Archive | Review

  • Image Credit- (Ikbenhet CCO)

    How to Read Donald Duck: Imperialist Ideology in the Disney Comic by Ariel Dorfman and Armand Mattelart

    Originally published in 1971 in Chile to intense opposition from the right-wing media, in How to Read Donald Duck: Imperialist Ideology in the Disney Comic, Ariel Dorfman and Armand Mattelart offer a cultural critique of Donald Duck comic strips, showing them to be far from benign products of the U.S. cultural industry.

  • The New Faces of Fascism Populism and the Far Right

    A historian’s view of post-fascism

    Whatever we are facing [in world politics], it is not twentieth-century fascism. Hell keeps on disgorging new demons to beset us. And as seasoned exorcists know, each must be called by its proper name before it can be cast out.
    – (possibly J. R. R. Tolkien’s Gandalf)

  • Red Round Globe Hot Burning

    Our globe is burning!

    Peter Linebaugh’s book comes with a long subtitle, a pithy summary of its contents: A Tale at the Crossroads of Commons and Closure, of Love and Terror, of Race and Class, of Kate and Ned Despard. His timeframe is the period between 1789 and 1804 when, in his view, a series of connected events took place in England, Ireland, France, the Caribbean and North America that formed an Atlantic crucible forging the capitalist world we have lived in since.

  • Aaron Bastani FULLY AUTOMATED LUXURY COMMUNISM Verso, 2019

    Gee Whiz! Communism is sure gonna be keen!

    When I was ten years old, I read and re-read a stack of decades-old Modern Mechanix magazines that I found in my grandfather’s basement. Throughout the Great Depression, MM regaled its readers with breathless accounts of technological marvels that were going to change the world, very soon.

  • Carbon markets in a climate-changing capitalism

    Carbon Markets in a Climate-Changing Capitalism offers an account of why these earlier expectations were not matched by experience. While the contradictions of market solutions have not gone away, the difference this time is that we are just over a decade away from the IPCC’s 2030 benchmark for 1.5°C. The concentration and centralisation of emissions instead points towards a different pathway that can meet this challenge – one that begins by confronting the disproportionate control the biggest polluters have over our climate future.

  • Olivier van Beemen, Heineken In Africa- A Multinational Unleashed (Hurst 2019), xviii, 307pp.

    Heineken In Africa: A Multinational Unleashed – book review

    Olivier van Beemen’s meticulous exposure of Heineken’s activities in Africa show the damage done by neo-colonial capitalism, argues Ellen Graubart

  • Central Park North crosswalk

    Watching ‘When They See Us’, as a white woman

    In order to really see these boys and their families white people have to see themselves as participatory in racism. So to see their innocence “we” must see our own part, our guilt, our responsibility in the newest forms of slavery, no longer chattel, but carceral.

  • Cover of Overripe Economy: American Capitalism and the Crisis of Democracy

    Review of Alan Nasser’s, Overrripe Economy

    Alan Nasser has written a masterful book, one that belongs in every serious leftist and socialist library, and one that certainly deserves to be widely and extensively read.

  • Image Credit: Karl Marx statue (Jörg Schubert CC BY 2.0)

    An anthropology of Marxism

    Beyond its analytical value, Robinson’s account holds great potential as a tool of political praxis. For what Anthropology confronts is the question of how exactly are we to make sense of the cultural and political significance of Europe’s medieval period in our current global moment?

  • Fascism and Dictatorship

    Fascism and Dictatorship: The Third International and the Problem of Fascism

    In the final stage of fascism, the fascist state has consolidated power and freed itself of its petty-bourgeois class origins. Poulantzas says that this is the most brutal stage, for it involves violent purges at the state level to remove the petty-bourgeoisie, and terroristic repression over the masses.

  • neoliberalism fascism

    Neoliberal fascism

    Undoubtedly we live in the age of neoliberalism. There might also be a link between Neoliberalism and fascism. If one agrees with the rather enticing idea that Hayek’s ideology pamphlet The Road to Serfdom is the ur-texts of neoliberalism, then neoliberalism was indeed invented during the dying days of German Nazism and Italian fascism.

  • city of segregation

    City of Segregation, One Hundred Years of Struggle for Housing in Los Angeles

    Andrea Gibbons’ history of the battle for equal housing in LA uncovers the intensity and injustice of segregation, which remains a highly visible aspect of US cities, finds Adam Tomes

  • Alan Thornett - Facing the Apocalypse: Arguments for Ecosocialism

    Review of ‘Facing the Apocalypse: Arguments for Ecosocialism’

    Clearly there will be ecological issues to resolve once capitalism has been defeated, but that will require a system being put in place that is capable of dealing with the disaster. In other words a society that is not based on the competitive accumulation of capital.

  • Can the Bolivarian Revolution Survive the Venezuelan Crisis?

    Dissecting ROAR’s article “can the Bolivarian revolution survive the Venezuelan crisis?

    ROAR published an article Can the Bolivarian revolution survive the Venezuelan crisis? containing the views of different professors, but with only two worth reading: Dario Azzellini’s and George Ciccariello-Maher’s. Of the others, Raul Zibechi appears to be the chosen faux left commentator committed to repeating U.S. ruling class propaganda against Venezuela.

  • Never Again

    Rock’s role in fighting fascism

    The National Front (NF) was on the rise in the UK in the mid-1970s. It was the envy of other far right organisations, in particular its ideological cousin, France’s Front National (FN). A decade later the NF was broken and the FN’s star was rising. Why was the NF defeated while the FN went from […]

  • "Picking up the Banner 1957–1960" painted by Gely Mikhailovich

    Students, the Sixties, and How to ‘Fail Better’

    With their wide range of styles and perspectives, these little memoirs give a good sense of the period and the issues, but their value is more than historic. As a new generation is being drawn to radical politics, today’s activists may be able to gain useful insights from the experiences of their predecessors.

  • The Unknown Anti-War Comics

    Vintage comics against war

    The next phase of rebellious art, I have thought all this time, belonged to the rise of the Underground Comix of the later 1960s, with one tip of the hat to the campus satire magazines that in some places gave artists like Austin’s Gilbert Shelton a start, and another to Harvey Kurtzman’s failed magazines after Mad, especially Help! (1961-65).

  • Red-Green Revolution

    Victor Wallis – Red-Green Revolution

    The scale of environmental crisis is absolutely terrifying. So I was very pleased to read Victor Wallis’ new book Red-Green Revolution which aims to both explain capitalism and environmental destruction and offer a clear strategy for building a movement to challenge both.

  • Witches, Witch-Hunting and Women

    Witches, Witch-Hunting and Women

    Witches, Witch-Hunting and Women by Silvia Federici, reviewed by Jessica White.

  • Dust Bowls of Empire

    Dust Bowls of Empire

    The “Dust Bowl” of the 1930s was an iconic moment in American history. As a result of what one historian called “the inevitable outcome of a culture that deliberately, self-consciously, set itself [the] task of dominating and exploiting the land for all it was worth” tens of thousands of people fled their homes, usually losing their entire livelihoods in the process.