[Marxism] Review of a Mark Lause book

Charles Brown charlesb at cncl.ci.detroit.mi.us
Fri Jul 18 13:00:33 MDT 2008

Louis Proyect

Mark Lause's Young America
Land, Labor and the Republican Community

by Louis Proyect

Book Review

Lause, Mark A.: Young America: Land, Labor and the Republican 
Community, University of Illinois Press, Urbana and Chicago, 2005 
ISBN 0-252-07230-8 (paper), ISBN 0-252-02980-1 (cloth), 240 pages

(Swans - July 31, 2006)   There is a tendency to look at American 
working people as part of the problem rather than as part of the 
solution. This was especially pronounced after the 2004 elections, 
when despairing liberals felt that "red state" voters chose George W. 
Bush against their own class interests. Oddly enough, their disgust 
with the American blue collar worker was reflected in Bertolt 
Brecht's poem The Selection, with the substitution of the word 
"liberals" for "government":

     After the uprising of the 17th June
     The Secretary of the Writers Union
     Had leaflets distributed in the Stalinallee
     Stating that the people
     Had forfeited the confidence of the government
     And could win it back only
     By redoubled efforts.
     Would it not be easier
     In that case for the government
     To dissolve the people
     And elect another?

Against this understandable tendency to blame the people, labor and 
left historians in the U.S. have worked hard to correct the record. 
Following the example of Howard Zinn, the dean of this school, they 
uncover instances of working people acting on their own class 
interests and for the interests of humanity as a whole.

CB: Wonder why,in the Marxmail disucssion,  Mark L. didn't cheer
Herbert A's thesis, after Marx, on working people as a big part of the
solution at the Civil War.

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