a monthly journal of politics and literature founded in 1934 as the platform of the British section of the pro-Soviet Writers' International. Until December 1935 it was edited by a group in which Montague Slater's was the dominant voice. Early issues were preoccupied with defining the functions of writers as instruments of revolutionary socialism. Although much of the content of Left Review justifies Bernard Bergonzi's remark on its ‘simplistic sentimental Russophilia’, contributions from W. H. Auden, Edward Upward, Stephen Spender, C. Day Lewis, and Christopher Caudwell give it some centrality to literary developments of the period. From January 1935 to June 1937 Edgell Rickword was principal editor. A series of critically astute articles by Rex Warner, C. Day Lewis, and Rickword himself applied socialist literary theory to the works of Dickens, Swift, Spenser, Hopkins, Shakespeare, and Blake. Rickword regularly published work by European contributors and made the magazine the principal forum for British writers in support of the Republican forces in the Spanish Civil War. During Randall Swingler's editorship, which continued until the magazine closed in May 1938, the Communist Party exerted increasingly rigid control, to the marked diminishment of Left Review's literary quality.
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