Whelanism revisited- the Revolutionary Marxist Current

Joint post with Red Mole Rising


Chapter two of Mike McNair’s study of the internal politics and factions of the IMG is titled “Whelanism” after Tony Whelan / Chris Marshall.

He suggests that under a “generic term of Whelanism may be grouped the 1972 Fusion Conference majority, the Left Opposition Tendency (LOT) of 1973-4, Tendency D at and after the 1975 Conference and the Current X at the 1976 Conference; also, the public organisation the Revolutionary Marxist Current (RMC), formed 1975 from the LOT split from the IMG, fused with Big Flame 1978.”

Having previously looked at the RMC here and here, we are now able to add a substantial number of new documents to our collection.

Firstly we have the document of Liverpool comrades resigning from the IMG in 1974- part of the group which became the RMC.

Then we have the Political Platform of the RMC published as a duplicated pamphlet

We also have a substantial number of RMC Internal Bulletins covering the period April 1975 to October 1976. These detail the political clarification of the RMC and its relations with other groups including the fusion discussions with Workers Fight and the Bolton based Marxist Worker Group.

Three issues of a joint WF-RMC discussion bulletin were produced. The first of these was “Notes on the Mass Struggle” a WF critique of the Whelan tendency within the IMG. This retrospectively became bulletin no1, followed by Bulletin 2 and Bulletin 3.

We do not have later period documents relating to the discussions with Big Flame.

Many more related documents here:



One thought on “Whelanism revisited- the Revolutionary Marxist Current”

  1. There were several things that slowly pushed me away from the revolutionary left & one was the intensity of its factions. (One thing I liked about Big Flame was how uninterested everyone was in factions, even when they did emerge.) So, when the RMC joined BF (we called them the red currants) I don’t think we knew anything about their long history in & out of the IMG. I remember how intense they were as individuals, but they seemed to like BF so I for one liked them. I realise that lots of people still like to follow all these ancient factions, frictions, fractures, & I bet Tony Whelan has filed all the relevant papers — I have a feeling they might be in Warwick University’s archives. He sometimes answers emails, so you could ask him, if they don’t show up on a Warwick search.


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