Rocker was a non-Jewish German anarchist bookbinder who lived for a couple of decades in the East End of London as the "rabbi" of the Yiddish anarchist and labour movement there. He later lived in Germany, where he was a key figure in the syndicalist movement, and then in upstate New York, where he was associated with the Freie Arbeiter Stimme group and the libertarian education movement. His great works include The Tragedy of Spain, The Truth About Spain, Anarchism or Sovietism and his magumn opus Nationalism and Culture.
At the afternoon celebration, chaired by Anthony Rudolf, the keynote speaker, if his health allows, will be great Bill Fishman, Cable Street veteran, author of the wonderful East End Jewish Radicals and well-known tour guide.
He will be followed by Ben Gidley on "Why Rudolf Rocker matters". Ben Gidley is a researcher at the Centre for Urban and Community Research at Goldsmiths,
Brian Morris will speak on "Rocker as an anarchist". Brian Morris, Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at Goldsmiths,
Julia Weiner will also speak, on Fermin Rocker, Rudolf's son, a great artist and illustrator, whose 100th birthday would have been last Autumn. (His painting of his family, from AskArt, is on the right here, and his engraving of his father, from Jon's anarchist librarian web page, is above.)
The event is at 2.30. It is £10 to get in (£8 for JEECS members), including ham sandwiches - the food of choice for the East End Jewish anarchists. Further details from Jeecs chairman Clive Bettington, 07941 367882 or mail to: email@example.com
Walk – Rudolf Rocker and the Radical History of the Jewish East End.
Clive Bettington looks at the life of anarchist leader Rudolf Rocker and the general history of radical politics in the Jewish East End. 10.30 am from Aldgate Tube. £8/£6. 07941 367 882 firstname.lastname@example.org
Also, BBC Radio 3's Sunday Feature will be broadcasting "The First War on Terror" on Sunday 28th September, on the policing of anarchists in early twentieth century London, presented by Hari Kunzru and featuring JEECS' Clive Bettington, Ben Gidley and others.
Previous: The Spanish Civil War in SF, Alexander Schapiro, Chaim Weinberg, Sacco & Venzetti, Itzik Manger, A Voice from the Aliens, Majer Bogdanski.
Blog links: Rocker on Bakunin, Fermin/Rudolf at EastLondonHistory, Fermin at whitelightblacklight, Asher in London, Donnacha D on anarchism in the NUJ, Revolutionary Yiddishist, Telexism on Rocker and Kropotkin, Charlie Pottins on Rose Witcop.