The Russian Revolution confronted the issue of housing, gave rise to the greatest social experimentation ever seen by workers on collective and communal ways of living and working, and very soon had to address the transformation of urban space in order to push forward the revolution of social space that was in its perspective.
Tag: russian revolution
At the height of the Russian Revolution, as the working class wielded political power for the first time and hundreds of thousands of workers were experimenting with new forms of collective labor, Taylorism and the scientific organization of labor raised debates that were only partly resolved historically: Are the techniques of scientific organization of labor necessarily alienating and do they necessarily increase exploitation? Is their scientific foundation correct? Is there anything rescuable in them?
Many decades before the emergence of environmentalism, the first extensive experience of workers’ power, the Russian Revolution, featured a strong policy on forests and revolutionary plans for wilderness. The soviets discovered from the first moment, however, that Nature is not a minor battlefield in the class struggle.
The premise was as appealing as it could be: retelling Bogdanov’s Red Star amid the 1917 revolution. The main character, Leonid, actually a surrogate for Bogdanov himself, would have had a daughter in the communist Mars. The young woman comes back to look for him in the midst of the world revolution. But no. We discover that the plot begins in 1927, in the midst of the Stalinist counterrevolution, shortly before the killing and purging of the generation that had carried out the revolution. And that the authors replace historical context with a jumble, a tangle even, of prejudices and distortions… A tngle that is anything but innocent.
Articles promoting co-living are popping up in the press. They specifically target young workers (no students allowed, as pointed out by TeleMadrid) and sell a way of life based on an idea of community offering the promise of overcoming isolation and atomization. In reality: shared apartments with minimal individual spaces at prices which not long ago would have been charged for a family house; housing precariousness beyond the mini-house level based on a false collectivist bond and commodified interpersonal relationships. These are certainly similar to the oppressive and miserable stalinist komunalkas which are also now coming back, but light years away from the collective and communal housing movements of the workers’ movement up to and during the Russian Revolution.
The world Revolution and the Soviet takeover of Russia briefly opened a period in which a whole universe of human needs was expressed and knowledge developed in a new way. It radically changed, among other things, the conception of learning and childhood.