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The LSA and the Toronto Women's Caucus

From 1970 to 1972, the Toronto Women's Caucus (TWC) was the largest and most influential Women's Liberation group in Toronto. This essay, written late in 1972, discusses the history of the TWC from the point of view of members of the League for Socialist Action, who helped found the group and were among its leading activists.

The document provides a unique picture of how women from the LSA and Young Socialists took part in the women's movement and how they learned and developed as political leaders through that experience. It also provides important insight into the period when the women's movement was evolving from "consciousness raising" into organizing for mass action.

See also Our Line in Practice, a related document that deals with the period immediately following the decline of TWC.

Originally published in: League for Socialist Action / Ligue Socialiste Ouvriθre Discussion Bulletin 1972. Number 23, December 1972.

Toronto Women's Caucus:
A Two-Year Experience in a Cross-City Women's Liberation Group

by Lis Angus, Pam Dineen, L. Robertson
Toronto local


Our intervention in the new feminist radicalization has been one of learning through experience. We don't have a blueprint for how the women's liberation movement will develop, but we do have a strategy — a mass action strategy. In our interventions in the developing movement, we have looked for opportunities to intervene and to win women to this strategy.

One of the most important of our experiences was our intervention in the Toronto Women's Caucus (TWC).

The purpose of this contribution is to review the experiences and lessons of our two-year intervention in TWC. It traces the nature of that intervention, and how our movement benefitted and developed its ability to carry out our perspective of building and leading the developing mass feminist movement.

Why We Helped Found TWC

Our participation in the founding of TWC, in June 1970, was based on the same kind of analysis as our later participation in the founding of the abortion coalitions: an analysis of the direction of the movement and of the most effective way to project a mass action perspective for the movement.

In the spring of 1970, after the successful Abortion Caravans actions in May, it became clear to us that neither the New Feminists nor the Women's Liberation Movement (the two existing groups in Toronto) were willing or able to meet the challenge posed by the Abortion Caravan: to move beyond the framework of small discussion groups into public, independent political action. The New Feminists continued to limit the size of their group to 16 (new women could join only by the unanimous vote of the 16). The WLM, dominated by a new left leadership, became a talk shop with meetings often degenerating into "struggle sessions".

We had spent a year fighting a dead-end battle in these two groups for a mass action perspective. In June 1970 we took the initiative, along with several independent women from the New Feminists, in launching the Toronto Women's Caucus,

TWC represented a way to break out of the narrow framework of existing Toronto groups and project a mass action perspective for the feminist movement. We saw that this could be done most effectively at that time through a group which was open to all women and dedicated to active struggle against women's oppression. It had to be a group which constantly reached out to the public and drew women out of isolation from each other and into collective, active struggle.

Frustrated by the non-struggle perspective offered in existing groups, the founders of TWC based the group on three basic premises: "non-exclusionism, an activist character, and an orientation to reaching the population of women at large. (Its aim) is to mobilize women, to unite them, to be a means by which women can organize to end their oppression." (November 1970: introductory leaflet)

Early Stages of TWC

In the first months of its existence, TWC grew and developed rapidly into an activist organization. It reflected the diffuse and undefined energies of the early women's liberation movement. Although there was no focus of activity, a large number of the women who came to meetings became active on one or another of the many committees.

TWC carried actions on a wide variety of issues, aimed at bringing more women to the group. For example, the first public meeting sponsored by TWC attracted 150 people to hear British feminist Jo O'Brien. TWC was further established in Toronto — and to some extent across Canada — through publicity around a Miss Toronto demonstration in July and an August 26 speak-out in Toronto City Hall Square in solidarity with the August 26 actions across the United States. (Although carried by only a handful of women, this last action received front page coverage in Toronto papers and attracted many new women to the group.)

TWC also participated in a coalition of women for inclusion of the word "sex" in the Ontario Human Rights Code; carried educational discussions around a wide variety of topics, from socialization and child care to fashion and media; and had a very active "contact" committee which consistently phoned new women to invite them to meetings and activities.

The Velvet Fist

During the summer of 1970 TWC launched Velvet Fist, as a cross-Canada feminist paper putting forward TWC's perspective on the women's movement. We projected that it was necessary for the women's liberation movement to have a mass-oriented publication to pose an action perspective for the movement and lead it forward.

We saw at that time that the Fist would play two roles: 1) it would be a mobilizer for various actions and campaigns of the feminist movement, convincing women of a mass action perspective; and 2) it would be an educator, carrying articles on the origins of women's oppression, history of women's struggles, etc.

When the Fist was initiated we did not know what path the feminist movement would take — what the key issues would be, etc. — but we know that the women's liberation movement must be mass-oriented and that it must fight for women's needs. We projected the Fist as a cross-country paper that would help build the mass action wing of the feminist movement in Canada and our comrades intervened in both TWC and Velvet Fist with this orientation.

In those early months, TWC became a pole of attraction in Toronto for women radicalizing around the questions raised by the women's liberation movement. A report to a Toronto Branch Conference in the early fall of 1970 observed that TWC had grown (in four months) from the founding group of five women to a mailing list of 300 and an activist core of 25 to 30 women, thereby becoming the largest, most active group in Toronto.

The Emergence of the Abortion Campaign:
Focus for a Mass Action Perspective

a) The Saskatoon Conference — In November, 1970, the first cross-country conference of the new feminist movement was held in Saskatoon to discuss the way forward for the Canadian movement. A number of comrades and members of TWC participated.

The leadership of the conference, which was anti-mass action, hoped once and for all to squash the activist direction which many new groups had adopted following the Abortion Caravan. They appeared to fear that new women would dilute the revolutionary content of the movement.

We had seen the breadth of support for the Abortion Caravan actions the previous May, and saw the possibilities of ongoing struggle. We projected that a continued campaign around this issue could concretely pose a perspective of struggle around concrete demands, mobilizing the growing sentiment for the right to abortion. Our comrades at the conference put forward the perspective of continuing to build on the successes of the Caravan by working towards drawing large numbers of women into independent struggle around the campaign initiated by the Abortion Caravan.

This debate decisively divided the conference. Many arguments were put forward to oppose a mass-oriented campaign around abortion: it was a reformist struggle, the movement would be co-opted and die just as it did when the vote was won, it was selfish for women to fight just for themselves — we should organize for free health care for all, etc. It became clear that the opponents of the campaign were frightened not so much by the issue of abortion, but by the implications of the struggle to win this right. Not surprisingly, they projected no actions for the movement coming out of the conference

Our comrades and other supporters of mass action — a minority of the conference — met in an afternoon workshop and adopted the only actions to come out of the conference — a call for cross-country abortion actions on February 13, 1971.

It was at this conference that the abortion campaign became the dividing line in the Canadian women's liberation movement between support of mass action and the inward-turned, non-struggle perspective of the New Left and reformist currents developing in the feminist movement,

b) TWC and the abortion campaign — Following the Saskatoon conference we carried this debate into TWC and convinced TWC to build the Feb. 13 actions. TWC took on the cross-country co-ordination of this action.

From that time, TWC was instrumental in building the abortion campaign until the fall of 1971. Particularly through the publication of the Velvet Fist, which carried regular articles on the campaign, TWC was able to play a role in the abortion struggle in Toronto, and, to a limited degree, across the country.

It was during this year of intensive, defined activity around the abortion campaign that we won most of our recruits to the LSA and YS from TWC. All of these comrades were recruited through their intimate and intensive work with us on the abortion actions of 1971, which included a Christmas torchlight parade, February 13 in Ottawa, May 8 in Toronto, the founding conference of WONAAC in New York in July, the founding of the Ontario Women’s Abortion Law Repeal Coalition (OWALRC) in October, and November 20 in Ottawa. Most of the women we recruited in this period had also participated in the production of the Velvet Fist.

Throughout 1971 TWC continued to hold other actions and activities around beauty contests, sexist advertising, public meetings on the Status of Women report, etc. However, the only ongoing project of TWC — apart from the production of Velvet Fist — was the abortion campaign. It was this continuing focus which carried TWC through lull periods and enabled it to overcome periods of inactivity. It was also TWC’s ongoing work in the abortion campaign which enabled it to support a staff person for three months around the building of May 8. The bulk of donations which made the staff position possible were made on the basis of TWC's role in the abortion campaign.

The experiences of this period enabled us to begin to assess concretely the best ways to build the abortion struggle.

In building for Feb. 13, knowing that we had to broaden the struggle beyond TWC, we initiated a coalition of various groups in the city (this coalition disintegrated before the action because of disagreement over the slogan "Free Abortion on Demand").

After the experience of May 8 in Toronto — which was organized by TWC and marked the public emergence of Right to Life (they held a counter-demonstration and outnumbered us two-to-one) — we began to see more and more clearly the need to broaden the abortion campaign to include the growing numbers of organizations and individuals who were beginning to declare their support for abortion law repeal.

c) Rising opposition to mass action — The whole period of TWC's existence was a time of differentiation and drawing of political lines in the women's movement as the radicalization spread and deepened. Different tendencies developed: the personal liberation and self-help programs of women's centres; women's studies courses; the closed collectives and consciousness-raising of the radical feminists and so on. There were those women, many of whom were leaders of the early movement who dropped out entirely, determined to find their liberation in communes and alternative lifestyles.

Increasingly, in this period of differentiation, the abortion campaign posed the clear direction forward for the feminist movement; a strategy of struggle around demands against the institutions which oppress women.

Outside the women's movement, lines were also being drawn. We saw the first obvious mobilization of anti-woman forces in the form of anti-abortion groups which sprang up across the country. Even within the "left," many groups abstained from or opposed participating in the women's liberation movement, particularly the abortion campaign.

It was around the abortion campaign that all the various lines of opposition coalesced. This was the campaign which concretely posed a mass action perspective for the movement; and it was around this struggle that our opponents, varied as their positions were, could agree in opposition — opposed to the abortion struggle and opposed to mass action.

Many members of TWC felt pressured by these positions and agitated in the group for a pulling back from the abortion campaign — alleging that TWC was becoming "too identified" with this struggle. Although generally the women in TWC were open to our politics and accepted our leadership within the group, by the fall of 1971 the pressures to pull back from the campaign began to affect the functioning of the group, leading to inactivity and in some cases, opposition to covering the campaign in Velvet Fist. Editorial Board meetings, which included the main activist core of TWC, became the main focus of the abortion and mass action debate within TWC.

Our experiences in building the abortion campaign led us to realize that forces outside of TWC and outside the organized feminist movement were prepared to support this campaign; however, these forces were in part being excluded from the campaign by the slogan "free abortion on demand." These experiences led to our recognition by the summer of 1971 that the demand which the broadest forces could agree with was the demand to repeal the abortion laws.

Through a number of educational discussions, we were able to win TWC to support of this demand. In the fall, we and other TWC women participated in the founding of OWALRC (Ontario Women's Abortion Law Repeal Coalition).

d) The founding of a provincial abortion law repeal coalition — In the late summer of 1971 we projected the formation of broad action coalitions for abortion law repeal because we felt these formations would attract the broadest number of forces — allowing women with many different approaches, backgrounds and beliefs to unite organizationally around their common agreement of the necessity of abortion law repeal.

Support for the right to abortion was growing well beyond the confines of the organized feminist movement. Many of these groups would not join the TWC to build the campaign — e.g. the United Church, the YWCA, Planned Parenthood, other feminist groups — but would participate in a coalition organized around repeal. We saw that TWC women could be important builders of this coalition.

The founding of the Ontario Women's Abortion Law Repeal Coalition in October 1971 had a tremendous impact on TWC. Several key women in TWC, along with comrades, played a major role in launching the Coalition. It was shortly after this experience that we recruited several of these activist women to the LSA/LSO. They were the last women to be recruited from TWC.

Once the central co-ordination of the abortion campaign had moved from TWC to the Coalition, TWC began to decline in activity. In spite of continual protests that TWC should carry other campaigns besides abortion, when the opportunity presented itself, there were no women willing to act on these ideas.

During that fall, even the spot actions of TWC ended, despite the continued intervention of comrades. Women were less and less willing to take on tasks and activities. Although the meetings continued to attract many new women, they came primarily just to be at meetings and participate in discussions. Without the focus of activity offered by organizing the abortion campaign, the turnover of women was tremendous. The atmosphere of the early period of TWC, when almost every woman who came to a meeting felt she should volunteer to work on some committee, was entirely missing. We were not successful in involving TWC in a major way in the activities of the Coalition except through the formal representation of one member, who saw herself as "the feminist" representative in the Coalition. We were, however, able to convince TWC to take on a modest petition quota; and it was around petitioning and the production of the Velvet Fist that the last activist elements of TWC focused.

e) Growing challenges of the abortion campaign — "which side are you on?" Through the fall and winter of 1971-72 the challenges of the abortion campaign became more sharply posed. The increasing organization of opposition — the growth of Right to Life groups, the New York and Ontario abortion injunctions, posed the urgency of struggle.

More than ever before, the necessity of a mass action perspective — as posed by the abortion campaign — became apparent. More and more women, particularly within the feminist movement, were being forced to make a decision about priorities.

In February of 1972, in order to answer the growing attacks on the repeal movement from both right and left wing tendencies, the Ontario Coalition launched a cross-country tour to answer the Ontario injunction and build for a cross-country abortion law repeal conference, March 18-19 in Winnipeg. We projected the conference as a major step forward for the repeal movement: a uniting of she resources, experiences, and strength of the provincial coalitions into a coordinated cross-country movement.

The Decline of TWC

As noted earlier, TWC began a steady drift away from action and toward inward-turned armchair feminism in the fall of 1971, as activist women became attracted to the newly-founded abortion coalition. TWC lasted the longest of the multi issue, cross-city groups, largely because of its consistent work in coordinating the abortion campaign.

Its only public activity from the fall to its final meeting in June, 1972 was a panel discussion in February on "Women's Struggles in 1972," a panel which dealt with major issues facing women, including day-care, abortion, and the Status of Women report. Despite the broad character of the meeting, it was primarily organized by one comrade, with little or no participation from other TWC women — apart from their questioning of whether an abortion speaker should be included on the panel. We had to carry a fight to have a coalition speaker there.

Comrades continued to assume organizational responsibility for, and give political direction and leadership to TWC until the end of April, 1972. (In fact, by that time, it was nearly impossible to get other women to assume any organizational tasks.) Meetings grew smaller and smaller.

New women were discovering that their needs could be met elsewhere. Many new groups were forming around various issues as feminism took on a respectable face. We saw the emergence of the National Action Committee on the Status of Women, Women for Political Action and the Women's Place (a women's centre set up under a LIP grant which ran educational and self-help courses) to name several. At this time the popularity of university women's studies courses was also growing. The vacuum in the women's liberation movement, which TWC filled for nearly two years, was now being filled in a myriad of ways. Most important for us, activist women were being attracted to the abortion campaign and a mass action perspective. This campaign offered us a concrete way to convince women in all these developing groups of the importance of active struggle by challenging them and their organizations to sponsor and actively support the abortion campaign.

It was during this period that the debate on mass action and the abortion campaign, which had been rumbling in TWC for many months, climaxed in Feb. through a discussion initiated by our comrades on the, necessity of a cross-country abortion publication,

The Velvet Fist Debate:
Mass Action or Personal Liberation?

The necessity of a publication to coordinate and mobilize for the abortion law repeal campaign was repeatedly drawn to our attention by comrades across the country who pointed out that Velvet Fist was not meeting this need. (It should be noted that by this time, February 1972, TWC was the only viable cross-city women's liberation group in Canada. Comrades' interventions in the women's movement were primarily through provincial abortion law repeal committees.)

Apart from sales to abortion coalitions, Velvet Fist circulation was almost non-existent at this time.

When the Fist was founded, the media were by and large blacking out women's liberation; so part of the role we saw for the Fist was that as an educator around women's oppression. We also saw it as a cross-country organizer of women into action against their oppression.

By 1971, there were many feminist papers, including mass circulation ones like Ms. The media also opened up to feminist material. What was downplayed, omitted, and even attacked in many of these publications was the abortion struggle, the only cross-country struggle women were engaging in at the time.

In considering the small forces of our movement and of TWC — and the still narrow resources of the whole feminist movement in Canada — it was apparent that it would be very difficult (if not impossible), to continue publishing and circulating the Fist as well as launching a publication of the abortion campaign. Since the Fist by this time had a very small audience as a multi-issue paper, and was not satisfactory as an organizer of women into action — the logical evolution of the Fist, as we saw it, was to put its resources into building an abortion campaign paper.

We decided that the most principled thing to do was to carry the whole discussion into TWC: to pose to them the importance of the abortion campaign and the desirability of carrying on the traditions and purpose of Velvet Fist by putting the personnel and experience of the Fist at the disposal of the cross-Canada Coalition (which was proposed to be founded at the upcoming Winnipeg conference) for the purpose of producing a cross-country paper for the repeal movement.

We did this through a discussion paper presented by Lis Angus who was then functioning as editor of Velvet Fist. We did not know if it was possible to convince TWC of this perspective, but we knew it was important to try — the alternative was simply to withdraw our comrades from production of the Fist without clarifying the political issues involved. We were looked to as leaders in TWC and we understood our responsibility to explain and try to win support for our positions.

We quickly discovered that the debate was much broader and inclusive than we had anticipated. Although the discussion formally centered around the proposal for the paper, in fact this proposal was only a catalyst for a full debate over the direction and priorities of the women's movement.

Our position in the debate challenged TWC to make a firm commitment to the abortion campaign. Although most of the women left in the group had for months given verbal support to the perspective of mass action and the central role, at this time, of the abortion campaign — what this debate revealed was that, when it came to concrete decisions on priorities, they stood on the other side of the fence.

The discussion, which continued over several weeks, revealed a clear clash between two perspectives: for mass action and for individual solutions. The women opposing our view revealed that, though they gave lip service to a mass action perspective, in actual fact they did not support it. Nowhere in the written reply by seven TWC women to Lis Angus’ paper did they talk about the importance of drawing women into action (the very basis of TWC), either on abortion or any other issue: "More and more women are aware and want to read about the feminist movement"; "conveying personal experiences is an important function of the Velvet Fist."

As the debate continued, it became extremely clear that, to them, a "multi-issue" group meant in fact a "no-issue" group when it came to action. There was no understanding of the necessity of collective struggle. As they said in their paper: "We feel every woman should decide on her own what her responsibilities are and then act on them." These positions reflected a conscious rejection of a mass action perspective, despite the fact that we had spent many months both in meetings and individual discussion attempting to educate and convince all the women in the group on precisely these points.

Our participation in the "Velvet Fist debate" was very principled and in fact, a model of such discussions. Our positions, both written and verbal, were designed to clarify the issues and bring them out into the open.

Once the nature of the debate became clear to us, we withdrew the specific proposal — that Velvet Fist merge with an abortion publication — because the proposal was unreal unless the group as a whole could substantially agree with it.

TWC did unanimously vote to present a proposal to the Winnipeg Conference that an abortion publication be launched and to encourage any TWC women who wished to work on that publication to do so.

When in fact our comrades did begin work on Spokeswoman and ceased taking responsibility for Velvet Fist, it was completely clear to the other women in TWC why we did so, and, although they did not agree with us, they defended our decision to women outside TWC.

The debate introduced a much-needed political clarity into TWC and forced women to define their priorities — mass action or personal liberation. Their conclusion was made clear when, apart from our comrades, only one woman from TWC — who was also a contact of the League — attended the founding conference of the Canadian Women’s Coalition to Repeal the Abortion Laws, in Winnipeg the following month.

The Last Days of TWC

By April 1972, the direction of the group had become clear: with no clear focus of struggle, and no specific constituency to organize in, TWC had become inward-turned. Meetings continued to grow smaller. We ceased at this time to take responsibility for the organization of TWC, although one comrade remained on the House Management Committee, which was responsible for agendas, etc. Several comrades, depending on what was coming up at the meetings, were assigned to intervene in an educational way by selling our press and Spokeswoman and raising the abortion campaign in the discussions.

With the launching of Spokeswoman in March, comrades were no longer involved in the production or distribution of Velvet Fist — although we maintained good relations with the women who continued to put out the Fist, giving technical advice when necessary and having a Velvet Fist representative on the Spokeswoman editorial board. Rather than taking up the other issues in women's liberation, the Velvet Fist began to carry a personal liberation line and offered no perspective of struggle around any issue, let alone abortion. The three or four women involved put out two issues of the paper; their experience was that they could not involve any other women in production or circulation, and that the sales, which had always been low, continued to drop.

In June 1972, TWC — which by this time was a tiny core of women — decided to call a general meeting to discuss the future of the group. We agreed with this step and helped to publicize the meeting. We took no proposals to the meeting and saw our role as an educational one around the growth of the women's liberation movement since the founding of TWC and the role of the abortion campaign. Despite a massive mailing, the attendance at the meeting was about twenty-five women, made up mainly of ourselves and the women who were putting out Velvet Fist. The decision of the meeting was that TWC move its offices to the Women's Place.

No woman present was willing to assume any responsibility for the group, beyond the several who volunteered to take care of the arrangements of moving to the Women's Place.

TWC held one discussion group meeting at the Women's Place and has not met since. Its mailing list, office equipment, etc, were turned over to the Women's Place. At the time of writing this contribution, the women who continued putting out the Velvet Fist are involved in discussions to consider merging with The Other Woman and Bellyful, two Toronto feminist papers.

It is important to note that none of these women ever attempted to blame us for the decline of the TWC; in fact, they have defended our participation in TWC and our view of the abortion campaign as a priority when other women (e.g. at the Women's Place) have attempted to red-bait our past role in TWO.

Our Intervention In TWC

We learned a great deal in TWC about how intervene as revolutionary socialists. One of the most memorable experiences in this process was the "Corileen North experience."

When we helped found TWC, our comrades were new and inexperienced, unsure of how to intervene. The first Branch conference report after the founding of TWC is full of phrases like "we must learn to be sensitive," etc. Corileen North, an NDP woman and founder of TWC who referred to herself as "basically of a Trotskyist orientation," took it upon herself to instruct us in how to intervene — including writing a document for our branch conference advocating, among other things, that comrades receive sensitivity-training before intervening in TWC! The thread of her advice was to soft-pedal the politics — basically to hide our politics from the women in the group, We were somewhat influenced by this advice, although we did not take it to heart so much as to prevent us from recruiting two women in this period.

We did not entirely come to grips with the soft-pedal approach until several months later when (after the Saskatoon conference) we were confronted with a vile red-baiting attack by North and Yvonne Trower which attacked us for dominating TWC, This written attack was sent to the major daily papers in Toronto, the mailing list of TWC and "all women’s liberation groups in North America and Britain."

We countered that attack with a paper of our own, explaining our politics and defending our right to be in the women's movement. We learned from that experience that hiding our politics only lays us open to attack. The only reason the North-Trower attack did not seriously injure us in TWC was that we had been sufficiently open and principled in our participation to have won the respect of most of the active women.

From that time we continued what we had already begun, to openly intervene with our movement’s program — in educationals, where we had the opportunity for fuller explanations, and also in other kinds of discussions. We regularly had our literature on hand to sell to the women, and tried to sell our press regularly — most active members of TWC (as most coalition activists now) had subscriptions to at least one of our papers. We encouraged women to come to our forums and classes, particularly ones which we felt contacts would be most interested in. Our comrades were widely known and respected as LSAers. We were more than ready to get into further discussions on our program with contacts. Other activities of our movement were built in TWC as well — particularly the anti-war movement: we had several excellent educationals on why women should oppose the war, and regularly brought TWC women to women's contingents in demonstrations.

It was our consistent work as LSAers that gained us wide respect for our politics even from women who disagreed completely with us. It was this work which enabled us to recruit eight women in the first 1-1/2 years of our intervention in TWC. And it was this work which, even after TWC had dispersed, led the women we had worked with to defend our role in TWC and in the abortion campaign.

Our work in TWC was an extremely valuable experience in other ways as well. We learned some very valuable lessons in how to organize meetings, demonstrations, fund drives, etc; how to put out a mass-oriented paper; how to popularize the concepts of feminism and socialism, and how to put forward a mass action perspective. We gained experience in how to judge the correctness and effectiveness of slogans; and gained some valuable contacts which have aided us in our work of building the abortion campaign. In fact, the ability of our movement and our women comrades to effectively build the abortion campaign rests in many ways on the lessons learned in the TWC.


The final meeting of TWC confirmed that there was no objective basis for the continuation of TWC. As pointed out earlier, particularly the final year of TWC was a period of differentiating and drawing priorities in the women's liberation movement — and TWC could not escape that process. Our experience with TWC was not unique; it is one example of the process which took place in cross-city feminist groups across Canada

In the process of building the mass feminist movement of the future, we are not committed to any one organizational form. As the movement grows, we will continue to make organizational adjustments, when and if necessary in order to most effectively implement and pose a mass action strategy.

Our intervention in the developing feminist movement is based on our understanding of the importance to the coming Canadian and world revolution of the independent action of oppressed sectors of society, as part of the struggle against the capitalist class and its state. We intervene in such struggles to lead them in a mass action, anti-capitalist direction and to win the best militants to revolutionary socialism and our movement.

Our decision to help found TWC was correct; we made many important gains and learned a great deal about the dynamics of the feminist movement. Although TWC was not an organization which continued to meet the needs of that movement as it grew — that fact in no way lessens the contribution which TWC and other groups like it made to the developing movement.

In many ways, our intervention in TWC was a model intervention: one which we can point to with considerable pride, and certainly one which helped develop our understanding of the tasks ahead, and our abilities to meet them.

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