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Peter Campbell

Peter Campbell

Best Article Prize in Labour History

2022

Peter Campbell, “Let Us Rise: Dialectical Thinking, the Commodification of Labour Power, and the Legacy of the Socialist Party of Canada,” Labour/Le Travail 87 (Spring 2021): 93–120.

In “Let Us Rise: Dialectical Thinking, the Commodification of Labour Power, and the Legacy of the Socialist Party of Canada,” Peter Campbell insightfully explores the intellectual world of Canada’s most important socialist formation before the First World War. Long dismissed as otherworldly “impossiblists” whose opposition to the capitalist wage system led to their abstention from trade-unionist battles over the price of labour, “Let Us Rise” paints a picture of an intellectually engaged party, alive with debate, struggling with the dialectical relationships between existing conflicts and the fight against the capitalist wage system with its many implications including, as Campbell points out, for racialized and gendered labour.  In the end, the article helps us understand the central role that SPCers played in the Workers’ Revolt of 1919.