March 1925



Communist International

ECCI

March 1925



THE DRAFT RULES FOR


THE ORGANIZATION OF AGITATION AND PROPAGANDA WORK


BY THE SECTIONS OF THE COMINTERN,


SUBMITTED BY THE AGITPROP DEPARTMENT OF THE ECCI





EXTRACTS


Inprekorr, v, 34, p. 514, 12 March 1925



[In endorsing these rules at its meeting on 3 April, the ECCI emphasized the need for ideological training of the party membership; its resolution said, in part:

'The enlarged Executive, while directing the attention of all sections to the decisions of the agitprop conference held in connexion with the Executive meeting, underlines the following current tasks in this field:


1. An end must be put to the passive attitude of sections hitherto towards the question of the party training of the entire party membership. . . .


'2. For the theoretical training of the basic party cadres, every party centre must establish a central party school, with a two to nine months course, according to the practical possibilities. . . .

The agitprop department of the ECCI must promote and support these schools in every way.


'3. The enlarged Executive approves the plan to organize international party courses in Moscow, and instructs the presidium to see that work begins in this school in the autumn of the present year. . . .



'6. The steadily growing interest of the broad working masses in the economic and cultural life of the Soviet Union, and the continuing campaign of calumny in the bourgeois and reformist press, make it necessary to devote special attention to supplying correct and comprehensive information about conditions in the Soviet Union. . . .


All sections are obliged to maintain the closest contact through their agitprop departments with the agitprop department of the ECCI.']




A. CENTRAL COMMITTEE


1. For the unified conduct of party agitation and propaganda work in all its forms, verbal as well as printed, every section of the Comintern, regardless of the party's influence or the political conditions in which it works, must have an agitprop department attached to its central committee.


2. Instructed by the CC of the party, the agitprop department works out the entire plan of party agitation and propaganda in their various branches, and supervises the execution by all local party organizations of congress and CC decisions concerned with these questions.


3. The CC appoints one of its members to take charge of the work of this department.


4. The head of the department works with an agitprop commission, consisting of four to eight members appointed by the CC, the head acting as chairman. The commission carries out all preliminary work on general agitprop questions, drafts the plan of work for the department. . . .

The commission meets regularly, at least once a week.


5. In order to maintain contact with other departments of the CC, and with organizations related to the communist party, and to bring uniformity into their work, representatives of the organization department of the CC, of the women's secretariat, of the young communist league, of the red sports organization, the International Red Aid, and others will be attached to the commission. Care should be taken in appointing the commission to see that comrades concerned with educational work in the trade unions and co-operatives are included. . . .


6. In allocating functions within the agitprop commission the department should bear in mind the following three chief spheres of work:

(a) agitation work among the masses;

(b) work concerned with propaganda or party education;

(c) the political periodical press.

The commission may set up special sub-commissions to coordinate the work in these three fields. Their composition, and the choice of a responsible head of each sub-commission, is determined by the agitprop commission and must be ratified by the CC of the party. They may include comrades who are not members of the agitprop commission.


7. ... In sections which have not yet developed very far, it is enough to form a small agitprop department, consisting of a head of department and a commission of three (including the head), without any sub-commissions. A sub-commission for the press should be set up only where the party press is already well developed or where good opportunities are open for our comrades in the trade union press. . . .


8. ... It is desirable that two or three leading party members should receive regular pay for this work, so that they can devote all their time to it.


9. The entire work of the agitprop department of the CC must be carried out on the basis of a thorough study of the working experience of all local party organizations. If it issues a circular or directives, the department must see that the instructions really are carried out. . . .


10. About twice a year the CC should call a meeting to discuss general questions of the agitprop department (or its sub-sections), to be attended by members of the department and the agitprop leaders of the most important district and local committees, as well as the agitprop organizers of the three to five largest factory cells. . . .



B. DISTRICT COMMITTEES



      1. Agitprop departments shall also be attached to the district committees, on the same lines as the CC department, but on a smaller scale....


      1. LOCAL COMMITTEES


12. One member of the presidium or bureau of the local committee must be appointed to take charge of the entire agitation and propaganda work of the area, for which he is responsible to the local committee. . . .


[13.] For all the preparatory work there will be an agitprop department consisting of the leader mentioned in para. 12 and a commission of five to seven members.

One of these must be a member well versed in the theory of Marxism-Leninism, who will be in charge of all propaganda (party education) work in the area. ... At the meetings of this commission the cell agitprop organizers shall report on their work and take part in discussing and deciding general questions of the commission's work. . . .



15. All decisions of the agitprop commission which have a general character must be endorsed by the presidium or bureau of the local committee. . . .


17. At least once every two months the committee shall call a meeting of the secretaries and agitprop organizers of the factory cells and area party committees, to hear the report of the department and discuss agitprop work,


      1. The agitprop department of the local committee must send regular reports to the central party agitprop department. . . .


E. FACTORY CELLS



22. From the very beginning of the work to organize factory cells it is necessary to give great attention to the agitation and propaganda work of the cell among the working masses of the factory....

One member of the cell shall be appointed agitprop organizer to take charge of the work and supervise the execution of all decisions.


23. It is the job of the agitprop organizer to:

(a) draw up a list of members of the group suitable for agitprop work;

(b) organize a group to study the party programme and party tactics;

(c) organize individual agitation among non-party workers, in the first place those who sympathize with the party;

(d) organize agitation meetings;

(e) organize party participation at meetings called by trade unions and other bodies;

(f) organize the distribution of party literature, etc.