Donny Gluckstein, author of the fascinating A People’s History of the Second World War (Pluto, 2012) has been reviewed by Ian Birchall on the London Socialist Historians Group blog. Birchall says a number of lovely things about the book before offering up some healthy criticism, to which Donny has replied at the end of the article.
The exchange covers some of the book’s perceived weaknesses, at least from the reviewer’s perspective, including the whole concept of a people’s war; the omission of various Trotskyist groups, particularly in the French case; and the lack of discussion about a number of countries’ unique experiences. They’re all valid points, and both the review and Donny’s response are well thought out. Why not have a read and see what you think…? At the end you’ll still definitely want to buy the book, so fear not! – the purchase details are found below…
To view the piece, click on this link.
Resistance Versus Empire
Fascinating history of the Second World War as fought ‘from below’ by anti-fascist militias, who worked both with and against the allied powers.
“The Second World War is so thoroughly surrounded by myth that it is hard to grasp its real character. Gluckstein offers a new interpretation, portraying 1939-45 as two parallel wars: one waged by the Great Powers among themselves, the other by the peoples against fascism. Refreshingly avoiding a conventional narrative approach, he offers new insights that provide a powerful antidote to historical mythology.” – Alex Callinicos, author of Imperialism and Global Political Economy (2009)
“Rigorously structuring his analysis around the two central themes of popular resistance and inter-imperialist rivalry, Gluckstein makes an indispensable contribution to understanding the reality of the conflict in all its complexity.” – Neil Davidson, Senior Research Fellow, University of Strathclyde and author of Discovering the Scottish Revolution