Professional revolutionaries

Professional revolutionaries

The concept of professional revolutionaries, alternatively called cadre, is in origin a Leninist concept used to describe a body of devoted communists who spend the great majority of their time organizing their party toward proletarian revolution. This core is usually very small, and as a consequence is sometimes cited for being the cause of the return to capitalism of the so-called 'Communist states'. Most Marxists argue that a cadre core is necessary in one form or another. Trotskyists do not believe that professional revolutionaries or vanguardism are to blame from the eventual totalitarian nature of the Soviet Union, its satellite states, and the People's Republic of China. Instead they cite Stalinism as the cause, coupled with an unprepared proletariat. In Lenin's original work the purpose of the cadre is to educate the masses and essentially bring the entire population to the level of "professional revolutionaries".

Basing themselves on What is to be Done?, the pamphlet that bore the idea, Trotskyists and other communists today advocate for a "mass party" with a membership of millions of working class people, thereby maximizing, in their view, direct participation in the revolution and the subsequent revolutionary government.

ee also

*Professional Revolutionary a documentary about American Communist Saul Wellman.
*Vanguard party

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