it’s a nice quote. So what I’m trying to do is to challenge, first of all, the established typology of two modes of socialism, supposedly a West European one and an Eastern Russian or Soviet one, until the first world war and I’m doing that through an exercise in begriffsgeschichte of the common history of the concepts of socialism, communism, Marxism, of course abetted by the magisterial Geschichtliche Grundbegriffe and so my conclusion is that insofar as we can speak of a binary model it would be applicable only after the 1920s. After the schism that had occurred in the field of social democracy with the creation of the third Communist International in 1919 and then the developments in the interwar period The passionate debates within the second international, so until the First World War, were not played on a West-East axis And then I try to situate Bulgaria

within this bickering but still family formation and demonstrate how this problematizes the notion of transfer of ideas. So just to give you a— It’s a sublime irony that of course the universalist Marx, and we can have quibbles about how universalist he was, [he was] obviously Eurocentric but he had a universalist message, he is nationalized to Germany and then he’s regionalized for Western Europe, but in both cases he’s deemed to be authentic and then he’s transferred to Eastern Europe and to the world. Why is that so? I’m arguing that he is transferred and understood also in Germany itself. After that I’m highlighting the attitudes toward the national question and the particular case of Balkan federation and especially their divergent positions toward the first world war, which proved the central issue in the undoing of the Second International So let me now offer you just a glimpse from from this part, a detail. So here you see Kirkov of course on the right and these are two pictures of the same person. The first one was when he was a student, he he was a student in Vienna in the Cartographic Institute, and this is a picture from 1904 In February 1917, at the height of the war through his nephew Kirkov sent Kautsky, the leader of German social democracy—in fact the leader of the the international so called Red Pope, and I quote, “on the part of our comrades here a modest gift that could be useful in the present circumstances, namely 100 eggs and some other things to eat.” The next much longer letter by Kirkov was from March 1917 after Kautsky had gratefully acknowledged receipt of the eggs. And Kirkov wrote “I’m happy that I could contribute through my modest gift to the material basis of your world of ideas, especially now when the international proletariat brought to confusion by the events, betrayed, and almost without leadership, needs urgently the bold, committed, and above all consistent word of its old, trusted, and faithful master and leader.” Now if the tease in this sentence can be taken by a doctrinaire recitation of historical materialism, I hope that you have not gone through that but but I have, so it sounds like that [and] I want to disabuse you. Kirkov was celebrated by his inimitable sense of humor, he was twice elected to Parliament, his speeches were so popular that the MPs of the government parties came to listen to him because of his wit, the redoubtable journalists and diplomat Simeon Radev valued Kirkov as the best speaker of parliament second only to Genadiev the leader of the National Liberal Party, when asked why he ranked him second he said “Genadiev is the chief of my own party,” he then added, “never has a socialist suggested suicide to the bourgeoisie in such a pleasant manner like citizen Kirkov.” So responding to Kautsky’s comment that the February Revolution would speed up the end of the war Kirkov agreed but reminded that the German proletariat entered the war under the slogan against Russian Tzarism and he continues, “now that the Russian proletariat has brought down Tzarism the question is what should the attitude of the German proletariat be since the position of the backbone of reaction has been ceded to the German monarchy.” It seems the perceptions of the social democrats in the small, still underdeveloped, countries of the German social democracy were very exaggerated and the German monarchism was stronger and thus more dangerous for socialism and democracy than the Russians. Just to remind you, the Bulgarian Narrows—it’s one of the two social democratic parties—were one of the tiny but honorable foursome next to the Italians, the Serbs, and the left-wing in the Russian Duma who opposed the war Everybody else became bitten by the bacillus of nationalism. So the letter ended with a polite sentence of Kirkov’s hopes that the German proletariat will rise to its task and that everyone awaited Kautsky’s powerful word and energetic call. Immediately following was a post-scriptum, “this letter will be passed to you by Comrade Mithoff he’s also going to hand you 150 eggs and would you please kindly give 50

of them to Comrade Luxembourg and Comrade Liebknecht together with the warmest greetings of the Bulgarian comrades.” So the whole correspondence despite the serious issues was bookended tactfully, not by reproach, but by eggs of which only ten arrived broken. Here one is drawn to use the now fashionable lens of materiality and a lot of my anthropology friends tell me you should do that .Yet, I resisted the temptation to ascribe things to the question eggs, right, to their symbolism and thus putative sexual innuendo Even if they were used as obscenity they would not be sent to Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht who were against the war But in fact materiality can be used and there is an organic relationship between things and practices. Eggs have always been considered one of the most nutritional foods and in poor societies are rare and a coveted ingredient at a festive table, alongside meat and butter eggs were also considered, if not a remedy, at least strengthening resistance to tuberculosis, which was of course the mal du siècle. In times of war, especially, but also during peacetime it was common of rural relatives to send eggs to their city kin. Usually reserved for the children as a strong nutrient. Ironically, by sending eggs to their German comrades the Bulgarian socialists were playing the role of the rural relatives and were reproducing their country’s status as the agricultural supplier of the industrialized German centre. So what does this survey of the place of Bulgarian social democracy leave us with? Does it upset the history of socialism? Is there an East European or Balkan contribution to it? What is the price of excising the periphery? So there are several conclusions here and I want to share them. First, it questions the stereotypes about how Marxism in peripheral societies, specifically agrarian societies with a week or incipient working class, can be formed And for this we do not necessarily have to wait for the discovery of the third world and for post-colonial theory to show that this is not paradoxical, but possible and normal. Where the Balkans are evocative is that they show this alternative not in line with the argument of different paths to modernity The Balkans and Bulgaria in particular, despite the condescendence, have hardly been questioned as a European space And their path to modernity is, of course, considered to be lagging but not systematically different from the other modernizing European path. Theoretically, of course, the Russian example which has been more studied and to which western historians are bound to pay at least minimal attention should be theoretically sufficient. Yet, in practice, with Russia there is always the fall back to deviation because it is often described, and unfortunately also often self-described, as essentially non-European, really different, and because Western Marxism has excised it neatly and now with a new Cold War it is difficult to serve as a foil. But Bulgaria can. Its inclusion fractures the normative story about socialism from within. Secondly, even if rare and not reciprocal this narrative shows intersections and the inter crossing of ideas. To imply of course that Balkan socialists contributed to the theory of socialism with particularly their take on the Balkan Federation might be overstated not because it was not original—it was original—but it was never acknowledged. But on the other hand no other theoretical concepts of socialism has endured and has borne any fruit. In actuality, the detailed deliberations of the Bulgarian socialists creating a federative structure, beginning with a customs union and preserving independent territorial entities was quite original and ran against the then dominant Austro- Marxism. Thirdly, this analysis addresses the challenging problem of historical significance. This is of course a philosophical question and historians notoriously avoid it when they chose the significant items with which they try to weave their explanatory narrative. Altogether and even when not being explicit about it they assign importance in terms of causal significance. But very often, as Max Weber has told us, we forget that

assigning causality itself is a function of value orientation. Besides, significance is fickle. And now I’m going to go to the present just to give you how fickle it is. In 1998, Brzezinski in an interview to the to the Nouvel Observateur reviewed that the CIA had hoaxed the Russians into invading Afghanistan by starting a secret operation. When asked whether he had regrets over giving support to Islamic fundamentalism, he responded, “Regret what? That secret operation was an excellent idea It had the effect of drawing the Russians into the Afghan trap and you want me to regret it, what is most important in world history? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet Empire? Some agitated Muslims or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the Cold War?” [That was] three years before September 11th, so significance. So another Weber, the historian Eugen Weber, may have been right to assert that, “history is the tale of what happened not of what might have happened,” and that, he says, “does a great deal to narrow our field.” But what do we do if it actually did happen and we choose not to write about it? By excising these parts we pay a price both epistemological, I think, but also ethically. We should be thinking back to to the International and socialism at large as an intersection in time where different outlooks met held together by a shared worldview, a polyphonic contrapuntal plural. It is only normal, and sometimes inbuilt, that we hear a dominant voice in—this case it’s the german voice—it may even have a solo part, but the other voices make a difference. Do they change the basic melody? Hardly. But they change the rhythm the harmony and how we hear it and the difference is not insignificant. It is the difference between Gregorian chant and Bach. So, I’ve come here to “generations,” which is the quantitative thing. It addresses the intersection or interplay of several generations of leftists looking at the specifics of how socialist ideas were generated, received, transferred, and transformed. This period and its agents remain relatively unknown even in the local historiography, which used to center mostly on the communists, but these people were not that much described So I offer three ways of approaching these groups. First, there is a quantitative prosopographic analysis of several demographic cohorts unified in a special political generation, following Mannheim of course It is based on the digitized database of over three thousand five hundred people all born before 1900. And this is collected from bibliographies, dictionaries, encyclopedias, and the archives These include first and foremost self-defined social democrats of different, often passionately opposed factions but also anarchists, anarcho-liberals, populists—or narodniks as they were known—left-wing agrarians, left-wing members of different nationalist organizations. It allows us to establish patterns about social provenance, types and places of education, professional and political networks, involvement in crucial events, and so on So let me walk you through just two thing The first one shows you the exponential growth of the party after its creation, so you have socialists born in the 1850s, the the party was created in this third thing, and then it really exponentially grows. The the second one illustrates what was known and produced, and actually something that produced unease among socialists, namely that this was a party predominantly of intellectuals or at least the educated class. I have data of about sixteen hundred, nine hundred of whom are educated and with university education. So the place of intellectuals as a social group was a question that really bothered Bulgarians, but not only Bulgarians, it bothered in general socialists and

it has remained theoretically an open question until today In the relatively egalitarian Bulgarian society of the 19th century, but especially in this dynamic atmosphere in the newly created—after 1878—modernizing state, education was the most valued cultural capital and it was the principal meritocratic move for advancement. I have only six hundred and sixty individual with a definite educational record and of them five hundred and forty-one are with a university education. So you see here in the graph most of them are lawyers, quite unexpectedly, and in fact you can see the riddle solved in one of the memoirs Most of them wanted to be teachers of biology, they loved Darwin, they wanted to teach Darwin and some of them math. But, he says, “the law profession is independent. That is it is materially independent from the direct control of the state—teachers were state officials—lawyers cannot be fired, they can be deprived of their rights only under exceptional circumstances anticipated in the law. This guarantees lawyers not only their material existence but allowed them to undertake social and specifically political work. Every idealist intellectual who in the past desire to devote himself to social work wanted to study law and become a lawyer this naturally did not mean that only idealist became lawyers many bourgeois politicians and political careerists also chose this part.” The education they received both in Sofia but mostly in Western Europe and you can see it here in Bulgaria after the university was created, but if you put together Switzerland, Germany, Austria, and France it would be the biggest column. So most of them studied in Western Europe and mostly in Switzerland in Geneva. Geneva had the lowest university fare, of course, so this is partly the explanation and the other explanation is that Plekhanov was there and they loved him. So, my analysis then moves to a qualitative account where representative cases are singled out to create a narrative around the notion of formation. That is I’m offering several bildungsromans to see how they became socialist. All in all there is a common pattern. The earliest socialists started with emancipatory nationalism, this is what they were, very quickly they became disappointed with nationalism and then were enamored by the promises of science they were reading evolutionary theory and were looking for science in society. Where do they find it? They find it in Marx. So the younger ones were socialized mostly in the gymnasium, the high schools, this is where they become socialists but of course the individual ways are really very diverse Finally, I try to shed light on the invisible women of the movement by questioning the opposition between socialists women and socialists wives, which is a current thing in especially Western feminists theory. Here you can see one of the very important thing and there is one woman there, and she is nameless, she’s not in any encyclopedia. She was quite remarkable Anna Stefanova, so she didn’t make it. So here in this oral presentation I’m giving short shrift to socialist women but essentially there should not be a contradiction between socialist women and socialist wives, as it was, even, perceived by some of the activists Socialist men could afford to be leading invisible because of their invisible socialist wives. And also that these women very seldom acknowledged this says less about the limitations of the socialist idea and more about the rootedness of these men and women in the historical time and place Still, luckily, many women have been preserved visually although we don’t know their names but you can see them These are the high schools, this is where

they come together and then there are the conferences of these women. Here are some other close-ups of women. These two were the the head of the socialist women’s movement and this is the the liberal women’s movement. So this leads me to my structures of feeling where I focus the lens on individual experience. What I’m trying to do here is to investigate the intersection between subjectivity and memory as reflected and influenced by published and unpublished memoirs, diaries, personal correspondence, biographies, autobiographies, oral interviews all of which allow the reconstruction of the world of these first socialist generations and I’m introducing completely unknown biographies by highlighting their emotional world. I have an extraordinary peasant teacher, a lawyer who happens to be also love-stricken graphomaniac and I will tell you something about him, and of a brilliant economist who was a banker director and his no less stunning partner. In doing this I want to pick up and resurrect what has been considered to be historical debris and serve as a transmitter or translator of human visions and emotions. And here I cannot help but quote one of my favorite novels Julian Barnes’ “The Sense of an Ending” where he says, “history is that certainty produced at the point where the imperfections of memory meet the inadequacies of documentation.” And I have to illustrate this inadequacy of documentation. I start with Angelina Boneva, she does not exist in any encyclopedia and I first encountered her just by the way she was mentioned in an episode, which was narrated as a small aside under the title “curiosity” in the unpublished memoirs of a provincial teacher and lifelong social democrat. So, I was reading this memoir and then he mentions this and I thought it was a nice thing. He was recalling how on a gray autumn of 1911 he was sitting with the owner of a small bookstore in the town of Vratsa which sold Marxist literature and was a virtual club for local socialists. An old peasant woman entered the bookstore, she was dressed all in black— and this is the age when she came, this is how she looked—so she was dressed all in black with the black kerchief over her white hair, which was falling on her wrinkled face. She wore simple peasant men’s shoes on her feet and instead of a bag had a wicker basket hanging from her arm Once she entered the bookstore she reached into her bosom and produced a small cigarette case, then she rolled a cigarette took out a pair of glasses and started looking at the literature, which was spread on the table. And the owner, who was actually a Macedonian emigre socialist, approached her and pointed the way out and said, “Grandmother we don’t have the books you’re looking for. I know you’re trying to find the dreams of the virgin and a stone fell from heaven.” The peasant woman pretended not to have heard him and continued to look at the books finally she asked, “Do you have Anti-Dühring?” The owner who was, of course, pop-eyed stared at her. She continued unruffled by asking him whether he had Kautsky and named a particular book. Then she finished her cigarette picked up silently the books and calmly asked for the bill So these were two pages that describe this curiosity and the only thing it says is that this was the oldest teacher in Bulgaria in a godforsaken village of Pripîlzhane She was in her mid 60’s when she came there and was a devoted member of the Social Democratic Teacher’s Organization. Once a month she would take, at this age, the 7 kilometer road on foot to town to attend a meeting of the organization. So all my efforts to find something more about her were in vain, so I thought I don’t like this American way but I will use her as a vignette. But then luckily for me I told the funny story to my friends in the archives and they said I wonder whether it would be worth it to go to the provincial archive in Vratsa and they said why should you go there we we are living in the digital age. I said, “What kind of digital age? They don’t even have a detailed published paper

cataloging the holdings of the [centra’l] archives let alone something on on a small-town archive.” “Well no,” they say, “but there is an internal online catalogue for the archivists.” And it’s nice to have friends. So lo and behold a week later I was called in and told that a whole file existed on Angelina Boneva in the even smaller town of Montana, and I received the PDF. So we are lucky that small voices of history are preserved. So here she is aged 32, then 70, and 82. So these are the only pictures that exist of her. So the file contains reminiscences about Angelina by her former students and colleagues collected during her 80th birthday in the 1930s She died in the 1938 and the centenary of the school in 1950 when she was already dead And there is also this official school book in her own writing and I will show you how she writes. Finally, there are her own memoirs copied by her nephew These are strange memoirs apparently conceived as notes for a future unfinished autobiography but not ensuing from a preliminary structured plan and obviously following stream of consciousness. She was born in 1852, she was the youngest child in a orphaned family and she was sent to work in the fields and not allowed to attend school, so she was completely illiterate until the age of 23. At the age of 23 her brothers decide that she’s a burden she ought to marry and she runs away from home. She runs away from home on foot and she goes to Pirot, which was then still in the Ottoman Empire but today is in Serbia, and for two years she completes elementary school four grades and then ’78 comes, the Russo-Turkish War, Bulgaria is autonomous practically independent and she studies five years more coming out with a pedagogical degree. And she lies how old she is, of course she’s 30 by that time. As a teacher she wants to be sent to Macedonia to liberate and to educate her brethren there So as a teacher she became a member of the IMRO and actively she helped in the Macedonian struggle. She was arrested by the Ottoman police, put in prison and then released, and she then came back to Bulgaria where she taught until 1922 when she was retired against her will at the age of 70 So here is Angelina, so this is the book and this is her handwriting. So this especially for the Bulgarians might be interesting because she copies texts of letters notifying her of her retirement, this is her last entry, and then added a final line in her minuscule hand writing. (Reads the line in Bulgarian). This is is unconceivable, it just means “close your eyes Hasan and I’ll mumble an incantation.” What it means is “give me a break.” and then in red pen a few months later the inspector comes and puts a question mark and puts in red pen “such ironies cannot be allowed in official books.” So Angelina Boneva seems to have had the last laugh. She was an open Communist Party member and she continued her political engagement even after the party was banned until her death in 1938 at the age of 86. So let me tell you a few words about Angelina Boneva. For me the most important, most interesting thing is the juxtaposition of how she was remembered to how she remembers herself. There is a fundamental factual agreement between the recollections about her and of her and yet there is there are significant differences between the style, the tone, and emphasis in describing her public and private persona. The public one has three vectors: teacher, patriot, and

socialist, and everybody agrees on that Without denying these, her private notes deal only with her career as a teacher and it is elaborated most in the official school book. The second is mentioned only implicitly and the third not at all. Yet, there is no doubt about her political engagement. Why is that? Why is she writing strictly for herself? And here I’m using the theory of Paul Ricoeur about idem and ipse identity, the sameness answering the question what am I, and the notion of selfhood answering the question who am I. What Angelina Boneva was is what she projected with her physical presence, character, and actions, and how they were projected was reflected in the eyes of others, but also how she recognized herself as an individual, a teacher, a patriot, and a socialist. But who she was emerges from how she shaped the story of herself in her notebooks, which focused excessively on her childhood and they are actually pretty wrenching. Behind this self-assured teacher lurks a traumatized child it is not merely that she put down information that she had not shared but by remembering different episodes she created a narrative identity that further helped her to better understand herself. The human need of making a oneself intelligible to oneself ultimately equals composing one’s own life. In the words of Ricoeur, “self understanding is an interpretation and finds in the narrative a privileged form of mediation.” So again, was Angelina Boneva an exception? She was not an exception as a female teacher, there were lots of them and in Bulgaria, not as a socialist female teacher, either. Most of these socialist women teachers were teachers in town schools in the cities, she was an exception in terms of being in really the most godforsaken village. The people who wrote about her treated her not as an exception but as an inspiration, as a role model. Was she, then, typical or representative of some group? Can we infer some common characteristics? And I’m inclined in this case to be defensive and say that it doesn’t matter Why do we apply typicality only to ordinary people? Why are not others subjected to the statistical gaze. Do we speak of the un-typicality of presidents, of generals, of princes? So I would like to think of her as an extraordinary, ordinary person I will be very brief with my graphomaniac lawyer, but he’s funny because among other things he emigrated for about ten years to the States and he received a law degree at Illinois He lived in Granite City. His wife got a biology degree from Washington University in St. Louis. But the important thing is that he left handwritten diaries, 10 volumes of them, only four made it to the archives. I was very happy because they are one thousand and one hundred pages the four volumes, so I was happy that the family did not give them, he had promised them. They covered his life from his birth in 1882 and actually the diary itself, so it’s not a memoir it’s a diary, has entries from 1904 until 1932, in fact covering my my period and comprising these more than 1,000 pages So given the lengthy inclusion of excerpts from diaries and whole letters this whole exercise looks more like a montage of sources, an aide-mémoire, rather than a memoir. So if autobiography is life construction through text construction, Tsekov’s material is a hybrid memoir-diary approaching the confessional genre. The diary is dominated by his two things: socialism and love affairs. These are the two things that he was really interested in And here is a quote, “I was taken by the love scenes in the books I read and cried over ‘The Sorrows of Young Werther.’ I was already 18 years old completely devoted to nature, entertainment, reading, and patriotism but my sexual life was in a lethargic state.” So he sent 300 letters in the

year when he was in military school and kept copies of them, they are part of this diary. So, I mean, graphomania His longest is a hundred and sixty pages, which he sent to one of his girlfriends, he also bought her a subscription to all the socialist journals and then was disappointed that she didn’t read them So he dumped her or she dumped him But eventually he found Katya, here, the girl with a biology degree and before he met her he said, “I too want to love but a woman pure of debauchery who is not a hypocrite far from meanness and deception who despises coquetry and directs her thoughts to the realization of the new social order. I want a woman whose ideas are superior to her feelings and only then backed by ideals shall we be able to lead a completely happy life Only a woman with a progressive spirit can be a true companion to men.” This is here. And then he says, “I had a pollution and was very excited.” I mean, I’m telling you that these are the two things Finally, my third couple. So we come from extraordinary ordinary to middling lawyer to really high-class intellectuals These are Koika Tineva and Nikola Sakarov. This picture is of them as students in Berlin in 1903 among a group of other bulgarian socialist students of which Sakarov was the secretary. Koika is sitting on the far right with her future husband behind her and with his hand over her shoulder Both are wearing pince-nez but I have to say that this is not a sign of affectation they were just myopic and in all later photographs they wear glasses except one that I’m going to show you. Next to Sakarov in the middle is another Nikola also a socialist, Nikola Harlakov, quite a famous socialist who would be Koika’s future life partner. So with hindsight one may say that this is a picture of a future love triangle. So Nikola Sakarov and Koika were married in 1906 and then she left him for Harlakov in 1911, formally they were divorced only in 1922. All three of them participated in different socialist factions, first in the Narrow Party then the Anarcho-Liberals and then the Broads then back to the Narrows then all of them became communists. After 1925 Sakarov retreated from political commitments and he became the director of the agrarian bank, although he continued to be socially engaged. Koika Tineva, on the other hand, with Harlakov emigrated to the Soviet Union and was arrested after her uncle—very famous uncle—Christian Rakovsky, who was of course the Commissar of the Ukraine and later Soviet ambassador to London and Paris was shot as a Trotskyite in 1941 She was arrested then released and she ended her life in Bulgaria in the 1960s as an editor of a press. As behooves intellectuals they are reserved about their feelings, so you don’t find love letters in the archive, although both, and especially Sakarov, have left a prodigious written legacy. They were a studious couple but not excessively stern, so this is one picture that I found. This is a photograph of them as newlyweds the only one where she has taken off her glasses in a studio in Istanbul they are dressed up as Turks reclining in an ottoman holding hands with a hookah in front of them It is actually the only photograph that we have that shows them a little bit [indistinguishable]. But were it not for one item in Sakarov’s archive that was luckily deposited alongside hundreds of pages describing his political views and dozens of books and articles on economic and social issues, one would remain with the impression of an extremely thoughtful, upright, and disciplined human being completely in control of his emotions even to the point of suppressing them. One could then perhaps speculate about the reasons Koika left him for the more dashing Harlakov. But,

there is this item and this item actually belies this, the lack of emotion. Here it is. So it is about a handmade tiny little album like a herbarium, in fact about forty pages, three to four inches or eight to ten centimeters, with pressed flowers stemming from Nikola’s Berlin student years, so he keeps it all his life. Half the pages are inscribed with poems by Heinrich Heine and the other half with entries in Bulgarian about the meaning of love. Nikola and Koika were speaking the language of European high culture in its main vernaculars at the time, French and German, and sharing in its main sensibilities and perhaps also affectations. Sentimentality was the twin of the socialist sentiment. So most of the lives I’m trying to recover from oblivion were inspired by a utopia of the future and were attempting to live their lives according to its ideals. Insofar as they conform to these ideas one can simply define them as idealists. Many of the older ones among this political generation completed their voyage to life in the interwar decades before the advent of “utopia on earth.” Many, especially among the younger generation born after the turn of the century who grew up in the interwar period, gave their lives for it, others survived and tasted the utopia of state socialism. Again some were persuaded by it, others were disappointed and paid with their lives, still others reserved as skepticism toward the praxis but preserved their belief in the ideal with the proverb “because of our John let us not blame Saint John.” By confining my narrative, and this is the second time I’m repeating it, to the generation before 1900 I do not wish to pass judgment on how they conducted their lives and least of all to posit that there existed a liberal, tolerant, legal, socialists who were displaced by intolerant and terrorists communists, I think that there is a continuity there and it has to be understood in the in the context of the times. My socialists were imagining the world in which they wanted to live. For at the same time as one speaks of discursive frameworks being imagined, of a socialist imagination of think feel, one necessarily has to account for the fact that in the Marxists among the Socialists, especially, socialism was not utopia. Even someone like Leszek Kołakowski, with whom I began, who was adamant about the desirable demise of utopia and he was extremely critical of Marxism, still left the door open for socialism. And this is a quote from Kołakowski, “This does not mean that socialism is a dead of option, I do not think so—he wrote it in 1971—and when I say socialism I do not mean a state of perfection but rather a movement—and this is the important thing Marx also speaks of a movement—trying to satisfy demands for equality, freedom, and efficiency. A movement that is worth trouble only as far as it is aware not only of the complexity of problems hidden in each of these values separately but also of the fact that they limit each other and can be implemented only through compromises. We make fools of ourselves and others if we think or pretend to think otherwise.” I’m going to end with a personal note, some forty years ago—you can make your calculations— when I lived under “real” socialism in Bulgaria, but especially after the crushing of the Prague Spring in 1968, I was taking very seriously Max Weber’s much cited adage from 1919, another German pronouncement, “that the audacious Russian experiment would bereave socialism of its reputation and authority for a hundred years.” This was his idea. Whether Weber’s dictum was borne out by reality can be a matter of debate but coming from someone who disliked and feared socialism he pointed his pivotal role as a social alternative in Europe before the First World War Weber died in 1920 and he could not foresee the peregrinations of his own quip but also the peregrinations of socialism and witness the different moments at which believers acceded to his doubts 1925 for Bulgaria, 1937 obviously for Russia, 1949, 1953, 1956, 1968 for me. Later, but especially after after 1989, I began to realize the impoverishing nature of this dictum, not only presumptuous and dismissive of

human agency but it was as monolithic as its Soviet foil. They both closed off the possibility of multiplicity. Now that we have reached and passed the centenary of the audacious experiment, I think it is worth trying to rescue this multiplicity and argue for the groundedness of divergent horizons of expectation. So I wish I had not read Zygmunt Bauman, who is also one of my heroes, and would conclude with my own words, but he said it so beautifully that I have to express it through him. So here is the gospel via Bauman, “The body of utopian criticism is bound to remain, as before, inherently fissiparous. Men climb, as it were, successful hills only to discover from their tops virgin territories, which their never- appeased spirit of transcendence urges them to explore. Beyond each successive hill they hope to find peacefulness of the end. What they do find is excitement of the beginning. Today as 2,000 years ago, ‘hope that is seen is not hope.’ For who hopes for what he sees?” This is Saint Paul to the Romans Thank you very much So I have two questions. One is about the peripheries and I’m just curious to know if you have studied or if you know anything about Greek communism the Greek communist movement at the beginning of the 20th century. As far as I know it was created in at the beginning of the 20th century, the Greek Communist Party, in Thessaloniki, so it is part of the landscape -Absolutely. It was created by Avraam Benaroya who is a Jew born in Bulgaria, he was born in Vidin, he studied also in Belgrade and then abroad. He had an idea, so he was a member of the Bulgarian Social Democratic Party and he was very active in Plovdiv, but he he was arguing he actually wanted to embrace the Austro-Marxist idea and have sections, and the Bulgarian party wanted it to be unified. He still continued but when he moved to Thessaloniki, which at that point was a stronghold of Jews he was he he was a part of this socialist federation and Vlahov and other Bulgarians were who eventually after that returned and became leaders. So they were together and after the war he created the Greek Communist Party. Well in the sense that it was conceived by someone who had these connections His vision was a socialist federation, they all shared this idea . The idea of a socialist federation came about after 1908, after the Young Turk Revolution. People were hoping that it will get there and very clearly the nationalism of the Turks took the upper hand and they were disappointed In my period there were some some connections. There were actually two Balkan conferences, one in Bucharest another one in Belgrade. There were only Greeks individual representatives, so the Greek leftist movement was not organized. Well you can imagine Greece at this point is really dominated by the Megali Idea. I mean its foreign policy at this point it is after the after the Asia Minor catastrophe that people become radicalized and they embrace different alternatives. This is the Greek case. On the other hand the Rakovsky, for example, was within the Comintern. He was part of

the Balkan fraction, which also involved the the Greeks The second question is, you said that they lived their lives as idealists So there was this connection, they viewed the utopia not as a utopian place it was more like someplace that they will reach in the future. So that utopianism is very realistic utopianism So there is a sense in which that is a project and that project is within reach So it is a kind of hope it is not like a counterfactual desire so often we can want things that can be without reach, like I can want to be a NASA astronaut but I can’t because I don’t have the training or qualifications. So that kind of idealism is constrained by realism and so I was wondering to what extent was that a product of that time because that was the time in that space of reorganization. The Ottoman Empire falls we have the national revolutions, states are created, so it was realistic at the time to have that project and whether you wanted to then compare that time or maybe say whether that realistic constraint on idealism whether that is the project of the time or is something more universal that transcends So if we transcend it and we look at let’s say the US today, where the circumstances are very different we have you know stability at least we’re not negotiating borders, whether then the fact that we see the revival of that type of idealism is related to that of a century ago or not? There are actually two implicit questions in your thing. The Balkan federation as an ideal may have been, in fact, quasi- realistic, the socialists, unlike what you say, I don’t think that they imagined it as something very concrete, not at all I mean even the Russians before 1917 happens they don’t know, they don’t know what will happen. It is the movement, so they don’t know they are they’re moving toward it. It is nebulous The other thing is, usually I have this quarrel with my early modernists ,who stopped their thinking—they’re brilliant all of them—but they stopped their thinking as if there is nothing after that. So they say, well utopia Thomas More it is either utopia, no utopia, or you know the noble right. So I said no way. Utopia if you have it in Marx it is a movement, it’s just the movement. The person who really managed to emancipate the notion of utopia was Ernst Bloch in the interwar period, when he writes during the time of the of the Second World War, a little bit before, “The Principle of Hope.” In which he writes that it is not a utopia with the telos. So it’s either not or it’s just moving to somewhere and we don’t know what it will be. But it is the strive, the attempt to achieve it, that is what is utopian -So it is really very totalitarian by nature? -Why? Well I’m thinking of Hannah Arendt and the way she defines, if I understand it correctly, the nature of totalitarianism is that volatility, or that motion -Well, why would it be totalitarian? I mean you of all people would know the fracturing of the left, there are different visions of this utopia, right, so you strive in different ways. It’s not only these people who are being the Social Democrats, there are anarchists who are moving sometimes, they become socialists, then they become agrarians. So there is movement among this left space so that they don’t have something concrete in mind. Now, even the people after 1917, they they also don’t know what they will build but still they think that it is there that they can build it. Particularly in the Balkans in the

Bulgarian case although it was a very strong party the leader of the party, Blagoev, was saying we should not do anything. He was very much against the so-called September Uprising and then this bloodbath, which which opened a civil war in Bulgaria, it was imposed by the Comintern. Because he said our movement, it is one quarter us, it depends on the international conjuncture and also the Russians everybody was waiting for a revolution in in in the West and you have a Bavarian Republic, you have then Budapest, then all of that is gone These people were revolutionaries, they were they were embracing the word revolution, but revolution nowadays people think that revolution is necessarily violence, these were parliamentarians, they were using the state in order to get to the tools of how they can effectuate their ideals, which were very very modest ideals Women’s rights, workers’ pay, and things like that -With regards to the woman who was illiterate until her 20s, who came from the village to Turkey to study Was there a language barrier there? What was the language of the education she received? What was she teaching? So in her case she was monolingual. All the others, in fact since I said that most of these socialists are intellectuals, they are really poly lingual, you have eight, seven, six languages. She’s monolingual she goes first to Pirot in the Ottoman Empire, this was Bulgarian, she goes to a Bulgarian school. And she goes to a boys school and the teacher takes her in so she finishes elementary education. She goes to Sofia after that, she finishes this pedagogical thing, so essentially she finishes high school And she is literate, she writes what wonderful things, but it’s not Tolstoy when you read her. So then she goes to Macedonia where she teaches Bulgarian She goes there as a fiery nationalist and then when she comes back she goes to her own village, builds the school in her own house, gathers all these children, but she has the diploma and all that, and she teaches elementary education, everything. She manages to find a compass for somewhere so geography, literature, arithmetic, I mean all the basics of the the first four grades, this is what she was teach but in an entirely Bulgarian -My question is, migration was an implicit part of your story, in so far as you discussed these students studying abroad and their relationships with Plekhanov. I have another question about migration with regards to people coming into Bulgaria, in particular I’m interested in in the Russian revolutionaries who were in exile in Bulgaria or passing through Bulgaria. So I guess when you were talking about federalism I was thinking about [indistinguishable] already there in 1870 talking about socialism and federalism and then later on you also have these radical exiled communities there as well. To what extent do you see this—I mean, I understand your argument is that there’s something uniquely Bulgarian about this story but can you also talk about Russia -I mean the the book is dealing at a very great length with the Russian connection because you have the usual stereotype which Trotsky, in fact, said the Bulgarians they’re only a branch of the Russian social democracy because he was very angry with this particular faction that he was meeting. So yes, there were connections So several ones, first of all Blagoev is probably the only one of all these socialists who is in fact studying in Russia, in Saint Petersburg, he creates the first Marxist

group in Russia, which Plekhanov said has a wonderful program, 1883, he’s kicked out of Russia, he comes back to Bulgaria and there he starts publishing these papers and he is in huge dispute with some of the Russian emigration. Now what is the Russian emigration you have people mostly of the of the Narodnik type. So if you have a socialist you have the [indistinguishable] who stays in Romania in Bulgaria you have [indistinguishable] he’s there and they are arguing that there is no there is no place for socialism in Bulgaria, it’s an agrarian country and what people should do is go to the people and there is a counterpart of Russian Narodniks who in the Bulgarian case it’s called [speaks Bulgarian] the lovers of poor people, right. So this debate which is played out in the press between this part of the Russian emigration and [indistinguishable] and there are a few, there are not that many in Bulgaria Bulgaria is only a stop for wealthier people so they would like to go somewhere else So there is this debate. So you do have these Narodniks of the Bulgarian type, which are again not that strong because by this time the Marxist party is taking over and it proves that there can be place for socialism in in Bulgaria So Trotsky comes comes in this play when the Bulgarian party is split. This is another thing which among people who are not very careful readers parallels the split between the Mensheviks and the Bolsheviks. And of course somebody like Rothschild will say well of course they are aping the Russians, the thing is that the Bulgarian split was before the Russians split, so who is aping whom. Nobody was aping anybody because they split based on different issues. Now having said that the connections are very very close So before the 1890s a lot of Bulgarians, especially high school Bulgarians, during the Ottoman times go to Russia. Russia is the closest country language-wise, culture-wise etc. After the 1890s they cannot go to Russia because for more than 10 years Bulgaria has no relations with Russia. This is also something that people don’t know, no diplomatic relations. So all of them go and study in the West but in the West they come very close to the Russians, so not only the circle around Plekhanov. Sspecially Bulgarian women are enamored of Russian women. So you have this aristocratic women who are free, who are coming out, who are teaching and they really love them, they adore them, they love this emancipated women. Not only that, but the Bulgarians are becoming this channel for Iskra They are smuggling Iskra into Russia, Lenin had a Bularian passport. The other thing though is that they were not that close to Lenin until very little late. So it is a Plekhanov-ite party, this this first party. They until 1909 thought that Lenin was a pseudonym for Plekhanov and when they found out that it was not they would write him as Yonin because in Bulgarian there is not this e with two dots They would write him Yonin after that they found out, of course, and they, especially the Communists, embraced him But they were very strongly Plekhanov-ites But there is another connection, which is a little bit on the side but I do write about that, Tolstoyism. So this girl for example who said I thought of myself as a socialist she was reading Tolstoy she was a Tolstoy-ist and eventually she became as communist, etcetera, etcetera But Tolstoyism did have huge roots and they were very very close, although religious etc, they were very close to to some of these communists. So Russia has a very important place but not that much through the emigration

-So what was the constellation or balance of forces between say agrarian populists, social democrats, Marxists, and other forces in Bulgaria and in the broader region -So I’m talking about this period, there are a few of the future agrarian leaders who start out as socialists, [indistinguishable] for example, because the Socialist Party is created in 1891 by 1900 you have a strong strong agrarian party. And of course all the agrarian, rural labor would be represented by this agrarian party. So the the the political balance would be that— well in terms of elections I told you the Bulgarian social democrats would get 20, 22, 23 percent the agrarian party would get 78 up to 80 percent when they did the majoritarian rule So the the agrarian party is much bigger and they were in a love-hate relationship, which was also the reason for the split of the Bulgarian social democrats, because half of them were saying we are orthodox we are going to work only among the incipient working-class the others were saying since we are a parliamentary party we have to do our elections where can we do them it’s a rural country we have to try to make socialists out of the peasants. This was a split where the others were saying no because this will dissolve the ideology you inevitably will go to a compromise rule, which eventually happened. The so-called party of the Broads who were for a common position were coalescing not only with the agrarians, and not so much with the agrarians, but with other so-called bourgeois parties. And in the end they ended up like [inaudible], part of the totalitarianism of the interwar period. Now, with the agrarians the issue was really quite dramatic because Bulgaria was the only country in which a peasant party took power, right. It’s the only experiment that we have in which from1919 until 1923 the agrarian party takes power. And it does incredible reforms but it manages to alienate most everyone among other reasons because it is a time of huge reparations Bulgaria is just coming out of the war always it reminds me a little bit of Venezuela, not now under Maduro but under Chavez. You know, Stamboliyski was a very popular leader who was assassinated by a coup d’etat 1923 and at that point you have the Communist Party, you would think they are together but the ideology of Stamboliyski was a state based ideology not class-based, obviously, and he was looking to elevate the peasantry not so much the the urban working class and there were clashes between him and the

Communist Party. Once he was assassinated the Communist Party officially came with the idea that we are going to be neutral because this is a fight between the urban and the rural bourgeoisie. But this was this was ridiculous and they they themselves actually laughed about this because this was simply an excuse that they thought “we are weak.” They had come to the government of Stamboliyski and said give us arms there will be a coup d’etat, arm us. And he refused to arm them so they withdrew and they said in order to save it we are going to be neutral at that point comes the command from Moscow that they have to rise and they rise in 1923, a terrible idea, Effectually all these people, I mean I can show you some of them here Look at the cohorts that are being killed, so these are the people that are killed in 23, 24, 25. It is really the decimation of these people either killed, lots of people killed, or they emigrate mostly to the Soviet Union, some of them perish in Siberia but mostly some of them return But this is where it starts. And the same thing is also true for the agrarians. Agrarians also are killed in this uprising, finally they come together, some of them also emigrate the more left leaning go to to the Soviet Union and they create the Krestintern, which is of course the rival of the Green International as you know well, and so it is a fraught relationship -Did the peasant parties in the interwar period have their own model of regional cooperation? Not in the interwar period. After 23, 25 they were splintered, there were five or six or seven splinter organization of this before that really magnificent party. In terms of internationalism the Green International is the brainchild of Stamboliyski. It was in Prague of course and this is where the archive has disappeared, we don’t know where the archive is, but it was his brainchild to do this type of federation between all the eastern countries including Poland, and the Czechs, the Romanians But by 1925 without him it’s practically gone, yeah. This interwar period is pretty tragic and so I read some of the archives and I don’t have the nerve to to dig further there, it’s lots of killings -Can you show the occupation slide again? -Could you just read off the columns it is hard to see from here? I will tell you, these are the teachers, artisans, the factory workers, agricultural laborers, lawyers, civil servants, and other The big issue of course when they were in parliament was “are you going to confiscate the land, yes or no.” And it’s interesting, of course, that the so called broad party said “no, we are not going to do that.” And this is what happened after the Second World War with this episode In the beginning the didn’t, Blagoev was saying yes, yes private property is theft. My 33 year old granddaughter would say that when she was 3 years old, not any longer

-Could you tell us a little about how you derived these statistics and how they compare both to other party’s distributions of professions and to the population of Bulgaria at the time? -The population of Bulgaria would be 80 percent here [agricultural laborers] and you would have you know lawyers are zero point I don’t know what percent Educated people usually would strive to be civil servants and military people would be among these civil servants There are several officers who were strong Social Democrats, Communists who would be here. So for example, these are the self-described socialists, but the artisans the agricultural laborers, these people in other places would not be described as part of the proletariat This is the proletariat, the artisans, the urban workers, the agricultural workers are the proletariat and this is the educated class -So that doesn’t surprise us, social historians have written a lot about the professional backgrounds of socialists during this period Yes, it is very typical and to this day for some reason people are imbued with this stereotype, what are intellectuals are they a separate class or are they representative of different classes. And this continues to be an interesting debate and you have the Gramsci thing and you have others. So these people were constantly arguing what are we, are we part of the proletariat, well we are teachers, most of them, we don’t get anything but we are educated so are we part of it in terms of wage-wise or are we not because we know a little bit more So this would be the typical thing of any social democratic party in this period But, if you look at the profile of the German Social Democratic Party it would be workers and therefore the idea was, even in this period, you can have these intellectuals and their bickering but you cannot have a party because you don’t have a working class. And they were saying, well working class can be a broad thing, these people also working, they need our support But they are philosophizing in these terms, what is the working class, why should it be only industrial, and the interesting thing, which I didn’t know, was even for Western Europe it is argued and that is accepted So Tony Judt, everybody knows Tony Judt, but probably very few people know his best book which is called “Socialism in Provence.” It’s his best book, his first book. The first book is usually the best book, for some people. He wrote it before he became an enemy of this So he writes about rural Provence and he said we shouldn’t be surprised that these people were socialists, so for France it’s not surprising, but it is surprising for Poland and for Russia and for Bulgaria and what not that rural people can be socialists -But rural people were largely part of the Agrarian Party Yes, right, yeah [Inaudible discussion] This is just the Socialist Party, right This socialist party at its peak would get 20% of the votes but at it’s peak Before that it would get let’s say five, six, ten percent, right Within this ten percent you would have ten two to three percent was the so-called industrial labor. But then you would have small businesses in which these people are. You have memoirs, for example, of apprentices who say why I became a socialist, right, because you know it was warm in the socialist club and people were saying nice things. I mean so there are different ways to become something

-Just a quick follow up on this, what was the distribution of teacher column between primary secondary education and university professors? Were the university professors overwhelmingly bourgeois or was it pretty even? You wouldn’t have university professors. You would have teachers and these teachers were constantly fired So for example this woman, Vela Blagoeva, she’s the wife of the founder of the Socialist Party, she’s a teacher and she’s fired all the time. Her brother is the Minister of Education of Bulgaria but she’s fired all the time because she’s a state official So she comes from a wealthy family, she’s the black sheep of the family, but she’s fired all the time the teacher profession was the most precarious profession So, I don’t have this breakdown of how many would be primary or secondary, but definitely not University. You would have sympathizers there, but they would be also kicked out -Thank you very much!