Marilyn Levine focuses on the representative group of the Chinese Communist Youth Corps and Party, who moved from Europe to travel and study in the Soviet Union on their way back to China. Based on groundbreaking archival research and interviews, Levine examines how the group’s Euro-Soviet experience determined their understanding of the Russian Revolution. The Euro-Soviet group included the future top leaders of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), and as such, Levine argues, their shared experience in the Soviet Union and personal networks influenced the nature of the CCP.
Alexander Pantsov examines the activities of Zhang Tailei (1898-1927), a co-founder of the CCP and the Chinese Socialist Youth League, and his relationship with the Comintern. Pantsov argues that because of his close contact with Russian Bolshevik ideologues Zhang Tailei became the main channel of Russian revolutionary thought to China. As the most crucial link between the Russian and Chinese Communists, Zhang Tailei deserves a more thorough investigation in order to understand the arrival of communist ideas to China.
Tatiana Linkhoeva draws attention to the early socialist reception of Russian communism in imperial Japan. Inspired by the Russian Revolution, the cohort of interwar Japanese socialist radicals advanced a new vision of Asian brotherhood and cultivated regional networks across East Asia. Linkhoeva argues that the Russian Revolution pushed the issue of conflict between loyalty to one’s nation and loyalty to a supranational community to the forefront of concerns among Japanese leftists.
Masha Kirasirova examines the life of an early Egyptian socialist Charlotte Rosenthal. Based on the Comintern’s records Kirasirova reveals the exchange of specific revolutionary ideas and practices related to the “women’s question” and gendered expectations about communist behavior in Egypt and the Soviet Union.
The panel attempts to explore the different meanings the Russian Revolution had in the non-European world, introduce and investigate new sources for interpreting the relationship between Russian and “Eastern” communists, and provide new frameworks for understanding these relations.