Council Communists (US organization)

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In 1934 a group of left communists within the IWW joined with a dissident faction of the Proletarian Party to form the United Workers Party. The group soon changed its name to Groups of Council Communists or simply the Council Communists.[1]

Originally based in Chicago, the group's main activity was producing its journal International Council Correspondence, which was called Living Marxism when the group transferred to New York in 1938 and New Essays in its final issues in 1943. The group published important articles by Paul Mattick, Anton Pannekoek, Karl Korsch and the first English translation of Rosa Luxemburgs Marxism or Leninism. Its most important original work may have been The Inevitability of Communism by Paul Mattick, the first book length critique of Sidney Hooks Karl Marx: a revolutionary interpretation. Hook thought the work important enough to attempt to get it published by a mainstream publisher.[2]

The periodical, which was originally produced with voluntary labor, increased readership inversely to the growth of membership in the organization. The journal gained readers as the group lost members. Shortly after the entry of the US into the Second World War interest in radicalism began to fade. When the cost of producing the journal became too expensive to accommodate its circulation the group was dissolved and the periodical folded.[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Paul Mattick "New Essays" in Joseph R. Conlin ed. The American radical press Westport, Connecticut; Greenwood Press p.360
  2. ^ Christopher Phelps "Historical introduction" in Sidney Hook Toward an understanding of Karl Marx. Expanded edition Amherst, New York, Prometheus Books
  3. ^ Paul Mattick "New Essays" in Joseph R. Conlin ed. The American radical press Westport, Connecticut; Greenwood Press p.360

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