KSL’s quick roundup of recent anarchist books on 19th century history, First World War syndicalism and enigmatic figure Peter The Painter.
The Red Flag of Anarchy: A History of Socialism & Anarchism in Sheffield 1874-1900
by Andy Lee
A wonderful account of Sheffield’s radical history (and of digging it out: go to research in Amsterdam and they want your anti-poll tax T-shirt for the collection!) David Nicoll features, as you’d expect. Hear him lament his inability to learn Yorkshire: ‘And when I try to talk the language of the country, when I say, “reet owd lad. How’s owd lass”, they laugh at me as if I was a Frenchman trying to talk English and say “Get out you blooming Cockney”’ [p157]. If nineteenth century anarchists seem so far away with their bicycle outings and singing revolutionary songs, does this not ring a bell? ‘We then proceeded to the station and liberally posted it with little notices, such as “Anarchy no Master”, “Revolution not Reform”, “Read Commonweal”.’ [p141, in 1893]. Get a copy!
The Enigma of Hugh Holmes Gore: Bristol’s Nineteenth Century Christian Socialist Solicitor
by Mike Richardson
AK Press/Bristol Radical History Group
Mike Richardson’s full biography of this complex figure solves his disappearance (quite a feat, both the disappearance and the solving). It also looks at his defence work for the Walsall Anarchists.
Anarchists, Syndicalists, and the First World War
by Vadim V. Damier
Black Cat Press
Translated by Malcolm Archibald and out now from Black Cat Press.
A Towering Flame : The Life & Times of ‘Peter the Painter’
Out now in English (from Dienas Grāmata who published the Latvian edition).
This article was first published in the March issue of the Kate Sharpley Library Bulletin