Download Class or Nation: Communists, Imperialism, and Two World Wars by Neil Redfern PDF

By Neil Redfern

The dimensions of the Communist get together of significant Britain (CPGB) belied its impression; many observed it as a microcosm of the communist-capitalist fight. It had a robust presence in British society regardless of being a minority circulation. dependent upon newly to be had assets, Neil Redfern re-examines the circulate and its courting to imperialism. He strains the historical past of British communism from its gradualist roots and reveals that, regardless of international conflict I, the 1917 revolution and mass hobbies in Asia, Africa and Latin the United States, CPGB remained Euro-centred and reformist instead of innovative, even assisting the post-1945 Labour executive.

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Extra info for Class or Nation: Communists, Imperialism, and Two World Wars

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But of course the SDF itself was hardly free of these vices and thus internal doctrinal wrangling led to near-splits and splits. An early row was caused by anti-Semitic tendencies which surfaced during the Boer War. The Party went against the popular tide (though Richard Price has convincingly argued that the war was not very popular among the working class73) and mounted a spirited attack on the British war effort. But immediately prior to the war, at a rally in Trafalgar Square, Hyndman had slyly referred to ‘the good old British names of Eckstein, Beit, Solomon, Rothschild and Joel’ of those involved in commercial and financial activities in South Africa.

The BSP, now in the hands of the internationalists, had nothing to say for several weeks and then disdainfully remarked that ‘In every demand made by the Sinn Fein movement there is the spirit of nationalism . . to rise, as the men in Dublin rose . . ’132 Thereafter the BSP had little to say on Irish matters. John Maclean, who was sympathetic to Irish nationalism, was in prison and unable to influence matters. It was not until after the formation of the CP that British Marxists began to pay serious attention to the Irish question.

Was] . . 127 Eighteen months later the Bolsheviks demonstrated how the war might be brought to an end, but such methods were not contemplated by the BSP. It still regarded education and propaganda as the key. British Socialism and the Easter Rising in Ireland In 1916 the UK had of course an insurrection of its own. But the Easter Rising in Ireland neither inspired the vast majority of British socialists nor gained their support. Of course, the sanguinary measures taken by the British government against its leaders, most of whom were executed, may have deterred any British socialists who were contemplating emulating Irish 38 CLASS OR NATION nationalists.

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