Features

With Orwell, Cottman and Quinto in Catalonia

Jan 8th, 2018 | By David Connolly | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, Lead

ILP Chair DAVID CONNOLLY reports on his visit to Catalonia last year to mark the 80th anniversary of George Orwell’s involvement in the Spanish Civil War.

George Orwell’s Homage to Catalonia is one of the great books of political literature of the 20th century. It records his time in Spain as a volunteer with the ILP in the first half of 1937, the political and social upheaval in Catalonia, the exhilaration of the workers’ takeover of large sections of the economy, the repression of the ILP’s sister party POUM by the government and his somewhat fraught escape to France, eventually returning to what he calls in the last page of the book, ‘the deep, deep sleep of England’.



The Movement and its Message

Jan 3rd, 2018 | By Barry Winter | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage

BARRY WINTER reviews a new book on the Labour Church, and suggests the much-forgotten movement provides an important guide on how to remake left politics in the modern age.

Huddersfield-born Labour leader, Harold Wilson famously declared that the British Labour movement owes more to Methodism than Marxism. While he was right to recognise the religious influences upon many early socialists, it would be wrong to presume this meant they were not very radical. As Paul Mason once tweeted, “If people only knew how revolutionary Methodism was!” The socialist historian, Edward Thompson would have agreed.



Boggart Hole Clough & the ILP’s Campaign for Free Speech

Jan 3rd, 2018 | By admin | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, Lead

An area of open ground in north Manchester once hosted meetings with Keir Hardie and Emmeline Pankhurst, and became the focus of a battle for political freedom. ROD PETERS tells the tale.

Boggart Hole Clough in the 1890s covered some 147 acres of rough grass, sandy slopes, fields and natural woods. The geography of the Clough is such that a cup-shaped hollow, open to the brook side, makes a natural amphitheatre in the slope, holding perhaps 30,000 people.



Freedom of The City for Edward Carpenter

Dec 20th, 2017 | By admin | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage

CHRISTOPHER OLEWICZ calls on Sheffield to correct “a historic injustice” by erecting a statue to the early ILPer and pioneer of gay rights an awarding him posthumously with the Freedom of the City.



Understanding Corbyn’s Politics

Dec 13th, 2017 | By Barry Winter | Category: Articles, Comment, Features, Frontpage, Lead

BARRY WINTER examines the political origins of Jeremy Corbyn’s politics, asking: what are its ideological roots and what is the nature of his leadership?



Under Siege: The ILP in the Interwar Years

Oct 20th, 2017 | By Matthew Brown | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, News

Despite its decline, the Independent Labour Party preserved the values of democratic socialism during the interwar years, according to ILP historian Ian Bullock in his new book, due to be published by Athabasca University Press.



Robert Blatchford, the Clarion and Socialism as a Way of Life

Oct 16th, 2017 | By admin | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, History, Lead

STEVE THOMPSON sketches a brief profile of Robert Blatchford, the founding editor of The Clarion newspaper, who campaigned for socialism as a way of life.



Cable Street Anniversary Prompts Call for Support

Oct 5th, 2017 | By Matthew Brown | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, Lead

Hope not Hate have marked the 81st anniversary of the Battle of Cable Street with a call for donations towards its current day efforts to “present a steadfast and united opposition to fascism”.

The day on 4 October 1936 when the people of the east end of London united to halt Oswald Mosley and his British Union of Fascists (BUF) marching through Stepney is a historic date in the story of the anti-fascist movement.



Fear and Hope in a Divided Country

Sep 1st, 2017 | By Matthew Brown | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, Lead

England is both an increasingly tolerant and open society and a more divided place, according to the latest ‘Fear and Hope’ survey published this week by Hope not Hate.

In its fourth survey of attitudes to race, faith, belonging and identity since 2011, the anti-extremist campaign group finds that England is more tolerant and open than it was six years ago, despite recent turbulent events such as the four terrorist attacks in the last three months, the Brexit negotiations and the Grenfell fire.



Alfred Martlew and the Richmond 16

Jul 20th, 2017 | By admin | Category: Articles, Features, Frontpage, Lead

ROS BATCHELOR examines the short life and sad death 100 years ago of an early ILPer and World War One CO who paid a heavy price for sticking to his conscience in defiance of military orders.

On 11 July 1917, a young man was found drowned in the River Ouse at Bishopthorpe, a village south of York. He was eventually identified as Alfred Martlew, a conscientious objector, whose stand in the spring of 1916, had led to his forced enlistment in the army.