Donnerstag, 20. November 2014, 18:00 - 20:00 iCal

ipw lecture

E.P.Thompson and the Peace Movement

Konferenzraum (A 222) des Instituts für Politikwissenschaft, NIG, 2. Stock
Universitätsstraße 7, 1010 Wien


Vortragender: Richard Taylor (Cambridge University)

Moderation: Elsa Hackl (Institut für Politikwissenschaft)



E.P. Thompson made a significant contribution to a remarkably diverse range of intellectual and political fields. He is known chiefly for his transformative historical work- notably, ‘The Making of the English Working Class’(1963)-which has had a profound and radical influence upon the historical study of Britain in the 18th and 19th centuries. But he also made major contributions to socialist and libertarian politics (especially in the first British ‘New Left’), to adult education, to biography and, not least, to the Peace Movement.

This lecture will analyse Thompson’s overall contribution and will emphasise the unity, coherence and contemporary relevance of his writing and activism. However, the main focus will be on Thompson’s Peace Movement involvements. Throughout his adult life Thompson was committed to and energetically engaged with the Peace Movement in Britain and Europe-at first through the Communist Party, and subsequently in the first ‘New Left’ in the aftermath of the furore in the Communist and socialist worlds, following the 1956 revelations about the crimes of Stalinism. Later, in the 1980s, Thompson became the leading figure in the European mass movement for a nuclear free Europe, ‘from Poland to Portugal’. His arguments for a new, socialist humanist European politics, articulated through the transnational mass Peace Movement, speaks eloquently to our current problems of creating a viable alternative politics to confront neo-liberalism.


Institut für Politikwissenschaft


Walburg Steurer
Institut für Politikwissenschaft
+43 (1) 4277-477 02