Detroit & London: Facing Reality Publishing Committee (Speak Out), 1967. First Edition. Preliminary draft of this late, unpublished work from Facing Reality, a small faction of C.L.R. James loyalists that remained following the split in the Johnson-Forrest Tendency in 1955. The group was led by Martin Glaberman in the U.S. and C.L.R. James in England. Though never commercially published, "The Gathering Forces" is described by one James scholar as "a major statement" of the group's philosophy in the years following the Johnson-Forrest split; James's biographer Kent Worcester attributes much of the writing directly to James and calls it "...the most sustained, most ambitious, and perhaps the most disappointing of the various attempts C.L.R. and his associates made to reach out to black and New Left movements in the Age of Aquarius" (see Worcester, CLR James: a Political Biography (Albany: 1996) and A.L. Nielsen, CLR James: a Critical Introduction (Jackson, MS: 1997)).
In a memoir of James for Solidarity, Martin Glaberman states that the current work was never finished: "...[James] always thought that a revolutionary organization should split only on differences that related directly to the U.S. working class and the American revolution...in the case of "The Gathering Forces," differences developed on China. James began to move away from our old position that the socialist revolution still had to be made there. So the dispute was put aside. But a document on the 50th anniversary of the Russian Revolution without China was impossible, so publication was tabled indefinitely" (see Glaberman, "Remembering C.L.R. James" in Against the Current, Jan-Feb 1998).
The current printing is identified as a "Draft" copy on front cover and was apparently intended for circulation within the Facing Reality circle; inside cover has a call for comments "...to achieve a finished and satisfactory whole [and] to elicit financial contributions that are essential to achieve, finally, a printed book." An unknown reader has marked the text in eight locations, with comments ranging from simple proofreading marks to more substantive criticisms ("...were the Bolsheviks members of the intelligentsia??").
An important late James work, distinctly uncommon in any iteration; OCLC notes two locations only, neither of which is identified as a "draft" copy (MSU & UT Austin). Quarto (28cm). Side-stapled mimeographed sheets; 70pp. Light soil; editorial annotations to text throughout; Very Good.