Labour History Review

‘The teacher of strange doctrines’: George Julian Harney and the Democratic Review, 1849-1850

Labour History Review (2013), 78, (1), 67–86.

Abstract

Although the Chartist movement generated a vast array of newspapers and journals, the Northern Star has received the most scholarly attention, not least because its dwindling subscription base and chaotic editorial arrangements after 1850 seem to be a corollary to the movement's decline. Yet it was other journals - sponsored and edited by enterprising individuals - which sustained the Chartist cause and helped to foster political solidarities between British and European radicals at the mid-century. This article throws the spotlight on George Julian Harney's monthly Democratic Review of British and Foreign Politics, History and Literature (1849-50). It is noteworthy that Harney edited both the Northern Star and the Democratic Review until September 1850, and from 22 June 1850 to 30 November 1850 he also published a third journal, the weekly Red Republican. Whilst the Red Republican has attracted a good deal of interest from Marxist scholars, who view the first English translation of the Communist Manifesto as a landmark moment in the development of international socialism, arguably the development of social democratic ideas in this critical period can best be understood by appraising all of Harney's journalistic output in this period.

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Author details

Allen, Joan