Steve Cohen 1945-2009

27Mar09

in-memoryoriginally published: 26th March 2009

The anti-racist movement has lost one of its foremost fighters.

Steve Cohen was not the easiest of men or the least controversial of campaigners, but he has left behind him a host of tangible achievements that few can rival.

Unusually for today, he extended his notion of personal oppression, as a Jew, into an understanding of the racist treatment of all migrants in a globalised world. And, yet more unusually, he married theory and practice.

In 1983 Steve was one of the first to suggest in the UK the surreptitious emergence of a form of anti-Semitism on the Left and, though I could not agree with many of his interpretations in the pamphlet That’s funny you don’t look anti-Semitic (he was always one for a jokey aside), it was certainly a brave broadside.

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