Category Archives: Repression

Hongci, Xu: “No Wall Too High: One Man’s Extraordinary Escape From Mao’s Infamous Labour Camps”.

Xu Hongci met Chairman Mao in June of 1953 when he happily celebrated the presence of his great leader. By the time Mao had passed away in 1976, with the blood of millions of people on his hands, Hongci was exiled … Continue reading

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Trotsky, Leon: “Terrorism And Communism”.

Published in 1920, this short polemic from Trotsky is a reply to Karl Kautsky’s stinging critique of the Bolsheviks in the first years after their infamous coup d’etat. In practice, it was also a warning to the Mensheviks. Kautsky, considered … Continue reading

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E.H. Carr: “The Russian Revolution from Lenin to Stalin 1917-1929”.

Carr devoted thirty years of his life to writing the fourteen volume, two million words and arguably the definitive history of twentieth century Russia. This is his magnum opus distilled into two hundred pages. Carr, like Hobsbawn, had a leftist … Continue reading

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Sam Harris’s inexplicable defence of Israel

Harris thinks well in certain areas and has interesting guests on his accessible “Waking Up” Podcast. He is good at criticising all religions. After recently deciding to go back to one of the first episodes of his “Waking Up” podcasts … Continue reading

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Axworthy, Michael: “Revolutionary Iran. A History Of The Islamist Republic”.

Axworthy has written a scholarly history of twentieth-century Iran, doing justice to a country with a complex history. So much detail is on offer that I occasionally had to digest certain sections and chapters multiple times. For anyone interested in political … Continue reading

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Orwell, George: “Animal Farm”

Orwell’s “Animal Farm” is still relevant. Living in a free and democratic country makes it all too facile to ignore the fact that millions of people and vast parts of our planet continue to be ruled with tyranny and repression. Contemplate the … Continue reading

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