Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Religion and Communism, Earl Browder CPUSA 1939

Vintage Leftist Leaflet Project

See the end of this post for details on the project.

Leaflet: Religion and Communism, Earl Browder CPUSA 1939

In this leaflet -- which is a transcript of a speech he gave at the Community Church in Boston in 1939 -- Earl Browder, the then leader of the Communist Party USA, tries to address issues around religion and communism both ideologically and in the context of the Soviet Union and the US party. Browder led the party from the mid 1930s until 1945. (Browder was eventually expelled from the party in 1946.)

The booklet is interesting in its historical context against the backdrop of the Spanish Civil War and Nazism, both of which it references. It is also notable for its very obvious attempts to appeal to Catholics specifically. Browder also tries to frame the campaigns against the Greek Orthodox Church in the Soviet Union as the repudiation of what had been a state religion under the Czars and thus akin to the overthrow of the stranglehold of the Catholic Church on life in France during the French Revolution or the desire of Americans to be free from a state religion and to favour the separation of church and state.

 One notable quote: "The fascists have so terribly revived the cannibalistic anti-Semitism of the Middle Ages, and intensified it, precisely under the completely false identification of the Jewish religion with Communism". 

(Click on scans to enlarge) 

When The Left Chapter began part of what I wanted to do on the blog was to show and highlight vintage public leftist election/political leaflets and booklets. While many of these have been offered with commentary to date, a very large collection of hundreds of them from several different sources remains and to preserve these often quite rare documents we will be posting them on a regular (almost daily) basis now often without or with minimal commentary so that people may have access to them as quickly as possible as an historical resource. 

While these will all be leaflets from a variety of different leftist viewpoints and countries, they are being posted as an historical/study resource and the views or opinions expressed in them do not necessarily reflect the views of this blog or blogger.

All of these posts (as well as posts made to date) will be listed on the page: Vintage Communist/Socialist Leaflets  (which is still being updated with past posts).

If you have any public, vintage leaflets or booklets you would like to contribute to this project please contact us via

No comments:

Post a Comment