The international links of the Australian far right in the Cold War
Evan Smith discusses how, between the mid-1960s and the early 1990s, the far
right in Australia attempted to place itself within an international
movement that combined white supremacism, anti-communism, and extreme
nationalism. In the 1960s and 1970s, some groups, such as the Australian
League of Rights and the National Front of Australia, were heavily
influenced by the British far right, extolling the virtues of the British
Empire and monarchism, while other groups, such as the National Socialist
Party of Australia and the National Alliance, were more closely aligned with
white supremacist groups in the United States. In the 1980s, new groups,
such as National Action and the Australian Nationalist Movement, attempted
to take influence from both the UK and US, while increasingly inspired by
the Third Positionism of the European far right. These far right groups all
expressed ideological (and sometimes practical) solidarity with white
supremacist regimes in southern Africa, viewing these states as the
frontline of anti-communism and multiracial democracy. This chapter shows
how Australian white nationalism developed in reaction to both the domestic
political and social context and international trends in the era of the Cold
War and decolonization.
Waiting for the revolution is a volume of essays examining the diverse currents of British left-wing politics from 1956 to the present day. The book is designed to complement the previous volume, Against the grain: The far left in Britain from 1956, bringing together young and established academics and writers to discuss the realignments and fissures that maintain leftist politics into the twenty-first century. The two books endeavor to historicise the British left, detailing but also seeking to understand the diverse currents that comprise ‘the far left’. Their objective is less to intervene in on-going issues relevant to the left and politics more generally, and more to uncover and explore the traditions and issues that have preoccupied leftist groups, activists and struggles. To this end, the book will appeal to scholars and anyone interested in British politics. It serves as an introduction to the far-left, providing concise overviews of organisations, social movements and campaigns. So, where the first volume examined the questions of anti-racism, gender politics and gay rights, volume two explores anti-nuclear and anti-apartheid struggles alongside introductions to Militant and the Revolutionary Communist Party.
This book explores the role of the far left in British history from the mid-1950s until the present. It highlights the impact made by the far left on British politics and society. The book first looks at particular strands of the far left in Britain since the 1950s. It then looks at various issues and social movements such as Trotskyism, anti-revisionism and anarchism, that the left engaged (or did not engage) with, such as women's liberation, gay liberation, anti-colonialism, anti-racism and anti-fascism. The book focuses on how the wider British left, in the Labour Party and amongst the intelligentsia, encountered Trotskyism between the 1930s and 1960s. The Socialist Party (SP) and the Socialist Workers Party (SWP) traditions have proven to be the most durable and high profile of all of Britain's competing Trotskyist tendencies. Their opponents in the International Marxist Group and the Socialist Labour League/Workers' Revolutionary Party (SLL/WRP) each met limited success and influence in the labour movement and wider social movements. The SWP and Militant/SP outlived the 'official' Communist Party of Great Britain and from the collapse of the Soviet Union to the present day have continued to influence labour movement and wider politics, albeit episodically. The book is concerned with providing an overview of their development, dating from the end of the Second World War to the onset of the 2009 economic crisis.
The term 'the left' in British politics is open to different interpretations. One of the constant features of the British far left is its oscillation between periods of unbridled enthusiasm and periods of profound pessimism, both of which may be seen in the left's analysis of the prevailing socio-economic and political climate. Since the dissolution of the Communist Party of Great Britain (CPGB) in 1991, a flourish of studies emerged to examine aspects of communist history. The trajectory of those who left the CPGB varied. Divorcing themselves from party politics, E. P. Thompson and John Saville started The New Reasoner in 1957, which alongside Stuart Hall's Universities and Left Review became the focal point of the first wave of the New Left. This chapter also presents some key concepts discussed in this book.