VANGUARD - Expressing the viewpoint of the Communist Party of Australia (Marxist-Leninist)
For National Independence and Socialism •


Basic and Advanced Study Courses

The practical work of a Marxist-Leninist Party must be guided by an understanding of the basic theories developed by those who have been successful in leading revolutionary movements. All members of the party must contribute to its practical work according to their circumstances and the needs of the working class of Australia.

The approach that comrades should adopt towards their study is to “Know the teachings to use the methods”.

The Basic Study Course should have a purpose embedded in the daily life of members. The test of the success or otherwise of study is not being able to drag out quotations from this or that text or to just know the teachings, but rather the ability to “apply this Marxism daily, hourly, in the most diverse, peculiar, unprecedented circumstances.”  In other words, while looking back at the experiences of leaders from Marx through to Mao, we are learning for today and for the future, for the ability to use the method of Marxism in situations that the classic teachers had not themselves encountered. 

The Basic Study Course will enable members of long standing to remain grounded in the basics whilst at the same time assisting new members to be introduced to and become more familiar with some of the essential guides to mass work.

There is no one general approach to study that will suit every member. There are advantages to private individual study, and to group study and discussion. Probably a combination of the two can be effective. 

Most of the readings in the Basic Study Course are available in booklets or on the Internet (see or

An Advanced Study Course will be recommended for leading comrades and those who are of longer standing as Party members, and will consist of some longer and more detailed texts.

This Basic Study Course is not a rigid or fixed outline.  Comrades should feel free to suggest or add new topics and new materials added to existing topics. 

As Marxist-Leninists, we systematically strive as we are able in our individual and collective circumstances, which may include long and intense hours of work and travel, to deepen our study beyond these two courses.

Topic 1: Overview of Marxist Theory
Marx and Engels, The Communist Manifesto
Engels, Karl Marx (mid-June 1877)
Lenin, Karl Marx (1914) – first four sections through to “Marx’s Economic Doctrine”
Lenin, Three Sources and Three Component Parts of Marxism
Lenin, The State (1919) 
Stalin, Lenin as the Organiser and Leader of the Russian Communist Party (April 1920)
Mao Zedong, On Practice, (1937)
The Significance of revisionism, Australian Communist, Oct-Dec 2010 p. 53,  

Topic 2: Characteristics of the Australian revolution
CPA (M-L), General Program (see our website)
CPA (M-L), Organisational Principles and Rules (see our website)
E.F. Hill, Reflections on Communism in Australia (chaps. 9-14) s
Nick G., Revolutionary Organisation: The Iceberg Principle Explained, Vanguard - Communist Party of Australia Marxist Leninist ( or “Australian Communist” Spring 2020
CPA (M-L), Who Owns Australia? (2018) 
CPA  (M-L), Three Basic Questions, (2018)

Topic 3: Introduction to Political Economy
Marx, Wage, Labour and Capital (1847)
Marx, Wages, Price and Profit (1865)
Lenin, Karl Marx (1914) – second section on “Marx’s Economic Doctrine”
Engels, Introduction to Vol 2 of Capital
The Marxist Concept of Surplus Value – in “Marxism Today” p. 21 
Humphrey McQueen: 150 Years Young: Marx’s “Capital”

Topic 4: Communist principles of behaviour and class outlook
Stalin, Lenin, (1924)
Mao Zedong, On the reissue of the three main rules of discipline and the eight points for attention, (1947)
Mao Zedong, In Memory of Norman Bethune, (1939)
Mao Zedong, Serve the People, (1944)
Mao Zedong, Combat Liberalism, (1937)
Readings on the lives of deceased members from the Our Comrades section of the website

Topic 5: Study and investigation
Kalinin, Study and Life, (1926) – in M.I. Kalinin, On Communist Education

Mao Zedong, Reform our Study, (1941)
Mao Zedong, Oppose Book Worship (1930)

Topic 5: Methods of Work
Mao Zedong: Quotations from Chairman Mao, Chapter 5 “The Mass Line”
Dulcie Steffanou, Fundamental question is detailed mass work (this can be found by scrolling to the last item) 
E.F. Hill, A comment on the mass line method of work
Jose Maria Sison, On Mass Work, “Australian Communist” Autumn 2021
The Draft Fighting Program of the CPA (M-L), 
Humphrey McQueen, The Five Pillars


Advanced Study Course

Topic 1: Imperialism
Lenin, Imperialism: The Highest Stage of Capitalism, (1917)
CPA (M-L), Australia and Imperialism in the 21st Century, (2017)
CPA (M-L), Explaining China: How a socialist country took the road to social-imperialism, (2018) 
E.F. Hill, The Great Cause of Australian Independence, (1977)

Topic 2: The State 
Lenin, State and Revolution, (1917)
E.F. Hill, Revolution and the Australian State, (1974)

Topic 3: Parliament, the Labor Party and the unions
CPA (M-L), Parliament and Elections -  a superficial democracy
E.F. Hill, The Labor Party? Dr Evatt-The Petrov Affair-The Whitlam Government (1974)
E.F. Hill, Looking Backward, Looking Forward

Topic 4: Historical and Dialectical Materialism
Mao Zedong, On Contradiction, (1937)
Jose Maria Sison, Questions on Dialectical Materialism Part 1
Mao Zedong, A Talk on Sakata’s Article (1964)

Topic 5: Political Economy
Marx, Introduction to “A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy”, (1857)
Marx, Critique of the Gotha Programme, (1875)
Maoist Economics and the Revolutionary Road to Communism: The Shanghai Textbook 
Nick G., Understanding the Need to Restrict Bourgeois Right, “Australian Communist”, Autumn 2022, p 14