Communist University 2017: Who is speaking and when

A list of speakers and current timetable

A PDF of the timetable is available here.

Communist University is the annual summer school of the Communist Party of Great Britain, it is jointly sponsored this year by Labour Party Marxists. Naturally on the 100th anniversary of the October Revolution there is a particular emphasis on the Bolsheviks, Russia and the nature of the Stalin regime.

Communist University is different to the run-of-the-mill schools put on by other left groups. Plenty of time is allocated for contributions from the floor. Needless to say, there are no one minute time limits. Moreover, critical thinking is positively encouraged, as can be seen by our impressive list of speakers.

Moshé Machover: Born in Tel Aviv in 1936, he has been active in and written extensively on Middle Eastern politics. In 1962 he co-founded the Israeli Socialist Organisation, Matzpen. He was a lecturer in mathematics at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and, having moved to London in 1968, he was reader in mathematical logic at King’s College London and then professor of philosophy at the University of London. Together with Shimon Tzabar and others, comrade Machover established the Israeli Revolutionary Action Committee Abroad. He is a regular writer for the Weekly Worker and has recently had published a collection of essays: Israelis and Palestinians (Chicago 2012).

Hillel Ticktin: He is emeritus professor of Marxist studies at the University of Glasgow and edited the journal Critique for 34 years. Originating as an anti-Stalinist journal of Soviet studies, Critique’s initial aim was to analyse the empirical reality of Stalinism, but since the collapse of the Soviet Union it has become a more general journal of socialist theory. Comrade Ticktin’s articles have featured regularly in the Weekly Worker.

Yassamine Mather: Acting editor of Critique, she is an Iranian socialist who joined the Fedayeen Minority. She worked in Kurdistan, becoming editor of the organisation’s student monthly journal Jahan. She was on the coordinating committee of Workers Left Unity Iran and has been a central figure in Hands Off the People of Iran. At Glasgow University she was deputy director of the Centre for the Study of Socialist Theory and Movements.

August H Nimtz Jr: Professor of political science and African-American and African studies at the University of Minnesota. He is the author of a number of books on the Marxist tradition, focusing in particular on the contribution of Marx and Engels to the fight for democracy. See www.bookdepository.com/author/August-Nimtz.

Bob Arnott: A medical archaeologist, who was director of the Institute of Medical Law at the University of Birmingham until 2008, he is also a fellow of the Royal Historical Society. His writings have ranged from disease and medicine in the Aegean and Anatolian Bronze Ages to campaigning articles on the provision of healthcare.

Marc Mulholland: Fellow in modern history at Oxford University, his research interests concern Ireland since the famine, political thought since the French Revolution and the history of socialism. He is the author of a number of books, including Northern Ireland: a very short introduction (Oxford 2003).

Chris Knight: Research fellow at the department of anthropology, University College London, his books include Blood relations: menstruation and the origins of culture (Yale 1991). He has developed a groundbreaking theory of human culture. His latest work is an attempt to grapple with the emergence of language. He regularly contributes to the Weekly Worker.

Camilla Power: A social anthropologist and senior lecturer at the University of East London, she combines Darwinian and behavioural ecology with hunter-gatherer ethnography. Her fieldwork has been with Hadza hunter-gatherers in Tanzania, where she researched gender ritual.

Neil Davidson: A former member of the Socialist Workers Party, his works include The origins of Scottish nationhood, the Deutscher Prize winner Discovering the Scottish revolution, and How revolutionary were the bourgeois revolutions? - the latter being the subject of his CU talk.

Michael Roberts: Working in the City of London as an economist, he has closely observed the machinations of the global financial system from the dragon’s den. He regularly discusses this from a Marxist perspective on his blog, The next recession (https://thenextrecession.wordpress.com).

Tony Greenstein: A political activist for all his adult life. His main areas of work have been Palestine solidarity, anti-racism and anti-fascism. Tony is a founding member of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign and Jews for Boycotting Israeli Goods. Currently suspended from the Labour Party under the rightwing ‘Anti-Zionism equals anti-Semitism’ campaign, he has recently authored A history of fighting fascism in Brighton and the South Coast.

Another regular Weekly Worker contributor, he also features in The essentials of philosophy and ethics (London 2006).

Jack Conrad: The founder editor of The Leninist, first published in November 1981, he is also a long-standing member of the CPB Provisional Central Committee. He has contributed numerous articles to the Weekly Worker and written a number of books and pamphlets - the latest being the second edition of Fantastic reality, a study of Marxism and the politics of religion.

Kevin Bean: Lecturer at the Institute of Irish Studies - University of Liverpool. He has contributed to a number of books, including chapters in The politics of fear? Provisionalism, loyalism and the ‘new politics’ of Northern Ireland and Civil society, the state and conflict transformation, where he discusses the politics of the nationalist community in the Six Counties.

Mike Macnair: A member of the CPGB’s PCC and author of Revolutionary strategy (London 2008), he is currently working on a second edition. Based at the University of Oxford, his political speciality is Marxist theory, its application to understanding law as a social and historical phenomenon, and the ‘limits of law’.

Anne McShane: Has a long history of involvement in the workers’ movement, both in Britain and Ireland. She has stood in a number of elections in Britain, for the CPGB and the Socialist Alliance. Today she is active in Cork, where she is a member of the United Left Alliance and continues to struggle for a united revolutionary party in Ireland.

Paul Demarty: Is a member of the CPGB’s PCC. He is a regular writer for the Weekly Worker. He has a particular interest in the media and new technology.