The March-April 2019 issue of News & Letters, Vol. 64, #2, is available on the web, along with several web-only articles.
Women bearing the brunt of reaction lead the resistance
In a year marked by the contradiction between deepening women’s revolt and activism and neo-fascism rising across the globe, women have been fighting back in unprecedented numbers and ways.
Editorial: Is nuclear war on the horizon?
The retreat from even modest efforts to control nuclear weapons has brought humanity closer than ever to annihilation. President Donald Trump’s suspension of the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) with Vladimir Putin’s Russia gins up an already accelerating new arms race.
From the Writings of Raya Dunayevskaya: Women’s liberation, experimentation and revolution in permanence
An interview of Raya Dunayevskaya by Katherine Davenport which aired on WBAI radio in New York City on International Women’s Day, March 8, 1984. It brings together women’s liberation and revolution in permanence, as Dunayevskaya discusses what life might be after revolution.
Genocide happening now in Idlib
In-person report from Idlib province, Syria.
Editorial: Fighting gun violence
New passions and forces alive in the U.S. ensured that the toll of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School last year would not fade into the political ether.
Venezuela is at the crossroads
Many in Venezuela oppose both U.S. intervention—in league with the right wing and Juan Guaidó—and the government of President Nicolás Maduro and his generals. At the same time we cannot forget that what passed for constructing “21st Century socialism” has been a problem.
Essay: What is Socialism? Socialism and a philosophy of revolution
What is socialism? From Left to Right, this question is becoming central to political discussion. For me, it raises another question, too: What is philosophy? This is where I will begin, with the young Karl Marx.
Oakland, Calif., teachers strike!
On Feb. 22 over 3,000 Oakland teachers went on strike, demanding better wages, smaller class sizes, more nurses and counselors and a stop to school closings. Many students and their families showed up on the picket lines.
Chicago charter school teachers strike!
Chicago Teachers Union paraprofessionals and teachers won a nearly two-week strike against charter school company CICS on Feb. 18. Teachers will achieve pay parity with Chicago Public School teachers by the end of the four-year contract, while paraprofessionals gain parity immediately.
World in View: Rise of Far Right threatens ‘Europe’
The Far Right threatens to make significant gains in the European Parliament elections this May. What inheres within the “idea of Europe” that can destroy fascism as idea and reality is the humanism that became its internal critique, Marx’s humanism.
Letter from Mexico: Maquiladora workers strike in Matamoros
On Jan. 25 more than 30,000 workers from 45 maquiladoras (foreign-owned factories on the border exempt from certain duties) in the northern city of Matamoros, Tamaulipas, began a strike demanding a 20% salary increase and an annual bonus amounting to $1,700 USD.
Presidents Day demonstration in Oakland, Calif.
With just 72 hours notice, over 50,000 people came together in 48 states in almost 300 events to protest Donald Trump on Presidents Day. While the events were organized by MoveOn.org as a response to Trump’s fake emergency declaration, their call was answered spontaneously by many.
Woman as Reason: Church abuses nuns
The rape, forced abortion, and sexual abuse of nuns is the newest scandal to plague the Catholic Church. The do-nothing attitude of the Church on this abuse has continued for centuries. Will anything change now?
Detroit women rally
An in-person report of the Jan. 19 “sister march”–sponsored by Women’s March Michigan, a separate organization from the National Women’s March–which brought nearly 1,000 women to a rally at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African-American History.
Review: ‘Politically Incorrect Feminist’
Feminist Adele reviews Phyllis Chesler’s book “A Politically Incorrect Feminist: Creating a Movement with Bitches, Lunatics, Dykes, Prodigies, Warriors, and Wonder Women,” seeing in it an important first-person history that can help today’s movement.
Women WorldWide takes up the South Korean Escape the Corset movement, Greta Thunberg’s work against global warming, and the struggle by BethAnn McLaughlin to draw attention to the harassment of women in science by prominent men.
People of Taiwan wary of China’s reach
China Airlines pilots in Taiwan won a strike over safety and staffing, while survivors of the bloody repression perpetuated by Chiang Kai-shek’s Kuomintang beginning Feb. 28, 1947, demonstrated to remember those killed 72 years ago and to campaign against the threats of forced reunification under Xi Jinping.
Pages 6-7, Readers’ Views
Readers’ Views, Part 1
Readers’ Views on: workers strike back, genocide and Facebook, Mauritius victory, Syrian Revolution under fire, “55 Steps,” debating yellow vests, women’s struggles, and why read News & Letters.
Readers’ Views, Part 2
Readers’ Views on: Rosa Luxemburg’s revolutionary life; the Green New Deal; and voices from behind bars.
Voices from the Inside Out: Importance of community support
In Madison, Wisc., during the 1980s, a solitary Black woman roamed the hallways of the Dane County Courthouse for the purpose of attending trials of Black defendants. Her goal was to ensure that every Black woman, man, and child would see at least one Black face in the courtroom other than their own.
‘Poverty and Profit’
Matthew Desmond’s book “Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City” is an important contribution to understanding the workings of exploitative housing, although he fails to appreciate that, under the capitalist system, the best-intentioned programs will always become conduits to extract money from the poor.
Handicap This! column on Black Disability History; maltreatment of children with disabilities; and bill aimed at phasing out the subminimum wage paid to over 150,000 disabled workers.
Queer Notes on the Auckland Pride Festival; Denise Ho Wan-sze; two newly-elected Democratic governors making strides for Queer rights; and a history of Compton’s Transgender Cultural District in San Francisco.
Youth in Action
School students in Oakland, Calif. support striking teachers; Belgian environment minister resigns after attacking Strike 4 Climate Action; high school students walk out in Vancouver, Canada, protesting tar sands; medical students’ direct action at Gandaki Medical College in Pokhara, Nepal, against tuition theft.
Bruno Latour’s ‘Down to Earth’ buries human revolt
Bruno Latour’s new book “Down to Earth: Politics in the New Climatic Regime” wants to comprehend the era of global warming but takes a very wrong turn, substituting “Earth” for human subjects of revolution.
Pipeline tragedy in Mexico
The horrendous oil pipeline explosion in Tlahuelilpan, Mexico, which killed over 100 campesinos and injured many more, has shaken all of Mexico. This was a tragedy long in the making.
Page 12, World in View
The second summit meeting between Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong-un, in Hanoi on Feb. 27, ended without any new agreement. But it achieved what it aimed for as theater.
Haitians rise up against corruption
Haitians took to the streets Feb. 7 against a long-simmering background of anger at government corruption.
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has allied with the fascist Jewish Strength party, disciples of Meir Kahane. This alliance has crossed a line for many former supporters.
Prisoners of Rukban
In the Rukban camp along the Jordan/Syria border, at least 41,000 displaced Syrians, including women and children, are suffering the ravages of winter weather, hunger, lack of medicine, and the terror of being threatened by the forces of the genocidal Bashar al-Assad regime.
What Is Socialism? Socialism and Philosophy
This is the first in a series of four presentations on “What is Socialism?” Shorter versions will be published in News & Letters. The second essay is “Socialism, labor and the Black dimension”; the third is “Socialism and ecology”; and the last is “Socialism and Women’s Liberation.”
News and Letters Committees Call for Plenum
Official Call for national gathering of News and Letters Committees to work out Marxist-Humanist perspectives for 2019-2020
Statement on Venezuela by the Anti-War Committees in Solidarity with The Struggles for Self-Determination
We share the Statement on Venezuela by the Anti-War Committees in Solidarity with The Struggles for Self-Determination, which looks at the situation today, its history, and takes the measure of today’s Left.
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