[Marxism] clarifications re Gitlin, etc

Mark Lause MLause at cinci.rr.com
Mon May 31 17:09:44 MDT 2004

In any event, if anyone needs to consult Gitlins views on historiography
to understand why his position is wrong, they probably shouldn't bother.

And, if they do, this writer--a big fan of Zinn and a historian
myself--would suggest NOT accepting joe dubovy's view of historians.  I
assume by "C.R. James," he means "C.L.R. James, the Trotskyist.  Joe
groups him with former CP-ers, E.P. Thompson and Eric J. Hobsbawm, old
CPers, and adds Woodward (who I don't think was anywhere near the
organized Left) and, Gerda Lerner, whose clan included the hard-working
tutors of Dan Quayle.  Odd damned mix to start with....

Joe asserts that these are "historians who have no sense of class, but
would rather eliminate the overwhelming impact of class throughout  all
of human history."  A generation of our best historians owe much to
Thompson's MAKING OF THE ENGLISH WORKING CLASS. (An odd title, btw, for
a guy that sought to eliminate class and class consciousness, eh?)  He,
James and Hobsbawm were outstanding in their work, though the latter may
have moved right in his old age (I can't recall).  Woodward made some
very essential points at crucial junctures in the history of the civil
rights movement, by not obscuring many of the class questions it posed.
How he put them in a group with Lerner is a wonderment. 

Mark L.

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