Mudcat Café message #4032127 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #157878   Message #4032127
Posted By: Jack Campin
04-Feb-20 - 06:11 AM
Thread Name: Dave Harker, Fakesong
Subject: RE: Dave Harker, Fakesong
I haven't looked up 'social Darwinist' but taking it in two halves fits with his introduction. One the one hand, as a socialist he could well have believed that most of what separated him from an English peasant was upbringing, education and opportunity. On the other hand he could have read Darwin's account of speciation in a group of small islands as allowing the folk music of different nearby nations to be be different because of inherent differences in their peoples.

Social Darwinism was not invented by Darwin, but by Herbert Spencer. It doesn't come from Darwin's own work AT ALL.


The social Darwinist view would be at odds with Marxism which saw history as class struggle. It's a key emotive word for Harker I think, a bit like 'bourgeois' and tending to get annoying (but who am I to talk).

Marxism (and Harker's version of it in particular) does not take the attitude of dismissing people's assertions simply because they weren't Marxists. Harker has no problem with Sharp being what he was; he says it was only to be expected that someone with Sharp's background would hold racist and militarist attitudes regardless of his avowed socialism. What he objects to is the way he's been misrepresented since his time, by people who have an interest (maybe a career one) in shining by the light of a falsely deified figure. A Marxist position would say Sharp deserves better than to be caricatured in the cause of making somebody money 100 years down the line.