Socialist Review issue

February 2017 #421

Why we defend the free movement of Labour


by Simon Guy
The world was rocked by a monumental event in January. Not the initiation of the most right wing US government in decades, but the inauguration of...
by Simon Guy
1984 hits top spot George Orwell’s classic book about a dystopian tyranny topped Amazon’s best-sellers chart shortly after members of the Trump...
by Simon Guy
Students at Seoul National University (SNU), South Korea, have taken control of a campus building for more than 100 days so far against a plan to...
by Simon Guy
Anti-fascist campaigner Esther Brunstein died last month. She was a survivor of the Holocaust. She played an active role in the struggle against...


Carlo Morelli

Theresa May is putting the end of free movement of labour at the heart of her plan for Brexit. Carlo Morelli explains why socialists and anti-racists must make defence of EU workers a priority....

Pat Clinton

Trans people face many barriers to accessing healthcare, from medics’ lack of training to funding cuts. Pat Clinton argues that access is a class issue intertwined with oppression.

Esme Choonara

In February 1917 Russian workers toppled the hated emperor, beginning a process of mass revolt that would lead just eight months later to the overthrow of the entire state machinery. Esme Choonara...

Christian Høgsbjerg

The author Richard Adams died last Christmas, prompting Christian Høgsbjerg to re-examine Adams's well-loved work about a band of rabbits on the run, Watership Down. Here Christian analyses the...

Bob Light
When John Berger died on the second day of the new year Marxism lost one of its finest thinkers and the left lost one of its most eloquent writers. Many of Berger’s obituaries have referred to him...


by Gerry Carroll
The Assembly election in Northern Ireland on 2 March will take place in the context of the rage over the energy scandal that provoked it and the divisions it has exposed. There is a lot of anger...
In my view column
by Ellen Clifford
Mental health was the focus of Theresa May’s first major speech on health, given in January. She was strong on rhetoric, expressing her drive to tackle the “burning injustice” of inadequate mental...
In perspective column
by Joseph Choonara

The prime minister’s commitment to both nationalism and neoliberalism is the worst of both worlds.

by John Newsinger

Part five of our series looks at the free speech campaigns the Wobblies waged in their efforts to organise agency workers.


by Rob Ferguson
The political terrain underlying debates about antisemitism and Zionism has shifted dramatically since 2000. This shift has been shaped by the second intifada, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and...
by Miriam Scharf
John Rose’s article may serve to begin a discussion but certainly was not a “clear perspective” as claimed by SR. John argues “the need to campaign for national dialogue between Palestinians and...
by Mark Krantz
We have President Trump appointing open antisemites to the White House, the end of the so called “solution” of two separate states for Jews and for Palestinians, the expansion of “illegal” settlement...
by Merilyn Moos
A postscript on Noel Halifax’s discussion of the attitudes of the different bits of the German left (“The First Sexual Liberation Movement”, January SR): “the left radical Kurt Hiller” fled to...
by Dermot Smyth
Michael Lavalette’s piece on Universal Basic Income (“Safety Net Without Stigma”, October SR) is spot on. And the two letters, one supporting the idea, one against (November SR), are an object lesson...


by Sheila McGregor

This collection of essays looks at revolution in the 21st century via the legacy of the Russian Revolution of 1917.

Individual contributions range from assessments of the left in Latin...

by Delia Hutchings

When the revolutionary workers of Russia seized state power in 1917, 70 percent of the population were illiterate. Yet the revolution revealed a hunger for knowledge and art, and a cultural debate...

by Josh Hollands

Our Revolution is essentially a lengthy version of the stump speech that self-proclaimed democratic socialist Bernie Sanders perfected at rallies across the country during his campaign. He...

by Maggie Falshaw

This book is a fine example of someone on a mission. In the 1970s Sheila Rowbotham found a book in the British Library called Whitman’s Ideal Democracy and other writings by Helena Born, with a...

by Jay Williams

This is an entertaining book. Hughes has a genuinely pleasing turn of phrase, for example: “The data explosion — how the cloud became a juggernaut”.

The book makes many interesting...

by Rebecca Townesend

Jeremy Greenstock dedicates his book to his wife, but could as well have dedicated it to the global anti-war movement, stating, “For Anne, who suspected long before I did that Saddam had no WMD...

by Adam Rose

It’s not often that any section of the working class suffers a defeat so crushing that the collective memory of its struggles and the living tradition of the participants is completely...

by Richard Rose

While being one of the most compelling and interesting figures around the events of the 1916 Easter Rising, Roger Casement has not always dined at the top table of Irish rebels.


by Simon Shaw

The heart of the problem, according to David Van Reybrouck, is very simple: “Our democracy is being wrecked by being limited to elections, even though elections were not invented as a democratic...

Art / Exhibitions
by Alex May

“Tripe, clogs, going to the dogs, Wigan and Blackpool tram, Brass bands, butties in yer ’ands, whippets and next door’s mam” — Victoria Wood’s ditty about a failed singer who finds success by...

by Sheila McGregor

This play, written by Maxim Gorky in 1902, was widely produced across Europe and made Gorky’s reputation as the father of socialist realist writing.

Gorky experienced the vicissitudes of...

by Jo Cardwell

Maren Ade’s film takes on modern life, gender, family and the neoliberal bullshit of the corporate world. Ines, our protagonist and hero, works as a business consultant in Bucharest.


by Lois Browne

Set against the blazing Florida glow during the height of the crack cocaine epidemic in the US, Moonlight documents the turbulent life of Chiron, a young black man. We see him at three pivotal...

by Tristan Ayela Beardmore

Judging by the opening track you might think that Run The Jewels spent the two years since their last album in anger-management classes. Compared to the in-your-face opening line of their previous...

by Anne Alexander

What is Hezbollah? Its disciplined and well-armed fighters are an important player in key regional conflicts, working in alliance with Syrian and Iranian states. Its media and telecommunications...

New Nigerians
by Tokunbo Oke

New Nigerians is a rather timely, cynical satire about the state of Nigerian politics. The main protagonist, Greatness Ogholi, is the presidential candidate of the People’s Revolutionary Party. We...