Manchester Engels Tea Towel

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  • Sturdy half panama US cotton (48cm x 70cm)
  • Our special inks mean that colours last in the wash
  • Includes hanging loop
  • Designed and manufactured in the UK
  • Delivery with Royal Mail, free on orders of 2+ tea towels
  • 100-day money back guarantee if you change your mind

Friedrich Engels is best known for being the philosophical sidekick to Karl Marx with whom he collaborated in the foundation of modern communism and co-authorship of The Communist Manifesto (1848). Yet his own work stands in a league of its own and has come to embody the socialist and progressive history of Manchester. Engels moved to the city in 1842 and was quickly involved with radical publishing and journalism, and with the British Labour and Chartist movements.

This design depicts the Engels statue which is located in Manchester’s city centre - a revamped version of a Soviet era original created by Turner Prize nominated artist Phil Collins. Yet the statue does come with a darker side. Whilst Engels’ intellectual and cultural impact on Manchester is unchallenged, we cannot forget the origin of the statue. The original figure was erected in Ukraine but toppled after the collapse of the Soviet Union, a regime with a strong authoritarian impulse which had brought horror to thousands of Ukrainians.

Engels cannot be held responsible for the wrongdoings of others, or the fact that his work was used for the purposes of propaganda. Let this design be a reminder, therefore, of Engels the philosopher and historian. A reclamation of his intellectual legacy, helping us move past those horrors and remind us of his enduring positive legacy in Manchester and the history of the left.

Half Panama unbleached cotton (heavy weight, textured finish). Stitched on all four sides. Includes hanging loop. Measures approximately 48cm x 70cm. Machine wash at 40 degrees max. We recommend that before you use your tea towel for the first time you wash it at least once to soften up the material and make it more absorbent for drying dishes. Please note size can vary slightly.