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Children of the Revolution: Communist Childhood in Cold War Britain [Paperback]

Gillian Slovo , Phil Cohen
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

30 April 1997
This is a record of the experiences of children of Communist Party parents brought up in 1950s Britain. They grew up in a unique micro-environment dominated by a faith in the world that was semi-religious, based on hope rather than reason. Through a set of interviews, Phil Cohen dissects the value system that dominated these families. He explores how being communist made many children feel isolated from their school mates, and how they were often made to feel secondary to political activity. This generation went onto experience the political and cultural excitement of the 1960s, often coming into conflict with parents who were, fundamentally, conservative. They wanted to change the world, but not to reproduce the Soviet Union. Many of them now hold influential positions, and in this book they discuss how their childhoods have affected their current attitudes. Interviews are conducted with: Michael Rosen, Hywel Francis, Alexi Sayle, Martin Jones, Jackie Kaye, Martin Kettle, Carole Woddis, Anne Kane, Jude Bloomfield, Pat Devine, Mike Power and Nina Temple. Phil Cohen is the author of "It Ain't Half Racist Mum" and "Tobacco: Face the Facts".

Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Lawrence & Wishart Ltd (30 April 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 085315841X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0853158417
  • Product Dimensions: 21.3 x 13.7 x 1.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 351,531 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
From the day in August 1949 that my parents named me after Phil Piratin, who was then a Communist MP, I was probably fated to produce a book like this. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting account of growing up an outsider 18 April 2000
By A Customer
This is an interesting book. It suffers some what from lack of structure but that is to some extent a reflection of the methodology chosen which is personal accounts of growing up as children of Communist Party members. The most interesting aspects for me are the way in which it exposes how hypocritcal and self deluding people can be and also the effect for children of growing up as outsiders from society as a result of the choices their parents had made. What also comes through however is the profound way many of these children have benefited in adult life from the critical framework of a Marxist perspective. It is also interesting to me the comments on the Stalinist structures of the Communist party and how profoundly flawed they are and yet left wing groups still seek to self impose these structures instead of recognising that the left ought to be the place for honest debate.
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