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Monthly Review Volume 72, Number 11 (April 2021)

April 2021 (Volume 72, Number 11)

Many factors are involved in COVID-19 mortality rates. Nevertheless, it is clear that the more socialist-oriented countries—by prioritizing social needs and public health, plus aggressive testing, tracing, and enlisting the aid of their populations—have generally been more effective in limiting the effects of the disease on their societies. The failure of the wealthier capitalist countries to do so is largely a result of their prioritization of profits over people. | more…

Marx in Motion: A New Materialist Marxism by Thomas Nail

What Sort of Kinetic Materialism Did Marx Find in Epicurus?

In his Theses on Feuerbach, Karl Marx suggests that the main flaw of all previous materialism has been to uncritically accept and champion a notion of matter that has its proper place in a dualistic framework, where matter is passive and the mind is active. If this is so, true materialism will conceive of matter as an active principle, and of material beings as perfectly capable of conscious sensation and agency. | more…

New this week!
Eddie Conway and Paul Coates on February 20, 2020

These Brothers Chose Well

Writer, editor, and prison activist Susie Day has written a beautiful, heartrending, and inspiring account of the friendship between Paul Coates and Eddie Conway. Both were born in the late 1940s and grew up in Black communities—Paul in Philadelphia and Eddie in Baltimore. Both were members of the Black Panther Party in the late 1960s and early ’70s, and both were harassed by police for their radical activities as Party members. Eddie was wrongfully convicted of killing a Baltimore policeman and spent forty-four years in prison. Through it all, Paul was his steadfast friend and supporter, as well as partner in their political development and commitment to the liberation of Black people in the United States. | more…

New this week!
The Foreign Minister of Ecuador, Ricardo Patiño, participated in the commemoration of the death of Commander Hugo Chávez Frías

Socialist Practice and Transition

In Socialist Practice, a collection of essays on leftist theory and experiences, Victor Wallis adheres to the view that the achievement of socialism is a drawn out, nonlinear process consisting of episodes that in many cases have a mixed impact on the revolutionary cause. He analyzes several, ranging from the seven decades of Soviet rule to the New Left of the 1960s. His main thesis is that over the last century pure socialism has never existed and that on all fronts socialist movements and governments have contained elements of the old—namely, capitalism. | more…

Pete Seeger at the opening of a canteen for the United Federal Workers of America, a trade union representing federal employees, in then-segregated Washington, DC

Was Folk Music a Commie Plot?

This article will be released in full online April 26, 2021.

The revival of folk music—music derived from rural southern sources, unamplified, and, to a large extent, comprised of old songs of anonymous origin—was more than just another fad. Folk music encapsulated longings for an idyllic past, for a time before crass commercialism turned music into a commodity, and for relationships between musicians and audiences that were egalitarian and holistic. | more…

Monthly Review Volume 72, Number 1 (May 2020)

May 2020 (Volume 72, Number 1)

In its wider economic, ecological, epidemiological, and public health context, the current COVID-19 pandemic demonstrates the enormous dangers of the metabolic rift in human ecology and epidemiology brought on by capitalist social relations in the age of monopoly-finance capital, global agribusiness, and intricate, globe-spanning supply chains associated with the extreme exploitation and expropriation of both human beings and nature. Neoliberalism, representing the inner logic of capitalism, has left the world vulnerable to catastrophe wherever it has come into play. | more…

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