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Yes, this is the “Classic” 1965 revised and expanded edition of The Anatomy of Revolution that masterful book by author Crane Brinton (1898-1968), first published in 1938 near the onset of WWII. The front cover was designed by Paul Rand. By now, you know that I really do own these serious sorts of books, even if you are still in some doubt after 700 posts, so here is the back cover.

img473No, I do not think that the R on the cover stands for Republicans or Republic nor for Rand Paul or Paul Rand (no relation I assume). Does it stand for Right or Right wing? Of interesting note is the year of the original publication 1938 which is 70 years prior to the election of “Barry” O, das Wunderkind (the brilliant child) and the “Revolution President”, also known as the “transformer” of the USA.

Crane Brinton worked for the Office of Strategic Services (O.S.S) during World War II as the Chief of Research and Analysis in London in the O.S.S., according to his bio. Here is what appears on the last page of the book before the back cover.

img474Of an interesting note is the fact that there is no mention of his title while he worked for the O.S.S. (Office of Strategic Services) in the short bio above.

The O.S.S. personnel file does not list a military rank or serial number for him, it just indicates him as a member, and we find some other Brintons on the personnel list as well. The O.S.S. was the forerunner organization of the C.I.A. (Central Intelligence Agency), and many well known operatives were former rank and file O.S.S. members. Recruitment of former secret service organization members as professors or educators was, as normal in the sixties as it is today, in the entangled web between  the Military Industrial Complex and higher education institutions in many countries.

An example of that type of close collaboration is easily found by those who have read the book by Naom Chomsky on languages, that was published while he was teaching at M.I.T, and financed by a grant from the military industrial complex stated on the inside cover of the paperback version of the book.

Many soft or hard revolutions have lead to the “election” of former members of secret services into positions of almost absolute power, a good example of this is the Russian Presidency in the form of Vladimir Putin. Perhaps we have entered the phase of ideology that masks itself under the guise of the leader with self appointed near Monarchial Powers, where the People’s Representatives are rubber stamp slaves, elected by those who still believe in a representational model of Democracy. Could it be that the more educated we become, the more complacent and compliant we become? Do we care less about democracy and its principals in reality? Are we more willing to relinquish freedom and privacy to those who govern? Have we entered the age of the Global Potempkin Village?

The iconic book cover designed by Paul Rand has been published widely in the graphic design press in the past decades. Paul Rand was a leading figure in graphic design at the time, but I wonder if he read the theories by Brinton, and applied some of those lessons in his own career? Or did he favor, understandably so, just the letter R and turned a dull topic for non revolutionaries, into a mini design revolution with just one letter and a stroke of the magic pen?