A. James McAdams
Vanguard of the Revolution
The Global Idea of the Communist Party
Princeton University Press 2017
New Books in HistoryNew Books in Intellectual HistoryNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Political ScienceNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in Russian and Eurasian StudiesNew Books in World AffairsNew Books Network June 4, 2018 Nadirah Mansour
Is there a difference between the Communist Party as an idea and the Communist Party in practice? A. James McAdams thinks so and takes the global approach to history to write a political and intellectual history of the Communist party. In Vanguard of the Revolution: The Global Idea of the Communist Party (Princeton University Press, 2017), he urges us to think of the party in practice and not simply think of communism as an idea detached from the workings of a political party. He starts with the writing of The Communist Manifesto and tracks the major communist parties that changed the course of the 20th century. We talk global history, Marx, the idea of world revolution, and the longevity of ideas.
James McAdams is the William M. Scholl Professor of International Affairs and Director of the Nanovic Institute for European Studies. He has written widely on European, especially central European, affairs. His books include East Germany and Detente, Germany Divided, Judging the Past in Unified Germany, and The Crisis of Modern Times.
Nadirah Mansour is a graduate student at Princeton University’s Department of Near Eastern Studies working on the global intellectual history of the Arabic-language press. She tweets @NAMansour26 and produces another Middle-East and North Africa-related podcast: Reintroducing.