Diplomats who were not quite like the rest

Sabine Dullin

in Men of Influence

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print October 2008 | ISBN: 9780748622191
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651290 | DOI:
Diplomats who were not quite like the rest

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Soviet diplomats of a certain rank were few in number compared with those of the Quai d'Orsay, for example. Less than 300 in number in the mid-1930s, they seemed more like diplomats than revolutionaries, more Westernised than Soviet. If the clothes they wore when they entered the People's Commissariat for Foreign Affairs helped forge their identity, they were not so much a part of them that they altogether crushed their individuality. They still drew on their personal experience, using what was helpful professionally, both within the Soviet Union and in their dealings with the outside world. Working within a diplomatic framework which, in many respects, retained traditional administrative structures and practices, their links with the Soviet political culture and way of life was no less crucial to them. It was true for Litvinov, the old Bolshevik, but also for his other colleagues.

Keywords: Soviet diplomats; Soviet political culture; Foreign Affairs Commissariat; Litvinov; Bolshevik

Chapter.  18274 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Politics

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