The Militant(logo) 
    Vol.60/No.7           February 19, 1996 
Selling `Episodes' Leads To Talk On Revolution  


This past weekend more national meetings took place of socialists who are members of industrial unions. The chart below includes goals adopted at these meetings as part of the campaign to sell Episodes of the Cuban Revolutionary War by socialists who are members of the United Steelworkers of America, the United Auto Workers union, the United Mine Workers of America, and the Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers union.

Next week the Militant will list the national goal in this campaign, and an ending date for meeting the goals. Readers are encouraged to send any information on the campaign or sales on the job to the Militant for use in this column. Sales results to be listed in the Militant should be received at the Militant business office by 12:00 noon, Eastern Standard Time, each Tuesday.

Episodes of the Cuban Revolutionary War, by Ernesto Che Guevara, was just released by Pathfinder. Socialist workers and youth are adopting ambitious goals for selling the book as part of a working-class campaign against Washington's war drive against Yugoslavia, and as the best way to increase overall sales of Pathfinder books. Central to this effort are sales to workers on the job, at picket lines, plant gates, mine portals, and elsewhere.

Episodes describes the military battles and political campaigns of the Rebel Army in Cuba from 1956 to 1958 that culminated in the January 1959 mass armed insurrection that overthrew the U.S.-back Batista dictatorship.

Guevara's writings show how he and other Rebel Army combatants were transformed by their experiences into battle- tested leaders of working people in Cuba. He shows how the revolution's social program emerged out of deepening class- struggle experience by workers and peasants themselves, and how the Rebel Army grew into a movement capable of leading millions to carry through a socialist revolution in the years after the 1959 victory.

Reading the book is one of the best ways to learn about the fight for power on the part of working people, which is at the heart of the communist approach to fighting imperialist war.

Dan Fein, a member of United Transportation Union Local 1416 in Salt Lake City, Utah, has been showing the book around. "A subscriber to the Militant picked up a copy of the Episodes book as soon as he saw it after getting off work last week. He works at the Southern Pacific railroad as a brakeman/switchman," Fein writes, "and is a member of the UTU." Fein and his co-worker also sent for applications to attend the April meeting of the Central Organization of Cuban Workers (CTC), whose leadership has invited workers from the United States and other countries to attend the 17th CTC congress.

In Alabama, two socialists who are members of the United Mine Workers of America Local 2368 at Jim Walter Resources no. 5 mine have each sold a copy of Guevara's book to a co- worker. "Both have read books from Pathfinder before, and on Cuba. So they were interested in getting this new book too," reports John Hawkins. "One became a member of the Pathfinder Readers Club. We are also talking to people about attending the CTC congress. Another book sold this week was Teamster Rebellion, so we've sold three books in three weeks! By paying close attention to every political discussion and thinking about how to advance those discussions it is clear that there is a Pathfinder title to use in most cases," he said. Supporters in Birmingham raised their goal to 60 this week.

Eva Braiman and Nell Wheeler spent a couple days of their vacation in Albany, New York, on a Pathfinder sales trip. While visiting several retail stores and the university library, the two called Militant subscribers in the area to see if they had been reading about the new book and if they wanted to purchase a copy. Three were sold altogether.

A subscriber to Perspectiva Mundial bought Episodes and The Truth About Yugoslavia as well. "She is a Puerto Rican woman and really wanted to find out about what is going on in Yugoslavia and what to do about it," Wheeler said. Another copy was sold to a Kurdish immigrant from Turkey. "A lot of our discussion with him was on whether or not it is possible to make a revolution today," she said. "He bought the book to find out how to build a fighting movement and what kind of program that movement needs to win. He wanted to get the whole story on the Cuban revolution."

Katy Karlin, a member of the Oil, Chemical, and Atomic Workers union in Newark, New Jersey, reports that getting into discussions with co-workers on the new book led to a sale of New International no. 6. A worker originally from Trinidad, while deciding not to get Episodes, purchased New International no. 6 because he had followed the revolution in Grenada. That issue of the magazine of Marxist politics and theory features "The Second Assassination of Maurice Bishop," by Steve Clark. Bishop, the central leader of the Grenadian revolution in the early 1980s, was assassinated during the 1983 counterrevolutionary coup led by Bernard Coard, which opened the way to the defeat of the revolution and an invasion by Washington's military forces.

Copies of a color poster of the cover of Episodes of the Cuban Revolutionary War were shipped last week by Pathfinder. Posters can be ordered for $.50 each. Also available in limited quantities is an 8+" X 11" photo sheet used in a press mailing. The sheet can be used locally for further press work. Material can be ordered from Pathfinder by calling (212) 741-0690.

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