On February 12, 1937, Christopher Caudwell, a Marxist scholar and revolutionary, was killed by fascists in the valley of Jarama during the Spanish Civil War. He died at a machine gun post, guarding the retreat of his comrades in the British Battalion of the International Brigade. He was 29.
Of the many statistics in Steve Brouwer’s book, Revolutionary Doctors: How Venezuela and Cuba are changing the World’s Conception of Health Care, one in particular stands out. There are more students, about 73,000, in medical school in Cuba and Venezuela, with a combined population of 39 million people, than there are in the whole of the US with a population of 300 million. And they are all educated and trained for free. Many of them will go to Bolivia, Haiti and other countries in order to “to serve the poor, heal the afflicted and make a better world”.
On 3 September 2011 Samir Amin celebrated his 80th birthday. Amin is a consistent and irrepressible exponent of the development of Marxism in his chosen discipline, International Political Economy. His long and fruitful career of intellectual struggle has been marked by a series of publications and re-publications, including the five books under review.
The most important thing that has taken place since Wisconsin is another uprising, the phenomenal Occupy Wall Street (OWS). It began in Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park in September 2011 and spread rapidly to more than 2,600 towns and cities around the world. With OWS, the anger over growing inequality and the political power of the rich that has been bubbling under the surface for the past several years has finally burst into the open. Suddenly, everything seems different, and a political opening for more radical thinking and acting is certainly at hand.
Each of us read Steve Brouwer’s Revolutionary Doctors (MR Press, 2011) the same week the media reported average gross fee-for-service earnings of Manitoba doctors at $298,119. The media also reported, again, that many Canadians do not have access to a family doctor; that some specialists are in short supply; and that health conditions in many Aboriginal communities are appalling. While we are fervent supporters of Canada’s Medicare system, we think there is much to be learned about health care from Brouwer’s book.
Join MR Press authors Fred Magdoff and William Camacaro for a discussion on food sovereignty and Venezuela following a screening of the film Growing Change at Howard University in Washington DC.
He was an unabashed Marxist in theory and practice. A socio-historical approach clarified the concrete realities of his place and time: post-World War I and the Russian Revolution amid poverty and inequality. In hindsight, we know this systemic social problem birthed a financial panic and global Great Depression. Editors and translators Harry E. Vanden and Marc Becker divide Mariátegui’s writing into nine sections, including one at the end that has his writing on women, feminism and politics. He links their emancipation to human liberation in no uncertain terms.
Anthony DiMaggio, author of The Rise of the Tea Party, discusses his book, the state of the Tea Party today, the Occupy movement, and more, on History for the Future Radio with Kevin Brown, WRCT-Pittsburgh 88.3 fm.
Join David Newby, Michael Zweig, Stephanie Luce, and Rand Wilson for a party and discussion celebrating the publication of Wisconsin Uprising: Labor Fights Back, at Stony Brook Manhattan in New York City.
Since the late 1990s, the United States has funneled billions of dollars in aid to Colombia, ostensibly to combat the illicit drug trade and State Department-designated terrorist groups. The result has been a spiral of violence that continues to take lives and destabilize Colombian society. This book asks an obvious question: are the official reasons given for the wars on drugs and terror in Colombia plausible, or are there other, deeper factors at work? Scholars Villar and Cottle suggest that the answers lie in a close examination of the cocaine trade, particularly its class dimensions.
An impressive and stimulating analysis of the historical origins and structural roots of the financial crisis, The Great Financial Crisis has much to commend it, providing an excellent reminder of the power of Marxist political economy in revealing the dynamics and contradictions of the present financial crisis, and indeed, of capitalist crises in general.
Karl Marx wrote, “It is not the consciousness of men that determines their existence, but their social existence that determines their consciousness.” With this in mind, István Mészáros uses this two-volume work to locate the philosophy and political economy of the past few centuries within the capitalist mode of production. Capitalist relations of production produce ideological imperatives that are expressed by bourgeois intellectuals, who Marx called the “hired prize fighters” of the bourgeoisie.
Conventional wisdom says that integration into the global marketplace tends to weaken the power of traditional faith in developing countries. But, as Meera Nanda argues in this path-breaking book, this is hardly the case in today’s India. Against expectations of growing secularism, India has instead seen a remarkable intertwining of Hinduism and neoliberal ideology, spurred on by a growing capitalist class.
This timely book brings together some of the best labor journalists and scholars in the United States, many of whom were on the ground at the time, to examine the causes and impact of the Wisconsin Uprising, and suggest how the labor movement might proceed in this new era of union militancy. Includes a foreword by Robert W. McChesney.
Albert Ruben, author of The People’s Lawyer: The Center for Constitutional Rights and the Fight for Social Justice, From Civil Rights to Guantánamo, describes the recent lawsuit brought by the Center for Constitutional Rights against the Catholic Church.