Party and class

Socialism, Reformism and Democracy [a 1994 debate between AWL and former Labour leader Michael Foot]

Author: 

Martin Thomas

DO official Labour politics offer any real hope today? Or must serious socialists, and even serious democrats, look instead to the revolutionary left?

Such was the question in debate before a packed audience at London's Conway Hall last Wednesday, 9 March, when John O'Mahony [Sean Matgamna], editor of Socialist Organiser, a paper banned by the Labour Party leaders in 1990 for our Trotskyist politics, confronted Michael Foot, leader of the Labour Party from 1980 to 1983.

A face-to-face debate between AWL and former Labour leader Michael Foot - Febuary, 1994

Marxist Theory and History: 

Issues and Campaigns: 

Workers' Liberty 3/3: Factory bulletins in the 1920s and today

Workers' Liberty 3/3 (March 2006) reproduces many communist factory bulletins from the 1920s, and discussion from that era about how they should be produced. "Workers cannot write newspapers? Really? Just tell us some news about your factory". It also includes information on workplace bulletins produced by the AWL. Click here to download pdf.

How to take revolutionary politics into the workplace.

Marxist Theory and History: 

Trade Unions: 

Publications: 

The IRA in a West of Ireland Town in the 1930s

Author: 

Sean Matgamna

Below the great political generalities - opposition to British Imperialism, Partition, the "sell-out of Republican principles" by De Valera's constitutional Republican party, Fianna Fail - what was the IRA? Let us look at what it was in the 1930s in one area, Clare, and particularly in one town, Ennis, part of Eamonn De Valera's constituency.

We are not, in this excursion, in which we will look at the labour movement in that town, wandering off the subject: we are trying to bring the IRA of that time and of such places, and the sort of people who joined it, into clearer focus.

Below the great political generalities - Imperialism, Partition, the "sell-out of Republicanism" by De Valera - what was the IRA?

Around the world: 

Marxist Theory and History: 

Trade Unions: 

The IRA in a West of Ireland Town in the 1930s

Author: 

Sean Matgamna

Below the great political generalities - opposition to British Imperialism, Partition, the "sell-out of Republican principles" by De Valera's constitutionalRepublican party, Fianna Fail - what was the IRA? Let us look at what it was in the 1930s in one area, Clare, and particularly in one town, Ennis, part of Eamonn De Valera's constituency.

We are not, in this excursion, in which we will look at the labour movement in that town, wandering off the subject: we are trying to bring the IRA of that time and of such places, and the sort of people who joined it, into clearer focus.

Below the great political generalities - Imperialism, Partition, the "sell-out of Republicanism" by De Valera - what was the IRA?

Around the world: 

Marxist Theory and History: 

Trade Unions: 

The Russians Withdraw from Afghanistan (1988)

Author: 

Sean Matgamna

The withdrawal of Russian troops from Afghanistan must be perplexing for those on the left who supported their invasion or did not oppose their presence.

They argued that Afghanistan was a different case from Vietnam or other battles against imperialism. The USSR claims to be socialist; and even if we reject this claim we can point to the frankly reactionary prograrnme of the Afghan rebels and the support for them from the United States. In comparison the Afghan government and its Russian backers are , if no more, 'progressive'.

The withdrawal of Russian troops from Afghanistan must be perplexing for those on the left who supported their invasion or did not oppose their presence.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Around the world: 

Marxist Theory and History: 

The Russians Withdraw from Afghanistan

Author: 

Sean Matgamna

The withdrawal of Russian troops from Afghanistan must be perplexing for those on the left who supported their invasion or did not oppose their presence.

They argued that Afghanistan was a different case from Vietnam or other battles against imperialism. The USSR claims to be socialist; and even if we reject this claim we can point to the frankly reactionary prograrnme of the Afghan rebels and the support for them from the United States. In comparison the Afghan government and its Russian backers are , if no more, 'progressive'.

The withdrawal of Russian troops from Afghanistan must be perplexing for those on the left who supported their invasion or did not oppose their presence.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Around the world: 

Marxist Theory and History: 

How the working-class party was built

Author: 

Paul Hampton

The German Social-Democratic Party (Sozialdemokratische Partei Deutschlands, SPD) was the largest working class party built so far by Marxists, yet it is mostly remembered today with infamy for the great betrayal of 1914.

First of a two part article on the early history of the German socialist movement.

Publications: 

Marxist Theory and History: 

The Portuguese Revolution of 1974-5: “The left had no strategy and the right did”

Miguel Perez, a Lisbon-based socialist activist and historian who delivered a talk on the Portuguese Revolution of 1974-5, spoke to Solidarity about his view of events.


Why was there so much left-wing ferment in the Portuguese officer corps in the 1970s? Why did Portugal’s colonial war have such a big effect on the officer corps, the army and society?

An interview with Miguel Perez, a Lisbon-based socialist activist and historian, about the Portuguese Revolution of 1974-5.

Around the world: 

Marxist Theory and History: 

Publications: 

Gaddafi’s Foreign Legion to Knight’s Rescue (1981)

(This article was the subject of a five-year long libel case brought by the WRP in the name of the actress Vanessa Redgrave against its author, Sean Matgamna, and John Bloxham, who had repeated some of it in a circular letter to supporters of Socialist Organiser. The libel case collapsed when the WRP imploded at the end of 1985.)

SOMETHING strange and nasty happened at the "Local Government in Crisis" conference. Gerry Healy’s so-called Workers Revolutionary Party turned up to support Ted Knight and rent and rate rises.

This article was the subject of a five-year long libel case brought by the WRP in the name of the actress Vanessa Redgrave against.....

Marxist Theory and History: 

Debating with Vladimir Derer on socialist strategy

n the early 1980s, both John Bloxam and Sean Matgamna (John O'Mahony) of Socialist Organiser (forerunner of AWL) worked closely with Vladimir Derer, who died aged 94 on 10 June 2014, and debated frequently with him on tactical and strategic issues. This debate, in early 1980, set out the underlying differences of strategy.

In the early 1980s, both John Bloxam and Sean Matgamna (John O'Mahony) of Socialist Organiser (forerunner of AWL) worked closely with Vladimir Derer, the founder and long-time secretary of the Campaign for Labour Party Democracy who died aged 94 on 10 June 2014, and debated frequently with him on tactical and strategic issues. This debate, in early 1980, set out the underlying differences of strategy.

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Marxist Theory and History: 

Pages