Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Communist Review: Organ of theory and practice of the Australian Communist Party, edited by L.L. Sharkey.

Communist Review: Organ of theory and practice of the Australian Communist Party, edited by L.L. Sharkey.  Hardcover book (no dust jacket) published by the Central Committee of the Australian Communist Party 1945, various pagination (this book is comprised of the 12 monthly issues of the Communist Review with index, bound together in one volume).

Cover of the January issue

Greetings comrades.

Once again I’ve chosen to tackle the exciting and sadly not so popular world of Communist publications.  In this instance it’s a journal/magazine/“organ of theory” published by the Australian Communist Party.  The editor was a certain Lance Sharkey who at one stage attained the lofty heights of Secretary-General of the Communist Party of Australia and from all accounts and my brief reading of those accounts, he was an important person in the world of Australian Communism and beyond.  If you look back at my blog entry re communist publications, you’ll see that one of the publications was written by Mr Sharkey.

This book is a complete collection of the monthly 1945 issues of Communist Review.  In years gone by libraries would often gather issues of magazines or journals together and get them bound into one hard cover volume for easier reference and storage and from what I can gather this book is one such volume.  There aren’t a lot of clues as to which library it was bound for and all of what I’m writing here is theory only… but I did find this ink stamp on the front cover of the August issue: 

This could mean the book was part of a collection of learning tools that were available at the Marx School in Melbourne Victoria. The book doesn’t appear to have been overly used which is possibly an indicator as to the popularity of the magazine… or maybe this was a storage copy… in other words, crisp copies of the magazine, bound and put aside for future generations to study... and enjoy… or put aside for Huc & Gabet to one day pick up and sell…

Slightly earlier issues of the Communist Review, are currently selling on line for $20 a piece.  There are 12 issues in this volume ($$$).  Also to be noted is that there aren’t really that many issues available on the interwebs for purchasing.  This may be a reflection of the rarity or it may just be a lack of interest.  I personally think it is of interest, which I guess is why I picked it up.  It will be even more interesting to see if any one else finds it of interest.

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