Secret report of Khrushchev on Stalin’s personality cult auctioned

Nikita Khrushchev

Auction house Christie’s on 20 April will put up for online auction report from the secret speech of the Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev debunked the cult of Stalin. This is evidenced by information on the website of Christie’s.

On the cover in Polish the name of the document “On the personality cult and its consequences” criticism of Joseph Stalin. Output: “Warsaw, March 1956”. In the upper right corner contains a PostScript: “Exclusively for party organizations”.

The lot also includes an abridged, and full versions of the report, which was made by Khrushchev at the 20th Communist party Congress on 25 February 1956 in Moscow. Estimated value of these, as noted, a very rare first editions in their original covers is two or three thousand dollars.

Khrushchev’s speech at Christie’s is one of the defining documents of the XX century in General and of the cold war era in particular. The first Secretary of the Central Committee of the CPSU said it at a closed meeting of delegates of the CPSU. The goal of intervention was the destruction of the image and legacy of the late dictator. Khrushchev cited numerous examples of Stalin’s abuse of power.

Make the decision about how to deliver a speech undermining entrenched in the Soviet public consciousness ideas, it wasn’t easy, written by experts Christie’s, citing the publication in The Observer in 2006. Several months of fierce debate, left to loyal to Stalin, party leaders agreed, on condition that the text will never be published.

Despite the conventional secrecy, the report was distributed to all the Communist cells in the country, and some enterprises to its deliberations, and the non-party. The document has attracted a lot of attention around the world, there are translations into different languages. In the Soviet Union it was published in 1989 in the journal “Izvestia of the Central Committee of the CPSU.”