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Our Lenin: kid’s book from the USA, 1934

May 19, 2009

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I can’t remember where I found this book, but this is a children’s biography of Lenin published in 1934 by the CPUSA press. The writing is a basic heroic summary of his life, translated and adapted from a Russian book by Ruth Shaw and Alan Potamkim. The illustrations are by William Siegel, who I can find no reliable information about off a quick search. But I like his drawings, they’re nicely done and simple, good for kids books. His composition is really good too.

This book is heavy on the propaganda (no surprise there) and there’s something slightly creepy, comforting and hopeful in this art. The book itself is handsome: big bold red lines at the top and bottom of each page, the drawings fit in nicely with the text. Here’s a selection of images:

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Sample Page

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World War I

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Bloody Sunday

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Compare and Contrast

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The Shooting of Lenin

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Simple Math

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The Workers

History

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4 comments on “Our Lenin: kid’s book from the USA, 1934”

My sister and I pored over this book at home in the early 50’s, being red diaper babies. I remember the illustrations well. I’ve always felt close to Lenin as a result, despite wisdom aquired over the years…

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