Subjects Archives: Literature

  • Dylan

    [The following was delivered, by Paul Buhle, to an audience of 150 Brown undergraduates preparing to watch the first night of the Dylan special directed by Martin Scorsese, No Direction Home: Bob Dylan, 26 September 2005.] In my young political lifetime, from being your age to twice your age, there were three great individual singers […]

  • Rubber Soul

    what does a rubber worker exhale if it’s the same as what she inhales if she complains to management that the label on the primer is a warning with a skull and crossbones and there’s no ventilation in the building to ingest the souls of the antioxidants the activators and bonding agents if she asks […]

  • Counting the after-math

    People penned to die in our instant concentration camps, just add water, bodies pushed to the side. Thirst hurts worse than hunger. It swells your brain against your skull. it sandpapers your gut from within. But hunger too makes people mad. Shoot the looters who are grabbing from flooded stores survival for hours more. Baby […]

  • A Dream and a Nightmare

    Two films, Paheli and Matrubhumi: A Nation without Women, hit theatres in India within weeks of each other. Significantly, both the films, directed by Amol Palekar and Manish Jha respectively, have or claim to have women at the centre of their discourse. In the promos of Paheli, the producer-actor Shah Rukh Khan talked of the […]

  • The Front Lines of Social Change: Veterans of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade

    The Front Lines of Social Change: Veterans of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade. By Richard Bermack, Introduction by Peter Carroll. Berkeley: Heyday Books, 2005. 120pp, oversize. $19.95pbk. This is a photo book with text, and Richard Bermack is the master photographer of veteran political activists on the West Coast. He has been on the job for […]

  • Pyramid of Capital (1983)

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  • The Activists’ MC: An Interview with Rapper Son of Nun

    Most progressive-minded hip hop fans and culturally-inclined activists have not heard of Baltimore rapper Son of Nun yet. After listening to the Son’s first album, Blood and Fire, I can only say this: they will. Despite this being his first album, Nun — a high school teacher, activist, and organizer from Baltimore — is clearly […]

  • An Injury to One: A Film by Travis Wilkerson

    2005 will mark the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Industrial Workers World, the I.W.W., popularly known as the “Wobblies.” The most radical, mass-based labor organization to emerge within U.S. history, they embodied the slogan “An Injury to One Is an Injury to All,” as they organized unskilled as well as skilled workers, immigrants […]

  • Crude Facts Leak from Exxon Valdez Oil Spill

      We all remember the TV images of diligent cleanup workers in Alaska wiping the black sludge from the Exxon Valdez off the shores of the Prince William Sound. Who would have guessed that the well-intentioned workers were unknowingly being poisoned by Exxon? Those of us who are acutely aware of monopoly capital’s contradictions might […]

  • Red

    1 She calls across the tenement valley to her friends pulling laundry off the cross-cut line A block away, hogs hang from steel question-marks Guts pour from the gashes in their bellies spill over the workers’ shoes fall between the floor slats into Miller’s River She calls Bernadette, Madge, Belinda in the chopped syllables of […]

  • Holy war

    With god on our side we don’t need a conscience. The others are ripe for burning and burn them we will, the smoke of their flesh rising to heaven, an acceptable sacrifice. With god on our side there is no grey, no shading only glaring gorgeous white blinding with purity: beyond just blackness that could […]

  • Politics and the Playing Field: An interview with Dave Zirin

    It’s fashionable on the Left to look down one’s nose at the world of sports. To do so, according to Dave Zirin, would be to miss a chance at both inspiration and solidarity. Zirin’s new book, What’s My Name, Fool! Sports and Resistance in the United States creates a much-needed bridge between the political and […]

  • The Labor Movement: It’s More than We Bargain for

    The battle over labor’s future is heading toward a showdown at the AFL-CIO Convention, beginning Monday July 25th in Chicago. But the confrontation pitting a team of insurgent unions led by the Service Employees International Union against the AFL-CIO establishment is shaping up to be organizationally bloody, but spiritually bloodless. We’re fighting for the heart […]

  • Less than you bargained for

    New bargains every day in our packed aisles, come on! Trappist jams, lamps in the form of buddhas, striped baskets, ceramic bowls of potpourri that will never scent a room after the first five minutes. All the gifts you buy friends who thank you profusely before stowing them in a closet or taking them to […]

  • A Debt to the World

      from crush and splinter death in the market jeering robotic dryice disrupt to conjure mercy’s perishing persistent script blotted smeared and torn let hair, nail-cuttings nourish the vine and fig-tree let man, woman eat, be sheltered Marx the physician laid his ear over the heartbeat pressed the belly diagnosed the pain but did not […]