Socialist Review issue

November 2016 #418

States of Exclusion


by Sally Campbell
As we go to press, thousands of refugees are being herded out of the Calais “Jungle” camp and transported to other parts of France. Amid...
by Simon Guy
A terrifying choice between two unpopular options confronts voters in the US this month. When Barack Obama was elected in 2008 there were high...
by Eileen Short
A summit meeting in London last month to plan next steps against the Housing and Planning Act drew 250 people in a serious and determined mood. They...
by Ellisiv Rognlien and Andy Zebrowski
The Polish government is terrified of women. Its efforts to introduce a total abortion ban have created a massive backlash with hundreds of thousands...


Phil Marfleet

The nation state with distinct borders is a recent idea, tied up with the development of capitalism. It is workers and the poor who suffer at its edges, writes Phil Marfleet.

Héctor Sierra

Héctor Sierra explains a tumultuous year in the Spanish state as the maneuverings of the right in the Socialist Party forced out leader Pedro Sánchez for wanting to work with left wing Podemos....

Sally Campbell

Sally Campbell spoke to artist Tim Sanders and historian John Newsinger about creating a graphic representation of Russia 1917.

Leila al-Shami

Max van Lingen spoke to author Leila al-Shami about collecting Syrian voices from the grassroots for her book, Burning Country.


In my view column
by Anna Blake
The National Libraries, Museums and Galleries demonstration on 5 November will bring together campaigns in defence of cultural services that have been springing up across the country. Outside my...
by Alan Gibson
Jeremy Corbyn’s refusal to bow to the demand for tougher immigration controls is a rebuttal, not just of the calls made by right wing Labour MPs such as Rachel Reeves, Chuka Umunna, Stephen Kinnock...
In perspective column
by Joseph Choonara

The Tory party's pronouncements on refugees and "hard Brexit" fuel racism, but the political picture is more complex than a simple rightward shift.

In my view column
by Tom Kay
In the aftermath of the Brexit vote, 1,000 people met in central London to discuss “post-Brexit alliance building”. The idea — that the only chance to defeat the Tories is to form a “progressive...
by Dave Gibson

American novelist, journalist and socialist Jack London died 100 years ago. Dave Gibson outlines his passionate activism for workers' rights and his political novels, as well as the contradictions...

by John Newsinger

Part two of our series on the Wobblies looks at the bosses' attempt to have Bill Haywood framed and executed.


by Susan Rosenthal
In his otherwise excellent article, “Black Lives Matter” (October SR), Brian Richardson repeats a fallacy promoted by the American mass media — that the “more than 19 million white Americans” who “...
by Rosemarie Nuenning
Michael Lavalette’s article on universal basic income (October SR) is welcome and I share his basic assumptions. I would like to add some points. A debate about UBI has been raging in Germany for...
by David Paenson
Socialists should completely reject the concept of UBI for one main basic reason: it takes class struggle out of capitalism. Instead of fighting for higher wages, against privatisation of the NHS...
by John Curtis
Laura Miles’s article “How we fight for transgender liberation” (September SR) showed that while great strides have been made in terms of LGBT+ — rights transphobia is still very much a problem. The...
by Max van Lingen
I have to disagree with John Rose (October SR) when he writes that in her biography of Alexander Shlyapnikov Barbara C Allen doesn’t ask why he didn’t join forces with the Left Opposition. Allen...


by Brian Richardson

Gary Younge is one of the few fearless journalists who regularly cut against the grain in the mainstream media. He has recently returned to Britain, the country of his birth, after living and...

by Maggie Falshaw

Laura Beers’ biography of Ellen Wilkinson, a prominent socialist in the early 20th century, is packed with detail. It is written in a lively style and gives a real sense of her as a person.

by Glyn Robbins

David Madden and Peter Marcuse have successfully done three important things.

First, as the title suggests, they’ve made a clear case for housing to be higher up the mainstream political...

by Adam Rose

We are going through the sixth wave of mass extinction in the 3.8 billion year history of life on earth. Some 25 to 40 percent of all species are expected to disappear by 2050. And, like the more...

by Mark Krantz

Why has there has been no real recovery in the world economy since the crash of 2007?

After what is now almost a decade, still there has been no return to pre-crash levels of economic...

by Ayesha Saleem

This book exposes the networks that exist between big business, media, politicians and the role of the black economic elite in collaboratively supporting and propping up apartheid.

The book...

by Tokunbo Oke

Adam Mayer has rendered a great service to the workers’ movement in Nigeria and internationally. He shows that rather than being a foreign imposition, Marxism, a political guide to action, was...

by John Parrington

Margaret Atwood’s new novel is based on Shakespeare’s The Tempest. The main protagonist is Felix Phillips, former artistic director of the acclaimed Makeshiweg Theatre Festival, a kind of Canadian...

by Martin Empson

The execution of Charles I in January 1649 terrified the kings and queens of Europe. Civil wars weren’t uncommon, but never before had one become quite so revolutionary. Particularly worrying was...

by Lina Nicolli

Lina Nicolli recalls a memorable preformance by Dario Fo, the radical Italian theatre maker and Nobel prize-winning playwright, who died last month. His excoriating farces, such as Accidental...

Art / Exhibitions
by Kate Abildgaard

This is a timely exhibition of art from second wave feminism, which emerged in the 1960s. By the 1970s artists were using photography, performance and installations as tools for activism. Women’s...

by Amy Leather

This is a hard hitting, often quick witted and thought-provoking production. A play with the title “Oil” interested me. That it managed to span the arrival of kerosene in the 1800s all the way to...

by Lois Browne

One Night In Miami captures the extraordinary night of 24 February 1964, after Cassius Clay — soon to be known as Muhammad Ali — won his first heavyweight world title.

To celebrate, Clay...

by Rebecca Townsend

This is a great film for socialists with an interest in art. Written, produced, directed and narrated by Margy Kinmonth, the film focuses on the artistic avant-garde that flourished in advance of...

by Ken Olende

In 1947 London, Seretse Khama (David Oyelowo), an African law student, meets Ruth Williams (Rosamund Pike), a clerk with Lloyds of London. Starting from a shared love of jazz the two soon fall in...

by Jay Williams

As part of the BBC’s Black and British season, running throughout November, historian David Olusoga presents this four-part documentary on the black presence in Britain.

The programme...