When the workers rise: Workers' Liberty 3/18

When the workers rise

Published on: Mon, 14/04/2008 - 10:26

Sean Matgamna

“For the first time in the history of the labour movement the struggle is being so conducted that its three sides, the theoretical, the political, and the practical-economic (opposition to the capitalists), form one harmonious and well-planned entity”. Frederick Engels, 1874

The subordinate class — subordinate to the ruling class economically, politically, and in its ideas — that does not know its own history can never reap the full benefit of that history. It cannot learn the lessons and put them to use in the future.

The working class faces great difficulties in preserving the memory of its

Lessons of the Great Belfast Strike of 1919

Published on: Mon, 14/04/2008 - 10:22

Michael Farrell

1919 was a year of turmoil all over Europe. In the confusion following the break up of three great empires in World War I — the Russian, Turkish and Austrian empires — the working class began to assert itself. In Russia the young Bolshevik republic was fighting for its life. In Bavaria and Hungary short-lived Soviet Republics were established, and in Vienna and Berlin there were socialist uprisings.

Even Belfast did not escape unscathed and at the beginning of 1919 the city experienced the largest and longest industrial dispute in its history. For nearly four weeks shipyard and engineering

Jim Larkin: the Irish apostle of labour

Published on: Mon, 14/04/2008 - 10:19

Sean Matgamna

In March 1947, an immense crowd of people, 200,000 of them, many of the men bare-headed in freakishly Arctic weather, marched through Dublin behind the coffin of Jim Larkin, the founder of the modern Irish labour movement. He is the greatest figure in Irish labour history. James Connolly, Larkin’s partner between 1910 and 1914, was far more clever and far better educated, but it was Larkin who touched the workers of the slums with the holy fire of righteous indignation, and ignited them in revolt.

Larkin was a union organiser in Liverpool, Belfast, Dublin and in the USA — where he was jailed

Marxists and mass workers’ parties

Published on: Mon, 14/04/2008 - 10:16

Karl Kautsky

Evolving out of the trade unions, adopting a formal commitment to socialism only in 1918, two decades after its formation, the Labour Party puzzled and perplexed European Marxists. It was accepted into membership of the Socialist International in 1908 on the grounds that it fought the class struggle even though it did not “recognise” it and was independent. Karl Kautsky, the leading Marxist of the time, wrote a resolution to that effect. Lenin, while agreeing with Kautsky on the main point, criticised his resolution: Labour was not fully independent of bourgeois parties — electoral pacts with

This website uses cookies, you can find out more and set your preferences here.
By continuing to use this website, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms & Conditions.