by Christine Lamberson
New Books in History Podcast
March 28th, 2016
“The Incomplete, True, Authentic and Wonderful History of May Day (PM Press, 2007) is a new collection of essays from Peter Linebaugh about the history of May Day. The essays were written for a range of occasions celebrating or otherwise relating to May Day. Collectively, the essays recognize the power of May Day historically and internationally. They reflect on the holiday in relation to a number of historical figures from Native American anarcho-communist Lucy Parsons, the Dodge Revolutionary Union Movement, and Karl Marx to Jose Marti, W. E. B. Du Bois, and SNCC, along with many others. The book also makes an argument for the continued relevance and importance of this workers’ day.
In the interview Linebaugh discusses his own background as a child of empire from schooling in London to working as a professor in the United States and living in numerous places in between. He introduces listeners to some of the essays in detail and then generally talks about the importance of May Day historically. He also addresses questions about the continued relevance of the holiday today, including possible lessons for today’s political and economic climate.”