Totalitarianism At The Crossroads

In This Review

Totalitarianism At The Crossroads

Edited by Ellen Frankel Paul
Transaction, 1990
196 pp. $28.95

Thoughtful essays about the nature of communist totalitarianism, particularly its ideological component, by Vladimir Bukovsky, Adam Ulam, Roger Scruton, Zbigniew Rau and others. More than one essay, but particularly John Gray's, suggest a resemblance between glasnost/perestroika and the aims and games of Lenin's New Economic Plan, with ominous implications. Taking Czeslaw Milosz's classic essay The Captive Mind (1953) as a starting point, Andrezej Walicki tries to dissect the genuine appeal that Marxism-Leninism once had for the intellectuals of Eastern Europe. At a time when communism in theory and practice has been so thoroughly discredited, this is of interest and perhaps importance for those, especially of the younger generation, who may not realize that communist totalitarianism was ever anything more than naked force.

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