Socialist Review issue

April 2016 #412

Storm Clouds Gather Over Europe


by Sally Campbell
The Tory party meltdown over the past few weeks has been an edifying sight. Not since John Major’s ill-fated premiership in the 1990s have the...
by Simon Assaf
The Syrian regime’s capture of Palmyra, the historic Syrian city taken by ISIS last summer, has been hailed as a significant victory and a...
by Mirfat Sulaiman
In March 2015 troops of Yemen’s ex-dictator Ali Abdullah Saleh and allied Houthi militias took over the city of Sanaa. President Hadi fled to Aden...


Volkhard Mosler and Martin Haller

In the German state elections on 13 March in Saxony Anhalt, Baden Württemberg and Rhineland Palatinate the racist Alternative for Germany (AfD) jumped from nothing to become the second or third...

Joseph Choonara

The EU referendum is deepening the cracks in the Tory Party. Joseph Choonara looks at how the refugee question and EU austerity are converging into a crisis for our ruling class.

Eileen Short

The Tory government's Housing and Planning Bill, currently making its way through parliament, is a disaster for tenants. Housing activist Eileen Short looks at the potential consequences of the...

Kieran Allen

Kieran Allen's book 1916 examines the legacy of the Easter Rising. He spoke to Socialist Review about revolutionary Irish politics then and now.

Ken Olende

Recent controversies over food, hairstyles and music have highlighted the complexities of race and representation. Ken Olende unpacks some of the issues surrounding the notion of "cultural...


by Ellen Clifford
If the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Labour Party suggested that politics can be unpredictable, the resignation of Iain Duncan Smith (IDS) in a self-proclaimed stand for disabled people...
by Carlo Morelli
It looks like a racing certainty that the SNP will regain a majority in the Scottish Parliament after the Scottish elections in May 2016. Recent opinion polls suggest 70 of the 129 seats could be...
by Dave Gibson
Barry Hines was born into a mining family in Hoyland Common, a pit village near Barnsley, in 1939. He qualified as a teacher and taught in Barnsley secondary schools before becoming a full-time...
by Michael Lavalette
Last month saw yet another football crisis. Former England international and Sunderland player Adam Johnson was found guilty of grooming and engaging in sexual activity with a child. Johnson had...


by Simon Hester
Simon Assaf’s glowing review of The Egyptians by Jack Shenker (March SR) is spot on. Shenker is totally committed and reports from the thick of the struggle. He brilliantly captures the shifting...
by Tony Phillips
There was an important omission in Chris Fuller’s fascinating piece on resistance to conscription during the First World War (“Forced to fight their war”, March SR). Chris concludes by stating that...
by Dermot Smyth
Tom Kay’s “The united front in theory and practice” (March SR) was excellent and timely. United front work is not merely vital for revolutionaries, but equal in status to party-building. Without...
by Richard Staines
The labour movement has revived and the time has arrived to build a front against racism, Islamophobia and all the other associated forces of repression perpetrated by this monstrous government....


by Rebecca Townesend

This 1947 play by French playwright Jean Genet comes to London’s West End in a new version for the Jamie Lloyd Company. The all-star cast features Uzo Aduba (best known for her role in US TV...

by Sarah Bates

There are 11 million private renters in the UK. Staggeringly high rents, low interest rates and historically low social housing provision mean that vast numbers of working class people are unable...

by Kevin McCaighy

The mythic status of union organiser, songwriter and class warrior Joe Hill has tended to obscure the truth about the man himself and the times in which he lived. It is to the great credit of the...

by Mark Farmer

David Harvey is a Marxist geographer whose writing has spanned five decades. The Ways of the World is intended to be a lightning tour of this work, comprising a series of articles written by...

by Roddy Slorach

John Foot has done a valuable service by translating into English his new book on Franco Basaglia and radical Italian psychiatry. The history of this movement has been unjustly neglected in...

by Tony Phillips

Given that Ireland was officially part of the UK until 1922 and that many British unions organised in Ireland, not to mention that large numbers of Irish workers lived in Britain, you might assume...

by Alan Gibson

A US survey in April last year found that 58 percent of Americans believe that torture under certain circumstances can be justified. Henry Giroux is rightly horrified. He argues that a combination...

Gasmasks and Garston
by Dave Ramsden

This is an account of a childhood in Garston, Liverpool, before, during and after the Second World War. There is much for social historians — just as there is in hundreds of similar books filling...

by Aiden Lawler

The global refugee crisis is at its worst since the Second World War, but it’s easy to see it only as a few images of boats in the Mediterranean Sea and Syrians in life jackets landing on a Greek...

by John Godber

John Godber’s plays about working class people have been popular for many years. After attending a secondary modern school and becoming a drama teacher, he ran Hull Truck Theatre Company for 20...

Art / Exhibitions
by Tim Sneller

The core of the East London Group of artists were East End workers — “a warehouseman, a house decorator, three deck hands waiting for a ship, and a haddock smoker”. They met in classes at the...

Art / Exhibitions
by Antony Hamilton

Muhammad Ali is one of the greatest boxers of all time. He won the world heavyweight championship four times — a record he still holds. This exhibition takes you through his life, centring on his...

by Gareth Jenkins

In December 1930 the great Soviet film-maker, Sergei Eistenstein, arrived in Mexico.

He had already made three extraordinary films, Strike (1924), Battleship Potemkin (1925) and October (...

by Kate Hunter

You’ll have heard the facts. The UK’s 1,000 richest individuals own more than the poorest 40 percent. In the US 0.1 percent own as much as the bottom 90 percent. This film, a documentary inspired...

by Brian Richardson

Legal dramas are invariably bedevilled by overacting and wild scenarios which bear little comparison with what really goes on in the criminal justice system. These misgivings aside, I was...

by Esme Choonara

Sherpa is the fascinating story of an inspiring labour dispute, set against the breathtaking scenery of the world’s highest mountain.

Film-maker Jennifer Peedom and her team were on Everest...

Five Things Listing

Dir: Akira Kurosawa
Out: 1 April

Kurosawa’s late masterpiece reimagines King Lear as a historical epic set in 16th-century Japan. This dazzling 4K restoration...