I Believed - The Autobiography of a Former British Communist Hardcover – 1952
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I Believed - the Autobiography of a Former British Communist
Top Customer Reviews
Hyde writes well, though there are times which drag on a little bit, and the style is engaging and keeps one reading throughout. One feels his ideological fervour early on, and one understands the attractions of communism. But what would have been an interesting avenue to explore is the unquestioning and blind dedication that is a common feature of most of Marxism's adherents.
Hyde was clearly an intelligent man, but it sounds as if he only started really questioning the internal and external contradictions of Marxism after many years of service to the cause. It is that blind acceptance of something that is "rational" and yet not "reasonable" which is one of the most chilling aspects. Communism is defined by the maxim: "The ends justify the means". The end in question is a soviet super state, covering the world's land mass, and involving all human beings. The view is that communism is the ideal state of mankind, and so regardless of how you get there it will be worth it. The methods involved in getting there will be justified. But what if those ends are never met? What if it is not certain that those ends will ever be met? Can the means be justified then? Can the suffering of millions be justified if it is not even certain that this perfect reality will ever be fully realised?
These are questions and doubts that die-hard comrades of communists brush aside due to their utter surety of success. Their unwavering belief (and it is a belief, mind you) that the Revolution will come and all men will be equal and in harmony.Read more ›
The book chronicles his journey from Marxist fanatic to Catholic convert and anti-communist campaigner. In passing, it captures the spirit both of the times and of any self-styled revolutionary party. Dated in some respects at first sight, the fact is that the Marxist fanaticism that Hyde ends by condemning is unfortunately alive and well in the guise of Political Correctness. Hence the author's story is still relevent today - especially as the global credit crunch encourages a new generation to look for alternatives to capitalism. Hyde shows, from direct personal experience, why Marxism is no such alternative.An easy read and well worth a couple of quid if you're interested in history, politics or social science.