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The Russian Social-Democratic Labour Party, 1899‒1904

Documents of the 'Economist' Opposition to Iskra and Early Menshevism

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Richard Mullin

Much has been written about the activity of Lenin and his colleagues on the editorial board of the Iskra newspaper, whereas little has been said about the opponents of Leninism, who unsuccessfully fought for control of the Russian Social-Democratic Labour Party during the Iskra period. To redress the balance, Richard Mullin has translated 25 documents from this period, most of which express an anti-Lenin view. They include articles from Rabochee Delo, the Jewish Bund's Poslednie Izvestiia and the post-Lenin Iskra, pamphlets by Plekhanov and Martov, the resolutions of Party meetings and some very revealing private correspondence. However, the result is not an anti-Bolshevik polemic: through these documents a clearer, and curiously flattering picture of Lenin's thought and activity is obtained.

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José M. Aricó

In a work centred on Marx's harsh biography of Simón Bolívar, José Aricó examines why Latin America was apparently 'excluded' from Marx's thought, challenging the allegation that this expressed some 'Eurocentric' prejudice.
Aricó shows how the German thinker's hostility towards the Bonapartism and authoritarianism he identified in the Liberator coloured his attitude towards the continent and the significance of its independence-processes.
Whilst criticising Marx's misreading of Latin-American realities, Aricó demonstrates contemporaneous, countervailing tendencies in Marx's thought, including his appraisal of the revolutionary potentialities of other 'peripheral' extra-European societies. As such, Aricó convincingly argues that Marx's work was not a dogma of linear 'progress', but a living, contradictory body of thought constantly in development.

English translation of the Marx y América Latina edition, Fondo de Cultura Económica, 2010.

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Wade Matthews

In The New Left, National Identity, and the Break-Up of Britain Wade Matthews charts the nexus between socialism and national identity in the work of key New Left intellectuals, E.P. Thompson, Raymond Williams, Stuart Hall, Perry Anderson, and Tom Nairn. Matthews considers these New Left thinkers’ response to Britain’s various national questions, including decolonization and the End of Empire, the rise of European integration and separatist nationalisms in Scotland and Wales, and to the national and nationalist implications of Thatcherism, Cold War and the fall of communism. Matthews establishes a contestatory dialogue around these issues throughout the book based around different New Left perspectives on what has been called “the break-up of Britain.” He demonstrates that national questions where crucial to New Left debates.