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Renegades and Rats: Betrayal and the Remaking of Radical Organisations in Britain and Australia

From Billy Hughes and Joseph Lyons to Mal Colston and Mark Latham, the Australian Labor Party has produced many members later regarded as renegades. But betrayal of the working-class cause is not confined to Australia and, in the end, may not be as destructive as it first appears. Renegades and Rats traces betrayal in the labour movements of Britain and Australia through the careers of activists as diverse as H. H. Champion, W. A. Trenwith, John Burns and Adela Pankhurst Walsh. The drama surrounding accusations of disloyalty is vividly conveyed, the individual stories enhanced by insights into the language of betrayal and the role of the rat in political fiction. The book shows how radical groups not only withstood the bitter rivalries and occasional punch-ups that political treachery provoked, but emerged stronger and more unified. Jacqueline Dickenson offers a fresh approach to labour history that uncovers the true meaning and power of the labour rat. Author Jacqueline Dickenson completed her doctoral thesis in the History Department at the University of Melbourne in 2004. She teaches at RMIT University, Melbourne.
Publication Details
Name of Publisher: Melbourne University Press
Place of Publication: Carlton, Vic.
Resource Type: Monograph
ISBN: 9780522853094
EISBN: 0522853102
Publication Year: 2006
Publication Frequency: Other
Subject Covered: Political science; Modern history