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Signs of Change

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By: (1834-1896)

In the 1880s William Morris, the artist and poet famously associated with the Arts and Crafts movement, left the Liberal Party and threw himself into the Socialist cause. He spoke all over the country, on street corners as well as in working men's clubs and lecture halls, and edited and wrote for the Socialist League's monthly newspaper. Signs of Change is a short collection of his talks and writings in this period, first published in 1888, covering such topics as what socialism and work should be, and how capitalism and waste developed.

First Page:

SIGNS OF CHANGE

Contents:

How we Live and How we Might Live Whigs, Democrats, and Socialists Feudal England The Hopes of Civilization The Aims of Art Useful Work versus Useless Toil Dawn of a New Epoch

HOW WE LIVE AND HOW WE MIGHT LIVE

The word Revolution, which we Socialists are so often forced to use, has a terrible sound in most people's ears, even when we have explained to them that it does not necessarily mean a change accompanied by riot and all kinds of violence, and cannot mean a change made mechanically and in the teeth of opinion by a group of men who have somehow managed to seize on the executive power for the moment. Even when we explain that we use the word revolution in its etymological sense, and mean by it a change in the basis of society, people are scared at the idea of such a vast change, and beg that you will speak of reform and not revolution. As, however, we Socialists do not at all mean by our word revolution what these worthy people mean by their word reform, I can't help thinking that it would be a mistake to use it, whatever projects we might conceal beneath its harmless envelope... Continue reading book >>


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