Letter: Red Emma was not a dilettante Trotskyist

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The Independent Online
BEN PIMLOTT describes Christopher Hitchens as 'a kind of journalistic Emma Goldman' ('Self-made rebel with all the right connections', Review, 20 June) . This is a gross insult to a great woman. Emma Goldman was not 'an incendiary bomber, an anarchic and mesmerising but destructive and sometimes undiscriminating force'. She was a serious thinker and writer, and a courageous campaigner, who risked (and often suffered) mob violence for her carefully argued defence of the rights of workers, of free love and birth control, of resistance to war and conscription, and for her impartial criticism of left-wing dictatorship in Communist Russia and right-wing dictatorship in Fascist Spain. She should not be compared with a latter-day Trotskyist playboy of the Western world.

Mary Lewis

Freedom Press, London E1

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