By Nigel Copsey
Anti-fascism has lengthy been some of the most energetic and dynamic parts of radical protest and direct motion. but it really is a space of fight and renowned resistance that continues to be principally unexplored via historians, sociologists and political scientists.
Fully revised and up to date from its past variation, this e-book maintains to supply the definitive account of anti-fascism in Britain from its roots within the Thirties competition to Oswald Mosley and the British Union of Fascists, to the road demonstrations and on-line campaigns of the twenty-first century. the writer attracts on a magnificent variety of assets together with respectable executive, police and safeguard providers files, the writings and reminiscences of activists themselves, and the courses and propaganda of anti-fascist teams and their opponents.
The ebook strains the ideological, tactical and organisational evolution of anti-fascist teams and explores their usually complex relationships with the mainstream and radical left, in addition to assessing their effectiveness in battling the intense right.
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Additional info for Anti-Fascism in Britain
Elliot (Men's Origins of Anti-Fascism, 1923-35 31 Co-op Guild), H. Adams (Building Trade Workers) and Professor H. Levy agreeing to serve on the initial Committee. In due course, they were joined by the support of Lord Marley, James Maxton, Fenner Brockway, Ellen Wilkinson, Dorothy Woodman, Harry Pollitt and Leah Manning (President of the National Union of Teachers). 91 An internal CPGB memorandum dated 13 August, reveals how central the Hyde Park counter-demonstration was to the CPGB's strategy of breaking the Labour Party's ban on the United Front.
Given the composition of the audience, the dramatic events at Olympia were set to make front-page headlines. 7 7 Mosley claimed victory over the 'Reds', but leading politicians, establishment figures and the press were generally shocked at the brutality of the Blackshirts and subsequently condemned the disturbances. Notwithstanding a vocal minority from the Conservative right wing who rallied to the defence of Mosley, reaction to Olympia was far from positive and confirmed the extent to which, even in the depths of economic depression, the British establishment remained attached to liberal-democratic procedures and values.
121 A further factor was the failure of the CPGB to develop an offensive struggle against 'fascism' on the widest possible front. Anti-fascist counter-demonstrations in 1934 had been primarily 'defensive', triggered by announced BUF activities. Mobilisations had been particularly significant when a high profile visit by Mosley was given public notice, sparking the creation of local united front anti-fascist committees. However, once a counter-demonstration had been organised, activity often lapsed.