Labour History: A Journal of Labour and Social History

Inside the ‘Movement against War and Fascism’ and ‘The Writers’ League’

Labour History: A Journal of Labour and Social History (1977), 32, (1), 27–32.

Abstract

‘During the 1920s a young worker in a rubber factory, "conscientious, patriotic and ambitious", starts to think. As a result he becomes disturbed about his way of life; about his self-congratulatory hymn-singing in church on Sundays, about his dubious exploits in the Citizen Forces...’ So commences A. F. Howells’ account of his intellectual awakening. Howells progressed from an unsatisfactory experience with the W.E.A. to the reading of books which drew him towards socialism. He became active in trade unionism and the I.W.W., making a firm friendship with Charlie Reeve. In 1930, joining his family in Narrandera, he took a leading role in the local A.L.P. and aroused opposition from the local ‘old guard’ by pressing the socialisation issue. During 1933 Howells moved to Melbourne and became prominent in the anti-war movement and the Writers’ League, his sympathy with the Spanish Republican cause taking him to Spain late in the ‘thirties. The following extract, dealing with the period 1933-35, is taken from Howells’ manuscript autobiography, for which he is at present seeking a publisher. A copy of the manuscript may be consulted in the La Trobe Library, Melbourne.

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Details

Author details

Howells, A. F.

Table of Contents

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