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A Hard Rain FellSDS and Why it Failed$
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David Barber

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9781934110171

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781934110171.001.0001

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Reasserting the Centrality of White Radicals

Reasserting the Centrality of White Radicals

(p.188) Chapter Five Reasserting the Centrality of White Radicals
A Hard Rain Fell

David Barber

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter analyzes Revolutionary Youth Movement (RYM) factions from mid-October 1969 to the great upheaval of May 1970. As the antiwar movement began to peak in November 1969, factions of the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) increasingly isolated themselves from this mass movement. Weatherman did so by determining that mass demonstrations were irrelevant and that only violence mattered. RYM IIers, on the other hand, isolated themselves by increasingly ducking behind Marxist dogma: only the united proletariat, black and white, could bring down imperialism. The key task for revolutionaries was not mobilizing masses of new people against the war, but was building the foundations for a revolutionary Marxist-Leninist party of the working class in the United States.

Keywords:   Students for a Democratic Society, SDS, New Left, Revolutionary Youth Movement, RYM, antiwar movement, Weatherman, Marxism

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