Old Left

Old Left

The Old Left is a term used to describe classic 1930s-era Western Leninists, Trotskyists and Stalinists to differentiate them from the Marxists of the New Left who emerged between the 1960s and the 1970s. [See article by C. Wright Mills, the originater of the terms "Old" and "New" left, in his article from 1960: " [http://www.marxists.org/subject/humanism/mills-c-wright/letter-new-left.htm Letter to the New Left] "] The New Left developed as a separate, typically anti-Stalinist tendency from the developing Marxist-Leninist New Communist Movement. The Old Left and New Communist Movement tended to emphasise the importance of party organization and class consciousness over a cultural agenda, and to organize in the then-mass-based industrial sectors of society.

The Old Left experienced a massive decline with the combined effect of several anti-communist ventures on the part of governments, including such things as the Palmer Raids and the First Red Scare in the 1920s, and the Second Red Scare in the McCarthy era. The Communist Party USA was tremendously weakened by this, as well as problems of the line within the party and by Khrushchev's denunciation of Stalin in the Secret Speech to the Twentieth Congress of the CPSU. The ensuing Sino-Soviet and Sino-Albanian splits further divided the Old Left forces. By the late 1950s many far-left and communist Old Left people were gone, in jail, had become liberals, or had joined the emerging anti-revisionist groups.

References and footnotes

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Old Left — Old Left, the leftist movement, predominantly Marxist in ideology, that represented the radical element in politics before the emergence of the New Left: »The Old Left organized and proselyted, playing its part in bringing about the American… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Left-right politics — or the Left right political spectrum is a common way of classifying political positions, political ideologies, or political parties along a one dimensional political spectrum.The perspective of Left vs. Right is an imprecise, broad, dialectical… …   Wikipedia

  • Left-wing politics — Left wing redirects here. For the term used in sports, see Winger (sports). Leftism redirects here. For the album by Leftfield, see Leftism (album). Left of Center redirects here. For the comedy group, see Liberal Democrats. Part of the Politics… …   Wikipedia

  • Old Leftist — Old Leftist, a member of the Old Left …   Useful english dictionary

  • Old Vanderburgh County Courthouse — U.S. National Register of Historic Places …   Wikipedia

  • Old maid (card game) — Old Maid redirects here. For other uses, see Old Maid (disambiguation). Old Maid Origin England Type Going out game Players 2 8 Cards 49, 51, or 53 Play Clockwise Random chance …   Wikipedia

  • Old St Paul's Cathedral — Old St Paul s redirects here. For other uses, see Old St. Paul s. Old St Paul s Cathedral Digital reconstruction giving an impression of Old St Paul s during the Middle Ages. The image is based on a model of the Cathedral in the Museum of London …   Wikipedia

  • Left-handedness — is the preference for the left hand over the right for everyday activities such as writing. Most left handed people favor their right hand for some activities, and many exhibit some degree of ambidexterity. [… …   Wikipedia

  • Old Parliament House, Canberra — Old Parliament House as viewed from the front …   Wikipedia

  • Old Pueblo Trolley — The Old Pueblo Trolley at its University of Arizona terminus Overview Type Heritage Streetcar …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.