Why did some idealistic young people join the Communist Party of Great Britain in the 1930s? What was the attraction of Communism and which beliefs, events or material circumstances prompted them to join? How did the Party respond to this predominantly university-educated group of recruits? These and related issues will be explored through case studies which trace their trajectories as members from recruitment through engagement and often to withdrawal.
The issues raised in this lecture were discussed in further detail at the Seminar: Middle Class Recruits to Communism in the 1930s.
The transcript and downloadable versions of the lecture are available from the Gresham College website:
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Professor Nicholas Deakin CBE
Nicholas Deakin has worked as a civil servant and in local government and chaired national and local voluntary bodies. He was a founding member of the Runnymede Trust. From 1980 to 1998 he was Professor of Social Policy and Administration at the University of Birmingham. He is currently Vice-Chair of the Baring Foundation.