Cartoon maps portraying impending inter-imperialist apocalypse

MP Pavlovich [ML Veltman]
People’s Commissariat of
Nationalities
(5.31.1921)
.

Comrade Pavlovich,1

I have arranged for publication of a school atlas (in Petrograd).2 It would be extremely important to include maps of imperialism. Would you not undertake this?

For example:

  1. Colonial possessions 1876-1914-1921, adding or specially shading off semi-colonial countries (Turkey, Persia, China, and so forth).
  2. Brief statistics of colonies and semi-colonies.
  3. Map of financial dependencies. For example, for each country ± with a figure (millions or milliards of francs) of how much this country owes, and how much it is owed;
    Also comparatively for 1876-1914-1921, if 1876 be taken as the culminating point of pre-monopoly capitalism.
  4. Railways of the world, with a note, in each country, showing to whom most of them belong (British, French, North America, etc.).
    Will this prove too much of a mixture? Convenient forms can be found, with what matters, what predominates noted very briefly.
  5. The main sources of those raw materials over which there is a struggle (oil, ores, etc.) — also with notes (% or millions of francs belong to such-and-such a country).
    We must without fail include maps of this kind in the textbooks, of course with a brief explanatory text.
    A statistical assistant can be given you for the auxiliary work.

Please reply whether you undertake this, how and when.

With communist greetings,

Vladimir Ulianov (Lenin)
Chairman, Council of
People’s Commissars

Notes


1 Pavlovich, M. P. (Veltman, M. L.) (1871-1929) — Social-Democrat, Menshevik. He became a Communist after 1917, and from 1921 was a member of the Collegium of the Commissariat for Affairs of Nationalities.
2 Reference is to the preparations for the publication of the Vsemirny geografichesky atlas (Geographical Atlas of the World), launched on Lenin’s initiative. The project was not realized.

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4 thoughts on “Cartoon maps portraying impending inter-imperialist apocalypse

  1. Great post! This year I visited the Imperial War Museum in London on the anniversary of the Somme. I didn’t expect much to be made of imperialist rivalry as a driver of the conflict. But I also didn’t expect the curators to provide, without any reference to the above menageries, a table size animation of dueling bears, lions, and eagles in the run-up to August 1914. If I was five years old, I would have been delighted, looking forward to studying history by going to the zoo.

  2. I love those caricatural maps. Thanks a lot for that!

    As to Lenin’s suggestion, you can find a map “Overview of the colonies of European states”, taken from the German “Brockhaus” encyclopedia, 14th edtiion of 1890, reproduced on Wikipedia here:

    I try to include a 294×240 pixel version of it here in the comment:
    <img src="https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/bc/Europe-sees-the-world-as-colonies-in-1890.png/294px-Europe-sees-the-world-as-colonies-in-1890.png&quot;

    I used it to show the world view which generated the Zionist colonial adventure.

  3. Pingback: Cartoon maps portraying impending inter-imperialist apocalypse — The Charnel-House – Aya's Margins

  4. Pingback: This Week’s Top Picks in Imperial & Global History – Imperial & Global Forum

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