'The Left in Britain': A Reply

David Widgery


The quote which prefaces The Left in Britain 1956-68, so scathingly reviewed by Ken Coates in last year's Socialist Register, was the key to my intention. It is William Morris's prophetic remark, 'Men fight and lose that battle, and then the thing they fought for comes about in spite of their defeat, and when it comes, turns out not what they meant and other men have to fight for what they meant under another name.' It was an attempt to trace backward some of those battles, some of those defeats and some inadvertent victories, undertaken in the hope it might illuminate the present dilemmas of the Left.

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