Henry has nudged me a little, every so often, towards participating more in the life of Crooked Timber — or participating at all, really, since it’s been almost four years since my last posting. Fair enough. And so now, without further ado: Here I am again, ready to complain.

The Marxist Internet Archive (marxists.org) is a vast and growing resource, run entirely by donated labor, and as polylingual as circumstances permit. (Do they have Trotsky in Tagalog? Indeed they do.) Yesterday, a notice appeared in the Archive’s Facebook group, and also on its homepage, saying that Lawrence & Wishart’s lawyers demand removal of material from the Marx-Engels Collected Works: “Accordingly, from 30th April 2014, no material from MECW is available from marxists.org. English translations of Marx and Engels from other sources will continue to be available.”

Responding to L&W’s demand in a suitable manner would require someone with Marx’s or Engels’s knack for invective and scatology, and I’m not even going to try. But the idea that most of their work is going to be removed from the website on May Day is just grotesque.
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