Webbs on the Web bibliography

The lesser Fabians

Hobsbawm, Eric J. (1962) The lesser Fabians. Our history (28). Central Books for the History Group of the Communist Party, London.

Full text not available from this repository.


"We know that there is no truth in several myths propagated by the first official Fabian history, Edward Pease's. The Fabians did not start as a gradualist movement, but only developed into one towards the end of the l880s, largely under the influence of Sidney Webb and his 'old gang', which dominated the society thereafter. They were in no sense the pioneers of the Labour Party. On the contrary, they put their money on the 'permeation' of the Liberal Party and at certain moments sections of the imperialists and higher civil servants. They opposed the formation of the ILP, missed the opportunity of leading the movement for an independent labour party, and though they joined the Labour Representation Committee, they almost resigned from it in the early years, and paid no attention to the young Labour Party until the permeation policy had become evidently bankrupt just before 1914. Moreover, though their gift for public relations has led many people to believe in their and the Webbs' remarkable success in influencing the development of local government, education and social legislation, in fact most research shows that their influence has been very much exaggerated." 2nd para. Hobsbawm discusses the Fabians Hubert Bland, William Clarke, Graham Wallas and Sydney Olivier, including their relationships with the Webbs and Bernard Shaw.

Item Type: Book
Additional Information: 14 p. pamphlet. The full text is available at the link.
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
H Social Sciences > HX Socialism. Communism. Anarchism
J Political Science > JF Political institutions (General)
Date Deposited: 18 Jul 2017 15:10
Last Modified: 18 Jul 2017 15:11

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