A Memoir of Life in Struggle
Revolutionary Activism in the 1950s & 60s: A Memoir, Volume One, Canada 1955-1965
Publisher: Against the Current
Date Written: 01/11/2015
Year Published: 2015
Resource Type: Article
Cx Number: CX21302
Book review of Ernest Tate's Revolutionary Activism in the 1950s & 60s: A Memoir, Volume One, Canada 1955-1965.
To back up a bit to 1956, that year saw a crisis in Communist Parties throughout the world. In the beginning of the year, Soviet Premier Khrushchev gave his famous speech on the crimes of Stalin, which rocked world Stalinism. About six months later came the Hungarian revolution, and the spectacle of Soviet tanks crushing this great worker-led uprising for socialist democracy.
These events led to a crisis in the Labour Progressive Party (LPP), as the Canadian CP was called then, a crisis "from which it would never recover," Ernie reports. This crisis of the LPP led many to leave the party and opened a process of regroupment in which the Trotskyists played a part.
One particularly interesting episode involved Ernie himself, combining this regroupment activity with work in the CCF. Ernie was assigned to a CCF local and became active in its Toronto area youth group, soon becoming its organizer, while another SEL member, Alan Harris, became chairman. (Alan, originally from England, would later return there - Caroline Lund and I worked with Alan and his companion Connie when we were assigned to be SWP representatives to the Fourth International twice, once in Brussels and later in Paris.)