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  • Print publication year: 2017
  • Online publication date: September 2017

1 - The Global 1968 and International Communism

from Part I - Globalism and Crisis
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The Cambridge History of Communism
  • Online ISBN: 9781316471821
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A good overview of the subject is Caute, David, Sixty-Eight: The Year of the Barricades (London: Hamish Hamilton, 1988). Overviews which have a transnational but not necessarily global perspective include Gilcher-Holtey, Ingrid, Die 68er Bewegung. Deutschland, Westeuropa USA (Munich: Beck, 2001), Horn, Gerd-Rainer, The Spirit of ’68: Rebellion in Western Europe and North America, 1956–1976 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007), and Berman, Paul, A Tale of Two Utopias: The Political Journey of the Generation of 1968 (New York and London: Norton, 1996).

There are some very useful edited collections on this subject. The ones with the most global reach are Fink, Carol, Gassert, Philipp and Junker, Detlef (eds.), 1968: The World Transformed (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998), and Gassert, Philipp and Klimke, Martin (eds.), 1968: Memories and Legacies of Global Revolt (Washington, DC: German Historical Institute, 2009). Klimke has coedited two other important collections with a European focus: Klimke, Martin and Scharloth, Joachim (eds.), 1968 in Europe: A History of Protest and Activism, 1956–1977 (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2008), and Klimke, Martin, Pekelder, Jacco and Scharloth, Joachim (eds.), Between Prague Spring and French May: Opposition and Revolt in Europe, 1960–1980 (New York and Oxford: Berghahn Books, 2011). Artières, Philippe and Zancarini-Fournel, Michelle (eds.), 68. Une histoire collective (1962–1981) (Paris: La Découverte, 2008), focuses on France but links into wider themes.

Studies using the oral history of 1968 activists began with Fraser, Ronald et al., 1968: A Student Generation in Revolt (London: Chatto & Windus, 1988). A new generation of research, with a mainly European focus, although taking in global influences, is highlighted by von der Goltz, Anna (ed.), “Talkin’ ’Bout My Generation”: Conflicts of Generation Building and Europe’s “1968” (Göttingen: Wallstein Verlag, 2011), and Gildea, Robert, Mark, James and Warring, Anette (eds.), Europe’s 1968: Voices of Revolt (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013). A related series of articles, “Voices of Europe’s 1968,” was published in a special issue of Cultural and Social History 8, 4 (Dec. 2011).

Global connections operating at a national or local level have been explored by Klimke, Martin, The Other Alliance: Student Protest in West Germany and the United States in the Global Sixties (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2010), Slobodian, Quinn, Foreign Front: Third World Politics in Sixties West Germany (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2012), and Wolin, Richard, The Wind from the East: French Intellectuals, the Cultural Revolution and the Legacy of the 1960s (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2010). An interesting comparative study is Stokes, Sarah, “Paris and Mexico City: 1968 Student Activism,” D.Phil. thesis (Oxford University, 2012).

Studies that prioritize transnational cultural and countercultural movements include Marwick, Arthur, The Sixties: Cultural Revolution in Britain, France, Italy and the United States, c. 1958–c. 1974 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998), Schildt, Axel and Siegfried, Detlef (eds.), Between Marx and Coca-Cola: Youth Cultures in Changing European Societies, 1960–1980 (New York and Oxford: Berghahn, 2006), and Zolov, Eric, Refried Elvis: The Rise of Mexican Counterculture (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1999).

Among works that deal with questions of violent and peaceful protest are della Porta, Donatella, Social Movements, Political Violence, and the State: A Comparative Analysis of Italy and Germany (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995), Varon, Jeremy, Bringing the War Home: The Weather Underground, the Red Army Faction and Revolutionary Violence in the Sixties and Seventies (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2004), Ziemann, Benjamin (ed.), Peace Movements in Western Europe, Japan and the USA During the Cold War (Essen: Klartext, 2001), Thörn, Håkan, Anti-Apartheid and the Emergence of a Global Civil Society (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2006), and Davey, Eleanor, Idealism Beyond Borders: The French Revolutionary Left and the Rise of Humanitarianism, 1954–1988 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015).

Specialized studies on particular areas with a wide resonance include Bolton, Jonathan, Worlds of Dissent: Charter 77, the Plastic People of the Universe, and Czech Culture Under Communism (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2012), and Kostis, Kornetis, Children of the Dictatorship: Student Resistance, Cultural Politics and the “Long 1960s” in Greece (New York and Oxford: Berghahn Books, 2013).

Speeches, letters and memoirs by activists themselves may be used to trace global connections. Among these may be highlighted Gerassi, John (ed.), Venceremos! The Speeches and Writings of Ernesto Che Guevara (London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1968), Cohn-Bendit, Dany [Daniel], Nous l’avons tant aimée, la révolution (Paris: Barrault, 1986), Dutschke, Rudi, Écrits politiques, 1967–1968 (Paris: Christian Bourgeois, 1968), Dutschke, Rudi, Jeder hat sein Leben ganz zu leben. Die Tagebücher, 1963–1979 (Cologne: Kiepenheuer & Witsch, 2003), Passerini, Luisa, Autobiography of a Generation: Italy 1968 (Hannover and London: Weslyan University Press, 1996), Ali, Tariq, Street-Fighting Years: An Autobiography of the Sixties (London: Collins, 1987), Uhl, Petr, Le socialisme emprisonné (Paris: Stock, 1980), Michnik, Adam, Letters from Prison and Other Essays (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1985), and Gorbachev, Mikhail and Mlynář, Zdeněk, Conversations with Gorbachev on Perestroika, the Prague Spring, and the Crossroads of Socialism (New York: Columbia University Press, 2002).