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Lenin in Perth

Christopher Crouch

Hardcover 48pp, 15 x 23cm
Printed edition of 500
ISBN 978-0-9871910-3-8

Lenin lived in exile in Perth from 1925–1953. When he arrived incognito at the port of Fremantle the turbulent state of  Western Australia, of which Perth was the capital, was still consolidating the transformation of its colonial legacy into political autonomy. The Emu War of 1932 –where troops armed with machine guns were deployed to control rogue emus in the Campion district– was yet to be fought, and it was to be another year before the Forrest River Massacre took place; the last in a string of poorly documented ‘incidents’ in which the state asserted its right to rule over the Indigenous population through the power of the bullet rather than the ballot. Lenin’s emotional rock, the formidable Nadezhda Krupskaya wrote to him forlornly after his escape from the forthcoming flames of Stalinism into the hot furnace of Western Australia:

Vladimir Ilyich, my love, what will become of you trapped like Alice in a world behind the looking glass; indeed a world worse than hers, not only insensible because it is back to front, but because it is also upside down.

Using newly revealed material from the Institute of Leninist Metaphor’s archives, this short work introduces Lenin’s exile in Perth through a transformative moment in the baking summer of 1949.

Includes an introductory essay “No Hat, No Play!” by Christopher Crouch, translated into French by Julien Fournier.

Also features 12 pages of photographs of key pieces from the Institute of Leninist Metaphor’s archives, photographed by Karen ann Donnachie.