Socialist Books is proud to announce that our second publication is Lessons of October, by Leon Trotsky. This book opens with “We met with success in the October revolution, but the October revolution has met with little success in our press” – on the centenary of the Russian revolution, Socialist Books argues that the importance of the Russian revolution has only grown. You can order Lessons of October here, and receive your copy when it is returned from the printers on 26 September.
The Russian revolution of 1917 removed the brutal tsarist dictatorship and saw workers and peasants take charge of their destiny. The impact was felt around the world, inspiring a wave of revolutionary movements throughout Europe and beyond.
While the new workers’ state successfully defended itself from the invading armies, bent on snuffing out workers’ rule, the western revolutionary movements tragically failed and Russia was left isolated.
In Lessons of October, Leon Trotsky – together with Lenin a leader of the revolution – sought to draw out why the Russian revolution had succeeded, while other revolutionary moments had been missed. In particular, Trotsky looks at the role of the Bolshevik party and offers an insightful and frank examination of the difficulties and successes of developing a political programme offering a way forwards in the midst of the tumultuous and fast-moving events of 1917.
Writing to aid the fight for international socialism, Lessons of October provoked a series of attacks from the developing bureaucracy around Stalin, whose past mistakes Trotsky was exploring. Lessons of October is essential reading to understand the real history of the Bolsheviks and the October revolution, as well as the first-hand experience vital for the fight for socialism today.
Socialism 2017 will bring together working class fighters, trade unionists and youth and student activists, anti-cuts campaigners, those who want to find out about socialism and Marxism, and people who want to change the world, for a weekend of discussion and debate on the alternative to capitalist crisis.
Rally speakers will include From Militant to the Socialist Party author Peter Taaffe, Labour MP and Corbyn supporter Ian Mearns, US Socialist Alternative councillor Kshama Sawant, Irish TD Paul Murphy and many more throughout the weekend.
You can find out more about Socialism 2017, and book tickets, over on their website.
Socialist Books will have a stall open throughout the Socialism 2017 weekend, and there will be a chance to pick up our publications alongside a wide selection of books available from Left Books.
Just two weeks before the general election a new book, From Militant to the Socialist Party, will be released. It tracks developments from the Blairite takeover of Labour to the first rumblings of the world economic crisis of 2007-08, and is the sequel to The Rise of Militant.
It is an extremely timely release with people heading to the polls in June. Only by clearly putting forward a radical anti-austerity programme will Jeremy Corbyn be able to lead Labour to victory in this election. His clear call for voters to elect a Labour Party that “is standing up for working people to improve the lives of all” was a good start. Author Peter Taaffe will be speaking, and there will be a chance to ask questions, buy your copy and get it signed.
Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church, 235 Shaftesbury Avenue, WC2H 8EP
From Militant to the Socialist Party covers developments from the Blairite takeover of Labour to the first rumblings of the world economic crisis of 2007-08, and is the sequel to The Rise of Militant. In the aftermath of the collapse of the Stalinist regimes, capitalism’s representatives proclaimed ‘the end of history’. But the struggles of workers and young people continued. From the Liverpool Dockers’ strike to the mass movements against the invasion of Iraq, this book records the fightback and highlights the lessons of these movements for today.
As Blair and New Labour implemented neo-liberal policies, the fight for working-class political representation was, and is, a fundamental battle charted out here. As right-wing trade union leaders preached partnership with the bosses, trade union militants showed that a fighting strategy was possible.
This book is not written from the point of view of the sidelines, but by an active participant. From Militant to the Socialist Party offers unique insight into how Marxists organised and the programme and strategy put forward at key stages of the struggle. The crucial discussions and debate among socialists as to the best way forward are explored, to provide key lessons for those who want to build support for socialist ideas today.
About the Author
Peter Taaffe is the former editor of Militant newspaper, and is the general secretary of the Socialist Party. He was a founding member of the Committee for a Workers’ International, which now organises in over 40 countries, on every continent. As well as playing an active role in the struggles charted in this book, Peter is the author of several other books, including the Rise of Militant, Liverpool a City that Dared to Fight, Cuba: Socialism and Democracy, and Marxism in Today’s World.