In the recent Q&A on Marc Karlin’s Between Times (1993), the film’s editor and voice of ‘A’, Steve Sprung, declared Marc was both ‘A’ and ‘Z’. That is to say, Marc occupied the two opposing left wing positions simultaneously in the film, thereby allowing us to gain an intriguing insight into Marc’s paradoxical political outlook at the time.
Here is a fascinating transcript from the archive, that runs contrary to this claim. It is a conversation between Marc and Marxist writer, John Mepham that forms the foundations of the dialectic in Between Times. Marc and Mepham discuss the parallels between the fall of the British Left and the rise of Thatcherism since May 1968. Both seem to form the idea that all the questions and intentions at the heart of Thatcherism were made by the New Left after May 68. The New Left simply never organised their response into a coherent political project and as a consequence stagnated.
It is a very candid and engaging conversation that not only mirrors our search for fresh alternatives but also reveals our tendency to create our own political demons to disguise our complicity when things run adrift.