25 January 2021
By Alan Gilman, 17 December 2020
The US gold medal winner of the decathlon at the 1960 Olympics, Rafer Johnson, was the first African American athlete to achieve world prominence during the period of the Cold War and civil rights movement.
By The Socialist Equality Party (Australia), 15 December 2020
From the time he joined the Socialist Labour League, predecessor of the SEP, in 1974 Comrade Barry was a tireless fighter for the program of Trotskyism in the working class, particularly in the Elcar railway workshops in the Sydney suburb of Chullora where he worked for many years.
2 December 2020
By Rafael Azul and Andrea Lobo, 30 November 2020
Beyond the mark he made on the history of football, Maradona’s hostility to inequality and imperialism won him sympathy from wide layers of workers and youth internationally.
28 November 2020
By Nazım Özgün, 26 November 2020
Selçuk was a prominent example of the layer of Turkish intellectuals who turned to the working class amid the political radicalization and social struggles of the 1970s.
By Fred Mazelis and Kevin Reed, 24 November 2020
An immensely gifted artist, Jeff Riedel’s photographic work combined exceptional technical skill with social insight.
By Jean Shaoul, 19 November 2020
While all obituaries testify to Erekat’s tenacity, none could explain why he and the Palestine Liberation Organisation were in the end wholly unsuccessful.
By Jean Shaoul, 7 November 2020
Fisk was one of a dwindling breed of journalists—along with John Pilger, Seymour Hersh and, from a significantly different background, Julian Assange—that have dared to question the official narratives from governments and publish what they uncovered.
By Paul Bond, 7 November 2020
Strikingly attractive and hard-edged, Connery’s suave and imposing presence gave the character much of its authority.
By Clara Weiss, 10 October 2020
Cohen’s academic and political biography was bound up with his 1973 biography of Nikolai Bukharin, the first comprehensive English biography of the leading Bolshevik.
By Tom Carter, 21 September 2020
With around-the-clock tributes, the American media is presenting the late Supreme Court justice as a “progressive icon” and a “trailblazing feminist.”
By Paul Bond, 19 September 2020
Hibbert was widely respected and liked as a person, as well as admired for his work. That he was one of the most important international ambassadors for reggae owed much to his personal integrity.
By Carlos Delgado, 5 September 2020
Far from honoring his memory, the media’s over-the-top eulogizing demeans the actor’s work and serves reactionary political ends.
By Hiram Lee and Matthew Brennan, 27 August 2020
During the writing of the review of Ghosts of West Virginia, the recent album by veteran singer-musician Steve Earle, news reports indicated that his talented 38-year-old musician son Justin Townes Earle passed away on August 20.
By Tom Mackaman, 13 August 2020
Bailyn leaves behind a significant body of work that broadened the understanding of the intellectual conceptions that found expression in the American Revolution.
By Hiram Lee, 31 July 2020
From the middle of the 1930s until the early 1950s in particular, De Havilland distinguished herself as an intelligent and even elegant performer in a number of valuable films.
From Selma to the CIA
20 July 2020
The outpouring of tributes from reactionaries and war criminals demonstrates the class role that Lewis came to play, despite his youthful part in asserting the democratic rights of African Americans.
Making “fun of the people higher on the totem pole”
By David Walsh, 2 July 2020
Reiner may not be a name known by many under a certain age, but his influence and impact on American comedy and performance in the postwar period was considerable.
By Paul Bond, 27 June 2020
It is difficult not to see his subsequent representation of a character’s inner life as being drawn from his family background.
By Fred Mazelis, 26 June 2020
Twice the presidential candidate of the Workers League, Ed Winn fought for Marxist principles throughout the American and international working class. He was a New York City transit worker for 22 years.
By Paul Bond, 15 April 2020
Blackman’s feisty independence and intelligence were refreshing and even inspiring, and the product of her upbringing.
The death of singer-songwriter Bill Withers, 1938-2020: “I never tried to be a star, but to be an artist”
By Helen Halyard, 8 April 2020
Three-time Grammy award winner Bill Withers, who wrote and sang music that still resonates with millions of people around the world, died from heart complications on March 30 in Los Angeles at 81.
By Paul Bond, 19 March 2020
For more than six decades, the Swedish-born von Sydow, who has died at 90, was a standard bearer for serious, thoughtful acting in a remarkable range of work.
By John Braddock, 4 March 2020
Moore’s glorification reflects concerns in ruling circles over widespread popular alienation from the Labour Party and the entire parliamentary set-up.
By Joanne Laurier, 4 March 2020
The film treats the persecution of a security guard for the 1996 Olympics bombing. It condemns the role of the US government and the American media, which, as one character points out, are “two of the most powerful forces in the world today.”
“What we think changes how we act.”
By Erik Schreiber, 19 February 2020
Gill consciously broke with musical convention to develop his own style of guitar playing and to create a distinctive sound for his band. Similarly, he sought to understand the origins of social and political conditions, rather than accepting them as given.
By David Walsh, 10 February 2020
Douglas, one of the leading film actors in the post-World War II era, is also credited with helping to end the anti-communist blacklist by hiring blacklisted screenwriter Dalton Trumbo on Spartacus (1960).
By Alan Gilman, 29 January 2020
The retired basketball star and his teenage daughter were among nine victims of a helicopter crash near Los Angeles.
By Kevin Reed, 14 January 2020
Peart, the hard-driving drummer and lyricist of the Canadian progressive rock band Rush, died on January 7 at the age of 67.
By Nick Beams, 11 December 2019
A full accounting would reveal that his policies, imposed on behalf of the American capitalist class, resulted in untold social misery and the premature death of millions of people, not only in the US but around the world.
By Fred Mazelis, 10 December 2019
Jansons, who died November 30 at the age of 76, was one of the world’s greatest conductors, and at the same time one of the most beloved, by audiences and above all by the musicians he led.
By Patrick Martin, 30 October 2019
Conyers spent most of his political career using left rhetoric in an attempt to obscure the rightward evolution of the Democratic Party.
By Patrick Martin, 21 October 2019
The real purpose of the flowery tributes was to give a “progressive” gloss to the House Democrats' impeachment campaign, in which Cummings played a significant role.
By Sandy English, 7 September 2019
Pulitzer Prize winner and Nobel Laureate Toni Morrison wrote several significant novels, but as a public figure turned to the selfish racialist politics of the upper middle class.
By Richard Phillips, 10 August 2019
Pennebaker pioneered the use of handheld cameras and editorial comment to achieve an immediacy and closeness not previously achieved in documentary film-making.
By Fred Mazelis, 10 July 2019
The Texas tycoon won the biggest support for a third-party candidate since Theodore Roosevelt in 1912.
By Matthew Brennan, 29 June 2019
His early recordings spanned a remarkable musical range, from funk-driven pop songs and New Orleans jazz and blues to at least a half-dozen other musical styles and influences.
Director of Boyz n the Hood, Higher Learning and other films focusing on the African-American working class and poor
By Nick Barrickman, 29 May 2019
At his best, Singleton’s work shows warmth and concern for his films’ struggling and imperfect characters.
By Clare Hurley and Clara Weiss, 24 May 2019
Oz published 40 books of fiction, collections of essays, speeches and letters that have been translated into 45 languages, including Esperanto.
Ruling elites pay tribute to a favourite servant
By Nick Beams, 18 May 2019
Some of the most hated figures in world politics have come together to praise Hawke and laud his achievements.
By Matthew Brennan, 22 April 2019
Best known as a member of the 1960s pop trio the Walker Brothers, Scott Walker became an elusive and yet influential figure in the rock and electronic music genres in later years.
19 February 2019
By Fred Mazelis, 13 February 2019
Danny Freeman joined the socialist movement in the mid-1950s and made a significant contribution to the fight for Trotskyism in the United States.
11 February 2019
By Peter Schwarz, 1 February 2019
On December 31, 2018, Halil Celik, founder and leader of the group Sosyalist Eşitlik, which supports the International Committee of the Fourth International in Turkey, died of cancer at the age of 57. This obituary presents an overview of his life.
January 18, 1952–December 1, 2018
By Helen Halyard, 8 December 2018
It is with great sadness that the World Socialist Web Site reports the recent death of Debra Ann Washington Miller, an active supporter of the Socialist Equality Party in Detroit who played a significant role in mobilizing workers against evictions in the downtown area.
By Richard Phillips and David Walsh, 28 November 2018
Bertolucci will be remembered for valuable films he made in the 1960s and 1970s, including La commare secca (1962—English title, The Grim Reaper), Before the Revolution (1964), The Conformist (1970) and 1900 (1976).
By Fred Mazelis, 12 October 2018
Cooley, a former autoworker and high school and college teacher, had considered himself a socialist for most of his adult life. He was the US SEP’s congressional candidate in Maine in the 2004 election.
Part 2: Who betrayed the Manouchian Group?
By Francis Dubois and Alex Lantier, 31 August 2018
There is no doubt that the Stalinists’ decision to sacrifice the Manouchian Group was bound up with their genocidal onslaught against Trotskyism and the Left Opposition.
Part 1: The political origins and military record of the resistance fighters
By Francis Dubois and Alex Lantier, 30 August 2018
Arsène Tchakarian, the last remaining survivor of the famed Manouchian Group of the French Resistance, died on August 4, 2018, at the age of 101.
By Patrick Martin, 27 August 2018
The late senator from Arizona represented a bipartisan consensus in support of militarism and the defense of corporate America.
“US autoworkers have to accept a culture of poverty”
By Marcus Day, 28 July 2018
Marchionne, the Italian-born executive who collaborated with the trade unions in brutally attacking the jobs, wages, and working conditions of autoworkers throughout the world, died Wednesday.
By Josh Varlin, 10 July 2018
Soto was best known for his work with the seminal hardcore punk band Adolescents.
By Shannon Jones, 19 June 2018
The failure of the reform movement headed by Sadlowski in the United Steelworkers and similar efforts in other unions foundered on the conflict between the needs of workers and the pro-capitalist program to which the unions are wedded.
By David Walsh, 18 June 2018
In the wake of writer Philip Roth’s death May 22, numerous commentaries have appeared accusing him of misunderstanding or being hostile to women and related failings.
By Bill Van Auken, 24 May 2018
Protected by the US government until the end, Posada Carriles was responsible for the worst terrorist atrocity committed in the Americas in the twentieth century.
By Nick Barrickman, 13 April 2018
Brendon Whitney (“Alias”) was a founding member of the experimental hip hop/electronic music label Anticon.
By Bryan Dyne, 15 March 2018
Hawking, who lived much of his life debilitated by Lou Gehrig’s disease, was one of the world’s most significant cosmologists and a renowned popularizer of physics.
By Sandy English, 8 March 2018
Ursula K. Le Guin, one of the most significant and popular English-language writers of speculative fiction, associated with feminism and utopianism, died January 28 at the age of 88.
By Bill Van Auken, 5 February 2018
Parry, who won journalism awards for exposing CIA crimes in Nicaragua, founded Consortiumnews.com after confronting the corporate media’s impediments to serious investigative journalism.
By Fred Mazelis, 11 December 2017
Pat Jukovsky was an active member of the US Workers League in its early years, and the wife of Marty Jukovsky, a devoted supporter of the Socialist Equality Party.
By Fred Mazelis, 11 December 2017
The Siberian-born singer, who was known especially for his Verdi and Tchaikovsky roles, had performed in nearly every major opera house in the world.
By Hiram Lee, 4 November 2017
Rock ‘n’ roll pioneer Fats Domino died October 24 at the age of 89. The gifted pianist was second only to Elvis Presley in popularity during the early days of the genre.
By Steven Brust, 12 September 2017
This remembrance of Cynthia Brust Moore was sent to the WSWS by her brother, Steven Brust. Cynthia, a lifelong supporter of the Trotskyist movement, passed away on September 1.
By Fred Mazelis, 5 September 2017
Cynthia was the daughter of Bill and Jean Brust, who joined the revolutionary movement in the 1930s and were founding members of the Workers League, predecessor organization of the Socialist Equality Party.
By Peter Schwarz, 19 June 2017
The hymns of praise for Helmut Kohl, who served as German Chancellor from 1982 to 1998 and died Friday aged 87, have less to do with the real Kohl than with the current requirements of the ruling elite.
By Bill Van Auken, 29 May 2017
“What is most important to the history of the world? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some stirred-up Moslems or the liberation of Central Europe?” the former national security adviser said of the CIA alliance with Al Qaeda.
By Vladimir Volkov, 3 May 2017
Yevgeny Yevtushenko, the best-known Soviet poet from the 1960s to the 1980s, died at 85 from cancer on April 1, 2017, in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
By Carl Bronski, 8 April 2017
White’s 1985 breakaway from the UAW was a nationalist maneuver, aimed at protecting the union bureaucracy and blocking a joint struggle of North American autoworkers against all concessions and job cuts.
By Mike Head, 25 March 2017
A Trotskyist for four decades, Comrade Beryl was a fine and steadfast representative of the most advanced layers of the working class, attracted, above all, to internationalism.
By Paul Mitchell, 24 March 2017
McGuinness’s evolution from gunman to bourgeois politician was not a break from his republican principles, but the outcome of the petty-bourgeois nationalist perspective of republicanism.
By Fred Mazelis, 11 March 2017
The attorney was convicted in 2005 by the US government on fraudulent charges as part of an effort to intimidate anyone opposed to the “war on terror.”
By Jerry White, 19 January 2017
A well-respected criminal defense attorney in Detroit, Posner defended the Workers League, the forerunner of the Socialist Equality Party, in dozens of cases in the 1980s and early 1990s.
18 January 2017
By Kevin Reed, 17 December 2016
Greg Lake was a founder, along with schoolmate Robert Fripp, of the British band King Crimson in 1968 and later the 1970s’ supergroup Emerson, Lake and Palmer.
By Bill Van Auken, 28 November 2016
Castro’s legacy cannot be evaluated solely through the prism of Cuba, but must take into account the impact of his politics internationally and, above all, in Latin America.
By Fred Mazelis, 8 November 2016
Only two months after her nomination to head the Justice Department under President Bill Clinton, Reno presided over the horrific attack that killed more than 80 people, including 21 children.
By John Vassilopoulos, 7 November 2016
Pattakos was tried and convicted for his crimes during the military junta, but the Greek Stalinists and Syriza allowed him to return to political life.
By Fred Williams, 2 November 2016
A long-time member of the Workers League, which he joined in the early 1970s, and a supporter of the Socialist Equality Party, Albert combined immense erudition with an unwavering dedication to Marxism.
By Patrick Martin, 1 October 2016
The state funeral for Shimon Peres, former Israeli president and prime minister, brought leaders from around the world to pay tribute, not so much to the individual as to the rapacious, land-grabbing, militaristic state he did so much to construct.
30 September 2016
By Christoph Vandreier and Peter Schwarz, 20 August 2016
Nolte is infamous for initiating the Historikerstreit (Historians’ Dispute) in 1986 with his downplaying of National Socialism and the worst crimes in human history.
By David Walsh, 14 July 2016
The Iranian director will be best remembered and long honored for the series of feature films, including documentaries, that he made between 1987 and 1997.
By David Walsh, 7 July 2016
Cimino is best known as the director of The Deer Hunter (1978), which won numerous Academy Awards, and Heaven’s Gate (1980), which was denounced by leading critics, lost a great deal of money and severely damaged Cimino’s career.
Oversaw 1979 Chrysler concessions
By Shannon Jones, 7 July 2016
The sweeping concessions Stepp and other union officials imposed on Chrysler workers were a milestone in the corporatist degeneration of the UAW and the American labor movement as a whole.
By Hiram Lee, 6 July 2016
Ralph Stanley led one of the most remarkable groups in Bluegrass music and was among the genre’s greatest banjo players and singers.
June 6, 1969 - May 29, 2016
By Helen Hayes, 9 June 2016
Comrade Coley joined the Socialist Equality Party in 2005 and remained loyal to the fight for socialist principles until his death.
By David Walsh, 6 June 2016
The former heavyweight boxing champion, who died June 3, made his chief mark on history and popular consciousness by his courageous opposition to the Vietnam War.
By David North, 14 May 2016
David King, who devoted his extraordinary gifts as an artist to salvaging the historical truth of the Russian Revolution of 1917 and its aftermath from beneath the vast edifice of Stalinist crimes and lies, died suddenly in London on May 11.
By Peter Schwarz, 2 April 2016
The former foreign minister and FDP chairman Hans-Dietrich Genscher died Thursday at age 89.
By David Walsh, 9 March 2016
The American political and media establishment has responded in predictably fawning and dishonest fashion to the death of Nancy Reagan on March 6.
By Tom Carter, 15 February 2016
Scalia has personified the rightward march of the American political establishment over the past three decades, as it jettisoned what remained of its commitment to democratic institutions.
By Fred Mazelis, 19 August 2015
The outpouring of official tributes illustrates the political trajectory of the leaders of the civil rights movement of the 1960s.
By Sandy English, 27 July 2015
E.L. Doctorow, the prominent American novelist and author of Ragtime, Billy Bathgate and The March, among other works, died on July 21 at the age of 84.
By Hiram Lee, 18 June 2015
Saxophonist Ornette Coleman helped to define the free jazz movement during an often controversial career spanning half a century.
By James Brewer, 18 May 2015
The iconic American blues artist died May 15 at 89, after dozens of albums and decades of intensive touring.
By Fred Mazelis, 13 April 2015
Gotbaum’s precedent-setting surrender of New York City workers’ rights in the 1970s paved the way for the American ruling class’ offensive against workers throughout the US and the record inequality of today.
By Nick Beams, 25 March 2015
Fraser’s name is indelibly etched in history for his role in the ousting of the Whitlam government in the 1975 Canberra Coup.