Science was another field that received a great blow from Communism. Stalin's regime, along with inventing the concept of "proletarian art," also proposed the idea of "proletarian science." According to this theory, there is bourgeois science and there is proletarian science. The differences between the two will lead to different results. We might compare this to Nazi Germany's rejection of findings by Jewish scientists—Einstein, among others.
Proletarian science is actually nothing more than science corrupted according to the exigencies of materialist philosophy. One obvious demonstration was the "Lysenko affair," which put its stamp on Stalin's Soviet regime.
Trofim Denisovich Lysenko was educated in various agriculture schools in the Soviet Union. He came to Stalin's attention in the 1940s and assumed the total domination of Soviet policy in agriculture and biology. Most importantly, Lysenko rejected the laws of genetics discovered by the Austrian priest-botanist Gregor Mendel at the end of the 19th century and demonstrated by further experiments in the 20th. Lysenko dismissed Mendel's laws as "bourgeois science" and instead supported the thesis of the 18th century French evolutionist biologist Lamarck on the "inheritance of acquired traits."
Lysenko's idea was based on no scientific proof. But because the Soviet Union was experiencing a major agricultural crisis in the 1930s, Lysenko began to attract attention. He promised that implementing his theory would ensure a much larger and efficient grain production than other biologists believed. He claimed, for example, that when grown under the proper conditions, wheat would produce rye seeds—and he made preparations to achieve this. (This is like saying that dogs living in the wild will eventually bear litters of foxes—a claim that's totally contrary to science, of which no instance has ever been observed.) In 1940, Stalin put Lysenko at the head of the Institute of Genetics of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, and he held this chair for twenty-five years. Lysenko also headed the Lenin All-Union Academy of Agricultural Sciences, one of the Soviet Union's most important institutions.
Lysenko (top right) explains to Soviet experts the agricultural project based on "proletarian science."
In 1948, it was forbidden to be educated or do research in the area of classical genetics. Those geneticists who rejected Lysenko's evolutionist thesis, and continued to support Mendel's genetic discovery, were secretly arrested and executed.
Meanwhile, Lysenko's agricultural policy created widespread lack of productivity. For example, he claimed that putting seeds in cold water for a while before being sown, would make them gain resistance to cold weather conditions. To test this hypothesis, he had tons of seeds immersed in cold water and then sown on the Siberian steppes. Of course, none of the seeds sprouted. Similar experiments all ended in disaster, but these failures were never spoken of until the 1960s. Finally, in 1964, it was officially acknowledged that Lysenko's theory was wrong. Great efforts were expended to have Mendel's genetic discoveries taught and applied again. Russia moved to the American type of mixed hybridization management, using dung to fertilize the fields. Even though their nonsensical thesis had dealt such a great blow to Soviet science and agriculture, Lysenko and his supporters didn't abandon their ideas. In fact, they maintained their positions and titles in the Soviet scientific establishment.
Here, Lysenko's nonsense theories are explained in detail to Russian peasants who are forced to implement them. The result was a huge fiasco.."
Generally, modern evolutionists make no mention of the Lysenko affair, an historical documentation of the great damage that can be inflicted by a blind attachment to materialism and the theory of evolution. When they do speak of Lysenko's ideas, they dismiss them as a dogmatic form of Lamarckism. But he and his supporters were not only Lamarckists, they were also Darwinists, regarding Lamarck and Darwin as two complementary evolutionist theoreticians.
When Lamarck's theory of "inheritance of acquired characteristics" was abandoned as baseless, they realized that left Darwin's theory with no foundation. Therefore, they blindly continued to support Lamarck.
In his article "Darwinian Evolution and Human History," the Marxist and Darwinist thinker Robert M. Young comments:
Moving nearer to our own time, the belief that society and nature followed laws which were both evolutionary and communist led to one of the most disastrous episodes in the Stalinist regime in the 1930s and 1940s—Lysenkoism. Nature's laws were said to be dialectical, and any biologist who adhered to non-orthodox views lost his job, often his liberty, and sometimes his life. Lysenkoism was an evolutionism which ignored or opposed the interesting developments in genetics in the rest of the world. But this was done in the name of Darwinism…56
The resistance to the laws of genetics that Soviet administrators of Lysenko's time displayed is just one example of materialist fanaticism. In the same way that Lysenko and his supporters refused to accept the laws of genetics, many of today's materialists also close their eyes to the "design" (that is, intentional creation) that science has discovered in all living things just because of their own ideological prejudices. To produce a viable opposing theory, they have squandered millions of dollars and many years of labor on research that has come to nothing.