By Robert Levy
Ana Pauker, whilst she is remembered in any respect, is regarded as the puppet of Soviet communism in Romania, blindly imposing the main brutal and repressive Stalinist regime. Robert Levy's new biography adjustments the image dramatically, revealing a girl of exceptional energy, ruled through clash and contradiction excess of via dogmatism. Telling the tale of Pauker's early life in an more and more anti-Semitic surroundings, her dedication to a progressive occupation, and her upward thrust within the Romanian Communist circulation, Levy makes no try and whitewash Pauker's existence and activities, yet really explores each contour of the advanced character he discovered expressed in plenty of newly available archival files.
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Extra info for Ana Pauker: The Rise and Fall of a Jewish Communist
With the end of the war, the RWSDP resumed activity in Romania, though it was now severely split between radicals and moderates. 15 Consequently most of the party’s radical leaders ﬂed to Russia, leaving the top posts to the more moderate elements. At the same time, however, the repression further radicalized the party’s rank and ﬁle. More and more activists openly identiﬁed with the October Revolution and favored adopting illegal, underground methods to start an immediate revolution in 36 In the Movement Romania.
23 Whatever led her to Switzerland, Rabinsohn would be indelibly inﬂuenced by this charismatic and controversial ﬁgure and was no doubt thoroughly enamored with him. During her year and a half in Geneva, Ana Rabinsohn became acquainted with such leading socialists as Rene Lachenal, Humbert Droz, Henry Barbuse, Stasia Stanislavskaia, Platten Nicoll, and others. 28 In the end she was forced to renounce her studies and left Geneva without having passed the matriculation exams at the beginning of 1921 to join Pauker in Zurich.
From then on, however, the Social Democrats made little headway among the ethnic-Romanians. They had few adherents among the Romanian intelligentsia, the great majority of whom supported the Rightist National Liberal and Conservative parties for reasons that were as practical as they were ideological: the intellectuals, who were repelled by the socialists’ pronounced internationalism, were largely employed in a civil service controlled by the two ruling parties. 14 Hence the socialists’ insigniﬁcant numbers and non– ethnic-Romanian composition, and hence their virtual isolation from the Romanian masses and near total political irrelevance.