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The Postmodern Prince: Critical Theory, Left Strategy, and the Making of a New Political Subject

The Postmodern Prince: Critical Theory, Left Strategy, and the Making of a New Political Subject

John Sanbonmatsu’s Postmodern Prince is an work of political theory with a focus on questions of strategy. At the same time it provides an original and illuminating intellectual history of the Left from the 1960s to the present. It examines the politics of the New Left in the 1960s, showing how its expressivism led to political division and also prepared the ground for postmodernism. It shows also how the political economy of academic life in an increasingly commodified society strengthened the basis of postmodernism.… | more…

The Making of a Cybertariat: Virtual Work in a Real World

The Making of a Cybertariat: Virtual Work in a Real World

The workplace has been changed in recent decades by the rise of digital technologies. Parts of a single labor process can be moved around the world, with implications not only for individual workplaces or firms, but for the working class as a whole. Computer operators in India process medical transcriptions for doctors in the United States at one-eighth of what U.S. computer operators would earn, and at four times the salary of an Indian schoolteacher.… | more…

Digital Diploma Mills: The Automation of Higher Education

Digital Diploma Mills: The Automation of Higher Education

Is the Internet the springboard which will take universities into a new age, or a threat to their existence? Will dotcom degrees create new opportunities for those previously excluded, or lead them into a digital dead-end? From UCLA to Columbia, digital technologies have brought about rapid and sweeping changes in the life of the university—changes which will have momentous effects in the decade ahead.… | more…

On Gender and Class in U.S. Labor History

The relationship between gender and class, central to understanding the history of the labor movement, raises important issues for Marxist analysis in general. Grappling with the complexities of this relationship forces us to confront a wide range of theoretical and practical questions. What is the connection between “material conditions” and “identity”? What role do culture, discourses, sexuality, and emotions play in shaping people’s responses to their material conditions? How are the varieties of consciousness of class related to other identities and affiliations? These questions challenge us theoretically and politically, as we seek to develop a working-class politics that incorporates struggles against all forms of oppression … | more…

Socialist Register 2003: Fighting Identities

Socialist Register 2003: Fighting Identities

Why do racial, religious, ethnic and national identities have such purchase on the lives of so many people, and why are they still at the center of so many major conflicts at the beginning of the twenty-first century? What form is racism taking amidst the inequalities, refugees and mass migrations of today’s global capitalism? How does the American state—as both the manager of the world capitalist order and as the embodiment of an all-too-often chauvinist national identity—fit into the picture of ‘Fighting Identities’?… | more…

The Socialist Feminist Project: A Contemporary Reader in Theory and Politics

The Socialist Feminist Project: A Contemporary Reader in Theory and Politics

Socialist feminist theorizing is flourishing today. This collection is intended to shows its strengths and resources and convey a sense of it as an ongoing project. Not every contribution to that project bears the same theoretical label, but the writings collected here share a broad aim of understanding women’s subordination in a way which integrates class and gender—as well as aspects of women’s identity such as race, ethnicity, and sexual orientation—with the aim of liberating women.… | more…

Censorship, Inc.

Censorship, Inc.

Soley shows how as corporate power has grown and come to influence the issues on which ordinary Americans should be able to speak out, so new strategies have developed to restrict free speech on issues in which corporations and property-owners have an interest. From the tobacco industry’s attempts to prevent information about the effects of smoking on health from becoming public to corporate lawyers advising tire manufacturers not to disclose that their products are causing death on the roads, what are often seen as legitimate business practices constantly narrows our right to free speech.… | more…

Dialectical Urbanism: Social Struggles in the Capitalist City

Dialectical Urbanism: Social Struggles in the Capitalist City

Life in the city can be both liberating and oppressive. The contemporary city is an arena in which new and unexpected personal identities and collective agencies are forged and at the same time the major focus of market forces intent on making all life a commodity. This book explores both sides of the urban experience, developing a perspective from which the contradictory nature of the politics of the city comes more clearly into view.… | more…

The Women Who Organized Harvard

A Feminist Model of Labor Organization?

Balloons transformed Harvard Yard on May 17, 1988, the day the “servants of the university,” as workers were originally called, voted on whether to join the Harvard Union of Clerical and Technical Workers (HUCTW), an affiliate of AFSCME. “Ballooning” lightened the tension, but Kristine Rondeau, lead union organizer, had a grim warning for her staff: “You did a wonderful job. But we don’t have it … It’s very likely we didn’t win.”1 In fact, by a slim margin, they did have it. One of the most influential universities in the world had been outsmarted by some of its unknown employees, mostly women… | more…

The Education of Black People: Ten Critiques, 1906–1960

The Education of Black People: Ten Critiques, 1906–1960

Undoubtedly the most influential black intellectual of the twentieth century and one of America’s finest historians, W.E.B. Du Bois knew that the liberation of African Americans required liberal education and not vocational training. He saw education as a process of teaching certain timeless values: moderation, an avoidance of luxury, a concern for courtesy, a capacity to endure, a nurturing love for beauty. At the same time, Du Bois saw education as fundamentally subversive. This was as much a function of the well-established role of education—from Plato forward—as the realities of the social order under which he lived. He insistently calls for great energy and initiative; for African Americans controlling their own lives and for continued experimentation and innovation, while keeping education’s fundamentally radical nature in view.… | more…

Socialism or Barbarism: From the "American Century" to the Crossroads

Socialism or Barbarism: From the “American Century” to the Crossroads

István Mészáros’s bold new study analyzes the historical choices facing us at the outset of the new millennium. Drawing on the theoretical arguments of his monumental and widely-acclaimed Beyond Capital, Mészáros shows that the economic boom of the 1990s was built not only on the foundation of new, digital technologies but also on a new social and ethical basis. In the global quest for profit, capitalism has abandoned its claims to serve a larger historical cause. Even in the wealthiest capitalist economies, unemployment has become structural and conditions of life have become more onerous for most of the population.… | more…

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