Ellis Hillman: A Word of History

Readers may be interested to know that Harold Walsby’s arrival in the pages of The Socialist Leader was no accident. I had been having a number of discussions with George Stone, the Editor, about ways and means of widening the appeal and circulation of the journal, and he asked me to approach new and stimulating potential contributors. I had known Walsby for some time, had studied his Domain of Ideologies and had entered into many a discussion and some correspondence with him. The upshot was that Walsby, along with a number of other new people, decided to take part in the “Contributors’ Columns” of the Leader. He hugely enjoyed the experience, with the opportunity to spread himself.

The correspondence he provoked on the General Election of 1951 is particularly interesting. We both took the view – perhaps for different reasons! – that all socialists should vote Labour, and this provoked a veritable storm not only from among the brethren of the SPGB but also from the ILP. What he had to say did not lose its importance when the election of 1951 was over.

(Black or White by Harold Walsby begins on the next page. – GW)

from Ideological Commentary 28, July 1987.