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Silvertown: The Lost Story of a Strike that Shook London and Helped Launch the Modern Labor Movement

Silvertown reviewed on the Radical Sydney / Radical History blog

John Tully writes in the Preface to his new book, Silvertown – The Lost Story of a Strike that Shook London and Helped Launch the Modern Labour Movement, (Monthly Review Press, 2014), that ‘Conservatives have attacked some of my previous work as being partisan, and this book should upset them again.’ Radical historians, however, will welcome it for precisely that reason. And treasure it, because this is a way of writing labour history – or any history – that academic historians usually run a mile from. Radical historians know that it is impossible to be non-partisan. As Tully explains, ‘Historians must always be scrupulous with the facts, but we should be deeply suspicious of claims that studies of human society can be “value free”.’… | more…

The Contradictions of “Real Socialism”

The Contradictions of “Real Socialism” in the Marx & Philosophy Review of Books

Rather than a historical or dialectical analysis of actually existing socialism, The Contradictions of Real Socialism. The Conductor and the Conducted should be read more as an exercise in the moral psychology of ‘human development’ that, for Michael Lebowitz, should supplement today’s Marxism. The crucial tenet of this kind of socialism is the idea, nay, the ideal of human development. According to the author, the main problem with the old theory and practice of Marxism is that it hosts ‘a distortion that forgot about human beings’.… | more…

Race to Revolution by Gerald Horne

Read an Excerpt from Race to Revolution: The U.S. and Cuba during Slavery and Jim Crow

The Africans were apprehensive—with good reason. It was early in 1862 and the nation in which they resided, the United States, was embroiled in a bloody civil war. As such, the Washington authorities sought to send hundreds of them to Key West to work on fortifications, as this small town was well behind the lines of the so-called Confederate States of America—which dominated most of Florida—and had sought secession precisely on the grounds of continuation of enslavement of Africans. But the Africans asked to take on this important task balked, assuming this might be a prelude to selling them into slavery in Cuba, just across the Florida Straits. Their nervousness was understandable, since, for the longest period, there had been a robust slave trade—licit and otherwise—between the republic and the Spanish colony. … | more…

Race to Revolution by Gerald Horne

Gerald Horne discusses Race to Revolution at Red Emma’s in Baltimore [video]

On July 27, Gerald Horne, a radical scholar whose historical work refocuses our attention on the structures and legacies of white supremacy and black resistance, presented his two most recent books, Race to Revolution (published by Monthly Review Press) and The Counter-Revolution of 1776 (published by New York University Press) at Red Emma’s in Baltimore. The event was recorded and video is kindly provided by our friends at Red Emma’s. … | more…

Silvertown: The Lost Story of a Strike that Shook London and Helped Launch the Modern Labor Movement

Silvertown reviewed in Socialist Worker

The author and critic Walter Benjamin once wrote in an essay titled “On the Concept of History”: “There has never been a document of culture which is not simultaneously one of barbarism.” John Tully’s new book Silvertown is a well-researched examination of that very duality–with London, the 19th century heart of bourgeois imperial culture, at its center.… | more…

Paramilitarism and the Assault on Democracy in Haiti by Jeb Sprague

Paramilitarism and the Assault on Democracy in Haiti in Telesur Online

Jeb Sprague’s book “Paramilitarism and the Assault on Democracy in Haiti” documents how key players among Aristides’ “peaceful opponents” in Haiti, along with military and government officials from the Dominican Republic, closely supported the insurgents who killed dozens of people while the international press (and the human rights industry) ignored it and depicted some of the financiers as victims of a “crackdown on dissent”… | more…

Ruth First and Joe Slovo in the War Against Apartheid

Nadine Gordimer’s Foreword to Ruth First and Joe Slovo in the War against Apartheid

JOE SLOVO AND RUTH FIRST. We are entering their paths. Both grew up unbelievers in Jewish or any religious faith. They met when Ruth was at the University of the Witwatersrand, Joe just returned from the South African Army in the war against Nazi Germany. His motivation for volunteering, eighteen years old, unemployed, lying about being underage for military call-up—his early alliance with communism, and so to the Soviet Union under attack—was decisive in the act. But there remained the devastating racial dilemma in South Africa. He wrote: “How do you tell a black man to make his peace with General Smuts—butcher of Bulhoek and the Bondelswarts? ‘Save civilisation and democracy’—must have sounded a cruel parody. And fight with what? No black man was allowed to bear arms . . . if you want to serve democracy, wield a knobkerrie [wooden club] as a uniformed servant of a white soldier.”… | more…

The Theory of Monopoly Capitalism

The Theory of Monopoly Capitalism in the Marx & Philosophy Review of Books

The Monthly Review tradition has played a unique and invaluable role in understanding and explaining contemporary social being. Philosophically Monthly Review has been eclectic and broadminded. With respect to political economy the tradition of Monthly Review retains its broadmindedness, but can also be described as both steadfast and innovative. The new edition of John Bellamy Foster’s The Theory of Monopoly Capitalism (2014) is an excellent introduction and elaboration to fundamental issues in Marxian political economy in the context of the debates that emerged concerning monopoly capitalism and the Monthly Review tradition.… | more…

EP Thompson and the Making of the New Left by Cal Winslow

NEW! E.P. Thompson and the Making of the New Left: Essays and Polemics by E. P. Thompson, edited by Cal Winslow

The essays in this book, many of which are either out-of-print or difficult to obtain, were written between 1955 and 1963 during one of the most fertile periods of E. P. Thompson’s intellectual and political life, when he wrote his two great works, The Making of the English Working Class and William Morris: Romantic to Revolutionary. They reveal Thompson’s insistence on the vitality of a humanistic and democratic socialism along with the value of utopian thinking in radical politics. Throughout, Thompson struggles to open a space independent of official Communist Parties and reformist Social Democratic Parties, opposing them with a vision of socialism built from the bottom up. Editor Cal Winslow, who studied with Thompson, provides context for the essays in a detailed introduction and reminds us why this eloquent and inspiring voice remains so relevant to us today. … | more…

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