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This is an auction for THE JOHN A LEE DIARIES 1936-1940.

"A charismatic ex-soldier, orator and propagandist, John A. Lee was a dynamic figure in the Labour Party from the 1920s until 1940, when he was expelled for attacking the leadership of M.J. Savage. Lee had a parallel career as a writer and later bookseller. His best-known novel, the largely autobiographical Children of the poor (1934), was described as a ‘sensational book on vice, poverty, misery’... In 1916 Lee enlisted in the New Zealand Expeditionary Force, serving with distinction in the Palmerston ?North Infantry Regiment. Known as 'Bolshie Lee' for his socialist views, he wrote regular items from the front for Clutha Mackenzie's Chronicles of the NZEF. In June 1917 he was awarded a DCM for single-handedly capturing a German machine-gun post at Messines, Belgium... He was increasingly critical of the orthodox, cautious approach of Savage, Peter Fraser and Walter Nash. In 1940 he was expelled from the party for attacking the terminally ill Savage and Lee's political career was destroyed. He continued to disseminate left-wing views through John A. Lee's Weekly (1940–8) and other journals, and from 1950 became an Auckland bookseller. Lee outlived his enemies, continuing to fight old battles. He found a new lease of life as a writer in the 1960s. Simple on a soap-box, his version of the events of the 1930s, was published in 1963. Rhetoric at the red dawn (1965), Political notebooks (1973) and The John A. Lee diaries 1936-1940 (1981) provide a fascinating – if highly subjective – view of Labour's rise in the 1920s and 1930s. Lee died in Auckland in 1982."

Hardback 1981.

237 pages.

Very good condition.

The cost of shipping is $4.95.

There is of course no charge for shipping if you collect this book from my shop in Palmerston North following the auction.

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  • NZ Post$4.95
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  • Seller location: Palmerston North, Manawatu, NZ

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