Book Reviews

British trade unions' militant traditions

Steve Kelly reviews "In Defence of Labour" by Rob Sewell of Socialist Appeal in the UK. This book can be purchased from Wellred Books in the UK here or from the US here.

I have recently read 'In the Cause of Labour' (a history of British trade unionism) by Rob Sewell. I must say it is an excellent read, in fact one of the best books I have read in many years. The book covers the history of British trade unionism from its early beginnings in the 1800s right through almost to the present day.

It is written from a rank and file and Marxist perspective. It covers all the major disputes through the last 200 years, as well as the corruption and bureaucracy that took place in certain unions, but also shows that walking away and trying to form a new union is never the answer. As socialists we must fight the union bureaucracy as well as taking on the right wing within the Labour party. I personally enjoyed this book immensely and it enlightened me greatly on rank and file working class history, solidarity and struggles which must continue today. It is essential reading. Encourage your colleagues in work places and union branches to buy it. The book can be obtained from WellRed Books - the best £14.99 you will ever spend.- and at the special price of £8 we’re practically robbing ourselves.

The British labour movement is the oldest in the world. More than two hundred years ago, the pioneers of the movement created illegal revolutionary trade unions in the face of the most terrible violence and repression. read about our struggles and prepare for the future.

This book is aimed especially at class-conscious workers who are seeking to escape from the ills of the capitalist system, that has embroiled the world in a quagmire of wars, poverty and suffering. This history of trade unions is particularly relevant at the present time. After a long period of stagnation, the fresh winds of the class struggle are beginning to blow.

 

This book can be purchased from Wellred Books in the UK here or from the US here.

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