The National Library of Russia, the Plekhanov House, the Association for Marxist Social Sciences and the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation are organising an international conference in St.Petersburg (12-13 November 2021) titled ‘Soviet Union: An Alternative of the Past, or a Strategic Project for the Future?’
I will present a paper titled ‘‘Soviet Union: socio-economic type, collapse and lessons for the future’.
The abstract of my paper is the following.
According to Marxism class struggle is the mechanism explaining the evolution of class divided societies. This paper argues that the Soviet Union (SU) was a transitional to socialism but not a socialist socio-economic formation. As such it was characterized by internal class struggle between a latent bourgeoisie (to a great extent reborn within the ranks of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union – CPSU) and the working class. This transitional state of affairs corresponds to the Marxian ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’ phase – which is a precursor to socialism – and in which class struggle continues and intensifies even under the disguise of different and antagonistic socialist policies. The collapse of the Soviet Union was the result of the gradual dominance of pro-capitalist tendencies in the CPSU. This paper offers a periodization of this struggle and an explanation of the mechanisms through which pro-capitalist tendencies – initially in quasi-capitalist forms and later overtly – took the upper hand. In this crucial is the distinction between the legal forms of ownership of the means of production and the actual control of them. From these premises, the main lessons for future socialist transitions that can be drawn from the soviet experience are (a) the continuous revolution process as the way through which an irreversible path to socialism can be paved and (b) the significance of realigning legal public ownership of the means of production with the actual control of their operation by the working class through democratic planning (the real subsumption of the means of production by labour).
The programme of the conference is the following.
12 November 2019 г.
9.30 – 09.50. Registration. Plekhanov House,
4-th Krasnoarmeysraya str. 1/33, Petersburg (Technological Institute metro st.)
09.50 – 11.20. Session 1. Moderator: Tatyana I. Filimonova.
Greetings: Vladimir GhennadievichGronsky, Gen. Director of the NLR
Michael-Matsas Savas. USSR and Imperialism: Back to the Future
Savran Sungur. The USSR: Peoples’ Federation of Nations
Schiappa Jean-Marc. Commune de Paris, “The State and Revolution” and the USSR
Buzgalin Alexander Vladimirovich. Citizens’ Social Creativity as the Justification for the Development of the USSR
11.30 – 12.50 Session 2. Moderator: Mikhail B. Konashev
Apanasenko Tatyana Evgenievna. The Soviet Economic Model for Substituting Exploitation and Incorporating Costs as a Guideline for the Future
Oreshnikov Vladimir Vyacheslavovich. USSR as the Result of the Great Socio-Economic Revolution, Carried Out Prior to Setting Up Necessary Economic Basis
Ogorodnikov Vladimir Petrovich. Objective Laws for the Development and of the Fall of the USSR
Pilipenko Igor Valerievich. The Dynamics of Residence Construction and the Solution of the Dwelling issue in the Republics of the USSR, 1920-1980
13.00 – 14.00. Session 3. Moderator: Mikhail B. Konashev
Kalous Antal. Anti-Sovietism in the Pre-war Period
Beolchi Luciano. The Break-up of the antifascist front. Origins of the Cold War in Italy (1945-1950).
Ossin Roman Sergueevich. Stalin’s Argument about Class Struggle Aggravation Under Socialist Conditions and the Experience of the Soviet society
14.00 – 15.00. Lunch
15.00 – 16.20. Session 4. Moderator: Tatyana I. Filimonova
Abramson Joseph Grigorievich. A combination of objective and subjective factors that led to the End of the Soviet Union
Epstein David Berkovich. Contradictions of the Socio-Economic Nature of the USSR and Causes of its Perishing
Kurenyshev Andrei Alexandrovich. On the Pitfalls that Eroded the USSR
Konashev Mikhail Borisovich. On Some Economic and Philosophical Aspects of the Evolution of the USSR
16.50-17.30. Discussions. Moderator: Mikhail B. Konashev
13 November 2019 г.
Plekhanov House, 1/33, 4-th Krasnoarmeysraya str., Saint-Petersburg (Technological Institute metro st.)
10.00 – 11.20. Session 5. Moderator: Tatiana Ivanovna Filimonova
Bugakov Mikhail Mikhailovich. The Lithuanian Irony of the “Perestroika»
Retinsky Stanislav Grigorievich. The Defeat of Socialism in the USSR and the Party as the Class Conscience carrier
Mavroudeas Stavros D. Soviet Union: A Socio-economic Type, Collapse and Lessons for the Future
Isaichikov Viktor Fedorovich. Is It Possible to “Come back” to the USSR, Under What Conditions, and to What Type of the Union?
11.30 – 12.30 Session 6. Moderator: Mikhail B. Konashev
Boreyko Anton Vladimirovich. «Collapse» of the USSR and «Perestroika» in Cuba: a «Special period» as an Alternative to the restoration of capitalism (1991-2000)
Koppe Renate. The growth of anti-communism and Russo phobia in the Politics of German Imperialism as a Result of the Collapse of the USSR
Pavlenko Vladimir Borisovich. The USSR, People’s Democratic Countries and Modern Russo – Chinese Alliance as Alternative Projects for the Historical Development of and for the XX-XXI Centuries
12.40 – 13.40. Session 7. Moderator: Mikhail B. Konashev
Arkhangelsky Vladimir Alekseevich. To Meet the Actual Crisis in Sociology is but Essential Condition for the Future Success for the Doers, carrying Common Interests of the Humankind.
Filimonova Tatiana Ivanovna. «Our Party»: on a Special Role of the Communist Party in a Social and Socialist Transformation of the Society
Gafurov Said Zakirovich. The Global Nature of Modern Capitalism and the Class Struggle in the Countries of the Former USSR
13.40 – 14.40. Lunch
14.40 – 17.00. Round Table «Left parties and Social Movements of the Republics of the Former USSR: Problems of Inter- and disintegration” Moderator: Tatiana I. Filimonova
Presentations by delegates from Belarusian, Georgian, Ukrainian and other republics of the USSR.
Temporal regulations: Presentations – 15 min; Questions – 5 min; Reviews – a 5 min speech
Presentations at the Round table
Key-speakers: 10 min, a 5 min finalizing talk