Paul Corthorn presents an illuminating, in-depth study of the British Left's response to the rise of international fascism in the 1930s. He uses a range of newly available archival sources to analyse how the Labour left - which took the form of the Socialist League between 1932 and 1937 - and the Independent Labour Party reacted to developments such as Mussolini's invasion of Abyssinia, Franco's uprising in Spain and Hitler's drive for territorial expansion. He argues that their responses to these threats from the fascist dictators were shaped above all by their constantly changing views of another dictatorship: the Soviet Union under Stalin.
Paul Corthorn is Lecturer in Modern British History at Queen's University, Belfast, having taught previously at the University College, Oxford. He is the co-editor of 'The British Labour Party and the Wider World' (forthcoming, I.B.Tauris).