Scottish Labour History Society Newsletter

December 2020

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British Library Sound Archive Resource
The British Library has over 6.5 million recordings of speech, music and other material, providing a rich resource for scholars and researchers. Amongst the collections is Sisterhood and After (The Women’s Liberation Oral History Project), which includes interviews with historian Sheila Rowbotham, playwright Michelene Wandor, academics Juliet Mitchell, Ann Oakley, Cynthia Cockburn and Lynne Segal, barrister Vera Baird, journalist Bea Campbell, and psychotherapist Susie Orbach. More details at…;

Willie Gallacher Film
SLHS member Alex Cathcart has made a film, A Lion Rose in Paisley, about the life and times of Willie Gallacher, the former Communist MP. It is available to view on the Renfrewshire Council cultural website, REN TV, at

New Article on CPGB History
‘The early British Communist leaders: a prosopographical exploration’ by John McIlroy & Alan Campbell, analyses the foundation cadre of the party, discusses the leading architects, frequently forgotten or only briefly mentioned in earlier accounts, and explores in human terms the difficulties of forming a revolutionary British leadership in the early 1920s. See…

Socialist History Society Events
* Tuesday 1 December, 7pm: The Political Life and Times of Claudia Jones: Organised to launch a new Communist Party publication, charting the remarkable life and times of Claudia Jones, this event is hosted by the CP Anti Racist, Anti Fascist Commission. To register go to…
* Monday, 7 December, 7pm: Book Launch: Letters from England, 1895: Eleanor Marx and Edward Aveling; editors Stephen Williams and Tony Chandler, translator Francis King, and Professor Mary Davis discuss the making of the book and its contribution to understandings of the intellectual and personal relationships within the Marx-Engels circle. These previously  untranslated dispatches from London to a Russian journal by Eleanor Marx and Edward Aveling offer insight into their lives and politics, and the Victorian England in which they wrote. To register for the event, visit… Published by Lawrence & Wishart, more details of the book are available at…

Free Access to Historical Materialism Articles
Following this year’s virtual Historical Materialism conference thirty HM articles are available free of charge throughout December at

Raymond Williams and Mid-C19 English Fiction
The September Raymond Williams Society blog features a recording of Williams delivering, in 1977, his well-known lecture on 'Forms of English Fiction in 1848':…

Isaac & Tamara Deutscher Memorial Prize
The American academic John Bellamy Foster, professor of sociology at the University of Oregon, is the winner of this year’s Isaac & Tamara Deutscher Memorial Prize for his latest book, The Return of Nature: Socialism and Ecology, which uncovers the “long history of efforts to unite issues of social justice and environmental sustainability”, from Darwin, Marx, Engels and William Morris on. More details about Foster and the book at 

New Blog on ‘Sanny’ Sloan
A new blog by Esther Davies, the great-granddaughter of former South Ayrshire Labour MP, Alexander Sloan, has been added to the SLHS website at… A booklet by Ms Davies, about Sloan’s life and times, will be available to purchase via the website.