Tom Wetzel reviews the sections concentrating on the Russian Revolution in For Worker's Power, a collection of Maurice Brinton's writings.
I was attracted to radical politics in the late 1960s/early '70s when I was in my twenties. Most of the people who were drawn to serious revolutionary politics back then ended up in Leninist organizations of some sort, if only for a time. Third World revolutions were one influence.
Debates between Trotskyists and libertarians about the Russian Revolution rarely break new ground. But this debate from the 1970s raised many thought-provoking questions that still await satisfactory answers even today.
FACTORY COMMITTEES AND THE DICTATORSHIP OF THE PROLETARIAT (1918) by Chris Goodey (followed by debate with Maurice Brinton)
Solidarity's polemic aimed at Big Flame, following an exchange around the events of the Fisher Bendix occupation.
Big Flame (henceforth abbreviated B.F.) is a Merseyside group which publishes occasional broadsheets relating to working class struggles. Some of their publications have been excellent – we have even used some of their material – but others re pretty confused. They have never made any clear statements about their political beliefs, largely because as a group they do not appear to have any.
A second diary by Maurice Brinton describing some experiences in Portugal during 1976.
April 19, 1976, a Radio Televisao Portugues crew, in a van, is doing a programme on "the vision of socialism". It is stopping in the street, at factory gates, in markets, talking to people and recording their replies. It's a tight fit inside: seven people and lots of equipment.
A diary by Maurice Brinton describing some experiences in Portugal during August 1975.
Struggles in Alentejo
Evora is at the heart of the Alentejo, and the Alentejo is the heartland of the agrarian revolution. The latifundia are vast and for decades have been neglected. The soil is dry and hard, and upon it grow olives and cork. Wheat and maize would also grow readily if it were ploughed and watered. But this would interfere with the joys of hunting,
Edited by David Goodway
Oakland: AK Press, 2004.
I never met nor had any direct contact with Maurice Brinton; however, it's fair to say that without him and the Solidarity group, there might not be a Red & Black Notes. If that sounds overly dramatic, let me justify it.
Among thinking socialists there is a deep malaise. The purpose of this article is to explore the roots of this malaise, and to show that they lie in the transformations of class society itself. Over the last few decades - and in many different areas - established society has itself brought about the number of the things that the revolutionaries of yesterday were demanding. This has happened in relation to economic attitudes, in relation to certain forms of social organisation, and in relation to various aspects of the personal and sexual revolutions. When this adaptation in fact benefits established society, it is legitimate to refer to it as "recuperation". This article seeks to start a discussion on the limits of recuperation.