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Agitprop (Agitation and Propaganda Department)

Агитпроп-oтдел (Агитационно-пропагандистский отдел Центрального комитета, РКП (б))

1920 to 1928

The task of disseminating political information was under the Agitation and Propaganda Department (Agitprop) of the Communist Party’s Central Committee. Agitprop was formed in 1920 and it was placed under Glavpolitprosvet (Main Department for Political Education). Early-on, the term Agitprop described a politically-themed theatrical performance, however the term came to describe a variety of art developed for political education. Agitprop relied on a bevy of artists working as a collective and under the notion that social change would be achieved through artistic expression. Agitprop art covered performance to graphic design, to the decoration of boats and trains. As a department, it existed until 1928 when it merged with the Press Department of the Central Committee to create the Department of Agitation, Propaganda and Press of the Central Committee of the All-Union Communist Party of Bolsheviks. As an artistic movement, Agitprop faded when Socialist Realism emerged as the leading art form in the Soviet Union.


Kiianskaia, O.I., & Fel’dman, D.M. (2018). Slovesnost’ na Doprose: Sledstvennye dela sovetskikh zhurnalistov I pisateli 1920-1930-x godov. Moskva: Forum, Neolit. (p. 348, Agitprop years 1920-1928)
Chilvers, I., & Glaves-Smith, J. (2009) Oxford Dictionary of Modern and Contemporary Art: 2nd Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press. (p.14, agitprop bio)
Kenez, P. (1985). The birth of the propaganda state: Soviet methods of mass mobilization, 1917-1929. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. (p. 124, coordination of Agitprop sections) (Agitprop, defined)
Fitzpatrick, S. (1970). The commissariat of enlightenment: Soviet organization of education and the arts under Lunacharski. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. (p. 181, Agitprop under Glavpolitprosvet)