[Marxism] IWW and anti-imperialism
info at kersplebedeb.com
Mon Aug 15 20:01:11 MDT 2005
Rather than judge by the interview "When Race Burns Class", which is
really a discussion of the ideas in the book Settlers: Mythology of the
White Proletariat, i would suggest that one check the book itself. You
may not agree with it any more - perhaps even less - than with the
interview, but at least i am sure you will find more to mull over.
i have uploaded to my site the sections "Industrial Unionism" (which
deals with the IWW, amongst other things) and "The CIO's Integration and
Imperialist Labor Policy" (which deals with the Flint Sit-Sown Strike,
amongst other things). I would scan in more, but it is time consuming
and i've got other things to do. Perhaps later.
The texts can all be reached via my Settlers page at
http://www.kersplebedeb.com/settlers.html, but here are the direct links
if you prefer:
The CIO's Integration and Imperialist Labor Policy:
(to add fuel to the fire you ma also want to read the section on the
American Revolution at
What i think "When Race Burns Class" is more useful for is for
clarifying issues presented in Settlers. Dispelling certain mis-readings
of the book. The "settler thesis" so to speak is necessary, so far as i
can see, because it explains why things don't and didn't go further than
they did, why certain movements and organizations were defeated, why
deplorable policies took hold. It is not a moralistic tale of good
versus evil, it is a history book, albeit one from a revolutionary
Louis is right in rejecting a Manichean all-or-nothing approach, but he
is wrong in assuming that this approach is to be found in Settlers (or
at least, that's not how i read the book). However, there is a
difference between explaining why a particular organization - in this
case the IWW - had limitations and weaknesses, and sweeping these
weaknesses under the table. That just leads to a watered down
Manicheanism, in which the world does not consist of "absolute evil" and
"absolute good" but rather "absolutely evil" and "absolutely as good as
could be managed under the circumstances".
Just my two cents worth.
Louis Proyect wrote:
> Calvin wrote:
>> Obviously I was not questioning your knowledge of the I.W.W.
>> generally- I said that you were overly dismissive of J. Sakai.
>> Where does Sakai say that the Flint strike in particular was an
>> attempt to control black workers?
> In an interview at: http://www.agitatorindex.org/study/sakai.htm
> "an anarchist veteran of the autoworkers' historic 1937 Flint Sit-Down
> strike told me that the strike had been Jim Crow, that one of the
> unpublicized demands had been to keep Black workers down as only
> janitors....or out of the plants altogether."
> This is tendentious beyond belief.
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