Socialist Worker

Mike Marqusee 1953-2015

by Brian Richardson
Issue No. 2437

Mike Marqusee

Mike Marqusee

Socialists will be saddened to learn of the death of the writer and activist Mike Marqusee at just 61.

Born in New York, Mike moved to Britain in 1971. He threw himself into the labour movement. He was a committed trade unionist, Labour Party member, editor of Labour Briefing and contributor to Red Pepper.

He was passionately anti-imperialist and after leaving the Labour Party played an important role in launching the Stop the War Coalition in the early 2000s.

He was also that rare thing—an American who understood cricket and loved the game.  

Much as he enjoyed it, he hated its elitism. He sought to challenge it by launching the Hit Racism for Six campaign in 1995. This took its cue from the Kick Racism Out of Football initiative.

It was a pleasure to share a platform with Mike when he published Anyone But England, his take on the history of cricket, and Redemption Song, his brilliant biography of the great American boxer and activist Muhammad Ali.

Mike had real differences with the SWP but we will remember the times we worked together. He was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in 2007. 

He bore its progression with bravery, writing about it and other cancers in a series of pieces which were published as The Price of Experience. 

Our condolences go out to his brother and sisters and his long term partner Liz.


Mobile users! Don't forget to add Socialist Worker to your home screen.