Could this be the most Marxist film ever made?

14 May 2019 — MROnline – The Public Autonomy Project by Steve Darcy (May 8, 2019)

Boots Riley’s masterpiece of socialist cinema — Sorry to Bother You — may be the most self-consciously marxist film ever made. It is an exhortation to rebel, but to do so with our eyes open, with ‘sober senses,’ so we don’t replicate uncritically the logics that we aspire to contest.

[Note: this contains some plot spoilers.]

Those who avoided reading Karl Marx’s three-volume, 2,500 page magnum opus, Capital, in the improbable expectation that someday a movie version would come out, have finally got their wish. Boots Riley’s film, Sorry to Bother You, may indeed be the most marxist film ever made.

Continue reading

Invisible Leviathan – Marx’s law of value in the twilight of capitalism By michael roberts

6 April 2019 — Michael Roberts Blog

My foreword to Invisible Leviathan, by Professor Murray Smith of Brock University, Ontario, Canada, published by Brill in November 2018.   Relevant, I think, to my recent presentation on the contribution of Marx to economics made at the Rethinking Economics conference at Greenwich University, London.

Continue reading

Climate and contradiction in Marx’s theory of history by Matt Huber

11 February 2019 — GreenLeft – Marxist Sociology Blog
Climate change is often seen as a “new” kind of crisis of capitalism – one that throws into question the standard Marxist analysis as having a blind spot with respect to nature. This has led to a whole host of intellectual efforts to “green” Marxism, or to argue an ecological Marxism must go beyond class to incorporate the “new” social movement of environmentalism.

Continue reading

Problems of Value Production (1) By S. Artesian

5 December 2018 — The Wolf Report: Nonconfidential analysis for the anti-investor

The intensity of production

Competition, according to an American economist, determines how many days of simple labor are contained in one day’s compound labor. Does not this reduction of days of compound labor to days of simple labor suppose that simple labor is itself taken as a measure of value? If the mere quantity of labor functions as a measure of value regardless of quality, it presupposes that simple labor has become the pivot of industry. It presupposes that labor has been equalized by the subordination of man to the machine or by the extreme division of labor; that men are effaced by their labor; that the pendulum of the clock has become as accurate a measure of the relative activity of two workers as it is of the speed of two locomotives. Therefore, we should not say that one man’s hour is worth another man’s hour, but rather that one man during an hour is worth just as much as another man during an hour. Time is everything, man is nothing; he is, at the most, time’s carcase. 

Quality no longer matters. Quantity alone decides everything; hour for hour, day for day;  

Marx – The Poverty of Philosophy

Continue reading

‘Karl Marx’s Ecosocialism’ wins the 2018 Deutscher Prize

25 November 2018 — Climate & Capitalism

Kohei Saito honored for his brilliant study of Marx’s views on the relationship between society and nature


I’m thrilled to report that Kohei Saito’s brilliant bookKarl Marx’s Ecosocialism: Capital, nature, and the unfinished critique of political economy, has won the 2018 Deutscher Memorial Prize. The prize, named for the great Marxist scholar and historian Isaac Deutscher, is awarded annually to “a book which exemplifies the best and most innovative new writing in or about the Marxist tradition.”

Continue reading

The specter of Marx haunts the American ruling class By Barry Grey

6 November 2018 — WSWS

White House report on socialism

Last month, the Council of Economic Advisers, an agency of the Trump White House, released an extraordinary report titled “The Opportunity Costs of Socialism.” The report begins with the statement: “Coincident with the 200th anniversary of Karl Marx’s birth, socialism is making a comeback in American political discourse. Detailed policy proposals from self-declared socialists are gaining support in Congress and among much of the younger electorate.”

Continue reading

John Bellamy Foster answers five questions about Marxism and ecology

27 March 2017 — EcologizeClimate & Capitalism

Can Marxism strengthen our understanding of ecological crises? The author of Marx’s Ecology replies to a critic on metabolic rift, sustainable human development,  degrowth, population growth, and industrialism. 


Introduction: The Indian website Ecologize recently published John Bellamy Foster’s Foreword to Ian Angus’s book Facing the Anthropocene. Commenting on Foster’s article, journalist and activist Saral Sarkar,  who describes his views as eco-socialist, raised questions that challenge the usefulness of Marxist analysis in understanding the global ecological crisis. Foster’s reply was posted by Ecologise on March 26.

The exchange, republished below, addresses important questions about Marxist perspectives on the global ecological crisis. C&C welcomes further discussion.

C&C has added paragraph breaks to both articles to improve on-screen readability.

Continue reading

An essential summer reading list courtesy Climate & Capitalism

29 June 2016 — Climate & Capitalism

John Bellamy Foster
Marx’s Ecology: Materialism and Nature
Monthly Review Press, 2000

This is a classic, the one book you absolutely must read if you want to understand what Marx actually thought and wrote about humanity’s relationship to the rest of nature. Foster demonstrates that Marx’s work is deeply relevant in this age of environmental crisis. It’s not an easy read-on-the-beach book by any means, but it is truly essential. If you have read it before, read it again: I learn more each time I open it.


Continue reading

Study Guide For those applying to the School of Anti-Economics By S. Artesian

13 February 2015 — The Wolf Report:Nonconfidential analysis for the anti-investor

Rumor has it that our GameBoy, Yanis Varoufakis, Minister of Finance and VIB (very important blogger)  somewhere said something like: 

” Marx’s first error, the one that I suggest was due to omission, was that he was insufficiently dialectical, insufficiently reflexive. He failed to give sufficient thought, and kept a judicious silence, over the impact of his own theorizing on the world that he was theorizing about. His theory is discursively exceptionally powerful, and Marx had got whiff of its power. How come he showed no concern that his disciples, people with a better grasp of these powerful ideas than the average worker, might use the power bestowed upon them, via Marx’s own ideas, in order to abuse other comrades, to build their own power base, to gain positions of influence, to bed impressionable students etc.?

Continue reading

On the environmental question, Sam Gindin has got it wrong By Brad Hornick

4 July 2014 — rabble.ca

[This is a response By Brad Hornick to Sam Gindin’s Unmaking Global Capitalism. WB]

Sam Gindin’s recent contributions to the The Bullet  and Jacobin explore the lost potential of the working class in revolutionary politics. On the economic and ecological fronts, he argues, working-class politics has been incapable of catalyzing widespread and consequential societal mobilization, or becoming vital sites of theoretical and practical struggle.

Continue reading

Unmaking Global Capitalism By Sam Grindin

4 July 2014 — The Jacobin

[Two articles; this, the original essay and a response by By Brad Hornick On the environmental question, Sam Gindin has got it wrong. WB]

When Marx famously declared that while the philosophers have interpreted the world, the point is to change it, he was asserting that it was not enough to dream of another world nor to understand the dynamics of the present. It was critical above all to address the question of agency in carrying out transformative change. For Marx, that agent was the working class. The gap between workers’ needs and their actual lives — between desire and reality — gave workers an interest in radical change, while their place in production gave them the leverage to act.

Continue reading