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TitleSocialism before Sanders [electronic resource] : The 1930s Moment from Romance to Revisionism / by Jake Altman
ImprintCham : Springer International Publishing : Imprint: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019
Edition 1st ed. 2019
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Descript IX, 225 p. 1 illus. online resource


The early years of the twentieth century are often thought of as socialism’s first heyday in the United States, when the Socialist Party won elections across the country and Eugene Debs ran for president from a prison cell, winning more than 900,000 votes. Less well-known is the socialist revival of the 1930s. Radicalized by the contradiction of crushing poverty and unimaginable wealth that existed side by side during the Great Depression, socialists built institutions, organized the unemployed, extended aid to the labor movement, developed local political movements, and built networks that would remain active in the struggle against injustice throughout the twentieth century. Jake Altman brings this overlooked moment in the history of the American left into focus, highlighting the leadership of women, the development of the Highlander Folk School and Soviet House, and the shift from revolutionary rhetoric to pragmatic reform by the close of the decade. As another socialist revival takes shape today, this book lays the groundwork for a more nuanced history of the movement in the United States


1. Introduction -- 2. Prologue: The Promise of Revival -- 3. Radical Incubators: New York City and the Union Theological Seminary -- 4. The Revolutionary Policy Committee -- 5. Fruits of the Socialist Revival -- 6. Their Party, Their Power: Socialist Women in the 1930s -- 7. While the Men Played Revolution -- 8. The Great Transition: Channeling "A Mighty River" -- 9. Epilogue: Norman Thomas Nostalgia

United States-History Labor-History Social history World politics US History. Labor History. Social History. Political History.


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