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Commune or Nothing! Communes Against Capitalism

This panel examines the commune and communal organizing as part of the project of revolutionary social transformation. The speakers address how socialist communes can be used to abolish capitalism’s logic, based on the exploitation of human beings, the expropriation of nature, and oppression (including racial, gender, sexual, and colonial oppression) in capitalist society. The speakers draw from various theoretical perspectives and practical experiences.

This panel, presented by Monthly Review and hosted by The People’s Forum, was organized in the context of the recent launch of Chris Gilbert’s Commune or Nothing! Venezuela’s Communal Movement and Its Socialist Project from Monthly Review Press. The book examines the theory, practice, and history of socialist commune-building in Venezuela.


  • Kali Akuno, Cooperation Jackson spokesperson and co-author of Jackson Rising Redux: Lessons on Building the Future in the Present
  • John Bellamy Foster, Monthly Review editor and author, most recently, of Capitalism in the Anthropocene: Ecological Ruin or Ecological Revolution
  • Chris Gilbert, author of Commune or Nothing! Venezuela’s Communal Movement and Its Socialist Project
  • M.E. O’Brien, author of Family Abolition: Capitalism and the Communizing of Care and co-author of Everything for Everyone: An Oral History of the New York Commune, 2052–2072

Moderated by Cira Pascual Marquina, part of the Venezuelanalysis editorial team and co-author (with Chris Gilbert) of Venezuela, the Present as Struggle