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Beatrice Webb, reformist (May 1943)

James, C. L. R. (1943) Beatrice Webb, reformist (May 1943). New International, 9 (5). pp. 133-134.

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A critical obituary from the Marxist perspective, claiming that Beatrice Webb not only promoted socialism by gradual reforms, but also was consciously anti-Marxist. "In 1885, in one of her earliest writings, she denounced Marx’s economic theory and the doctrine of class struggle and revolution." After marrying Sidney, their conscientious, thorough research informed many books of worldwide influence, including Lenin, and particularly the British labour movement. "They sincerely hated the obvious evils of capitalism ... [but] while they guided the working class in a reformist direction, positively they built an intellectual barrier against the powerful Marxist current on the continent. They spent time, money and influence in founding the London School of Economics for the special purpose of combating Marxism." Their admiration for Stalinism and Soviet bureaucracy in Communism, a New Civilization? displayed "... ignorance, dishonesty and with an ill-concealed malice, the book attacked Trotskyism".

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Signed A.A.B. Transcribed & marked up by Damon Maxwell in 2009. Part of the Encyclopedia of Trotskyism - Marxists’ Internet Archive.
Subjects: C Auxiliary Sciences of History > CT Biography
H Social Sciences > HX Socialism. Communism. Anarchism
Date Deposited: 09 May 2017 15:43
Last Modified: 09 May 2017 15:45

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