Saturday, 15 July 2017

Was Eric Hobsbawm a LIMP?

Yesterday Sid Morgan asked the Question 

  19 hours ago19 hours agoMoreIs there a (nice) word, phrase for Anglo-British leftists and other progressives, liberals who don't get Wales, esp. Cymraeg? We so need one13 replies14 retweets20 likesReplyRetweet
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To which I suggested MoreReplying to  
How about LIMPS Left Imperialists.
Eric John Ernest Hobsbawnmwas a British Marxist historian of the rise of industrial capitalism, socialism and nationalism. His best-known worksare a must read for any Historian include his trilogy about what he called the "long 19th century" (The Age of Revolution: Europe 1789–1848, The Age of Capital: 1848–1875 and The Age of Empire: 1875–1914), The Age of Extremes on the short 20th century.

Hobsbawm was a Polyglot who spoke a number of languages including Catalan,

An yet when he bought a Holiday Home in the small village of Croeso in Gwynedd he found the people insular and attacked the use of Cynraeg.

Since he lived between two of the finest pubs in Wakes The Grapes in Maentwrog  the"Ring " in Llanfrothen  he doesn't seemed to have spent any time in these places where the locals are anything but insular.

He was largely dismissive of Welsh Nationalism 

Maybe this explains it
By 1983, when Neil Kinnock became the leader of the Labour party at the depth of its electoral fortunes, Hobsbawm's influence had begun to extend far beyond the CP and deep into Labour itself. Kinnock publicly acknowledged his debt to Hobsbawm and allowed himself to be interviewed by the man he described as as "my favourite Marxist". Though he strongly disapproved of much of what later took shape as "New Labour", which he saw, among other things, as historically cowardly, he was without question the single most influential intellectual forerunner of Labour's increasingly iconoclastic 1990s revisionism.
Hywel Francis wrote in Obituary


 It was for that reason possibly that he took a keen interest in us, the dissenting, radical and seemingly marginal Welsh and our history.  He had a home in Gwynedd and more recently in Hay.  He lectured for the South Wales miners at their weekend schools in Porthcawl’s Esplanade Hotel in the 1960s and spoke at our Welsh Labour History Conference ‘Forward into History’ at Swansea in 1987.  And he was a keen admirer of the Welsh and British Communist miners’ leader who also met with the disapproval of Stalin’s Russia.  Eric supervised the late Nina Fishman’s doctoral thesis.  He shared her enthusiasm for Horner as an organic intellectual and wrote the foreword to her biography Arthur Horner: A Political Biography (2010).  He was also President of the Hay Festival.

Hobsbawn may have learned to Identify those people like the Catalans in their defence against Franco ,  but it is inductive of LIMPS , that they support indigenous movements against authoritarian  government but disparage those who try and move through the democratic process.

They support an United Ireland even those who used violence to get it. but  perish the thought that Wales or Scotland can fight for independence through democratic means.

They back the rights of Native Americans or even Catalans and Basques , but  those wishing to use Cymraeg are insular and divisive.

In this Hobsbawnm was no different from the most imperialist Tory and therefore he was a LIMP.



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