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International Socialism, Autumn 1994




From International Socialism 2:64, Autumn 1994.
Copyright © International Socialism.
Copied with thanks from the International Socialism Archive.
Marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for ETOL.


ISLAMIC FUNDAMENTALISM is rapidly emerging as the ideology that Western politicians and media pundits most like to hate. The kind of abuse once reserved for ‘Communism’ is now directed at the Islamic movements which threatens to destabilise key areas of Western influence in the Middle East and beyond. But the campaign against Islamism has found allies on the left among those fearful that it threatens an irrationalist, even fascist, backlash.

Chris Harman charts a careful course through the contradictions of Islamism, revealing its class roots and arguing that when the Islamists are in opposition the socialist attitude should be ‘with the state never, with Islamism sometimes’. He goes on to show in which circumstances the Islamists challenge the establishment.

IRISH SOCIETY is at a fateful juncture, both North and South of the border. Kieran Allen looks at the break up of traditional institutions and the rise of the class struggle in the South and at the impasse which faces the British, Unionists and the Republicans in the North. He claims that socialists are better placed than at any time in the last 25 years.

RUSSIAN HISTORY and the contemporary crisis of Russian society are the subject of two of this issue’s book reviews – Rob Ferguson looks at Donny Gluckstein’s life of Bukharin and Mike Haynes reviews What About the Workers?, and attempt to give a socialist perspective on the transition to the market. Other reviews look at Sylvia Pankhurst’s life and Bookwatch examines South Africa’s history of struggle.

CULTURAL DEBATE has been sparked by two recent articles. Charlie Hore’s Jazz – a People’s Music?, published in International Socialism 61, has prompted three replies while Gareth Jenkins’s review of a history of the 20th century novel in International Socialism 62 has drawn a defence of modernism from Chris Nineham.

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