The Brecht Form, a âplace for people working for social justice, equality and a new culture,â features a lecture by Dr. Gerald Horne, âThe Counter-Revolution of 1776?â
Live event tomorrow:
Double Book Party
Distinguished Professor Gerald Horneâs latest publications: Fighting In Paradise: Labor Unions, Racism, and Communists in the Making of Modern Hawaii (University of Hawaii Press) and Negro Comrades of the Crown: African Americans and the British Empire Fight the U.S. Before Emancipation (NYU Press)
Friday, January 13th. 6â8pm
25 Broadway, 7th floor. Directions: One block
from the 4, 5 Bowling Green Stop, and the R Rector Hall Stop.
Reception and book signing to follow book talk.
Fighting In Paradise
Powerful labor movements played a critical role in shaping modern Hawaii, beginning in the 1930s, when International Longshore and Warehousemenâs Union (ILWU) representatives were dispatched to the islands to organize plantation and dock laborers. They were stunned by the feudal conditions they found in Hawaii, where the majority of workers–Hawaiian, Japanese, Chinese, and Filipino in origin–were routinely subjected to repression and racism at the hands of white bosses.
The wartime civil liberties crackdown brought union organizing to a halt; but as the war wound down, Hawaii workersâ frustrations boiled over, leading to an explosive success in the forming of unions. During the 1950s, just as the ILWU began a series of successful strikes and organizing drives, the union came under McCarthyite attacks and persecution. In the midst of these allegations, Hawaiiâs bid for statehood was being challenged by powerful voices in Washington who claimed that admitting Hawaii to the union would be tantamount to giving the Kremlin two votes in the U.S. Senate, while Jim Crow advocates worried that Hawaiiâs representatives would be enthusiastic supporters of pro-civil rights legislation.
Hawaiiâs extensive social welfare system and the continuing power of unions to shape the state politically are a direct result of those troubled times. Based on exhaustive archival research in Hawaii, California, Washington, and elsewhere, Gerald Horneâs gripping story of Hawaii workersâ struggle to unionize reads like a suspense novel as it details for the first time how radicalism and racism helped shape Hawaii in the twentieth century.
Negro Comrades of the Crown
While it is well known that more Africans fought on behalf of the British than with the successful patriots of the American Revolution, Gerald Horne reveals in his latest work of historical recovery that after 1776, Africans and African-Americans continued to collaborate with Great Britain against the United States in battles big and small until the Civil War.
Many African Americans viewed Britain, an early advocate of abolitionism and emancipator of its own slaves, as a powerful ally in their resistance to slavery in the Americas. This allegiance was far-reaching, from the Caribbean to outposts in North America to Canada. In turn, the British welcomed and actively recruited both fugitive and free African Americans, arming them and employing them in military engagements throughout the Atlantic World, as the British sought to maintain a foothold in the Americas following the Revolution.
In this path-breaking book, Horne rewrites the history of slave resistance by placing it for the first time in the context of military and diplomatic wrangling between Britain and the United States. Painstakingly researched and full of revelations, Negro Comrades of the Crown is among the first book-length studies to highlight the Atlantic origins of the Civil War, and the active role played by African Americans within these external factors that led to it.