Norman Markowitz

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Norman Markowitz

Norman Markowitz is a Communist Party USA member. He joined the party circa 1978.

He is a history professor at Rutgers University New Jersey, where he has worked since 1971.[1]

My work is in twentieth century U.S. political history. I write and teach from a Marxist perspective, and I have written in recent years many articles for the History News Service, the History News Network, the journal Political Affairs and various Encylopedias, including the Encyclopedia of American National Biography, and the Encyclopedia of Social Movements on a variety of topics, including biographical entries on Jimmy Hoffa, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, the Civil Rights movement, 1930-1953, and Poor Peoples Movements in American History.


  • Ph.D., University of Michigan, 1970
  • M.A., University of Michigan, 1967
  • B.A., CCNY, 1966[2]

Communist Party's May Day Salute

In 1995 the Communist Party USA newspaper People's Weekly World, published a "May Day salute" to the "heroes in the class war zone". More than 100 unionists/activists endorsed the call, mostly known affiliates, or members of the Communist Party.

Norman Markowitz, AAUP New Jersy, was one of those listed[3].

In 2009 Norman Markowitz was a contributing editor and a member of the [4] of the Editorial Collective of Political Affairs, theoretical journal of the Communist Party USA.

Supporting Obama

Like most Communist Party USA members in 2008, Norman Markowitz was very supportive of Barack Obama.

On January 30 2008 Markowitz wrote on the PA Editors Blog[5];

Progressives seeking to build a national majority coalition that would both end and dismantle nearly thirty years of right-wing political power in the United States suffered a setback (that is all, I think, it can be called) with the apparent announcement that John Edwards is withdrawing his candidacy.
Some, myself included, had hoped that Edwards would stay in, continue to win delegates, and form a coalition with Senator Obama's delegates at the convention to develop both a program and a presidential slate that would decisively defeat the right-wing Republicans and begin to enact in the 21st century programs like national public health care, substantial increases in minimum wages and other labor and social programs, funded through progressive taxation...

Markowitz believes that Obama will repeat the 1930's. At that time the Communist Party USA flooded into Franklin Roosevelt's "New Deal" and pushed the USA far to the left[6].

Senator Obama has attracted people of progressive views, many of whom have been alienated from politics or are having their first experience with political activities, in a way that few candidates have for a very long time...
He is far less of a known commodity, far more likely to bring into government independents and progressives from the mass organizations and the communities along with the traditional Democratic organization politicians, as Franklin Roosevelt did during the depression...
But he can, I think, turn his status as an African American, a member of the minority group most stigmatized in U.S. history, into a very positive force, becoming in effect a real unifying leader for working class and progressive people of all colors, ethnicities and sexual orientations...
All of these conjectures may be meaningless if Clinton wins a large victory in next week's "Super Tuesday," which is a good reason for progressives to both vote for and get out the vote for Obama...

In February 2008 Markowitz wrote in the Political Affairs blog[7].

Senator Obama Continues to Mobilize People for Progressive Change
Elections are, among other things exercises in mobilizing masses of people to advance politically, not only electing individuals and parties to ostensibly represent the people. Barack Obama is campaigning for substantive progressive change and he is making change, confounding mass media week to week...
Obama's speech in the aftermath of the primary was a continuation of his clear, focused and eloquent call for unity and active commitment to a progressive program. The people were listening if the media wasn't...
I wrote an article very recently on Obama's background and policies... let me say that I was surprised, in doing research for it, on how really progressive a candidate Obama is, and how the media and especially sections of the left have refused to take him seriously, preferring instead to play out their fixed ideas as the political landscape changes before them.
I was surprised because I had listened to the endless comments about his vagueness, the rich and powerful among his supporters...
But, like Robert Wagner who came out of New York's Tammany Hall and was the major sponsor of the National Labor Relations Act (still the most significant piece of pro labor legislation in U.S. history)...
"Obama is convincing more and more people that he can answer Lenin's question, What is to be Done? with the answer that Franklin Roosevelt gave when he rallied American workers to win the battle of production during World War II, "It Can be Done because It Must be Done."