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Hobsbawm’s Century

In 1902, the Rationalist Press Association issued a pamphlet entitled A New Catechism. Like the classic Roman Catholic statement of belief on which it was modeled, the document comprised a long list of questions and answers. However, the faith which it rehearsed was not belief in Christianity, but rather belief in secular human reason. The pamphlet opened with a stirring dedication:

We baptize the twentieth century—in the name of Peace, Liberty, and Progress! We christen her—the People’s Century. We ask of the new century a Religion without superstition; Politics without war; Science and the arts without materialism; and wealth without misery or wrong!

Manning Marable

History and Black Consciousness

The Political Culture of Black America

Many people from divergent ethnic backgrounds, speaking various languages, and possessing different cultures now share a common experience of inequality in the United States. Yet there is an absence of unity among these constituencies, in part because their leaders are imprisoned ideologically and theoretically by the assumptions and realities of the past. | more…

Meatpackers: An Oral History of Black Packinghouse Workers and Their Struggle for Racial and Economic Equality

Meatpackers: An Oral History of Black Packinghouse Workers and Their Struggle for Racial and Economic Equality

Available for the first time in paperback, Meatpackers provides an important window into race and racism in the American workplace. In their own words, male and female packinghouse workers in the Midwest—mostly African-American—talk of their experiences on the shop floor and picket lines. They tell of their fight between the 1930s and 1960s for economic advancement and racial equality. In cities like Chicago, Kansas City, Omaha, Fort Worth, and Waterloo, Iowa, meatpackers built a union that would defend their interests as workers—and their civil rights. | more…

Reminiscences of the Cuban Revolutionary War

Reminiscences of the Cuban Revolutionary War

Within a year after the triumphal entry into Havana at the beginning of 1959, Che Guevara began to set down the history of the guerrilla war. Fearful that the events would “dissolve into the past” and that an important part of the history of America would be lost, he urged other leaders of the Revolution to do the same, asking only “that the narrator be strictly truthful.” | more…

Korea: Division, Reunification, and U.S. Foreign Policy

Korea: Division, Reunification, and U.S. Foreign Policy

This historical work, released on the eve of the fiftieth anniversary of the Korean War, overturns the conventional wisdom on Korea. Official U.S. history portrays the Korean War as a notable example of America’s selfless commitment to democracy. According to Cold War history, South Korea emerged from the conflict to create a prosperous and dynamic economy, while U.S. troops served as the nation’s peacekeepers. This book, in a wide canvass of the historical background, contests those claims. | more…

Dispersed City of the Plains

Dispersed City of the Plains

Town-building in the Great Plains gets a fresh examination in Harris Stone’s final book. Form and consequences of the inhabitation of the plains landscape are explored, from the rural roads and farms to industrial parks. Beautifully hand-lettered and illustrated throughout, this thought-provoking work will appeal to architects, planners, historians, cultural geographers, and anyone interested in the interplay between people and vernacular form. | more…

Alice & Staughton Lynd

Our Kind of Marxist: An Interview With Staughton Lynd

In my opinion, American capitalism no longer has any use for, let’s say, 40 percent of the population. These are the descendants of folks who were brought over here in one way or another during the period of capital accumulation. They’re now superfluous human beings. | more…

In the Shadow of Empire: Canada For Americans

In the Shadow of Empire: Canada For Americans

In the Shadow of Empire: Canada for Americans invites Americans to take a closer look at their neighbor to the north, challenging the commonly held view that Canada is just like the United States. American-born but a longtime resident of Canada, Joseph K. Roberts brings into focus every major feature of Canada’s politics, from the distinctiveness of a society that does not stigmatize government action to the struggles of indigenous peoples and the quest of French-speaking Quebec for autonomy. | more…

In Our Time: The Chamberlain-Hitler Collusion

In Our Time: The Chamberlain-Hitler Collusion

When British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain returned from his Munich meetings with Adolf Hitler in September 1938, he proclaimed that he held in his hands a document guaranteeing “peace in our time.” In the decades since, Chamberlain's folly has become the occasion for a commonplace historical lesson: that when the “good” innocently accept the assurances of the “evil,” the result is catastrophic. | more…

In Defense of History: Marxism and the Postmodern Agenda

In Defense of History: Marxism and the Postmodern Agenda

Are we now in an age of “postmodernity”? Even as some on the right have proclaimed the “end of history” or the final triumph of capitalism, we are told by some left intellectuals that the “modern” epoch has ended, that the “Enlightenment project” is dead, that all the old verities and ideologies have lost their relevance, that the old principles of rationality no longer apply, and so on. Yet what is striking about the current diagnosis of postmodernity is that it has so much in common with older pronouncements of death, both radical and reactionary versions. What has ended, apparently, is not so much another, different epoch but the same one all over again. | more…