Posts Tagged ‘History’

On the Guardian obituary for Artyom Sergeyev

February 1, 2008

Bob Gould and Ed Lewis

The Sydney Morning Herald on February 1 carries a lengthy obituary for Artyom Sergeyev, son of Artem Sergeyev, a Russian exile from Tsarist repression after the 1905 revolution who was a working class militant in Brisbane before returning to Russia after the 1917 Bolshevik revolution, where he became a member of the Bolshevik Central Committee.


Bob Gould’s holiday reading

January 26, 2008

Being an energetic bookseller, the holiday period is one of my better ones for business, but I get a bit of time on public holidays to do a bit of reading rather than the routine marking that I do at the till.


War on the waterfront

May 16, 2007

Trade unions, war on the waterfront, a pretty good time for dialectics

Bob Gould

Green Left discussion list, May 16, 2007

In their desperation at their failure to make any headway in the opinion polls, the ideologues of the Liberal-National Coalition are getting wackier by the second, as are the hysterical pundits of the ruling class in the media. Peter Costello even redbaited Kevin Rudd the other day in an extremely eccentric way, asserting that Rudd’s use of the word dialectic had a Marxist flavour.


The DSP and the Tree of Knowledge

October 6, 2006

Green Left Weekly discussion list, October 6, 2006

I’ve just noticed NSW Socialist Alliance convenor Duroyan Fertl’s post,without comment, of a media report celebrating the death of the Tree of Knowledge at Barcaldine.


The mountain trembled and brought forth a postmodernist Tory mouse

September 6, 2006

The washup of Howard’s History Summit

The following was written for the Sydney Morning Herald, with my usual lack of success. The further outcome of the History Summit, which was reflected in The Australian and the NCC journal Newsweekly, puts an even more interesting twist on events.


John Howard’s history summit

August 20, 2006

The Tory war on objective narrative history

On August 17-18 in Canberra there will be a much ballyhooed history summit organised by the Tory federal government. This event is being presented as an attempt to exert pressure on Labor state governments to reinstate narrative history in secondary school curricula in place of the confusing, rather postmodern curricula that absorb history as part of a kind of social studies in seven of the eight states and territories governed by Labor.

The Bulletin’s 100 most influential Australians. A view from the left

July 1, 2006

By Bob Gould
Workers Online, June 2006

A list of the 100 most influential Australians was launched by Peter Costello at Machiavelli’s Restaurant in Sydney on June 27 with predictable razzmatazz. Surprise, surprise, global citizen or global buccaneer, depending on your point of view, Rupert Murdoch, was nominated by The Bulletin at the top of the list.


Sydney Morning Herald’s 175th anniversary

April 19, 2006

An alternative view

Bob Gould

As a man of the left with an interest in history, on April 19 I read the Sydney Morning Herald‘s 175th anniversary supplement with great interest.


Response to Sol Salbe

June 16, 2005

On John Percy’s memoir of the DSP and Resistance

Green Left Weekly discussion list, June 16, 2005

Sol Salbe’s critique of John Percy’s book has some value, as far as it goes. He details a number of obvious errors.


John Percy’s lonely morsel

June 16, 2005

A critical review of A History of the DSP and Resistance

Sol Salbe

Let me start by putting my cards down. I regard myself as a personal friend of both John Percy and his strongest critics like Bob Gould. I’m also a former member of the political current described in John Percy’s book. Uncommon as it may sound I drifted gradually away from the then SWP never needing major political differences or a personal conflict with any of the other participants. I was even consulted briefly during the writing process. These days I have some political differences but they are not of a factional nature, if anything Green Left Weekly supporters have backed me on the two-states for Palestine issue against some other members of the Socialist Alliance.


Three snapshots of the Vietnam antiwar movement

May 30, 2005

In Australia between 1965 and 1970

Helen Palmer


Bob Gould

In his History of the Democratic Socialist Party and Resistance, John Percy crudely portrays the socialist magazine, Outlook, as being isolated from the antiwar movement of the 1960s.


Shades of red, 1920

May 20, 2005

Nancy Mills

The 30th October, 1920, in Sydney, was a clear, cool Spring day. In a small hall above Fay’s bookshop, at the corner of Pitt and Liverpool Streets, twenty-six people gathered together. They represented the two main socialist groups, and their purpose was to amalgamate to establish the Australian Communist party.


Barry Sheppard’s memoir

April 2, 2005

An interested, critical review of The Party

Bob Gould

The Party. The Socialist Workers Party, 1960-1988. Volume 1: The Sixties, A Political Memoir, Resistance Books, Sydney, 2005

This is a book of considerable interest on the history of the revolutionary socialist movement, and it’s of particular interest to me because Barry Sheppard and I crossed paths at an important time. As well, the US SWP, of which he was a leading figure, had some influence on my political development and a lot of influence on the evolution of the revolutionary socialist movement in Australia.


John Percy’s strange memoir

April 2, 2005

Bob Gould

1. John Percy’s weird autobiography, and memoir of Jim Percy, masquerading as a history of the DSP

2. John Percy’s invincible ignorance of Australian labour history

3. Crudifying details of the 1956 upheaval in the Communist movement

4. John Percy’s industrial philosopher’s stone

A history of the Democratic Socialist Party and Resistance, 1965-72, John Percy, Resistance Books, Sydney, 2005

1. John Percy’s weird autobiography, and memoir of Jim Percy, masquerading as a history of the DSP

John Percy’s book, A History of the Democratic Socialist Party and Resistance, is a boring, self-interested curiosity. It is extremely derivative of other, better written, more objective and interesting books. It bears a striking resemblance to Denis Freney’s equally self-serving autobiography, A Map of Days. Like Denis Freney’s book, in this one the two heroes rarely make major mistakes and all the left opponents and enemies of John Percy and his brother, Jim Percy, emerge in the narrative as knaves, fools or both.


The timeless history of Jim McIlroy

December 1, 2004

The DSP school of history

The Origins of the Australian Labor Party, by Jim McIlroy, Resistance Publications, 2004

Bob Gould

The genial Jim McIlroy gives the obligatory historical lecture at DSP Christmas-New Year gatherings. This pamphlet is the lecture he gave last year. I don’t like being too hard on McIlroy, as he’s a pleasant enough bloke, unlike some others in the DSP leadership, but his historical lectures and pamphlets have become doggedly and predictably routine. They contain only a certain amount of history and the real point of these historical pamphlets is to reassert DSP dogma about the Labor Party.