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New Left Review I/177, September-October 1989


Norberto Bobbio

The Upturned Utopia

The catastrophe of historical communism stands literally before everyone’s eyes—the catastrophe of communism as a world movement, born of the Russian Revolution, promising emancipation of the poor and oppressed, the ‘wretched of the earth’. [*] This article first appeared in the Turin daily La Stampa, 9 June 1989. The process of decomposition is continually speeding up, beyond anything predicted. This does not yet spell the end of the communist regimes, which might still last a long time by finding new forces for survival. The first great crisis of a communist state occurred in Hungary more than thirty years ago, and yet the regime did not collapse. In this respect, too, it is wiser not to make any predictions.

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