Marxist IQ: May Day history

BY:Communist Party USA| April 25, 2022
Marxist IQ: May Day history


The working class faces both old and new crises this coming May Day—from the continuing Covid pandemic to the cold war revival and its economic political and military dangers. This quiz looks at what we can learn from the history of May Day and its meaning for today.

1. The first May Day was called for at an 1889 international conference in Paris by

a. corporations calling for international free trade.
b. imperialist powers celebrating the carving up of Africa and Asia.
c. workers’ organizations and early Marxist-oriented socialist parties calling for an international day of demonstrations for an eight-hour work day and other workers’ rights.
d. anarchist organizations and parties calling for a day of world revolutions against all governments.

2. May 1 was chosen by the conference to honor which of the following?

a. The European revolutions of 1848
b. The Paris Commune of 1871
c. The British Chartist Movement of the 1840s
d. The May 1, 1886, U.S. demonstrations for the eight-hour day, led by the Knights of Labor and labor radicals, which resulted in the Chicago Haymarket police riot and trials

3. The May 1st demonstrations spread and grew after 1890, becoming part of a new International of Marxist socialist parties, which called for

a. business-labor cooperation to ensure trickle-down wealth for the working class.
b. the building of socialist parties to advance political democracy allied to trade unions to build economic democracy.
c. general strikes to abolish capitalism.
d. independence for the peoples of the Czarist Russian and Austro Hungarian empires.

4. As May Day, also called International Workers Day, developed as an official holiday in socialist countries and an unofficial one in most of the world, it was seen as a day for workers to:

a. take off work and enjoy sports and entertainment.
b. hold meetings with employers to improve relations and avoid strikes.
c. hold marches and meetings which focused on the most pressing issues facing the working-class movement and what could be done about them.
d. engage in confrontations with the military and the police.

5. The most important issues that U.S. workers can and must address in this year’s May Day marches and demonstrations are which of the following:

a. A cease fire and peace program to end the Ukraine war and the NATO expansion policies which helped bring it about
b. A national planning and price control policy to end profiteering and prevent inflation from sharply reducing working people’s real wages
c. United action to defeat the Republican party in the 2022 off-year elections
d. Legislation to end the vigilante violence and voter suppression campaigns which the Trump Republican Right has advanced since 2017
e. All of the above

Answers here.



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