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Save Our Unions: Dispatches from A Movement in Distress

Save Our Unions reviewed in Journal of Sociology & Social Welfare

ave Our Unions is a sprawling collection of essays, covering everything from the Bread and Roses strike of 1912 to the current struggles of the British Labour Party. The text includes movie and book reviews, as well as journalistic accounts of many contemporary U.S. labor struggles, and even author Steve Early’s personal experience over many years of working for the Communication Workers of America (CWA). The book will offer practitioners a wealth of details with strategic implications for ongoing efforts. Academics will find hints of theory throughout, and a series of cases with implications for longstanding debates in labor and social movement studies.… | more…

Crooked Deals and Broken Treaties: How American Indians were Displaced by White Settlers in the Cuyahoga Valley

New! Crooked Deals and Broken Treaties

By John Tully

Long before the smokestacks and factories of industrial Akron rose from Ohio’s Cuyahoga Valley, the region was a place of tense confrontation. Beginning in the early 19th-century, white settlers began pushing in from the east, lured by the promise of cheap (or free) land. They inevitably came into conflict with the current inhabitants, American Indians who had thrived in the valley for generations. Historian and novelist John Tully draws on contemporary accounts and a wealth of studies to produce this elegiac history of the Cuyahoga Valley. Crooked Deals and Broken Treaties is an impassioned accounting of the cost of “progress,” and an insistent reminder

Race to Revolution: The U.S. and Cuba during Slavery and Jim Crow

Gerald Horne’s Race to Revolution reviewed in The American Historical Review

Race to Revolution: The United States and Cuba during Slavery and Jim Crow, Monthly Review Press, 2014, pp 429, $29.00

Reviewed by David Luis-Brown in The America Historical Review

“Gerald Horne’s Race to Revolution: The United States and Cuba during Slavery and Jim Crow charts the intersecting histories of African descended populations in Cuba and the United States. Horne begins with the age of slavery, when U.S. citizens from the North and South owned thousands of slaves in Cuba, and an illegal slave trade from Cuba into the United States thrived. The second half of the book narrates the Jim Crow era, in which

America's Addiction to Terrorism

The War on Terror Is a War on Youth — Henry A. Giroux/Brad Evans via Truthout

There is a revealing similarity between the attacks on September 11, 2001 – when airplanes were flown into the twin towers, killing thousands of people – and the attacks in Paris, in which over 130 people were killed and hundreds wounded. Yet, what they have in common has been largely overlooked in the mainstream and alternative media’s coverage of the more recent terrorist attacks. While both assaults have been rightly viewed as desperate acts of alarming terrorism, what has been missed is that both acts of violence were committed by young men. This is not a minor issue because unraveling this similarity provides the possibility for addressing the conditions that made such attacks possible.… | more…

The Socialist Imperative: From Gotha to Now

The Socialist Imperative reviewed by Systemic Disorder

If socialism is to be that better world, what structures might be necessary? Socialism can be defined as a system in which production is geared toward human need rather than private profit for a few; where everybody is entitled to have a say in what is produced, how it is produced and how it is distributed; that these collective decisions are made in the context of the broader community and in quantities sufficient to meet needs; political decision-making is the hands of the communities affected; and quality health care, food, shelter and education are human rights. There is no class, vanguard or other group that stands above society, arrogating decision-making, wealth and/or privileges to itself.
A blueprint for such a future is not possible; a better world will be created in its making. But neither can we leap to a different world empty-handed or without a compass. Tangible counter-examples and concrete ideas are necessary if working people — the vast majority of humanity — are to break free from their acceptance of capitalism as “common sense” or the “only alternative.” When ideas become rooted in masses of people, they become a natural force, argues Michael Lebowitz in his latest book, The Socialist Imperative: From Gotha to Now. He uses the example of the “socialist triangle” to explicate a structure for a better, democratic system….… | more…

Reconstructing Lenin: An Intellectual Biography

Deutscher Memorial Prize-winner, Reconstructing Lenin, reviewed by ResoluteReader

In recent years there has been a intense discussion about the ideas of the Russian revolutionary Lenin. Some of this has its roots in the class struggle – the Arab Spring and the Occupy movement both threw up questions about the nature of revolutionary organisation. Others have attempted to re-examine Lenin to critique existing organisations and ideas. There have been some excellent books, articles and events debating these questions.

Tamás Krausz’s important new biography must be seen as part of this debate. His work is very much an attempt to re-examine Lenin’s ideas as part of a resolute defence of Lenin and his work. Krausz is clear that this is intended to take forward the revolutionary movement that can challenge and defeat capitalism.… | more…

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

Silvertown reviewed by ResoluteReader

In 1889 nearly 3,000 workers at Silver’s, an enormous factory in East London, in Silvertown went on strike. The men and women who walked out were inspired by the New Unionism that was sweeping the city. They’d seen mass strikes by dockers in the East End that had won major victories and they wanted improvements too.

Their twelve week strike has almost been forgotten today. Perhaps because it ended in defeat. But John Tully’s important book rescues the struggle for readers today, and, perhaps surprisingly, the reader will find that we can learn much from those brave men and women.… | more…

Socialist Register 2016: The Politics of the Right

JUST OUT! Socialist Register 2016: The Politics of the Right

This fifty-second edition of the Socialist Register explores right-wing political forces and parties around the globe, bringing to bear the Register’s reputation for detailed scholarship and passionate engagement on some of the most troubling developments in world politics today. Contributors examine mobilizations of the right in a variety of countries by analyzing their social bases, their relationships with state institutions, and the reach of their influence on mainstream parties and opinion. This volume also addresses the historical transition from right-wing nationalism to ethnicism, the question of resurgent fascism, and how left parties should respond to challenges from the far right.… | more…

The Socialist Imperative: From Gotha to Now

“Trump Entertains; Lebowitz Enlightens”—The Progressive Populist reviews The Socialist Imperative

According to Donald Trump, a former front-runner to be the GOP presidential nominee, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, a democratic socialist running against Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination for the presidency, is giving everything away, a partial truth. For a fuller treatment of what a radical break with capitalism entails, read The Socialist Imperative: From Gotha to Now by Michael A. Lebowitz (Monthly Review Press, 2015).
A retired economics professor at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada, his two-part book doesn’t end there. That is a positive thing, as the public is open to socialism, in no small measure due to the Great Recession… | more…