Histomat: Adventures in Historical Materialism

'Historical materialism is the theory of the proletarian revolution.' Georg Lukács

Monday, November 12, 2007

Deutscher on the importance of class struggle

'On both sides of the great divide, a few ruthless and half-witted oligarchies – capitalist oligarchies here, bureaucratic oligarchies there – hold all the power and take all the decisions, obfuscate the minds and throttle the wills of the nations... The peoples have been silent too long. We can and we must get back to class struggle. It's all dignity. We may and we must restore meaning to the great ideas. The conflicting and partly conflicting ideas by which mankind is still living. The ideas of liberalism, democracy and communism. Yes, communism.'

Isaac Deutscher, 1965.

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2 Comments:

At 11:23 pm, Anonymous a very public sociologist said...

As beautiful as his three volume biography of Trotsky is, one wonders whether history would have been better off if he hadn't written them. After all, according to a certain Tony Blair, it were these books that inspired him to enter politics. Apparently.

 
At 10:08 am, Blogger Snowball said...

Yes, the Blair-Deutscher connection has been well covered on Histomat. However, for every 'Blair' that Deutscher's trilogy has inspired there must be about 100 people who have been inspired to take Trotsky and Trotskyism more seriously and sympathetically.

If one draws up a balance sheet, history is certainly better off overall for Deutscher's contribution as a Marxist writer. Though obviously if you are Iraqi and have just had your home and family bombed one might understand if you see things differently...

 

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