This website is intended as a historical and practical resource for anyone studying Canadian revolutionary socialist politics - the Marxist left and its mainstream Trotskyist current.

Ross Dowson was a leading figure in the development of Canadian Trotskyism, from his entry into that movement at age 15 in 1932 until his illness in 1989 - a movement forged in the struggle against the Stalinist Communist Party of Canada and its Maoist variations, while developing a positive and fruitful orientation to the reformist mass labor party in Canada, the New Democratic Party.

During these 57 years he devoted his energy and creative force into the building of what became the most promising of the Marxist left currents of the 1960s and 1970s. However in 1974 he, with a group of comrades were obliged to withdraw from the movement he had built for 30 years (the League for Socialist Action - LSA), to build another (the Forward Group), in order to continue and develop their traditional politics.

In 1974 he withdrew from the movement he had built for 30 years with a group of comrades to build another, in order to continue and develop their traditional politics.

This website documents the rich political heritage both of Ross and the movements he led, starting off with his journal articles. Later, a selection of his voluminous correspondence will be added.

Ross Dowson 1917-2002
Ross Dowson 1917-2002

With the stunning upsurge of popular indignation over the world debt crisis and resulting jobs and social service cuts, and the challenge by the Occupy Wall Street and its unprecedented world-wide solidarity occupations, new interest in revolutionary theory and organization is mounting. Where does the largely spontaneous protest go from its spectacular 2011 beginning - what will become it's primary demands, and what forms of organization (presently eschewed beyond its first experiments with consensus-based general assemblies and working groups)?

Is there anything Occupy can learn from the "old left"? Beneath the detritus of most of the 20th century movements is there not an invaluable kernel of revolutionary philosophy and experience?

Le défi de la Nouvelle Radicalisation

The Challenge of the New Youth Radicalization

Note to readers:

Hundreds of originals of the documents on this site can be found at National Archives in Ottawa . None have been altered except for added minor notes, dates or historical information, always clearly indicated.

Readers of this site are free to copy any material and are requested to give credit to this website as the source.

Communications:editor@rossdowson.com: