It is a long time since I have done one of these posts, and my comrade Entdinglichung has been relaxing for a while, so we have not had the benefit of his services to the cause. First, some news (thanks Liz in a comments thread), from the Modern Records Centre in Warwick, in the UK:
Work is now underway on a major new project to digitise internationally significant archives relating to the Spanish Civil War.
The project will result in over 10,000 pages of archive material being made available online free of charge. Transcriptions will be available for every item, allowing researchers to search through the mass of material for key words or phrases.
It is anticipated that the project will be completed in Spring 2012.
What is being digitised?
The archive collection of the Trades Union Congress includes 45 files on different aspects of the conflict. The files contain correspondence, minutes, reports, memoranda and propaganda material produced by members of the British and Spanish governments; political groups; international, British and Spanish trade unions; pressure groups, aid organisations, and other interested parties.
In addition, we are also digitising a small number of publications from the collections of the Trotskyists Henry Sara and Hugo Dewar. These include examples of bulletins (in English and Spanish) produced by Partido Obrero de Unificación Marxista (POUM).
This is great news. Those interested might also be interested in some of their other digital resources:
Examples of documents relating to the conflict in Spain are included in our online resources for the History Department module ‘Anti-fascism, Resistance and Liberation in Western Europe (HI392)’. Photographs of Basque refugees in Britain are included in our image gallery ‘North Stoneham Camp for Basque Children: Snapshots of a Volunteer’.
Below is extracted from the former, and I urge you to spend some time there:
|Letter from Willy Brandt of the German Seamen’s Group, Oslo, to Edo Fimmen, Secretary of the International Transport Workers’ Federation, 1937Willy Brandt was Chancellor of West Germany between 1969-1974 and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1971 for his attempts to improve relations between the East and West. As an active socialist and anti-fascist, Brandt (born Karl Herbert Frahm) fled to Norway in 1933 to avoid arrest by the Nazi authorities. It was then that Frahm adopted the new name that he would use for the remainder of his life. [Added, from Wikipedia: “After passing his Abitur in 1932 at Johanneum zu Lübeck, he became an apprentice at the shipbroker and ship’s agent F.H. Bertling. He joined the “Socialist Youth” in 1929 and the Social Democratic Party (SPD) in 1930. He left the SPD to join the more left wing Socialist Workers Party (SAP), which was allied to the POUM in Spain and the Independent Labour Party in Britain. In 1933, using his connections with the port and its ships, he left Germany for Norway to escape Nazi persecution. It was at this time that he adopted the pseudonym Willy Brandt to avoid detection by Nazi agents. In 1934, he took part in the founding of the International Bureau of Revolutionary Youth Organizations, and was elected to its Secretariat.” -Poumista][Included in the records of the International Transport Workers’ Federation, document reference: MSS.159/3/C/A/52]|
|‘The Spanish Revolution’, Bulletin of the Workers’ Party of Marxist Unification (POUM), 3 February 1937English language bulletin published in Barcelona. This edition counters Communist or Stalinist accusations against POUM. One of the inside pages also includes a reference to a visit to the offices of the publication by “the well-known British author” Eric Blair [George Orwell].[One of a series of publications on the Spanish Civil War from the papers of Henry Sara, Trotskyist; document reference: MSS.15/3/8/255/9]|
|‘Barcelona Bulletin’, second edition, 15 May 1937Anarchist news sheet describing the fighting between the Communists, and the anarchists and the Trotskyists (POUM) in Barcelona. It includes reports by Jane H. Patrick and Ethel Macdonald on events between 5-9 May.[One of a series of publications on the Spanish Civil War from the papers of Henry Sara, Trotskyist; document reference: MSS.15/3/8/243]|
More archival news from the Alliance for Workers Liberty:
The archives of the Alliance for Workers’ Liberty and our forerunners, deposited at the library of the London School of Economics, are now catalogued and available to researchers. http://archives.lse.ac.uk/TreeBrowse.aspx?src=CalmView.Catalog&field=RefNo&key=AWL The archives include all the documents and publications of the AWL and our forerunners except the most recent stuff, which is on this website or (in the case of more recent minutes of AWL committees) in electronic archives available to AWL members.
The rest of this post is a round-up of some of the main radical digital archive sites.
- Worker-Student Action Committees: France, May ’68, by two participants in the event, Fredy Perlman and Roger Gregoire [via Criticism &c]
From Robert Graham:
- Luce Fabbri: Transforming Democracy (Luce Fabbri (1908-2000) was an Italian born anarchist writer who spent most of her life in Uruguay, where her family eventually emigrated after being forced to flee Fascist Italy. Her father was the great anarchist critic of fascism and totalitarianism, Luigi Fabbri (Volume One, Selection 113). Luce Fabbri experienced dictatorship both in Italy and, for a time, Uruguay. In the following excerpts from her article, “More on the Matter of Democracy,” translated by Paul Sharkey, she argues that anarchy and democracy are not incompatible, but that anarchy represents a further step forward in the struggle for human liberation.)
- Jorge Silva: Libertarian Self-Management (1996)
- Felipe Corrêa: From Party Politics to Libertarian Socialism (2005)
- The New Anarchism: Beyond Neo-Marxism with Murray Bookchin (1978)
- Gaston Leval: Principles and Lessons of the Spanish Revolution (1954)
At the Kate Sharpley Library:
- Iron Column by Abel Paz printed: The story of the Iron Column: militant anarchism in the Spanish Civil War by Abel Paz, a Kate Sharpley Library copublication with AK Press, is back from the printers. If you can’t wait until we get copies, AK are already selling it at: http://www.akpress.org/2011/items/storyoftheironcolumn
- New publication: Anarchism In Galicia : Organisation, Resistance and Women in the Underground. The Anarchist movement in Galicia is unknown to English-language readers. These essays tells the stories of the men and women who built it, fought for it, and how they kept it alive in the face of incredible odds. ‘The FAI in Galicia’ by Eliseo Fernández gives a brief history of Galician anarchism before the foundation of the FAI (Federación Anarquista Ibérica: Iberian Anarchist Federation) in 1927. It goes on to detail the structure and activities of the FAI in Galicia, and shows how the tensions and tactical disagreements within Spanish anarchism played out at a local level, including within the CNT (Confederación Nacional del Trabajo: National Confederation of Labour). ‘Vigo 1936’ by Antón Briallos records the desperate – and ultimately unsuccessful – battle in the streets against the fascist revolt of July 1936. Full biographical details of anarchists mentioned show the roots, structure and fate of the anarchist movement in Vigo before, during and after the Spanish Civil War. ‘The Anarchist Homes of Libertarian Women’ by Carmen Blanco tells how Galicia’s anarchist women sheltered other militants and were central to attempts to rebuild the anarchist movement. This tribute reveals the extent of their involvement and the terrible price they paid. Edited and translated by Paul Sharkey. ISBN 9781873605127 Publication details and online review copy
- July 2011 KSL Bulletin online: KSL: Bulletin of the Kate Sharpley Library No. 67, July 2011 has just been posted on the site. You can get to the contents here or read the full pdf here.
- La « Garde rouge » raconte (“The “Red Guard” tells its story”): The centre of gravity of the workers’ committee movement in Italy in the late ’60s to late ’70s was the Milan area, and it was the committee of Magneti Marelli in the Crescenzago factory which was the most advanced expression of the committees in this region, and thus in the whole country. This book by the Italian historian Emilio Mentasti examines the whole history of the committee from its birth during the economic crisis of 1973 to its dissolution under the blows of judicial repression and industrial restructuring. Unfortunately, there is no English edition available as yet…
- The IWW Reply to the Red Trade Union International: Executive Committee, R.I.L.U., Moscow, Russia.
- The Left in the Detroit Labour Movement – Martin Glaberman: Martin Glaberman reviews – and contests the accuracy and honesty of – two books on the Detroit union movement: Christopher H. Johnson, Maurice Sugar: Law, Labor, and the Left in Detroit, 1912-1950(Detroit: Wayne State University Press 1988); Margaret Collingwood Nowak, Two Who Were There: A Biography of Stanley Nowak(Detroit: Wayne State University Press 1989).
- Rediscovering Two Labor Intellectuals – Steve Early: Steve Early reviews collections of writings by Martin Glaberman and Stain Weir, while tying their experience and outlook to the emerging split within the AFL-CIO in 2004: Singlejack Solidarity. By Stan Weir. (Edited and with an afterward by George Lipsitz. Forward by Norm Diamond.) Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press, 2004. 369 pp. $19.95, paperback; Punching Out & Other Writings. By Martin Glaberman. (Edited and introduced by Staughton Lynd.)Chicago, Ill: Charles H. Kerr Publishing Company, 2002. 229 pp. $15 paperback.
- Radical Unionism and the Workers’ Struggle in Spain – Ruben Vega Garcia and Carlos Perez: A piece on Spanish trade unionism since the Franco’s death. The Spanish labor movement inherited a revolutionary legacy whose most important landmarks are the general strike of 1917, the proletarian insurrection of 1934, and the zealous antifascist reaction of 1936. However, as a result of its defeat in the Spanish Civil War, the prolonged iron dictatorship profoundly disrupted the continuity of this tradition.
- Workers Against Work: Labor in Paris and Barcelona During the Popular Fronts – Michael Seidman (PDF). PDF of the complete book.
- The Old and New in Anarchism: A Reply to Comrade Malatesta Piotr Arshinov’s 1928 reply to Errico Malatesta. In the anarchist organ Le Reveil of Geneva, in the form of a leaflet, comrade Errico Malatesta has published a critical article on the project of the Organisational Platform edited by the Group of Russian Anarchists Abroad.
- The Struggle in the Factory: History of a Royal Ordnance Factory. The History of Dalmuir R.O.F. is the history of any other war-time factory, it is the story of the workers’ struggle against the forces of capitalism aided an abetted by the fakirs of the trade unions and the Communist Party. Faced with these odds it is creditable that the workers did not succumb entirely, and that a band of them continued in opposition and endeavoured to preserve some degree of sanity throughout the welter of lies, distortions and intrigue that surrounded the worker.
At Workers Liberty:
- From “Militant” to the Socialist Party: a collection Debating the Socialist Party/ Militant. See also Sean Matgamna: The Socialist Party and the workers: “every sect is religious”
- Edd Mustill: 1911: a time of possibility
- The life and death of Henk Sneevliet, Internationalist
- My Expulsion from Gerry Healy’s Socialist Labour League (Sean Matgamna)
- Dan Katz reviews Robin Blackburn’s Karl Marx and Abraham Lincoln
At the Marxist Internet Archive:
Added to the POUM History Archive:
- The Collectivization of the Vilardell Stores, 18 November 1936
Added to the Max Shachtman Archive:
- Sacco and Vanzetti, Labor’s Martyrs (1927)
- Trotsky taught us class action (1942) (reminiscences about Trotsky)
- What is the role of a revolutionary organisation? – Five years of the Workers Party (1945)
- Socialist policy in the war (1950) (position on the Korean War)
- Kerensky, head of the government that Lenin ousted, debates Max Shachtman (1951) (report on debate with Kerensky)
- An open letter to “our friends in Asia” (1951) (response to open letter by former left-wing intellectuals)
- For a democratic foreign policy (1953)
- Twenty Five Years of American Trotskyism (1953)
- Why the working class is central (1953)
- The Stalinist Social System (1954) (short analysis of Stalinist Russia and the new countries it had spread to)
- October was a true working class revolution (1957) (defence of the Russian Revolution while discussing fusion with Norman Thomas’s Socialist Party)
- The October Revolution was made for freedom in equality! (1957) (defence of the Russian Revolution on the occasion of the 40th anniversary)
Added to the Spanish Helmut Wagner Archive:
- El anarquismo y la Revolución española, 1937 [Thanks to Jonas Holmgren & Círculo Internacional de Comunistas Antibolcheviques]
Added to the Tony Cliff Archive:
Added to the U.S.A. History Section:
- 24 issues of Labor Defender, the monthly journal of the International Labor Defense. Completed are the full first two years of journal, 1926 – 1927. The Labor Defenderwas an “pictorial” magazine with dozens of photographs and drawings from the best labor illustrators of that era. Articles were written and edited by, variously, Upton Sinclair, Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, James P. Cannon, Max Shactman, Carloline Scollen and Eugene V. Debs.
Added to the Raya Dunayevskaya Archive:
- All 55 issues of The Militant for Volume VI, 1933 and all of the last year of The Militant, 1934. These additions represents the end of the Communist League of America (Opposition) era before merging with the American Workers Party (lead by A. J. Muste) that formed the new Workers Party of the U.S. which published The New Militant. This new period ended the period of being a public faction of the Communist Party of America while seeking to win that party back to what the Trotskyists of the CLA considered a genuine Leninist and revolutionary program. Both the failure of the German Communist to prevent Hitler from coming to power and the leadership of the CLA in the Minneapolis Teamster Strikes of 1934, the CLA concluded that it can have more of impact on revolutionary politics as a party in it’s own right than a faction of one they believed was playing an increasingly negative role in the workers movement in the U.S. and internationally through the Communist International.
- All the issues of the New Militant for 1935 and 1936, its entire run, published by the newly formed Workers Party of the U.S. This brings to an end the newspaper publication efforts of the Trotskyists in the form of The Militant and then the New Militant due to their organized entry into the left-moving Socialist Party of America. After this point it is not until August of 1937 with the start of publication of Socialist Appeal do the Trotskyists again publish a weekly workers paper.
Added to the C.L.R. James Archive:
- Preliminary Notes on the Negro Question (1939) (James’s notes in preparation for his discussions with Trotsky in Coyoacan)
- Notes Following the Discussions (1939) (As the title suggests some notes James made after his discussions with Trotsky in Coyoacan)
- On Gone with the Wind (1939) (Initial call by the SWP for a boycott of the racist film)
- On Gone with the Wind (1940) (Critique of the Communist Party’s campaign against the film)
- The Economics of Lynching (1940) (The title is self-explanatory)
- “My Friends”: A Fireside Chat on the War (1940) (Workers Party pamphlet against American entry into the war)
- With The Sharecroppers (1941) (Study of the position of sharecroppers and of their campaign to protect their rights)
- White Workers’ Prejudices (1945) (Attempt to explain why white workers were prejudiced)
- The Rapid Growth of the NAACP (1947) (Analysis of the rise of the main black organisation of the time fighting against racism and for civil rights)
- The Communist Party’s Zigzags on Negro Policy (1939) (Extract from an article on the SWP’s work with African Aericans)
- The 1919 Race Riots in Chicago (1939)
- The Destiny of the Negro – An Historical Overview (1939) (Educational series on the origins and history of African Americans)
- On Native Son by Richard Wright (1940) (Book review)
- Marcus Garvey (1940) (Short article on the significance of Marcus Garvey)
- Public Awareness of the Negro Question (1945)
- Joe Louis and Jack Johnson (1946) (Article on 2 Black boxing heroes from different eras)
- Lenin on Agriculture and the Negro Question (1947)
- The Two Sides of Abraham Lincoln (1949) (Critique of Lincoln)
- Key Problems in the Study of Negro History (1950)
- Capitalism and the Welfare State (1950) (Extract from an unsigned editorial in Fourth International)
- Free For All: The nine year old leader, in Race Today, 14, 3, May-June, 1982
- Remember Lansbury (1957)
- H Bomb Front – Now Black the Bomb! (1958)
- Tory Attack on National Health Service (1961)
- Charity is not enough (1961)
- Challinor’s Choice (1969)
- Military Discipline and Working Class Resistance in World War II (2001)
- Labour – Yesterday and Today (2001)
Added to the Alexander Shliapnikov Archive:
- On the Eve of 1917 (1923) (Book-length memoir of his experiences in the underground both in Russia and abroad during the World War I by Alexander Shliapnikov, a Bolshevik organiser and later leader of the Workers’ Opposition)
Added to the Periodical Page:
- The Class Struggle was a bi-monthly Marxist theoretical magazine published in New York City by the Socialist Publication Society. The SPS also published a series of pamphlets, mostly reprints from the magazine during the short period of its existence. Among the initial editors of the publication were Ludwig Lore, Marxist theoreticians Louis B. Boudin and Louis C. Fraina, the former of whom left the publication in 1918. In the third and final year of the periodical, The Class Struggleemerged as one of the primary English-language voices of the left wing factions within the American Socialist Party and its final issue was published by the nascent Communist Labor Party of America.
Added to the Murray Bookchin Internet Archive:
- State Capitalism in Russia, 1950. Article by Murray Bookchin when he was associated with the German ex-Trotskyists of the IKD putting their view on the nature of the USSR and historical retrogression.
An addition to the Spanish-language Archivo Andreu Nin:
- The Man Who Never Died: The Life, Times, and Legacy of Joe Hill, review by Richard Myers. More from the website.
- Comparing the Racial Politics of the IWW in South Africa and the United States, 1905-1925. This recent article in an academic journal examines how the revolutionary syndicalist IWW (an integral part of the broad anarchist tradition) sought to marry class struggles with struggles against racial and national oppression through the One Big Union. This story is an important part of the history of the global working class, but has been marginalised in the literature, in part because of the myth that left anti-racism started with Marxist communism in the 1920s. This paper recovers a history of revolutionary unionism and politics amongst workers of colour, and of their organisations, and it shows that the broad anarchist tradition played an important role in struggles for national liberation and racial equality.
- Review: The International Anarchist Congress Amsterdam (1907).
- Dunbar, Thibedi, Sigamoney: Three figures in the IWW in South Africa, From Industrial Worker, May 2011, no. 1735.
At the Anarchist Library:
- Anarchy and Organization: The Debate at the 1907 International Anarchist Congress by Various Authors Translations by Nestor McNab are taken from Studies for a Libertarian Alternative: The International Anarchist Congress, Amsterdam, 1907, published by the Anarchist Communist Federation in Italy (Federazione dei Comunisti Anarchici — FdCA); paperback edition available from AK Press.
- Against the Racist Delirium by Camillo Berneri Originally published as “El Delirio Racista” (Buenos Aires: Ediciones Iman, February 1935).
- The Motherland and the Workers by Enrique de San Martin El Productor, (Havana) 12 May 1889
- An esoteric interpretation of the I.W.W. preamble by Hakim Bey From The International Review, 1991 (published “the 15th day of Operation Desert Storm”), pp 2 — 3. This unnumbered Boulder, Colorado publication was edited by Paul Sager and Louis A. Villaire.
- Three Problems of the Revolution by Daniel Guérin Translated by Paul Sharkey, are fromGuérin’s 1958 essay, “Three Problems of the Revolution,” reprinted in his collection of essays, In Search of a Libertarian Communism (Paris: Cahiers Mensuels Spartacus, 1984).
- The policy of abstention from parliamentary action by William Morris 30th July 1887 at a meeting of the Hammersmith Branch of the Socialist League at Kelmscott House
- Federica Montseny and Spanish Anarchist Feminism by Shirley F. Fredericks Retrieved on 4 August 2011 from http://zinelibrary.info/federica-montseny-and-spanish-anarchist-feminism-journal-article
- Criticism etc: Marxist humanism (poumista.wordpress.com)
- Spanish Civil War: British volunteers lists available for the first time (poumista.wordpress.com)
- Left Archive: Ainriail No.6: An Irish Anarchist Bi-monthly Oct/Nov 1996 (cedarlounge.wordpress.com)
- 75 years of the Spanish revolution (poumista.wordpress.com)
- From the archive: special features (poumista.wordpress.com)
- From the archive, 2 August 1950: Stalin and the Soviet state (guardian.co.uk)
- From the archive: antisemitic anti-Zionism in the German Communist movement before 1933 (antigerman.wordpress.com)
- Andres Nín (politics.ie)
- An antidote to Tito nostalgia (poumista.wordpress.com)