[OPE-L] Amiel Melburn Trust Internet Archive (AMTIA)

From: glevy@PRATT.EDU
Date: Sun Oct 22 2006 - 20:20:48 EDT

The Barry Amiel & Norman Melburn Trust

Important Website Launch
Amiel Melburn Trust Internet Archive (AMTIA)

Growing the Tree of Knowledge on line


The Archive has been created to provide information and learning
resources for people who are interested in the world today and the
history of socialism.  It features six valuable sources:

1.      Universities and Left Review 1957-59.  The publication of ULR
marked an important moment in the development of a serious British
social democratic and Marxist tradition. Born out of the ferment from
the Suez Crisis, the Hungarian Revolution and the 20th Congress of the
Soviet Communist Party, ULR articles examine issues with a fresh,
enquiring approach and commitment to objectivity and frankness. Fifty
years later, people interested in social change and history will find
ULR a real inspiration and spur to further creative thought.

2.      New Reasoner 1957-59.  The archive houses every issue of NR in a
format which enables readers and researchers to find key words and
topics. The 'new' in New Reasoner denoted a truly new beginning.  The
earlier periodical, The Reasoner, had been published in 1956 by members
of the British Communist Party (CPGB) seeking to engage members and
leaders of the CPGB in full and frank debate about critical issues
facing the international communist movement.  As sincere communists and
committed Marxists they strove to keep within the bounds of democratic
centralism, as it had been practised by the British party. Their attempt
failed, however, and The Reasoner's  editorial team left the CPGB.
Their decision to publish New Reasoner was evidence of their continuing
commitment to Marxism and international socialism.

3.      Marxism Today 1980-1991.  Marxism Today was launched by the
British communist party leadership after they had compelled the party
members who produced The Reasoner to leave the party in order to
continue to think independently about Marxism.  Edited by James Klugmann
Marxism Today was an official CPGB publication intended to meet the need
to re-think the first principles of socialism, communism and Marxism in
the second half of the 20th century.  AMTIA has archived those issues of
MT  which appeared under the editorship of Martin Jacques.  Jacques was
a very different editor than Klugmann and was able to take advantage of
the strong currents of Euro-communism affecting the British party.
Researchers will be able to follow iconoclastic debates about
Thatcherism and key issues in cultural history.

4.      Our History.  AMTIA will give people access to publications by
the Communist History Group and its successor the Socialist History
Society. These deal with issues in historiography and real historical
events.  The Communist History Group included eminent historians like
Eric Hobsbawm, Christopher Hill, Rodney Hilton and Edward Thompson as
well as a host of keen local historians who did history in their spare
time.  Its pamphlets and journal will enable current students of history
to see how historical traditions are made.

5.      Miscellaneous Pamphlets and Articles.  AMTIA asked friends and
contacts to make contributions to the archive.  We have been given
articles, conference papers, chapters of books, to put up on the archive
for instant access.  These provide people with ways into controversial
topics-old and new!

6.      Reading Guides.  Written by experts in their field in social and
natural science, the guides provide a short summary of the current state
of knowledge and thinking about a particular topic, as well as a list of
accessible reading.  The guides will enable people to do their own
in-depth research and make up their own minds about critical issues.
The Archive will keep the guides updated with information about the most
recent important articles, books and websites.  More topics will also be
added.  There are currently a handful of reading guides which are being
added to about:  global warming/environment; Thatcherism and Blairism;
techno science.

AMTIA is a growing website.  It is also user-friendly.  We will continue
to expand its learning and information resources.  We also have plans to
enable users to comment on its contents and suggest useful additions.

About the Trust:

The Trust was founded in 1980 by Norman Melburn and named for his friend
and fellow Marxist, the lawyer Barry Amiel. Both men are now
commemorated in the name of the Trust, following Norman Melburn's death
in 1991.

The general objectives of the Trust are to advance the public education,
learning and knowledge in all aspects of the philosophy of Marxism, the
history of socialism and the working class movement.

The Trust, as well as initiating activity or research in pursuit of
these objectives, is open to applications for funding. The Trust will
give financial assistance to bodies or individuals for projects which
the Trust considers fall within the scope of the Trust's objectives.

Trustees: Stephen Amiel (Chair); Tariq Ali; Rebecca Amiel; Rodney
Bickerstaffe; Robin Blackburn; Nina Fishman; Kate Hudson; Michael
Rustin; Dorothy Wedderburn.


All enquiries to:

Willow Grylls
(M) 07966 416587

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