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Various publications e.g. "The Parent Care Conversation" (which seems to be a religiously inspired book in some parts at least) attribute the saying "destroy the family, you destroy the country" to Lenin.

The book "The Marxist Goliath Among Us" (2010) attributes a sinister context to the quote:

Vladimir Lenin described the importance of the traditional family's annihilation in Marxist revolutions. "Destroy the family, you destroy the country", he insisted.

Did Lenin actually say or write that, and if so in what context?

(Wikiquote doesn't contain that quote, or anything else similar about family; well there's something about "the world family of the proletariat" in there, but that's clearly a different meaning of the term "family".)

  • Perhaps also add a gBooks search limited to 20th century and add another context for notability? Perhaps, this one or this pamphlet – LаngLаngС Nov 8 at 4:09
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    Also, seems prudent to require more than this – LаngLаngС Nov 8 at 4:12
  • @LаngLаngС: I'm not seeing any close votes for now, so I'll refrain from adding more quotes to the question unless notability is actually challenged. – Fizz Nov 8 at 4:25
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    @RayButterworth: if you have some other quote from Lenin (but not from someone else) that is in effect saying what you have paraphrased, you could answer with that. – Fizz Nov 8 at 16:40
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    you destroy the country - did Lenin want to destroy his own country? Unlikely... So, the whole quote looks erroneous – HEKTO Nov 9 at 2:51
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The one thing somewhat like the quote that he wrote, in 1914, was:

A new form of family, new conditions in the status of women and in the upbringing of the younger generation are prepared by the highest forms of present-day capitalism: the labor of women and children and the break-up of the patriarchal family by capitalism inevitably assume the most terrible, disastrous, and repulsive forms in modern society.

He goes on to quote Marx:

...absurd to hold the Teutonic-Christian form of the family...

There are various published English translation of what Lenin wrote. A more-common translation of the Lenin's quote of Marx is:

...stupid to regard the Christo-Teutonic form of the family as absolute...

  • It's important to highlight (above "patriarchal" bourgeois family) that unlike anarchists for Lenin 'the state' as such isn't that bad in the mid-term.The analysis and predictions by Marx/Engels are already different from VIL, but marxists.org/archive/zetkin/1920/lenin/zetkin1.htm should explain well what the stance 'on family' is. We see neither no more families, nor no more state – but what we do see is that ie 'American (family) values' are seen as oppressive etc. Remains: when was the claim put in Lenin's mouth and how does it relate to his visions & reality of modern enemies? – LаngLаngС Nov 10 at 10:45
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It is almost an exact quote from Lenin's time, but not by Lenin.

Instead, in 1918, Sir John Robertson, the Medical Officer of Health for Birmingham, UK said:

To destroy the family is to destroy the nation

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There is a site (in Russian), devoted to Lenin works etc. I've entered the phrase "уничтожить семью" - in double quotes, meaning "to destroy the family", into the search field (upper right corner) - and got nothing. Also I tried some variations of this phrase - also nothing.

My conclusion, not 100%-reliable of course - Lenin didn't say that.

  • Here marxists.org/archive/lenin/works/1914/self-det/ch05.htm Lenin mentions “disintegration of the family”, “disintegration of family ties” and "destruction of family ties" (not that he is advocating these). – DavePhD Nov 10 at 3:01
  • Do you mean that quality of search at this site might be not that good? I've tried one of phrases, suggested by you and translated back to Russian - "распад семьи" - and got the chapter 5 of: leninism.su/works/63-tom-25/2188-o-prave-naczij-na- – HEKTO Nov 10 at 4:30
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    No, just that there are synonym-phrases. In English, Marx's phrase in The Communist Manifesto is "abolition of the family". Unfortunately I don't know any Russian and only a little German. – DavePhD Nov 10 at 14:20

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