The Hots For Trotsky

It was in 1936 that Trotsky founded the Fourth International.

The International Bolsheviks met secretly at a summit in Geneva. The secret was, it turned out later, that they actually met in Paris, since by this time the long arm of Stalin’s terror could reach anywhere.

One of the Fourth International’s aims was to defend workers against globalisation. In 1848, Marx and Engels accurately predicted that Capitalism would need to eliminate national borders. Therefore, ‘workers of the world’ would need to unite to continue their struggle effectively.

Well, 70 years on, we have the EU and multinationals but not much of a struggle. Should all that cheap Polish labour being exploited by the UK be given little red leaflets? A check on the net didn’t find any but it seems that the Fourth International isn’t entirely dead. It has just morphed a little from Trotsky’s original concept.


Here’s a poster from the French division, ASQIN. The illustration is loosely based on the old Soviet collective farm posters, though it isn’t clear why French skinheads have hair or would be harvesting spaghetti.


This for me is a more successful poster. If you look closely, the girl is wearing ANTIFA or ‘anti fascist’ knickers. A few of these girls could soon break-up those nauseating rallies of Putin’s bourgeois revisionist youth.

Brazil has many 4th International cells and Lenin still rocks. This is from the PunkCommunistas.


Meanwhile, in Colombia there is SHARP, who are actually SkinHeads Against Racial Prejudice and therefore completely out of boot with their Russian counterparts – as indeed were the Trotskyites.


All these groups appear to echo Trotsky’s call for organisation. As Brazil’s Redskins explain, “We can have riots and petrol bombs and revolutions all day long, but if we fail to organise we’ll waste our lives in protest songs.’

What has kept Trotsky current? Certainly he has received a cult boost from the recent bout of ‘Fridamania‘. The Mexican surrealist painter, Frida Kahlo, did indeed have the hots for Trotsky and was briefly his mistress until the great man was slain by Stalin’s agent icepick.

If you want to visit the shrine to the Fourth International, you will also have to go to Mexico on the Frida Kahlo trail. On this page, the thumbnails are broken but if you click on them they still bring up many unique images. If you liked Lenin’s Apartment museum, you’ll love Trotsky’s Casa.


6 comments to The Hots For Trotsky

  • i didn’t know this about the fourth international. i thought trotsky was just a defector who opposed stalin on political front. but marx and engels did have right about eliminating national borders, it’s being done.

    if lenin had such a haircut i bet the workers would shot him in petrograd instead of royal guards :)

  • Helen

    Steady on, all the Poles I know who came over here (I’m in the UK) to work came to earn money to send back to their families entirely voluntarily, and when the work dried up in 2007 and we went into recession (happens to Capitalist economies, don’t you know?) they all ran off home cos the work wasn’t there any more. Not even for us.

    An interesting book reflecting on Trotsky and Kahlo’s relationship is ‘The Lacuna’, it’s a novel about a boy who lives in their home for a while. It’s fiction but interesting. There’s been a recent exhibition of Kahlo’s work in London I believe.

    We all need defending from Globalisation, it flaming stinks.

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