Max Elbaum has been involved in peace and anti-racist movements since joining Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) in Madison, Wisconsin in the 1960s. Through the 1970s and 1980s he participated in campaigns defending affirmative action and opposing U.S. military interventions in the Third World while writing extensively for the radical press and taking part in then-widespread efforts to construct a new U.S. revolutionary political party. In the 1990s, he was the editor of CrossRoads, a magazine featuring dialogue and debate among socialists and radicals from different left political traditions. In 2001, he was among the founders of War Times/Tiempo de Guerras, until 2006 a free bilingual in-print tabloid distributed nationwide and until 2011 an on-line information and analysis project. He is currently one of the editors of Organizing Upgrade.
Max is the author of Revolution in the Air: Sixties Radicals Turn to Lenin, Mao and Che (Verso, 2002; paperback 2006), termed by Pultizer Prize-winning historian David Garrow “an absolutely first-rate work of political scholarship” (Village Voice, July 3-9, 2002). Elbaum’s writings have appeared in many publications including The Nation, Radical History Review, Z Magazine and the Encyclopedia of the American Left.
Between 1995, when Max started work on Revolution in the Air, and December 2018 Max has run 40 marathons with a personal best time of 3:26:53. Each fall he runs a Marathon for Peace to benefit antiwar and antimilitarist projects, most recently US Labor Against the War.