Communist Currencies Exhibition at the British Museum

British Museum Private Guided Tour
Communist Currencies Exhibition

In simple words, communist currencies are banknotes, which shows enthusiastic soldiers, committed intellectuals, cheerful farm workers, railways, lorries, dams, fields, factories, and even guns. These aesthetically pleasing historic currency notes will be exhibited at the famous British Museum of London shortly.

The 100th anniversary of the Russian Revolution will be honored by the museum authorizes by staging their first communist currency exhibition to public and visitors. There will be medals, banknotes, coins, posters, and binds that elegantly depict unmatched military prowess, major industrial progress, and bountiful agricultural productivity. The curator, Tom Hockenhull said, “I think they are beautiful. Especially compared to western notes of the same period, these are far nicer, far prettier.”

He added, “Even though the currencies were devalued and people were told they weren’t worth anything, the banknotes, in particular, carry some of the most glorious designs that have ever been committed to paper.” Hockenhull has been acquiring communist currency with the money he acquired from the Art Fund for filling gaps in the extensive money collections of the British Museum.

Reports indicate that the communist currency notes on display will contain a 100-shilling note of 1975 from Somalia, which gives us a clear idea of the expectations of the state from women. The note shows a woman holding a baby, a shovel, and a gun. Hockenhull explained, “It is saying to women you can do whatever you want, you can take on all these different roles, but you’ve still got to do all this.”

In addition to that, there will also be a Yugoslavian banknote, which features the handsome epitome of a hard-working foundry worker, Arif Heralić. The heroic image of the worker was used on Yugoslavian banknotes for a very long time. However, the true story of Arif Heralić is a sad and miserable one, as he had to die penniless in 1971.

The authorities from the British Museum stated that the exhibition is going to explore how money worked during those years under communism. Hockenhull said, “Under communism, under Marxist theory, there should be no money. It is a social construct, it should not exist. But it is never abolished… no state ever successfully eliminated it.”

If you are planning to go on a British Museum private guided tour this year, then make sure to attend the exhibition at the museum because it will make your tour a lot more delightful.