Britain: #CommunismOnCampus campaign draws in thousands

The Marxist Student Federation (MSF) in Britain has now hit all the fresher's fairs at universities where we have established a Marxist Society, spoken to thousands of people about the ideas of Marxism and shown them how to fight against capitalism. This has been a highly inspiring period for us. We have seen the thirst for communist ideas which exists amongst students.

3,750 people signed up to the Marxist Societies across the country, this shows the growing anger at capitalism and people searching for answers. Around 1,000 people attended a meeting on ‘Why We Are Communists’ (see our report on this below).

Noticeably, students were very interested in buying the Marxist literature we have on offer. Around £1200 of material was sold nationally. This shows a level of seriousness to understanding Marxism that is clearly the product of the crisis of capitalism ensuing around us.

During the last week of the campaign, we attended freshers’ fairs in Cambridge University, Oxford University, Imperial College London, and Lancaster University gaining over 500 sign ups in this one week. We also held ‘Why We Are Communists’ meetings in Loughborough, Cardiff, York, Greenwich, SOAS, UCL, Cambridge, Durham and Imperial, attracting around 250 people to these meetings. We also held a whole host of other meetings that week on topics such as ‘Why capitalism goes into crisis’, ‘Profit vs Peace: War and Imperialism’ and ‘Why we need a revolutionary philosophy’.

We are still looking forward to ‘Why We Are Communists’ meetings in Lancaster and Oxford. We have been excited to see the enthusiasm for Marxist ideas which exists amongst this generation of students and are looking forward to carrying on our work over the University term, showing in both theory and practice how to fight for communism.

A stand out event of the final week was the Lenin Walk! Comrades in North and Central London got together to look around London at different historically relevant places which Lenin spent time in.

Here are some more posts from our comrades who have been hard at work across the country during this period!

‘Why We Are Communists’ meetings show student radicalisation!

Over this freshers period, the MSF has put on 50 meetings entitled ‘Why We Are Communists’. Over 1,000 people attended these meetings and spoke to us about Marxist ideas.

Many students were already convinced of socialism and in some cases specifically looking for us. One student in London told us “your group seems to be the most serious about revolution”. Another student in Edinburgh said that he reads (our international website) every morning. In Newcastle at the start of the first meeting, the speaker asked ‘who here is already a communist?’ and everyone in the room put their hand up.

In Sheffield, York, Sussex, Southampton, Cambridge, Oxford, Leeds, Glasgow and multiple Universities in London we had between 40-50 people attend the meetings! In Leeds, one student said they were ‘blown away’ by our ideas. In Sheffield, one student immediately asked the speaker how they could get more involved in building the forces of Marxism.

At Westminster University, the discussion began with everyone explaining why they wanted to attend a communist meeting. Everyone discussed the current crisis, and how it had brought them to radical ideas.

One student even said “we have such high expectations about what we should achieve but capitalism is stopping it from happening”.

In Lancaster, one student told the speaker that they were ecstatic to see the optimism in the room after having been radicalised online and feeling very pessimistic.

These meetings showed the potential that is out there to build the Marxist forces. This has given the Marxist Student Federation a new optimism about the future. In doing this work, we can easily see the rising tide of Marxist ideas.

However, the Marxist Societies are not merely discussion clubs. We are learning Marxist theory in order to inform our actions. The Marxist Societies should act as the voice of Labour on campus.  Therefore, we spent time this freshers period in protests and on picket lines.

In London, 55 Marxist Students intervened in the Enough is Enough demo. In Edinburgh, 16 intervened. One comrade gave a speech to a crowd of 200-300 people. We also intervened in Canterbury, Portsmouth, Norwich, Falmouth, Glasgow, Ipswich, Leicester, Newcastle, Nottingham, Southampton, Bristol, Birmingham, and Manchester.

We have been on picket lines for the RMT, CWU and UNISON over the last month. In Ipswich the comrades went to an RMT and CWU rally. The chair of the RMT Young Members has spoken about the rail strikes as a visitor at four Marxist Societies in London.

The Birmingham and Warwick Marxist Societies organised an intervention of 25 Marxist Students in the demo against the Tory Party national conference.

This year, we have spoken to more radicalised young people than ever before! This has provided great inspiration and allowed us to build the forces of Marxism further.

We will continue to meet, discuss and build over the academic year. If you want to build a revolutionary organisation then you must get in touch. The Marxist Student Federation is the strongest it has ever been but we must build more to help push the movement developing in a revolutionary direction!

Hundreds of Marxist Students are also attending our Revolution Festival this weekend. This year’s festival – taking place from 21st-23rd October at the Friends House – will provide an incredible opportunity to meet Marxists from across Britain and Europe, and to participate in lively discussions on theory, history, and the most pressing issues facing socialist activists.

There’s never been a better time to be a Marxist. So get involved today: Join your local Marxist society! Join the revolution!

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