chaos and destruction! Long live death! Place for the future! Out of the chaos, Socialism was to be born.
Herzen's Socialism embodied the current European doctrines of his time. He grafted these on to his early Moscow studies. The result was that he confused nationalist ideals with radical universal ones. Down to the storm period of 1848, these two Russian movements were inspired with the same idea: the glorious destiny of the people. They separated and became irreconcilably opposed because the one movement conceived of the greatness of Russia and the other desired the greatness of the people themselves within and without Russia. This conflict finds an echo in the struggle that exists to-day between Trotskyism and Stalinism. The permanent revolution is European and cosmic. Socialism in one country is nationalistic and reactionary. Herzen states the difference very well in his "Memoirs."
"We and the Slavophils represented a kind of two faced Janus; only they looked backward and we look forward. At heart we were one; and our heart throbbed equally for our minor brother, the peasant - with whom our mother-country was pregnant. But what for them was the recollection of the past was taken by us as the prophecy of the future."
Herzen is here explaining that he and his Slavophils were agreed that the foundations of the Russian peoples' emancipation was the Mir or rural Commune. The Slavophils considered the Commune the historic national expression of Christian living - the economic organisation of love and humility. Herzen had not time for Christianity and theology. He wanted man, not god. To him, the Russian Commune was prophetic. It symbolised in germ the socialist society of the future. His Slavophile prejudices have been justified in two directions. The industrial expression of the Mir is the Soviet or Council. Without question, the Council is the unit of organisation and of franchise in industrial society as opposed to the territorial constituency of useless political or consuming society. Consumption has no right to be enfranchised. Production must be enfranchised if society is not to degenerate into chaos. Believing this, Herzen maintained that European civilisation must die a natural death of exhaustion.This world revolution would begin in Moscow and not in Paris or Berlin or even London. Herzen loved to compare the arrogant civilisation of the eternal city and the triumph of Christianity with the arrogant civilisation of Western Europe and the dawn of Socialism. He saw Russia playing the part of Saviour. He wanted a New Russia even as we want a New Britain.
Herzen developed his theories in a series of articles written during the first two years after he left Russia. He had approached them at the beginning of his exile in his famous work, published in Rome, "Before the Storm." The storm of 1848 left power in the hands of the heated bourgoisie whose politicians Herzen call "the