For many people all over the world, and particularly for those in the English-speaking countries, "Ten Days that Shook the World" by John Reed, was the first introduction to the Great October Socialist Revolution. The book was one of the first to tell the people in the West the truth about the Russian Revolution.
Born in Portland, Oregon, on October 22, 1887, John Reed took after his father, who was a fighter by nature.
After leaving school, John Reed went to Harvard, America's most famous university.
Having taken his degree, John Reed entered the wide world outside the walls of the university. Soon he was in great demand as a writer of articles, stories, poems and plays, which were published in all the leading journals and magazines. As a journalist he travelled widely over the United States, and the experience he gained during these trips brought him closer to the workers. He got to know their life very well and took an active part in their struggle.
In the town of Paterson, a strike of textile workers turned into a revolutionary storm - and John Reed was among the strikers. In the state of Colorado, an agricultural area of the United States, he joined the Negroes [´nJgrqVz] who rose against racial discrimination.
When World War I broke out, John Reed travelled to the battle fronts in France, Germany, Turkey, Italy and in Russia, too, and everywhere he went, he continued fighting for justice in spite of the danger to himself.