Chris Harman


In Brief

(November 1973)

From International Socialism (1st series), No.64, Mid-November 1973, p.32.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for the Marxists’ Internet Archive.

PLUTO PRESS [1*] remind us that still in print, and not selling as well as they ought to be, are four works that should be on the shelves of every reader of International Socialism.

For years, socialists would scour secondhand bookshops for Paul Frölich’s classic biography of Rosa Luxemburg. It provides an unparalleled introduction, not only to the life and ideas of one of the really great Marxist leaders, but also to the history of socialism in the period up to the end of World War One. Although the Pluto edition, at £1.50, might seem a bit expensive, it is in fact a bargain.

Alfred Rosmer’s account of the early years of the international communist movement, Lenin’s Moscow (£1.30) provides a fascinating refutation of most of the myths popularly spread about the Russian Revolution and the early years of the Bolshevik government. It is a damning reply to all those who see the present rulers of Russia as following in Lenin’s footsteps, by telling what it was really like in the early revolutionary years.

Pluto are offering at cut price by mail order, two books obtainable elsewhere at higher prices. Bukharin’s Imperialism (72p including postage), which is reviewed elsewhere in this issue, is in some ways easier to follow than Lenin’s book on the same subject and provides many insights into modern capitalism that are still relevant today.

Finally, Rose Levine-Meyer’s biography of her first husband, Leviné (£1.40 including postage) gives a graphic inside view of the German revolution of 1918-1919. It is one of the most readable such accounts anyone is ever going to find and contains important extracts from the various speeches made by Levine before he was executed by the counter-revolution.


1*. Pluto Press, Unit 10 Spencer Court, 7 Chalcot Road, London NW1 8LH.

Last updated on 16 November 2009