The Anthology of the Works of Ugo Spirito captures the trajectory of Ugo Spirito’s complex body of thought that spanned more than fifty years, from 1921 to 1977. While confronting difficult contemporary problems related to philosophy and science, liberalism and socialism, fascism and communism, and other economic and ideological aspects such as corporativism and democracy, Spirito revealed a persistent desire to reach truth and the absolute. Yet, he also voiced his failure to consistently believe in any philosophical or political system. Unable to reach ‘incontrovertibility,’ he consistently examined his ideas, developing at the same time the ‘antinomic’ approach, a method of critical analysis that undermined any truth considered ‘incontrovertible.’ Today, Spirito stands as one of most anti-conformist Italian thinkers for he challenged the certainties of modern thought.
In response to this current political and economic climate,
Teaching Marx & Critical Theory in the 21st Century defends the importance, and difficulties, of teaching Marx and critical theory—and the crucial insights of critical pedagogy—through variously original and republished chapters, which, each in their own ways, reflect on ways to teach and reach twenty-first century students. This volume presents unique perspectives on teaching Marx and critical theory in various contexts, sub-fields, and geographies, and underscores the need for students of the modern world to be versed in Marxist thought and for pedagogues to push the limits of critical pedagogical strategies in the classroom—and beyond.
Contributors include: Allan Ardill, Mary Caputi, Mauro Caraccioli, Zachary Casey, Ronald Cox, Kevin Funk, Maylin M. Hernandez, Douglas Kellner, Jason Morrissette, Sebastian Sclofsky, Bryant William Sculos, Sean Walsh.
Marx’s Philosophy of Revolution in Permanence for Our Day, a selection of writings by the Marxist-Humanist philosopher and revolutionary Raya Dunayevskaya, brings out the contemporary urgency of Marx’s work as a philosophy of revolution in permanence. That dialectic permeates the totality of Marx’s body of ideas and activities. Major themes include Marx’s transformation of the Hegelian dialectic; the inseparability of Marx’s economics, humanism, and dialectic; the battle of ideas with post-Marx Marxism, beginning with Engels; Black liberation, internationalism, and women’s liberation; today’s burning question of the relationship between spontaneity, organization, and philosophy; the emergence of counter-revolution from within the revolution; and the problem of what happens after the revolution.
Marx and Social Justice, George E. McCarthy presents a detailed and comprehensive overview of the ethical, political, and economic foundations of Marx’s theory of social justice in his early and later writings. What is distinctive about Marx's theory is that he rejects the views of justice in liberalism and reform socialism based on legal rights and fair distribution by balancing ancient Greek philosophy with nineteenth-century political economy. Relying on Aristotle’s definition of social justice grounded in ethics and politics, virtue and democracy, Marx applies it to a broader range of issues, including workers’ control and creativity, producer associations, human rights and human needs, fairness and reciprocity in exchange, wealth distribution, political emancipation, economic and ecological crises, and economic democracy. Each chapter in the book represents a different aspect of social justice. Unlike Locke and Hegel, Marx is able to integrate natural law and natural rights, as he constructs a classical vision of self-government ‘of the people, by the people’.
The Mismeasure of Wealth: Essays on Marx and Social Form gathers Patrick Murray’s essays reinterpreting Marx and Marxian theory published since his
Marx’s Theory of Scientific Knowledge (1988), along with a previously unpublished essay and an introduction. Murray’s essays concentrate on Marx the historical materialist, the investigator of historically specific social forms of wealth and labour. There is no production in general; the production of wealth always involves specific social forms and purposes that matter in many ways. Marx’s attention to the dynamics and far-reaching consequences of historically specific social forms – in particular those that are constitutive of the capitalist mode of production – sets him off from classical political economy and traditional Marxism. In probing Marx’s dialectical accounts of the commodity, value, money, surplus value, wage labour and capital,
The Mismeasure of Wealth establishes Marx’s singular relevance for critical social theory today.
Many scholars have recently shown great interest in a diachronic re-examination of Antonio Gramsci’s main theoretical-political categories in the
Prison Notebooks. This method would uncover the origins and development of Gramsci’s concepts using the same method that Gramsci himself believed would allow us to grasp ‘the rhythm of thought’ in Marx. The present work embraces this perspective and puts it to work in two ways. Its first part analyzes the relation between structure and superstructure and the concepts of hegemony and the regulated society. Its second part extends the diachronic analysis to the conceptual pairings which represent alternatives to structure-superstructure, encompassing questions of political and cultural organisation as well as the relation between Gramsci and the major proponents of historical materialism (Marx, Engels, Lenin).
English translation of
Il ritmo del pensiero: per una lettura diacronica dei «Quaderni del carcere» di Gramsci published by Bibliopolis, Naples (2011).
Suvin’s ‘X-Ray’ of Socialist Yugoslavia offers an indispensable overview of a unique and often overlooked twentieth-century socialism. It shows that the plebeian surge of revolutionary self-determination was halted in SFR Yugoslavia by 1965; that between 1965– 72 there was a confused and hidden but still open-ended clash; and that by 1972 the oligarchy in power was closed and static, leading to failure. The underlying reasons of this failure are analysed in a melding of semiotics and political history, which points beyond Yugoslavia – including its achievements and degeneration – to show how political and economic democracy fail when pursued in isolation. The emphasis on socialist Yugoslavia is at various points embedded into a wider historical and theoretical frame, including Left debates about the party, sociological debates about classes, and Marx’s great foray against a religious State doctrine in
The Jewish Question.
A decade and a half ago John Bellamy Foster and Paul Burkett introduced a new, revolutionary understanding of the ecological foundations of Marx’s thought, demonstrating that Marx’s concepts of the universal metabolism of nature, social metabolism, and metabolic rift prefigured much of modern systems ecology. Ecological relations were shown to be central to Marx’s critique of capitalism, including his value analysis. Now in
Marx and the Earth Foster and Burkett expand on this analysis in the process of responding to recent ecosocialist criticisms of Marx. The result is a full-fledged
anti-critique—pointing to the crucial roles that dialectics, open-system thermodynamics, intrinsic value, and aesthetic understandings played in the original Marxian critique, holding out the possibility of a new red-green synthesis.