J. T. Murphy

Letter of Resignation

Source: New Horizons, John Lane The Bodley Head, London, 1942 (second edition), pp. 302-304.
Transcription/Markup: Brian Reid
Public Domain: Marxists Internet Archive (2008). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as your source.

May 8, 1932.


It is perfectly clear to me after yesterday’s discussion that there is no place for me in the C.P.G.B. at this stage of its history.

After delaying discussion with me on questions raised by me as far back as March 10, 1932, you hold a Political Bureau meeting to which I am not invited; you refrain from circulating the letters which had passed between the Secretariat and myself; you draft a statement as a result of the discussion at this meeting and present it to me for acceptance at the present meeting, winding up your speeches in ultimatum form. You seek to confine discussion to a paragraph in an article although I acknowledged what I considered to be its errors, much more readily than most members of the Political Bureau are prepared to do under similar circumstances. This may be your conception of how to settle differences, but it is not mine.

I was accused of “manœuvring for a platform against the Political Bureau.” The same kind of accusation was made when I differed from the Political Bureau on its estimate of the General Election. You proved to be wrong on that. It may be that you will prove to be wrong again. At any rate I am not prepared to be convinced by ultimatums. Nor am I convinced by your arguments of yesterday afternoon before the categorical demand was made. I see, as yet, no reason to depart from the line indicated in my letters. So you can put your case before the workers and I will put mine. I feel there is no alternative, for after these experiences I have not the slightest confidence in any internal discussion you may initiate.

I am sorry to part company with the party after all these years of service to it, but I decline to go about subordinating myself to a policy I do not conscientiously accept, to be silent on questions which I conscientiously deem important, and subject myself to an authority which sees in every difference of opinion which arises a Machiavellian manœuvre to deprive the Secretariat of the party of its power and prestige.

Therefore from to-day I cease to be a member of the C.P.G.B. Whatever of its policy I can continue to support I shall support to the best of my ability.

Yours truly,