Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Posters of the Week

For All These Rights We've Just Begun to Fight
Ben Shahn
CIO Political Action Committee
Lithograph. 1946
New York, NY

Ben Shahn (1898 –1969) was a Lithuanian-born American artist, whose paintings, graphics and posters cry out for social justice. His work covered some of the most controversial issues of the day. In 1932 he completed a series on the still controversial trials of Sacco and Vanzetti, Italian immigrant labor organizers and anarchists who were executed in 1927. During World War II he worked for the U.S. Government Office of War Information (OWI) designing propaganda posters. Because his work lacked the preferred patriotism of the day only two of his posters were published. But both were memorable, especially a 1942 poster about Nazi extermination of the entire Czech village of Lidice. After the war, his work ranged from opposing nuclear weapons to supporting civil rights.

CSPG’s Poster-of-the-Week was done shortly after WWII. The enemy was no longer the Nazis, but attacks on working people and unions by the reactionary right in the U.S. Just like now. We dedicate the Poster-of-the-Week to the public employees and their supporters in Wisconsin who are fighting back, in some of the most creative and spirited ways we’ve seen in years. One protester even credited the Egyptians for inspiring the actions in the U.S. And the Wisconsin actions have in turn inspired actions in Ohio, Indiana, and support demonstrations around the country.

If you have posters about this or other issues, please send them to us.

Posted by Bruce Benidt on

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