East London Big Flame! 1970s activism and autonomy

A new fantastic resource online: an archive of East London Big Flame in the 1970s. From the Who We Were page:

We were a fluid group of about a dozen young women and men who came together in east London. We probably would have described ourselves as left libertarians. We organised in the community, in workplaces, around class, racism, women’s and men’s issues, for personal change/self-help therapy, and against bias in the media. We saw ourselves not as outside, but as part of these struggles, and saw the links between these different issues as embodying politics in everyday life.

From 1973–5 we belonged to a nationwide grouping called
‘Big Flame’ (www.bigflameuk.wordpress.com). Our projects carried on until the early 1980s, and after that we dispersed and took our ideas and values into different areas of work (teaching; architecture; psychotherapy; archaeology; local government;  film-making; writing) as well as into continuing political and community activism.

East London Big Flame   HomeHere are links to the sections: (more…)

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Chinese Labour (1887)//Asturias (1934)

A couple of items for the Archive of Struggle, from Slack Andy.

The (Australian) Anarchists on Chinese Labor (1887)

Text at SlackBastard. Andy writes, by way of introduction:

Honesty was published from April 1887 to November 1888. It was the first anarchist newspaper in Australia, produced by the Melbourne Anarchist Club. Contributors included David Andrade, his brother Will (later well known as a radical bookseller), J.A. Andrews and Chummy Fleming. Source : Reason in Revolt.

La Revolución de Octubre 1934 (José Muñoz Congost)

Octubre-34

Andy writes:

On the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the Asturian October 1934 revolution Exilio Libertario, a Melbourne-based group of Spanish anarchist exiles, have published in PDF format a booklet in Spanish written by compañero José Muñoz Congost.

[La Revolución de Octubre 1934 (José Muñoz Congost)]

From the archive of struggle: The Newsletter

Just saw this on the great Hatful of History blog:

After last week’s post about new avenues of research for British leftist history, I just thought I’d mentioned that another resource has appeared online. The Newsletter was edited by Peter Fryer, the Daily Worker reporter who had left the Communist Party of Great Britain after the invasion of Hungary in late 1956, after his departure from the CPGB and during his brief membership in The Club. The Club was an orthodox Trotskyist entrist group run by Gerry Healy, who later formed the Socialist Labour League (which transformed in the 1970s into the Workers Revolutionary Party). The Newsletter was edited by Fryer while he was involved in The Club, but after 1958, the publication was taken over by Healy and it became an SLL publication shortly afterwards, alongside Healy’s Labour Review (which also attracted former CPGB members, such as Brian Pearce). The ‘independent’ version of The Newsletter, under Fryer’s editorship from May 1957 to December 1958, has now been digitised by Steve Drury and is available on Norman Harding’s blog Staying Red (Harding was a long-term member of the SLL/WRP), as well as on the Marxist Internet Archive’s ETOL site.

The original flyer announcing the publication of The Newsletter (April 1957). Pic from Staying Red blog.

The original flyer announcing the publication of The Newsletter (April 1957). Pic from Staying Red blog.

Trabajadores: Spanish Civil War Archives Online

This, by Liz Wood, is in a recent History Workshop Journal:

MRC 2011 087On 12 November 2011, Wembley Stadium hosted a friendly between the football teams of England and Spain. Amongst the usual pre-match shots of flags and anthem singing, the television cameras picked out one English fan in the crowd with a home-made placard commemorating the British volunteers of the International Brigade, who had fought for the Spanish Republic 75 years earlier. The incident was an example of how the Spanish Civil War has maintained its place in the British popular consciousness in a way that is perhaps only exceeded by the two world wars.

In recent years it has been the subject of popular history books and formed the backdrop to best-selling novels and an HBO made/Sky broadcast television series starring Nicole Kidman; meanwhile the often bitter debates between supporters of different Republican factions in 1936-39 continue to be played out on internet message boards.  Despite this public and academic interest, only a small quantity of primary sources in English were freely available to researchers online – last year the Modern Records Centre, University of Warwick, added over 13,000 pages more. (more…)

Poumastica

In the Atlantic:  The Lawyer Who Told FDR He Couldn’t Censor a Trotsky Speech.

From Howie’s Corner:  Why do they call themselves “Socialist” Unity? / Martin Smiths “confidential resignation” / Is the Socialist Party heading for a split? / The “forgotten” Socialist Party (of Great Britain)..

From the archive of struggle, no.78

I have recently discovered Monoskop Log. Here are some treasures from it:

*Zenit, International Review of Arts and Culture, No. 1-43 (1921-26) [SH/FR/DE/RU]

*Graham Roberts: The Last Soviet Avant-Garde: OBERIU – Fact, Fiction, Metafiction (1997)

*Mary Gabriel: Love and Capital: Karl and Jenny Marx and the Birth of a Revolution (2011)

*Peter Linebaugh: Ned Ludd and Queen Mab: Machine-Breaking, Romanticism, and the Several Commons Of 1811-12 (2012)

*Marcel Duchamp: The Afternoon Interviews (2013)

And from a similar site, UbuWeb:

*Man Ray (1945-1998): Les Mystères du château de Dé (1929) / Emak Bakia (1926)  / Le Retour à la raison (1923)  / L’Étoile de mer (1928)  / Home Movies (1923-1937)  / Home Movies (1938) / The Bazaar Years (1990, documentary)

*Klaus Kinski Singt Und Spricht Berthold Brecht:

  1. Und Was Bekam Des Soldaten Weib? 6:16
  2. Der Anstreicher Spricht Von Kommenden Grossen Zeiten (Intro) 0:56
  3. Der Barbara-Song Oder Die Ballade Vom Nein Und Ja 10:58
  4. O Du Falada, Da Du Hangest… 7:06
  5. Ballade Vom Weib Und Dem Soldaten 6:17
  6. An Die Nachgeborenen 6:39
  7. Kinderkreuzzug 1939 14:05
  8. An Meine Landsleute 3:50
  9. Vier Aufforderungen An Einen Mann Von Verschiedener Seite Zu Verschiedenen Zeiten 1:36
  10. Vom Sprengen Des Gartens 0:54

In the Marxist Internet Archive:

*Added to the Andreas Nin ArchiveFinal Declaration to the Police 21st June 1937

*Added to the Grace Lee Boggs Archive in the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL)The Chinese Sailors “Mutiny” (as Ria Stone) (1942) / “March on Washington” Movement Stirs Again (as Ria Stone) (1942) / Negroes, March on Washington! (as Ria Stone) (1942)

*Added to the Irving Howe Archive in the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL)Labor Action Replies to Christian Science Monitor (1942) / The Saturday Evening Post Slanders the Jewish People (1942) / Labor Action Answers California Eagle Attack (1942) / Stalinists Defend War Profiteers! (1942) / Jim Crow – Who Will Win the New Orleans Race? (1942)

*Added to the Hugo Oehler Archive in the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL)The Negro and the Class Struggle (series) (1932) / The S.P. “Lefts’” Program (1932) / The Slogan of the Defense of the U.S.S.R. (1932)

And here’s a sample of new material added to the wonderful Early American Marxism website: (more…)

From the archive of struggle, no.77: Encounter

Taking a break from my well-behind trawl through MIA, UNZ, a website of free periodicals, has uploaded loads of back issues of Encounter. For those of you who think I’m a neocon, my pleasure at this will be further evidence.  For those of you less well versed in all of this, here’s Wikipedia:

Encounter was a literary magazine, founded in 1953 by poet Stephen Spender and journalist Irving Kristol. The magazine ceased publication in 1991. Published in the United Kingdom, it was a largely Anglo-American intellectual and cultural journal, originally associated with the anti-Stalinist left. The magazine received covert funding from the Central Intelligence Agency, after the CIA and MI6 discussed the founding of an “Anglo-American left-of-centre publication” intended to counter the idea of cold war neutralism. The magazine was rarely critical of American foreign policy, but beyond this editors had considerable publishing freedom

Here’s just some of the material in the amazing first issue from 1953:

Interesting global range, and a larger number of female contributors than many other cultural journals of the day (though still not many).

Here are other things that jumped out at me. From 1953:

From 1954:

From 1955:

Then, fast forwarding to the late 1960s, the mood has not changed one bit, with just the slightest sense of the cultural revolution at large in the world. Here’s some stuff from 1967:

Other periodicals available from the site:

1930s+

1950s+

1960s+

1970s+

From the archive of struggle no.76: Poumism and Shachtmanism

Up to January 2013 now with new additions to the extraordinary Marxist Internet Archive. Obviously, the first thing here is of most interest to me.

La Verite

Added to the archive of the Partido Obrero de Unificación Marxista/Workers Party of Marxist Unification a section of the Spanish Revolution History Archive is the complete run of the POUM’s English Language publication edited in Barcelona by American revolutionary socialists Lois and Charles Orr: The Spanish Revolution.

Spanish Revolution was the English language publication of the P.O.U.M. Edited by Lois and Charles Orr. In 1936 they had setup within the ranks of the Socialist Party of America the Revolutionary Policy Committee of the Socialist Party of the U.S. While the P.O.U.M. itself was never Trotskyist, many in the ranks of Trotskyism, and those near it politically, supported the publication.

Russell Blackwell, who was in Spain as a supporter of the P.O.U.M wrote, 30 years later for the Greenwood Reprints of The Spanish Revolution, the following:

Spanish Revolution faithfully reported events during its period of publication from the point of view of the P.O.U.M. Its first issue appeared on October 21, 1936, at a time when the revolutionary process was already beginning to decline. Its final issues dealt with the historic May Days of 1937 and the events immediately following, which led to the Stalinist takeover.

These 28 issues of The Spanish Revolution  were digitized by Marty Goodman of the Riazanov Library Project

They are all digitised as whole pdfs for each issue.

Other stuff: (more…)

From the archive of struggle no.75: anti-Stalinist Leninism in the 1930s (MIA special)

It’s months now since I’ve looked through the Marxist Internet Archive. Since I’ve last been there, loads of really good stuff is up. The below is just from November and December last year, and it covers a period from ca.1930 to ca.1940 which was pivotal in the development of the anti-Stalinist left.

The material here focuses on three overlapping currents in this anti-Stalinist left. The first is the POUM, the Spanish party whose name this blog’s is taken from, who fused the “left” and “right” opposition in Spain to the official Stalinist Communist party, to form a democratic mass movement of radical socialism, before being liquidated by the Stalinists in during the Spanish Civil War.

The second is the Trotskyist movement, Communism’s “left” opposition. While Trotsky supplied much of the intellectual justification for Stalin’s brutal misrule in the Soviet Union, his sharp critique of the degeneration of the Stalinist state made him a criminal in the dictatorship. His followers have formed one of the main planks of anti-Stalinist socialism globally. The material below focuses mainly on American Trotskyists, but particularly those who developed beyond the rigid and damaging orthodoxies of “official” Trotskyism.

Parallel to Trotsky’s Left Opposition, the Right Opposition called for a more democratic path to socialism, and was bitterly excluded from the Communist movement. Unlike Trotksyism, it leaves little organisational trace today, and so its history remains more deeply buried.

In the period from 1930 to 1940, these currents moved from composing a dissatisfied internal dissident streak within Stalinism, to a fully developed critical analysis of Stalinism. From 1940 to 1950, they several different interesting directions forward, some positively, others less so. Between them (along with anarchist, democratic socialist and left communist currents not represented here), they constitute a significant part of the heritage of anti-Stalinism that continues to be relevant to thinking about the task of reforging a radical movement today.

The POUM

Added to the Spanish-language Archivo Andreu Nin and English-language Andrés Nin Archive:

The Catalan Andreu (or Andres in Spanish) Nin i Pérez was a left dissident in the Communist Party, forming a left opposition group Communist Left of Spain (ICE), which merged with the Right Opposition party Bloque Obrero y Campesino, to form the Workers’ Party of Marxist Unification (POUM) in 1935.

Added to the new Julián Gorkin Archive in the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL): (more…)

Hands off Suez! Hands off Hungary!

From Entdinglichung:

Hands off Suez! Hands off Hungary! (pdf file, 1.13 mb), a 1956 brochure from the anti-Stalinist Marxist Vanguard circle around Walter Kendall (1926-2003), which opposes the imperialist intervention in Suez and the Soviet intervention in Hungary and seeks to popularize these positions in the TUC:

Published in: on October 29, 2012 at 12:56 am  Comments (3)  
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Misk

[Some links via my usual source]

Against Martovism! Some fantastically po-faced Stalinism spotted in the Morning Star letters page.

When tweeting can get you hard labour: Against Socialist Unity’s support for the Chinese regime.

Obituary for an anarchist: John Brailey 1934-2012.

Edd Mustill: The Daily Herald is one hundred years old

Our operaismo: Extract from Mario Tronti’s memoirs. Not read it yet, but I like this from the NLR intro: it offers an illuminating contrast of the springtime of 56 and hot autumnn of 69, and draws a sharp distinction between classical operaismo and its distant echo, autonomism, which persisted on the counter-cultural margins of Europe’s cities from the late 70s, to emerge in more hygenic form in Hardt and Negri’s Empire at the turn of the century.

From the archive of struggle no.74

This material mostly comes from a bumper edition at Entdinglichung. This leads off with MIA’s pdfs of The Workers’ council. An organ for the Third International. For info on this, see here or here. This was from an overwhelmingly Jewish and New York based left faction in the Socialist Party, that merged in 1921 with the WPA, i.e. what became the CPUSA. (more…)

The hammer strikes

Syndicalism and gefilte fish

The Jewish Socialist Group has organised an event this week in London on “United Against Sweatshop Slavery: The 100th Anniversary of the Great 1912 Tailors Strike” – Wednesday night at the Bishopsgate Institute (scheduled to be in the same building as SWP/Respect renegades John Rees and Lindsey German doing a rather overpriced “A People’s History of London“, so be careful not to stray into the wrong room). Speakers include Donnacha DeLong, who blogs here. More details on Indymedia and the Facebook event. A couple of days later, on Sunday 27 May at 6pm, David Rosenberg of the Jewish Socialists’ Group will lead a walk through the radical history of the East End, focussing on the 1912 strike, starting at Freedom Books in Whitechapel – details on Indymedia.

Other events: in Dublin, the anarchist bookfair is at the weekend – details here.

Jews and the left

I’ll probably return to this at some point when I have more time, but the YIVO conference earlier this month on Jews and the left sounds to have been fascinating. Some coverage: The Tablet, American Thinker, Commentary, Forward. Related, and following up my last linky post, read Ralph Seliger on Did the kibbutz really fail, responding to Michael Lerner.

Bobism

Tendance Coatesy with a wonderful post on the Bob Avakian Institute.

Mother Jones

Great article about a wonderful woman on the WSM website, also in the new issue of their Workers Solidarity.

From the archives of struggle

Below the fold, via Entdinglichung. (more…)

From the archive of struggle, no.72

Thanks once again Petey for spotting an error in my last post. I’ve reposted the link below, with extras. Thanks once again, of course, Entdinglichung, whose archival gleaning is becoming impossible to keep up with.

Cover of "Waterfront Workers of New Orlea...

“The roots of multi-racial labour unity in the United States” was published in International Socialism 2:63, Summer 1994, and can be read either at MIA or the SWP’s own archive. It’s a review  of Eric Arnesen, Waterfront Workers of New Orleans: Race, Class and Politics, 1863-1923 (New York and Oxford, 1991). Here’s the intro:

The idea that white workers in the US have historically benefited from racism is widely accepted on both the academic and political left. Even those who hesitate to draw such conclusions concede that a class analysis is insufficient to explain the persistence of racism in the US. [… For socialists in the US the question of the ‘socio-economic nutriments’ of racism is a matter of practical politics. The persistence of racism cannot be accepted as a ‘baffling phenomenon’, but is either explicable in terms of the class struggle, or, if race can be proven to be a more fundamental social division than class the struggle for workers’ power in the United States is sheer utopianism.

Previous articles in this journal have taken up the relationship of race and class in general and racism in the US in particular.2 Therefore there is no need here to recount the theoretical debates on the centrality of class. Rather this review article will attempt to show how multi-racial workers’ unity could take root in seemingly the least likely context: the segregated 19th century South. It will argue that whites did not benefit from the exclusion of blacks from the ranks of organised labour, but that such divisions were disastrous for black and white workers alike.

Further, despite white supremacy, black workers North and South often rejected alliances with the small, but influential, conservative black middle class to make common cause with white workers in trade unions and socialist organisations. It will conclude by arguing that the struggle against racism in the US working class is above all a political question that cannot be resolved within the economic framework of trade unionism. Rather it must be rooted in the struggle for socialism and black liberation.

You can read Lee Sustar elsewhere,at ZSpace (on various historical and political topics), at International Viewpoint (on Egypt), at Viewpoint (on Karl Marx) and even at NPR (on Dennis Brutus).

Here’s some recently posted material from Entdinglichung, including stuff I’d missed last month.  (more…)

Corrigendum

Bund election poster from Latvia, inviting to ...

Bund election poster from Latvia, inviting to a meeting with member of Saeima (Parliament) Dr. Noah Maizel (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Thanks to Entdinglichung for red greetings and EP Thompson. Thanks to Petey and Peter for pointing out a couple of wrong links in recent posts. I’m re-posting the links here.

From the Eugene Debs archive: The New Age Anniversary: The Socialist Leader Says Support Labor Press that Opposed the War (pdf, 1922)

Ten years have passed since The New Age was launched and  in this brief span of time the world in which we live has been shaken and shocked, torn and devastated; ravaged and bled as never before in its history. Every page of the record capitalism has made in that time has been written in the blood of its slaughtered victims. All previous wars were crude and dismal failures in point of slaughter as a science and destruction as a fine art compared to the Twentieth Century World War under the Christian Capitalist Competitive System. All the modern ingenuity the world afforded, all the arts and sciences in its command were employed in the highly Christianized and civilized undertaking to blow the earth to atoms, destroy everything in sight, and slaughter all mankind, save alone the international bankers and profiteer and their hireling slaves.

The New Age does not have a Wikipedia entry; the British periodical of the same name and same period does, but this is the Buffalo, New York one. Founded in 1912, it was associated with the Socialist Party of America. For more information, see this tenth anniversary review by co-editor Robert Wark at archive.org.

Nick Cohen: How the Left turned on the Jews, Standpoint. Flawed but fascinating. Some extracts:

“You cry out against Jewish capital, gentlemen?” cried one. “You are against Jewish capital and want to eliminate the stock manipulators. Rightly so. Trample the Jewish capitalists under foot, hang them from the street lamps, stamp them out.”

Ruth Fischer sounded like a Nazi. She used the same hate-filled language. She wanted to murder Jews. But Hitler would never have accepted her. Fischer was a leader of the German Communist Party. She made her small differences of opinion with the Nazis clear when she went on to say that her audience should not just trample Jewish capitalists to death, but all capitalists.[...]

The movements for Jewish self-determination and Russian Communism were twins separated at birth. The First Zionist conference met on August 27, 1897, to discuss the escape from anti-Semitic Europe to Palestine. The General Jewish Labour Bund held its first conference in Vilnius on October 7, 1897, to organise the Russian Empire’s Jews in a united socialist party. The Russian Social Democratic Labour Party, from which the Bolsheviks split, held its first conference in March 1898. Naturally, the Bund sent delegates. For liberal and left-wing Europeans of the late 19th century, no regime was more repellent than Tsarist autocracy, and nothing better symbolised its reactionary nature than its anti-Semitic pogroms. Jews responded to the terror by keeping their Jewish identity and joining Jewish socialist movements, such as the Bund, or by becoming entirely assimilated Communists, as Trotsky and many others did.[...]

Rudé Právo, the organ of the Czech Communist Party, said that Slansky and his co-defendants were “Jewish cosmopolitans, people without a shred of honour, without character, without country, people who desire one thing — career, business and money”. Communists and their supporters imagined a vast Zionist conspiracy reaching from the US Supreme Court to Tito’s anti-Stalinist supporters in Yugoslavia. For all that, they maintained that they were not anti-Semites but enemies of Zionism. They might have been modern “leftists” talking about the “Israel Lobby” conspiring to organise the Iraq War of 2003, while all the time insisting that there was nothing remotely racist about their conspiracy theories.[...]

Ralph Miliband, the father of Ed and David, dissected it well. He was a Marxist who retained the capacity for independent thought, and got into a furious argument with Marcel Liebman, a fellow Marxist Jew, at the time of the Six Day War of 1967. Miliband pointed out an essential truth: that the corrupt regimes of the Middle East needed Israel and anti-Semitic conspiracy theories to distract the attention of their peoples. “If Israel did not exist, they would have to invent it,” he said.[...]

Andrew Hosken, Ken: The Ups and Downs of Ken Livingstone, Arcadia Books, 10 April 2008. Extracts at Powerbase and Adloyada. Extract from the extracts:

John Ross was at the forefront of the internal struggle to ditch the industrial strategy and get all IMG members to join the Labour Party en masse and then seek to control the Left bloc within it. Supporting Ross was another key figure in Livingstone’s political career, Redmond O’Neill. At the December 1982 conference, Ross carried the day and over the next few months IMG members joined the Labour Party. A minority who disagreed with the policy of ‘deep entryism’ split away and formed its own party, the International Group which became a political irrelevance.

Despite becoming Labour members, the Ross majority still remained organised as a separate political organization. They decided to rebrand themselves as the Socialist League, and to establish a newspaper called Socialist Action. Like Militant, the group became known by the name of their paper rather than as the Socialist League. ‘The.next steps towards a revolutionary party comprise a fight for a class struggle within the Bennite current,’ said one discussion paper at the time. [...]

The Socialist League/Socialist Action met for the first time as a central committee at the Intensive English School in Star Street near Marble Arch for the start of a two-day conference on Saturday, 22 January 1983. The official launch of Socialist Action took place the following morning[13] and it first appeared on 16 March. The group’s old paper, Socialist Challenge, ceased to exist.[14] The group’s overall revolutionary objective did not change, only the strategy to bring it about, as an internal document in January 1983 made clear: ‘…

Socialist Action believes that it will be impossible to make the transition to socialism without incurring the armed resistance of the ruling class and thereby the necessity for violent self-defence by the working class.’[15] From the outset, Ken Livingstone was clearly an important force within the ‘Bennite current’ for Socialist Action. John Ross and comrades identified two Bennite wings: the Labour Co-ordinating Committee, a left-wing coalition within the Labour Party comprising Chartists from Briefing, and the Campaign for Labour Party Democracy, CLPD. Socialist Action identified the second wing ‘crystallising around forces such as the Campaign Group of MPs, Livingstone, the left of Labour Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (LCND)… and the constituency left…’[16] Its slogans were now: ‘Deeper into the Labour Party!’, ‘Deeper into the trade unions!’, ‘For a new newspaper!’,[17] ‘Defend socialist policies!’, ‘Stop the witch-hunt!’, ‘Remove the right-wing Labour leaders!’[18]

In September 1983, Socialist Action took the decision to disappear from public view. This meant closing down the Other Bookshop and taking extreme security measures to guarantee invisibility and deniability. Two months after the decision, Socialist Action’s leadership drew up a document entitled The dissolution of the public face’. It said: ‘This is a historical fact – namely that the public face dissolved itself. This requires no public announcement but all bodies of the [Trotskyist] world movement must be informed and act accordingly.’[23] Some members disagreed with the decision; one wrote: ‘The September meeting took a momentous decision. It voted 23 for and one against to formally dissolve our public organisation. The decision was taken on the basis of a false prognosis: that following the Labour Party conference there will be an immediate witch-hunt of our supporters within the mass organisation.’[24]

Jim Denham on Eric Hobsbawm. Extract:

On the minus side is his persistent lack of identification with the working class (indeed, he now seems to say that it no longer exists), his “reality denial” (Robert Conquest’s term) over the Soviet Union, his shameful and evasive record over Hungary in 1956 (the Soviet invasion led Hill ad Thompson to resign from the CP while Hobsbawm remained) and his persistent refusal to come to terms with Stalinism itself. The fact that he was – and remains – a person of towering intellect makes these shortcomings less, not more, forgivable. While working class Communist Party members could be forgiven for not knowing about, or believing the truth of,  the full counter-revolutionary barbarity of Stalinism, an intellectual like Hobsbawm has no such excuse. As David Caute put it “One keeps asking of Hobsbawm: didn’t you know what Deutscher and Orwell knew? Didn’t you know about the induced famine, the horrors of collectivisation, the false confessions, the terror within the Party, the massive forced labour of the gulag? As Orwell himself documented, a great deal of evidence was reliably knowable even before 1939, but Hobsbawm pleads that much of it was not reliably knowable until Khrushchev’s denunciation of Stalin in 1956.”

Also new at the Marxist Internet Archive (and hopefully with no dud links this time; items in bold especially recommended):

“Added to the USA History Publications Section as part of joint project involving the Holt Labor Library, the Encyclopedia of the Trotskyism On-Line and the Riazinov Library, we have completed the digitization of he remaining volumes of the International Socialist Review published by the Charles H. Kerr Publishing Co. from 1900 through 1918. Representing America’s premier Socialist journal, the ISR had the full pantheon of American revoluitonary socialist thought expressed in it’s pages, from Eugene V. Debs to Big Bill Hayword to John Reed. Presented in high resolution PDFs. Later, we will upload separate issues for each volume, starting with the volumes listed below: 1902 – 1903, Volume 2 1910 – 1911, Volume 10 1911 – 1912, Volume 11

Added to the International Socialism Archive – 2nd Series (1991–2003):

Added to the USA History Publications Section as part of joint project involving the Holt Labor Library, the Encyclopedia of the Trotskyism On-Line and the Riazinov Library, the Left Opposition Digitization Project has started placing online the internal discussion bulletins of the early Trotskyist movement in the United States organized as the Communist League of America (Opposition)1928-1934 and then the Workers Party of the United States (1935-1936). These are the first of the entirety of the internal bulletins of the US Trotskyists through the early years of the Socialist Workers Party. Presented in high resolution PDFs.”

Below the fold, more from Entdinglichung: (more…)

From the archive of struggle, no.70

Some new material at Entdinglichung:

*From Gruppe Internationaler SozialistInnen (GIS): Aghis Stinas: Das Massaker an den internationalistischen Kommunisten in Griechenland (Dezember 1944) (1977)

*From Cedar Lounge RevolutionClass War, Mai 1994 [This is the Irish sibling paper of the London anarchist tabloid]

*From irishanarchisthistoryIrish anarchism in the 1880s (1997/2008) [Two articles by Fintan Lane: Practical Anarchists We was published by History Ireland in March/April 2008 (vol.16, no.2), and The origins of modern Irish socialism, 1881-1896 in Red & Black Revolution (no.3) in 1997.]

Marceau Pivert

*From R.a.D.A.R.Marceau PivertRévolution d’abord ! (1935)

*From Libcom:

- Baumanskaya Group Proletarian Opposition VKP(b): New Forgery (1928, ein Untergrund-Flugblatt der “Demokratischen Zentralisten [Decists]” [Source used for this translation was Stephen Shenfield's upload: Collection of documents on the Decists (p. 71-73). This relates to one of the early anti-Stalinist opposition groups]
Ross WinnTexts from Firebrand (1895) [Winn was a Southern anarchist born in the 1870s)
– Peter Principle: What is anarcho-syndicalism?: libertarian reformism, vanguardism or revolutionary unionism? (1997) [From Black Flag, on a polemic within the International Workers Association]

I missed this instalment at Entdinglichung, which includes the following:

* Martha A. Ackelsberg: Free Women of Spain (1991, archive.org, also at Libcom)

* Juan Andrade: “El reñidero español. Relato de un testigo de los conflictos sociales y políticos de la guerra civil española” (Franz Borkenau, Ruedo ibérico, París, 1971) (1972, Fundación Andreu Nin)

* Cindy Coignard: Militants et sympathisants étrangers du P.O.U.M. (2010, La Bataille Socialiste)

* Ricardo Flores MagonLand & Liberty (191?, archive.org)

* Emile Pouget/Emile Pataud: Syndicalism and the co-operative commonwealth (1913, LibCom)

And did I miss this instalment too, with these things:

* Zeitungen: auf MIA einige weitere Ausgaben des The Toiler (1921/22) sowie die Jahrgänge 1935 und 1942 des Militant, auf R.a.D.A.R. weitere Ausgaben der Jeune Garde, der Clarté (Februar 1927Januar 1927Mai 1925), der Cahiers Rouge (Januar 1938, mit Beilage) sowie der Lutte de Classes vom31. Dezember 1942, sowie auf Materialien zur Analyse von Opposition die Wahrheit – Kommunistische Arbeiter-Korrespondenz desKommunistischen Bundes Bremen (KBB, der Laden von Ralf Fücks) 1972/73.

* L’Humanité: Gustav Landauer, héros de la pensée et de l’action prolétariennes (1923, Espace contre Ciment)

* Sojourner Truth Organization: Workplace Papers (1980, LibCom)

Published in: on March 20, 2012 at 1:52 pm  Comments (2)  

From the archive of struggle no.69: Emma Goldman, anti-fascism, etc

Most important link today is an apparently previously unpublished text by Emma Goldman on “The political Soviet grinding machine“, written in Barcelona in 1936.

I’ve only recently noticed the newish website Anti-Fascist Archive, which mainly has material from the history of British militant anti-fascism. Here’s a recent weekly update to give you an idea of what’s there:

Most relevant to this blog, I guess, is the pre-war stuff, so here’s a taster.

img074 img075 img076 img077img072 img073

The Two-Gun Mutualist site has been updating its translations. Among the updated are: “Nihilism” by Voline (ca.1929); Joseph Déjacque,Authority—Dictatorship (Down with the Bosses!) and Exchange; Henri Rochefort, letter on Louise Michel; Han Ryner, from “The Congress of Poets” and “The Revolt of the Machines“.

There’s lost more from the radical archive at Entdinglichungmainly in French but also including Rare texts by the Situationist International 1966-1972 and Nestor Machno’s The Anarchist Revolution (192?).

Below the fold, what’s new at the Marxist Internet Archive: (more…)

From the archive of struggle no.68

First, here’s Steve Hanson on the Working Class Movement Library, Salford:

Across from the Museum and Art Gallery in Salford is the Working Class Movement Library, which houses some very important documents about co-operative societies, including records on the Fenwick Weavers, a very early society:

‘Early societies tended to operate separately and did not come together to form a movement until the early 19th century, during the Industrial Revolution. Industrialisation brought the rapid growth of towns and fewer people producing their own food.’

Robert Owen is viewed as a founder of the movement, paying higher wages for shorter hours in the factory, much like the Fielden family over on the Yorks-Lancs border. The movement then blossomed in places such as nearby Rochdale, a place now on it knees, which is attempting some desperate revivification of the area around the train station.

What else?

Mühsam on the cover of the novel "Café Grössenwahn" by Rose Austerlitz

Erich Mühsam (1878-1934) was a leading figure in the German anarchist movement. The Erich in English site will be home to critical English editions of several of his most important works.

Newly published old texts now. In agone the entirity of Retour à l’Ouest by Victor Serge, written June 1936 to May 1940, via Ent./Espace contre CimentFrom the same source: Revolutionäre Kommunisten Deutschlands: Bulletin VI/2 (März-April 1946), G. Munis: La non-révolution (1966), Marc Chirik: La nature non-prolétarienne de l’État russe et sa fonction contre-révolutionnaire (1944)

From Bastard Archive: by Colin Ward Anarchism – A very short introduction (2004), via Ent.

And the next several items are also from Ent.:

Moses Hess: Zunächst der Hinweis auf ein Online-Archiv mit Texten von Moses Hess, der am 25. Januar 200 Jahre alt geworden wäre und eine nicht zu unterschlagende Rolle in der revolutionären Bewegung in Deutschland gespielt hatte, es war Hess, der Marx und Engels für die Idee des Kommunismus gewonnen hatte [an online archive of texts by Moses Hess , who on 25 January would be 200 years old. Hess had played a not inconsiderable role in forging the revolutionary movement in Germany; it was Hess, who won Marx and Engels for the idea of communism:]

Der Mensch muß mit sich anfangen, mit dem Ich, wenn er schaffen, tätig sein will. — Wie die alte Geschichte, die Naturgeschichte, mit dem ersten Menschen anfing, so muß auch die neue, die Geschichte des Geistes, mit dem ursprünglichen Individuum anfangen. Cartesius hat einen unglücklichen Versuch gemacht — er ist, wie wir gesehen haben, beim zweiten Worte gescheitert. Spinoza hat alles getan, aber die Geschichte hat sich nicht sogleich seiner Tat bemeistert; seine Ethik lag mehrere Jahrhunderte unfruchtbar im Boden, bis endlich das zwei­schneidige Schwert der geistigen und sozialen Revolution den Schutt wegräumte, der den Keim der Neuzeit erdrückte. Da zeigten sich plötzlich zwei Blättchen, deren Wurzel unbekannt. Atheismus und Kommunismus wurden von Fichte und Babeuf in den beiden Hauptstädten diesseits und jenseits des Rheins, in Berlin und Paris, zum Schrecken der Philister gelehrt, und Jünger strömten herbei, die sich für die Lehre begeisterten. Atheismus und Kommunismus!” (aus Philosophie der That, 1843)

Gefunden dank La Bataille socialiste: der Grand dictionnaire socialiste von Adéodat Compère-Morel (1924), der leider wie viele andere seines Milieus als Vichy-Kollaborateur endete [thanks to La Bataille Socialiste: the Grand dictionnaire Socialiste of Adeodat Compere-Morel (1924), who unfortunately ended like many others of his milieu as a Vichy collaborator]

Three texts at Collectif Smolny:

* Paul Mattick: Interview à Lotta Continua (1977)
* GLAT: Pour un regroupement révolutionnaire (1969)
* BILAN: Le droit au soulèvement armé (1937)
Acta de la reunión del Comité Central del  Buró Internacional de las Juventudes Revolucionarias (1937 unter den Anwesenden u.a. Willy Brandt)

From the website of  Fundación Andreu Nin, mainly Poumist related texts:

* Benjamin Péret: Cartas de Benjamin Péret a André Breton sobre la revolución española (1936-1938)
Reunión del Subsecretariado Internacional del POUM, 14 de mayo de 1937: Informe del camarada Gorkin sobre las “jornadas de mayo”(1937)
* Juan Andrade:  Prefacio a la edición de Ruedo Ibérico de Los problemas de la revolución española (1931-1937), de Andreu Nin (1986)
* Joaquin Maurin: Hacia la segunda revolución (1935)
* Amigos de Durruti: Hacia una nueva revolución (1937)

In La Presse Anarchiste:  La Voix du Travail n°2 of  IAA from September 1926.

From Marxists Internet Archive:  1941 volume of  The Militant. ["These are intermediate to high resolution scans for almost the entire year, 46 issues, preceeeding the US entry into World War II. These scans were made possible by the combined efforts of the ETOL, Holt Labor Library and Riazanov Library project." This is when Felix Morrow and Albert Goldman were editors.]

Also at MIA: Added to the Spanish Archivo Andreu NinLa situación política y las tareas del proletariado (1937)

From the Anarchist Library:

Letter of América Scarfó to Émile Armand  (Buenos Aires, 3 December 1928. Translation of an important document in the history of Argentinian anarchism and of anarchist thinking on amatory ethics. “I desire for all just what I desire for myself: the freedom to act, to love, to think. That is, I desire anarchy for all humanity.” From Libcom, updated.)

The Luddites’ 200th birthday by Bernard Marszalek (FIFTH ESTATE #386, Spring, 2012, Vol. 47, No. 1, page 4)// Back to 1911 by Peter Lamborn Wilson (“Reversion to 1911 would constitute a perfect first step for a 21st century neo-Luddite movement. Living in 1911 means using technology and culture only up to that point and no further, or as little as possible.” FIFTH ESTATE #386, Spring, 2012, Vol. 47, No. 1, page 10) // Against Negation Or, Positively Revolting by Patrick Dunn (FIFTH ESTATE #386, Spring, 2012, Vol. 47, No. 1, page 24) // Disobedience: The antidote for miserablism by Penelope Rosemont (Tracing a line from Paul Lafargue to Andre Breton and Jacques Vache to Franklin Rosemont to Bernard Marszalek to Fredy Perlman to Occupy. FIFTH ESTATE #386, Spring, 2012, Vol. 47, No. 1, page 25) //Redrawing The Line: The Anarchist Writings of Paul Goodman by Paul Comeau (A review of Drawing The Line Once Again: Paul Goodman’s Anarchist Writings, PM Press, 2010. FIFTH ESTATE #386, Spring, 2012, Vol. 47, No. 1, page 28)  //  Declaration by the Ghost of Emma Goldman by Rick London (FIFTH ESTATE #386, Spring, 2012, Vol. 47, No. 1, page 30) // Three anarchist Rebellions on Film by Dan Georgakas (“Hundreds of films take on anarchist themes in some manner, but only a handful deal with anarchist governance. Three of the most interesting of these are, Alexander the Great (Megalexandros, 1980, Greek), Viva Zapata! (1952, United States), and Rebellion in Patagonia (La Patagonia Rebelde, 1974, Argentina)… Rebellion in Patagonia deals with a revolt in 1821 by Argentine anarcho-syndicalist workers in the rural area of Santa Cruz and their alliance with workers in Buenos Aires who also raised the black flag. The film opens with an anarchist hurling a fatal bomb at a Lieutenant Colonel Zavala, a prominent military officer. .” FIFTH ESTATE #386, Spring, 2012, Vol. 47, No. 1, page 36) // Spain: model for anarchist organizing by David Porter (A review of The CNT in the Spanish Revolution, Volume I by Jose Peirats, Edited and Introduced by Chris Ealham; Translated by Paul Sharkey PM Press / Christie Books; 432pp, 628; www.pmpress.org, FIFTH ESTATE #386, Spring, 2012, Vol. 47, No. 1, page 45)

The Unknown Revolution, 1917-1921  by Voline (A complete translation of La Revolution Inconnue, 1917-1921, first published in French in 1947, and re-published in Paris in 1969 by Editions Pierre Belfond. An abridged, two-volume English translate of the work was published in 1954 and 1955 by the Libertarian Book Club (New York City) and Freedom Press (London). The present edition contains all the materials included in the earlier edition (translated by Holley Cantine), as well as the sections which were omitted (Book I, Part I and II, and some brief omissions later in the work, translated by Fredy Perlman). Originally at Ditext, copied at Anarchist Library and recently updated there. More from Ditext below.)

Ditext – Digital Text International – is a large and bizarre repository of texts on anarchism, Marxism, philosophy and the Ukraine. Sections include Anarchism: The Unfinished Revolution. Here are some texts: Camillo Berneri, Peter Kropotkin: His Federalist Ideas, 1942 // John Paul Himka, Socialism in Galicia, 1983. // Colin Ward, “The Anarchist Sociology of Federalism” Freedom, June-July 1992. // Rudnytsky, Ivan L. Essays in Modern Ukrainian History. Edited by Peter L. Rudnytsky, Edmonton: Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies Press, 1987 (includes The Political Thought of Soviet Ukrainian Dissidents) // Adams, Arthur E. The Great Ukrainian Jacquerie The Ukraine, 1917-1921: A Study in Revolution, edited by Taras Hunczak, 1977. // Arshinov, Peter. History of the Makhnovist Movement (1918-1921), Translated by Lorraine and Fredy Perlman, 1974, originally published in 1923 by the Group of Russian Anarchists in Germany. // Conquest, Robert. The Harvest of Sorrow: Soviet Collectivization and the Terror-Famine. New York: Oxford University Press, 1986. // Hunczak, Taras, ed. The Ukraine, 1917-1921: A Study in Revolution. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard Ukrainian Research Institute, 1977 // Souchy, Augustin. The workers and peasants of Russia and Ukraine, how do they live? 1922.

Vie Ditext, I followed links to a number of digital text archives and portals.

*The López Martín Collection. “This collection inspired by the Spanish and Portuguese Historical Society (SPHP) and sustained by Lynn H. Nelson (University of Kansas), Jack Owens (Idaho State University), and Ignacio López Martín (European University Institute) is since 1996 the first step of a wider project regarding the use of Internet to study Early Modern Iberian history.” In turn this has links to other sites such as Roberto Ortiz de Zarate’s Political Collection, a collection of political leaders and formation of Spanish Governments from 1931. Ferrol Urban History by José María Cardesín (U. Coruña) (“La ciudad española de Ferrol fue diseñada “ex-novo- por ingenieros militares que trabajaban al servicio de la monarquía de la Ilustración, para alojar una base naval, astilleros y arsenales. La doble necesidad de defender la ciudad frente a ataques del exterior y de asegurar la disciplina de sus trabajadores condujo a la aplicación de un plan espacial cargado de violencia y segregación entre la Marina de Guerra y la clase trabajadora. A largo plazo los cambios que se fueron produciendo en la economía y en la geopolítica internacional, así como aquellas novedades que se introdujeron en el arte de la guerra, tuvieron un impacto directo en la ciudad y vinieron a arrojar dudas sobre su viabilidad. Así mismo, los cambios que también se fueron produciendo en la cultura política y en las alianzas de clase condujeron a una redefinición de las prácticas de poder. A lo largo del siglo XIX, la base naval y la economía de enclave que caracterizaba a Ferrol sufrieron repetidas crisis de obsolescencia. Más adelante, durante la Guerra Civil española, la Marina franquista erigió la represión de la clase trabajadora en objetivo mayor dentro de la cuestión principal de derrotar a la España Republicana. La dictadura franquista conllevó el retorno de un Ferrol segregado y militarizado, un modelo que quedaría finalmente obsoleto a partir la década de 1980, con la consolidación de la democracia y la integración de España en la Unión Europea.”) History of Madrid by Luis Enrique Otero Carvajal and Angel Bahamonde (U. Complutense) “An excellent site on the evolution and development of Madrid from “Borderline to Metropolitan Area””. Loads of Catalan history resources here.

*KnowledgeRush Book Directory Large directory of popular literary works and historical documents available on the Web. Includes biographies of some authors and can be browsed by author, genre, or title.

*The Humanities Text Initiative. This includes such things as this:

The Great Depression conjures up one of the profound American twentieth-century experiences. Unlike earlier depressions and periods of hard times, this economic paralysis was of a magnitude and duration that approached trauma and and although amelioration was evident after federal relief measures were taken, the long-awaited recovery never took place. Almost all of the items exhibited here come from the Labadie Collection of social protest materials, with some augmentation from the main Special Collections Library, the Graduate Library, and the Music Library. This particular collection captures over 100 digital images of the items from this exhibit.

Spanish Revolution and Civil War gallery

A wonderful gallery at Libcom. Here’s just a taste – go enjoy the real thing.

Militia woman.Unidentified black soldier.Burned out cars after the defeat of Franco's forces in Barcelona, 1936.Madrid, July 1936.Spanish Civil War and Revolution photo gallery, 1936-39Demonstration, Puerta del Sol, Madrid.Anarchists in Madrid.Collectivised CNT tram, Barcelona.Collectivised tram.Spanish Civil War and Revolution photo gallery, 1936-39.Anarchist militia women.Workers' barricades.Workers' barricades.Militia men and women leave for the front in Barcelona.Spanish Civil War and Revolution photo gallery, 1936-39.Speech from bricklayer and CNT member Cipriano Mera.Spanish Civil War and Revolution photo gallery, 1936-39.The Durruti Column.Workers' barricades, Barcelona, July 1936.Workers on the barricades, Barcelona, 1936.Workers' barricades.Tereul, Aragon Front, 1938.Militias in training, Catalunya.Militia woman in training, Barcelona.Militia women in training, Barcelona.Boy wearing cap of “Union de Hermanos Proletarios”, Barcelona.Spanish anarcho-syndicalist, Buenaventura Durruti (centre).Durruti's funeral.Supporters at Durruti's funeral.Supporters carrying coffin at Durruti's funeral.Spanish Civil War and Revolution photo gallery, 1936-39

Theft at the Atenou

As I already reported (thanks to Kate Sharpley Library), there has been a terrible theft at one of the most important cultural spaces in Barcelona, l’Ateneu Enciclopèdic Popular, which will be celebrating its centenary this year. Here is a statement from the Ateneu, badly translated into English – please circulate.

Today, 1 February 2012 entered in force to steal important documents from the Library of the Athenaeum.

Among the items stolen were:

  • Original posters of the Civil War era as well as various objects also the period of the Spanish Civil War.
  • Postcards from the civil war, pamphlets of many organizations and groups of the 20s and 30s and of the Franco-era underground.
  • A collection of currency notes of the collectivized villages
  • A postcard collection of civil war and of personalities such as Bakunin and Kropotkin
  • A collection of film programs for the period of civil war
  • A collection of old tram tickets for ten cents a pts.
  • A collection of medals, pins, badges and insignia of the Civil War
  • A folder with pictures of the free women’s and libertarian cultural associations, as well as documentation of collectivised enterprises based on the road from Ribes de Barcelona and visit of experts from Mexico.

The website contains some images, as well as a zip folder, and people are urged to look out for these. Here are just a couple of items:

Published in: on February 14, 2012 at 4:30 pm  Leave a Comment  

Theft at the Ateneo enciclopèdic Barcelona

Important news from KSL, more on this to come soon:

The Ateneo enciclopèdic Barcelona suffered a major theft a few days ago, especially items and publications dating from the Spanish Revolution. Their statement (in Catalan) is at:
http://www.ateneuenciclopedicpopular.org/spip.php?article399
This page has a link to the document listing the lost items with details of the missing handbills, paper currency, posters, stamps etc. This page also contains photos of stolen items (you should click twice on the thumbnail for the larger version).
Alternatively the article with large format photos can be seen in pdf format:
http://www.ateneuenciclopedicpopular.org/spip.php?page=article_pdf&id_article=399

Get in touch with the Ateneo if you see these items being sold online:
Ateneo enciclopèdic Barcelona contact details:
http://www.ateneuenciclopedicpopular.org/spip.php?rubrique11

Published in: on February 13, 2012 at 4:28 pm  Leave a Comment  

From the archive of struggle, no.67

At The Quay, 1935
Strike, 1936
Evening Trip, 1937

First, some items from Roland Dodds’ latest webtrawl, and below the fold, the latest installment of the From the Archives of Struggle series.

Union Rights:  Shiraz Socialist brings to my attention theLabour Start campaign to free Mahdi ‘Issa Mahdi Abu Dheeb, President of the Bahraini Teachers Association (BTA) who is currently under arrest. The Alliance for Workers’ Liberty has an excellent piece criticizing members of the left that mourned the death of Kim Jong Ill in one form or another. Rossie Huzzard echos my sentiments: “This nonsensical affection for tyrannical “anti-imperialist” states taints the entire left. We are on the side of the international working class against all enemies. Solidarity with the working class of North Korea against their state oppressors!”

Anarchism, Socialism, Unionism: AWL also has a pamphlet debating the role of anarchism in the labour struggle.

And forget the OWS movement, with Newt Gingrich making inroads with Republican voters by criticizing the capitalist culture Romney comes from and perpetuates, Peter Dreier asks if Capitalism is on trial in America.

The Social Democrats USA, the small but influential organization led by Penn Kemble before his death in 2005, has been revived to some degree. Follow their activities at Social Currents.

Some items from Entdinglichung and elsewhere:

Central European Social Democracy 1900-1933 (more…)

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