Seeds of Fire: A People’s Chronology

Recalling events that happened on this day in history.
Memories of struggle, resistance and persistence.

Compiled by Ulli Diemer

January  February  March  April  May  June  July  August  September  October  November  December
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November 4, 1811  
A group of men in Bulwell, England, break into a workshop and smash weaving machines which threaten their jobs. They call themselves followers of “General Ludd” and go down in history as “Luddites.” They are not opposed to machines per se, but they believe that machines should be used to make weavers more productive and better paid, not to destroy their livelihoods.
Related Topics: Luddism
November 4, 1914  
Bolshevik deputies in the Russian Duma are arrested and sent to Siberia for opposing the war.
Related Topics: Bolshevism
November 4, 1918  
The poet Wilfred Owen (1893-1918) is killed in Northen France, one week before the end of the #Great War#. Found on his body is his poem Strange Meeting, narrated by a soldier who goes to the underworld to escape the battlefield and there meets the enemy soldier he killed the day before.

“Strange, friend,” I said, “Here is no cause to mourn.”
“None,” said the other, “Save the undone years,
The hopelessness. Whatever hope is yours,
Was my life also;”
“I am the enemy you killed, my friend.
I knew you in this dark; for so you frowned
Yesterday through me as you jabbed and killed.
I parried; but my hands were loath and cold.
Let us sleep now . . .”

Related Topics: Poets
November 4, 1936  
Representatives of the anarchist CNT join Spain’s Republican government, headed by Caballero, on condition they receive four seats in cabinet, rather than the one originally offered. The leading anarchist paper proclaims that with the addition of the four anarchist ministers, the Government has “ceased to be an oppressor of the working class.” Some foreign anarchists criticize the decision, but others, like Emma Goldman, acknowledge that while taking up positions in a government is a difficult choice for anarchists, in view of General Franco’s revolt, “I could hardly blame the CNT-FAI for choosing a lesser evil: participation in government rather than dictatorship.”
Related Topics: AnarchismSpanish Civil War
November 4, 1984  
In the first free elections in Nicaragua’s history, with an 83% voter turnout, the Sandinista Front wins 70% of the vote. The United States government reacts as it always does when democracy produces the ‘wrong’ result: it does everything it can to overthrow the Sandinista government.

January  February  March  April  May  June  July  August  September  October  November  December
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For more information about people and events in Seeds of Fire, explore these pages: