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Plebs League

Letters: The Plebs Leaguer and Marx

Confession from Winifred Horrabin

    We have received the following letter from the Honorary Secretary of the Plebs League referring to our criticism in the April “Socialist Standard” :—

The Editor,
     “The Socialist Standard.”
                              April 11th, 1926.

Dear Comrade,

 ‘‘The Socialist Standard,” ever up to date, criticises in its April issue a review of mine that appeared in the “Sunday Worker” in November of last year and in criticising what I wrote launches a bitter personal attack on me, calling me “a mentally indolent superior person,” finishing up by asking me why I "pose as a Marxian.”

 May I be allowed to answer?

Working Class "Education": Plebs Leaguer Puts Marx Right

 Winifred Horrabin i
s Honorary Secretary of the Plebs League. She reviewed in the “Sunday Worker” (15 Nov., 1925) "A Worker Looks at Economics," written by Mark Starr, a fellow member of the League. After warning the workers to beware of Capitalist explanations of economic facts and figures she writes:—

       “Don’t let us expect that when our employers pay us 5s. for 10s. worth of our labour power that their explanation of that odd 5s. is going to be the same as ours.”

Book Review: The latest criticism of Karl Marx

 We have been asked to deal with a publication called "The Socialist’s Bible." It is sold by the "Industrial League and Council," which is one of the many bodies aiming at a reconciliation between the employed and employing classes.

Editorial: Confusionists in Conflict

In the February issue of the “Labour Monthly” the Editor, R. Palme Dutt, adversely criticises the Plebs' League in a review of their text-book on “Modern Imperialism.” He says that the Plebs’ teaching is merely a “substitute for Marxism,” with the “essence of Marx left out”; that their “class consciousness” is abstract,” leading only to “Labour Party vagueness” ; that “Promising young men are sent to the Labour College for two years and come back budding snobs and trade union officials.”

He summarises the difference between the Plebs’ interpretation of Marxism and the real thing thus:—

    “Marxism interprets history and politics in. terms of the class struggle. The British-American substitute for Marxism interprets history and politics in the terms of economics (an occupation favoured by many bourgeois historians).”

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