Donate to People’s World—or else!

Or else? Yes, or else!

Or else—tomorrow or the day after—we’ll have to cut back staff, publish fewer articles, train fewer reporters and writers, sponsor fewer podcasts and webinars, attend fewer conventions, pull in our reach. And the only daily news you’ll be able to read will be monopoly corporate conglomerate AI puffery crafted to misinform, distort, and lie.

If you’re a regular reader, you already know that. But maybe even you take People’s World for granted, like, it’ll always be there, as it’s been for 100 years now, since 1924. You can’t imagine a media universe that doesn’t include our socialist, pro-worker, pro-people perspective. But let me assure you, that day could come, and you don’t want to live in such a country. In a just, honest, objective nation, the USPS would issue a “Forever” postage stamp honoring our Centennial for its inestimable contribution to the national discourse.

So, it’s up to us. Please, donate generously!

Now if you’ll indulge me, let me get personal as, I believe, the oldest (not longest) PW staff member we have today. I started reading PW, or its predecessor namesakes, back in the 1970s—around the time when the paper celebrated its half-century of existence, having survived the Cold War and Red Scare, the Smith Act and McCarthyism.

When I moved to New York City in 1979 I took myself down to West 23rd Street to introduce myself to the Culture Editor, Adelaide Bean, volunteering my services for reviewing films, museum shows, plays, opera. When she heard I was researching the life and work of composer Marc Blitzstein, she lit up with instant recognition: She had known him personally, going back at least to the 1940s when her sister Betty Bean was involved with Blitzstein and other composers in the American-Soviet Music Society, trying their best to keep the spirit of anti-fascist allyship alive in the post-war world. I remember Adelaide so fondly, meticulously going over my reviews that I biked downtown to hand her in person, so that I could learn from her, grow as a writer and critic, and be part of the milieu that nurtured Blitzstein, Earl Robinson, Langston Hughes, Lorraine Hansberry, Clifford Odets, Lillian Hellman, Arthur Miller and so many other great American cultural figures.

How could I have imagined that one day I would, figuratively, sit in Adelaide’s chair as Culture Editor of today’s People’s World? I’m glad I lived long enough to see it—and that PW is still here for new generations of readers.

Let’s keep it going! Please donate generously!

In my role I try my hardest, as Adelaide did in her time, to feature the cultural work that promotes humanistic values from every part of the globe, in every medium. We don’t review every bestseller or all the blockbuster shoot-’em-ups from Hollywood. But we do try to keep our eyes and ears peeled for the progressive series that make it onto the little screen, the movies that can make a difference in how the public sees issues like race and gender, class and war, the revelatory book, the 99-seat theater plays, hoping and trusting that our encouragement will give heart to these creative talents who are doing their utmost to create a better world for us and our children.

Eric Gordon’s recent review of “Romeo and Juliet” is an example of the kind of great culture articles you can expect on Peoples World. | Johan Persson

In the old Soviet days, in the socialist countries, school children read Nikolai Ostrovsky’s novel How the Steel is Made, and many of them could recite from memory a passage from it that informed an entire world view:

“The most valuable thing that a person possesses is life. He is given but a single one. And he should use it so that his years are not wasted without purpose, so that he will not burn from shame for a base and mean past, so that when he dies, he may say: My whole life, all of my strength, I have dedicated to the most splendid thing in the world, to fight for the emancipation of mankind.”

I did not grow up with that quote, but I can honestly say I have lived it.

I’m a monthly sustainer to People’s World. I don’t mind working the unpaid extra hour, or day, to finish an article or polish up someone else’s work for publication. If I travel (at my own expense because I get Social Security), I take notes and write them up for informational PW travelogues. I buy raffle tickets, and contribute items to it. I’ve willed royalties from my books to International Publishers. With my translations I’ve brought the entire anti-fascist fictional work of Manuel Tiago (pen name of Portuguese Communist leader Álvaro Cunhal) to the English-reading public. I urge both experienced and novice writers to contribute articles for us. “My whole life…,” as the novelist says.

So when we ask for your help in sustaining People’s World, it’s in that spirit. I’m reminded of the joke about the preacher, who announces from the pulpit, “I have good news for our church! We have the money to repair the roof! The bad news is, it’s in your pockets!”

I know that we have readers who are imprisoned, or working three jobs to keep a roof overhead, or are challenged to feed their families. Yes, I do know. But I also know that we have readers who could well afford a $100 donation this year to honor our Centennial. In fact, I know we have readers who wouldn’t feel the slightest pinch at $100 a month to sustain People’s World. Maybe even more.

But the critical thing is to participate with your whole heart. It’s not charity, and it’s not tax-deductible! It’s an investment in a sane, peaceful future, “the most splendid thing in the world…the emancipation of all humanity” (to update the language a bit).

Thank you! Obrigado! Gracias!


Eric A. Gordon
Eric A. Gordon

Eric A. Gordon, People’s World Cultural Editor, wrote a biography of radical American composer Marc Blitzstein and co-authored composer Earl Robinson’s autobiography. He has received numerous awards for his People's World writing from the International Labor Communications Association. He has translated all nine books of fiction by Manuel Tiago (pseudonym for Álvaro Cunhal) from Portuguese, available from International Publishers NY.