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Sean Antaya

Sean Antaya

The Eugene A. Forsey Prize


Sean Antaya, “Struggling for a New Left: The New Tendency, Autonomist Marxism, and Rank-and-File Organizing in Windsor, Ontario during the 1970s,” MA Thesis, Trent University, 2018.

Antaya’s study sheds new light on the trajectory of the New Left in the 1970s. It focuses in particular on a group of activists in Ontario who entered the industrial workforce and organized in a way distinct from and often opposed to traditional unions and political parties.  The New Tendency focused on working-class self activity and were connected to a transnational network of contemporary organizations developing an autonomist Marxist position influenced by theorists such as Martin Glaberman and C.L.R. James. Antaya’s elegantly written thesis seamlessly integrates oral and written sources and handles complex theoretical debates with impressive sophistication.  The thesis is able to combine close attention to local circumstances and the personal lives of activists with broader consideration of the changing international economic and political conditions to which they responded.