Martyrs of the Early American Left

Inez Milholland, Randolph Bourne and John Reed


In stock

SKU: 9781476691497 Categories: , , ,

About the Book

Intertwining the stories of three leading early twentieth century radical Americans, this book presents the enthralling tale of the too-short lives of Inez Milholland, Randolph Bourne, and John Reed. It highlights the movements and personal experiences that drew such privileged individuals to the American left, willing to sacrifice comfortable circumstances and opportunities.
As writers and activists, the trio became leading spokespersons for feminism, sexual liberation, unions, civil liberties, pacifism, internationalism, socialism, anarchism, and, in Reed’s case, communism. Challenging capitalism, patriarchy, and the nation-state, the independently-minded Milholland, Bourne, and Reed possessed a twofold commitment to personal liberation and community. With their early deaths, they left behind personal models for acting, living, and thinking afresh. One could say they became martyrs to the very movements they championed.

About the Author(s)

A professor emeritus of history and American studies at California State University, Chico, Robert C. Cottrell is the author of more than twenty books, including studies of the counterculture, the year 1968, American radicalism, black baseball and the World War II smokejumpers.

Bibliographic Details

Robert C. Cottrell
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 309
Bibliographic Info: 44 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2023
pISBN: 978-1-4766-9149-7
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4922-1
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vi
Preface 1
Introduction 7
1. Vassar Girl Suffragist 13
2. A Man of Letters 25
3. A Poet Singing Nothing but Joy 36
4. An American Renaissance 49
5. The Unanticipated Marriage 71
6. Thirteen Months in Europe 78
7. Riding with the Revolution 89
8. Keeping Faith with the Cause 103
9. The Lyrical Left’s Response to World War I 112
10. Joining The New Republic 122
11. The Peace Crusade 132
12. The Eastern Front 146
13. The Death of a Feminist Martyr 154
14. Frustrated Love and Transnationalism 172
15. The Love of His Life 184
16. The War to Make the World Safe for Democracy 192
17. The Bolshevik Revolution 208
18. “America in 1918” 218
19. War’s End 228
20. An American in Communist Russia 242
21. Three American Martyrs 261
Chapter Notes 267
Bibliography 285
Index 297