Books and Rifles: The Political Activity of Yugoslav Communist Students in Prague from 1927 until 1937 (Part I)
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This work deals with the previously under-researched topic of the Yugoslav communist student émigrés in Prague in the interwar period who would go on to become the political and intellectual elite of socialist Yugoslavia in the post-World War II era. Drawing primarily on sources from the National Archive in Prague and the Archive of Yugoslavia in Belgrade, as well as memoirs of the movement’s participants, this paper attempts to retrace their political activities and intellectual development through a period in which Comintern policy changed frequently, forcing the young communists to adapt to a constantly changing political climate. The first part of the article examines their attempts to take over the legal organizations of Yugoslav students in Prague, as well as their cooperation with the non-communist left which occurred in spite of Comintern’s ultra-left policies in the period between 1928 and 1935. This twofold strategy helped them to ultimately gain the upper hand in their frequent confrontations with the representatives of the Yugoslav Legation in Prague.
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