Liverpool Public Meeting



As the post-war accumulation cycle was coming to an end, capitalist states of the West and the East alike were facing a crisis of stagnation. They responded in the only way they could: by extracting more and more value out of the working class and reducing its share of national product. In practice this meant layoffs, unemployment, deskilling, reduced job security, lower wages and higher prices for basic necessities.

The working class did not take this lying down. A wave of protests, strikes and occupations spread across the industrial centres of the world, with some workers beginning to pose the social question. The 1970s gave birth to a plethora of organisations – including in Britain, where the ideas of the Communist Left were revived for the first time since the 1920s.

Alas, as harsh state repression was meted out and the initial enthusiasm died down, the class was diverted into political dead-ends, and the trade unions re-established their control. By the 1980s the capitalist class found a temporary solution: massive restructuring of production, as manufacturing was exported to the low-wage periphery of countries like China, changing the composition of and disorganising the class for decades.

Join us for a screening of two documentaries on class struggle in 1970s Italy and Poland, and a discussion on what we can learn from that decade and how internationalists should relate to future struggles to come.

When: Monday, 17 February 2020, at 6pm

Where: Next to Nowhere, Liverpool, L1 4HY

Communist Workers' Organisation