Sam Dolgoff (1902–1990) was a house painter by trade and member of the IWW from the early 1920s until his death. Sam, along with his wife Esther, was at the center of American anarchism for seventy years, bridging the movement's generations, providing continuity between past and present, and creating some of the most vital books and journals from the Great Depression through WWII, the Civil Rights era, and into the last decade of the century. This instant classic of radical history, written with passion and humor by his son, conjures images of a lost New York City, the faded power of immigrant and working-class neighborhoods, and the blurred lines dividing proletarian and intellectual culture.
"The American left in its classical age used to celebrate an ideal, which was the worker-intellectual—someone who toils with his hands all his life and meanwhile develops his mind and deepens his knowledge and contributes mightily to progress and decency in the society around him. Sam Dolgoff was a mythic figure in a certain corner of the radical left ... and his son, Anatole, has written a wise and beautiful book about him." —Paul Berman, author of A Tale of Two Utopias and Power and the Idealists
"If you want to read the god-honest and god-awful truth about being a radical in twentieth-century America, drop whatever you're doing, pick up this book, and read it. Pronto! If you're not crying within five pages, you might want to check whether you've got a heart and a pulse." —Peter Cole, author of Wobblies on the Waterfront
Check out a series of short interviews with Anatole Dolgoff on topics related to the book.
You can also read an excerpt from the book here.
Anatole Dolgoff is the son of prominent anarchists Sam and Esther Dolgoff, and was quite literally born and raised among the Wobblies and anarchists of the latter two-thirds of the twentieth century. Anatole was for many years an Associate Professor of Physics at CUNY and is currently Professor of Geology at the Pratt Institute.
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