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Nations without a past are contradictions in terms. What makes a nation is the past, what justifies one nation against others is the past, and historians are the people who produce it.

Eric Hobsbawm

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Reviewing Hobsbawm's 2011 How to Change the World in The Wall Street Journal Michael Moynihan argued:

Reviewing the same book Francis Wheen argued in a similar vein: "When writing about how the anti-fascist campaigns of the 1930s brought new recruits to the communist cause he cannot even bring himself to mention the Hitler-Stalin pact referring only to 'temporary episodes such as 1939–41'. Politics
Hobsbawm joined the Sozialistischer Schülerbund (Association of Socialist Pupils) an offshoot of the Young Communist League of Germany in Berlin in 1931 and the Communist Party in 1936.

Hobsbawm was President of Birkbeck University of London for ten years until his death. In 1998 he was appointed to the Order of the Companions of Honour a UK national honour bestowed for outstanding achievement in the arts literature music science politics industry or religion. Following the death of his parents and the rise to power of Hitler Hobsbawm moved to London England with his adoptive family and obtained his PhD in History at the University of Cambridge before serving in World War II.

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