A Novel of Class Struggle & Romance
Publisher: Against The Current
Date Written: 01/07/2013
Year Published: 2013
Resource Type: Article
Cx Number: CX20069
A review of 'The Gleaming Archway' by A.M. Stephen.
Originally published in 1929 and recently re-released by Iconoclassic Books, this novel provides a window into a lost world of class struggle and labor strife, with some passionate romance along the way. In so doing, it is a revealing portrait of a left that had a significant impact in the daily culture of the working class and yet viewed the world in strikingly different ways from contemporary anti-capitalist activists.
As Ian McKay has documented in his magisterial history of the early 20th century Canadian left, Reasoning Otherwise, this was a period when socialist ideas had real influence amongst a significant segment of the population. Large segments of the working class believed that the end of capitalism was very rapidly approaching. And as Peter Campbell has written, hundreds would show up at large venues like Vancouvers Empress Theatre to hear radical speakers preach about the evils of capitalism.