Walter Weyl and the Class War
CHARLES B. FORCEY
" ERTHA HAS BEEN SUGGESTING TO ME that I go to Lawrence to see the strike there," wrote Walter Weyl in his diary early one morning in January 1912.1 By midnight of the same day he had traveled from New York to Massachusetts and was ready to begin reporting the strike for the Outlook the next day. It was his first chance to see the radical International Workers of the World in action.
For the moment Weyl had reached an impasse in his work. Three months earlier he had finished The New Democracy, his first major work in political philosophy, and now awaited its publication and the "enormous influence" it might have? During the wait, Weyl had done some research for Senator LaFollette; he had written several potboilers for the Saturday Evening Post and a weightier article for the North American Review; for a few days he had even tried to write a play. The chief source of his restlessness, however, had been the roughing out of a new book, one he planned to call "The Class War." Where his forthcoming book advocated middle-class progressivism, the new one would attack proletarian socialism.