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The Missing Voice Of Socialism

The Philadelphia Inquirer

Posted May 14, 2000
Tags Hamilton In the News
Socialism we're told, is the perennial ideology of youth, a stage some people go through until their compassionate idealism gives way to the hard-headed realism of adulthood. Anyone who's not a socialist by the time he's 20 has no heart; anyone who's still one by the time he's 40 has no head... No American radical of recent vintage defied this axiom more impressively that Michael Harrington. Before his untimely death from cancer in 1989, he spent more than 35 years campaigning for socialist ideas in a country where the legacy of Marx -- never strong to begin with -- has been more marginalized than anyone else in the world...Maurice Isserman, a history professor at Hamilton College and author of several books on the American left, is an ideal biographer for Harrington. His excellent new study of the man's life and work shows how Harrington had, in one important area of public policy, far greater impact than any other left-wing activist of his generation.

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