Ukrainian self-determination and idea of freedom

Ukrainians’ self-organizing drew in all layers of the population, acting on their passion for independence and freedom from imperial overlords. The new life they have brought to the idea of democracy is deeper than political democracy. Marx’s humanist idea is a future determined by fully realizing that deeper content.

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COP15 and COP27: Ecology summits hide two worlds clashing

January 22, 2023

Two hotly anticipated global summits on ecology and climate papered over a raging war of capital against humanity and Planet Earth—a war manifested in open conflict between “developed” and “developing” countries, but more deeply in a war of the two worlds of rulers and ruled within each country.

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Congress breaks railroad workers’ strike

December 3, 2022

Congress has done its best to become the nation’s strikebreaker by forcing a five-year contract on railroad workers who had been set to go on strike on Dec. 12.  Union members in four of the 12 unions had voted to reject a tentative agreement that negotiators had reached with six major rail carriers in September.

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Michigan MAGA threats

November 12, 2022

Curtis reports on the state of electoral politics in Michigan, including racism, violence, misogyny and fraudulent Trump supporters.

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Xi Jinping’s precarious hold on China

November 11, 2022

The coup that Xi Jinping had long planned to cement his control of the Communist Party of China went according to script: Xi was re-elected to a third five-year term as leader at the Party Congress that ended on Oct. 23.

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From the Writings of Raya Dunayevskaya: Letter to Adrienne Rich–Women’s liberation, Gay liberation & dialectic

September 13, 2022

This letter expands on the reason for writing Philosophy and Revolution, and on the concepts of “woman as revolutionary reason as well as force” and “new forces and new passions” of revolution. It illuminates Dunayevskaya’s view of multilinearity in Marx’s late writings as a dimension of his concept of revolution in permanence concerning not only class but all social relations, and speaks to the question of method in today’s debates about sexuality, women’s liberation and new subjects of revolution.

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UN documents Uyghur forced labor, torture

September 10, 2022

The pretext for China’s genocidal campaign against Uyghurs was “Countering Religious Extremism.” Under China’s “anti-terrorism law system” a new UN report states, “acts of legitimate protest, dissent and other human rights activities or of genuine religious activity fall within terrorism.”

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Kei “Basho” Utsumi (1935-2022): in remembrance

August 24, 2022

Kei Utsumi touched many lives before his death on July 15, a few days shy of his 87th birthday. In conversations with friends, in being present at countless demonstrations, or in putting pen to paper, his was a passionate, unyielding voice for freedom movements, which will be sorely missed.

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War, climate chaos, capitalism, COVID: World food crisis spreads

July 7, 2022

With Russia’s war on Ukraine, a food crisis is emerging globally with lightning speed. Capitalism, with its agricultural-industrial system of commodity food production for the world market, is the cause of, and suffers from the consequences of, multiple, linked crises of war, COVID, and climate. There is radical opposition to this perfect storm of capitalist crises.

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Editorial: Abortion bans show need for new society

July 5, 2022

With the gutting of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court has taken away a human right and stripped bodily autonomy from half the population. It is a giant step towards fascism. What is the answer to such an outrage? It is not the Democratic Party, who couldn’t even rid us of the Hyde Amendment.

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Abortion bans upheld: Our task–a new human society

June 24, 2022

With the gutting of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court has taken away a human right and stripped bodily autonomy from half the population. It is a giant step towards fascism. What is the answer to such an outrage? It is not the Democratic Party, who couldn’t even rid us of the Hyde Amendment.

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New pamphlet: Pelican Bay prisoners speak

Prisoner strikes and struggles through Marxist-Humanist lens

May 19, 2022

Commemorating the 10th anniversary of the historic prison hunger strikes that ended California’s permanent solitary confinement, Faruq and Urszula Wislanka give a retrospective/perspective on our involvement in prison issues with two talks on “Historic hunger strikes: 10 years after” and “Listening to women prisoners with Marxist-Humanist ‘ears’”

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Review: ‘The 1619 Project’

May 14, 2022

‘The 1619 Project’ tackles U.S. history since the first enslaved Africans were brought to Virginia—from multiple perspectives. Each essay is grounded in original sources, scholarly works, interviews and oral histories. Historical events, photographs of ordinary African-Americans and poetry surround each essay, adding a human touch.

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Freedom vs. the war against women

April 27, 2022

The Republican attack against women won’t stop with trashing our right to control our bodies. Hate has worked so well for them that they will also come down harder on LGBTQ+ people, especially Trans people who trample every notion the Right has of “how things are supposed to be.”

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Review: ‘The 1619 Project’

April 22, 2022

‘The 1619 Project’ tackles U.S. history since the first enslaved Africans were brought to Virginia—from multiple perspectives. Each essay is grounded in original sources, scholarly works, interviews and oral histories. Historical events, photographs of ordinary African-Americans and poetry surround each essay, adding a human touch.

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Readers’ Views: January-February 2022, Part One

February 5, 2022

Readers’ Views on: Labor: Teachers Face Politician Bosses; Labor: Automation and the New Humanism; Socialism, Statism and Philosophy; Fake ‘Right to Life’; Eviction Tsunami; Agribusiness vs. Planet; Afghanistan Exploited; Taiwan Faces China and U.S.; Desmond Tutu; With the Migrant Caravan; U.S. vs. Palestinians

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Essay: Marx’s demystified dialectic and the ‘new society’

February 2, 2022

Ours is an age of total crises and pervasive angst about humanity’s future. Marx’s recreation of Hegel’s freedom Idea, a humanism that is directly part of life and nature, is a unifying pull of the future in freedom movements and presages “the new society” Dunayevskaya saw in Hegel’s Idea.

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From the Writings of Raya Dunayevskaya: Absolute Idea and self-liberation

Part of a dialogue with the China scholar Jonathan Spence and of the process of writing Philosophy and Revolution, this piece explains “Hegel’s Absolute Idea in terms of what it means to the book and the whole world’s objective development,” taking up the self-activity of African revolutionaries in contrast to state-capitalism, as in Mao’s China, the struggle for world power between the U.S. and USSR, and what happens after revolution.

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DISCUSSION ARTICLE: Was Marx a materialist?

January 21, 2022

Many post-Marx Marxists have painted Marx as a materialist. While no one denies the aspects of Marx that are materialistic, to call his philosophy materialist is as accurate as calling his philosophy idealist. Both are key aspects that play a part in shaping human life. Both are important to understanding human life and human activity.

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Review-Essay: Adrienne Rich’s Expanding Solitudes

November 15, 2021

Ed Pavlić’s ‘Outward: Adrienne Rich’s Expanding Solitudes’ is the first critical book to appear after Rich’s Collected Poems (2016) and thus the first covering all of Rich’s poetry. The book is especially welcome because Pavlić attends to the latter half of Rich’s career, and acknowledges her Marxism, largely unexplored territory even now.

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Youth Vs Apocalypse

September 29, 2021

As part of the ongoing Fridays for Future, on Aug. 27 several hundred, mostly youth, gathered in San Francisco to call attention to environmental racism, the climate crisis, and public health.

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New focus on Hegel’s ‘naturalism’ impels another look at Marx

In conversation with Karen Ng’s book “Hegel’s Concept of Life,” Ron Kelch takes up the concept of life and “naturalism” and their relationship to freedom in Hegel, Marx, and Marxist-Humanism. Whether one takes Marx’s starting point of freedom with respect to human life activity that is inextricably part of nature or Hegel’s beginning again from Nature as mediation, the self-determination of the unifying Idea cannot be taken for granted in the face of the spontaneous self-bringing forth of liberty.

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Review: Outward: Adrienne Rich’s Expanding Solitudes

September 6, 2021

Ed Pavlić’s ‘Outward: Adrienne Rich’s Expanding Solitudes’ is the first critical book to appear after Rich’s Collected Poems (2016) and thus the first covering all of Rich’s poetry. The book is especially welcome because Pavlić attends to the latter half of Rich’s career, and acknowledges her Marxism, largely unexplored territory even now.

read the rest!

Readers’ Views: July-August 2021, part one

July 2, 2021

Readers’ Views on: What Is Socialism?; What Is Marxist-Humanism?; Nuclear Socialism?; Nuclear Capitalism; Flat Earth Society; Indigenous Genocide; Indigenous Liberation; Racism Takes its Toll; Rape Culture; Coming Out in Sports; Colonialism and Liberation

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World in View: COVID-19, philosophy, and revolution

June 29, 2021

The ruling class response to the pandemic was to lie, obfuscate, and manipulate the public in its own interest. The possibility that COVID-19 may have been a lab leak illustrates how capitalism can turn our deepest insights into our own nature towards our own destruction.

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Thoughts From the Outside: Capital is out of control

Where I work among the homeless on the street, I see the infinite degradation experienced by those discarded by capitalist society and barely surviving on its margins. There were always those who live on the edge. Karl Marx was describing the lack of transparency in social relations: what appears to be a free decision to sell your labor is nothing of the kind. Yet people stay away from thinking about how all labor, even paid labor, is forced labor.

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The people of Myanmar unite against the military coup

May 8, 2021

Defying Burma’s coup has provided time for the forces of old revolutionaries, youth, workers and women to work out what they are fighting for, beyond deposing the military caste that has ruled them, and an opportunity to bridge long-time divisions between the Burmese-speaking majority and the peoples long fighting for self-determination.

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Youth: Marx speaks to youth alienation

Young people keep taking matters into our own hands. Our time of total crises calls for a philosophy to help us understand the problems at the root of our misery and give us hope we can create a new society. This makes Marx a contemporary for youth, looking for a way out of life under capitalism’s hopeless future.

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