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Page:Studies in socialism 1906.djvu/163

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Strike and Revolution

system intact and armed it with implacable fury. The fear of the ruling classes, and even of a great part of the masses, will express itself in a long succession of reactionary years. And the proletariat will be disarmed, bound, and crushed, for an indefinite period.

But is there, under these conditions, a chance of success? I think not. In the first place the working class would not rouse itself to action in defence of a general formula, such as the advent of Communism would be. The idea of Social Revolution in the abstract would not be enough to animate them. The Socialistic idea, the Communist idea, is strong to guide and co-ordinate successive efforts on the part of the proletariat. It is toward the accomplishment of that end, towards its gradual realisation, that the proletariat is directing its organised effort. But if a great movement is to be started, it is essential that the idea of Social Revolution should be embodied in specific claims.

To bring the working class to the point of leaving the factories and of beginning a battle to the death with all the powers of the present social system, a battle full of uncertainty and peril, it is not enough to cry "Communism!" because the proletarians will immediately say, "Which Communism?" and "What form will it assume to-morrow if we win?"

Great movements are never set on foot for the