Subjects Archives: Marxism

  • Haiti’s Classquake

    Just five days prior to the 7.0 earthquake that shattered Port-au-Prince on January 12th, the Haitian government’s Council of Modernisation of Public Enterprises (CMEP) announced the planned 70% privatization of Teleco, Haiti’s public telephone company. Today Port-au-Prince lies in ruins, with thousands, possibly hundreds of thousands dead, entire neighborhoods cut off, many buried alive.  Towns […]

  • Politics of the Earthquake: Respect the People of Haiti

      In June of 2004, I went to Haiti with two other members of the Haiti Action Committee.  We were there to investigate the effects of the political earthquake in which the democratically elected government of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide had been overthrown by a coup orchestrated by the United States, France and Canada. What we […]

  • Sex Workers Targeted in New Orleans

    More than half of the people on Louisiana’s Sex Offender Registry — which was designed for rapists and child molesters — are indigent women convicted of sex work. Tabitha has been working as a prostitute in New Orleans since she was 13.  Now 30 years old, she can often be found working on a corner […]

  • Check It Out: WSJ Favors Socialist Market Controls After All

      So for the last 2 years the Wall Street Journal has been predicting the total fucking COLLAPSE of the Venezuelan economy because they stubbornly refused to devalue their currency.  Well guess what?  Over the weekend Venezuela finally bit the bullet and devalued the bolivar, so today the Wall Street Journal took their predictable victory […]

  • A Tribute to Baltimore Socialist Bob Kaufman

      In the early morning hours of December 25, 2009, we lost a revolutionary voice.  Bob Kaufman, a life-long fighter for social and economic equality, succumbed after a protracted struggle with health complications stemming from a brutal attack in 2005.  He was 78. Bob’s assailant was a drug-addicted tenant in his West Baltimore home.  After […]

  • Labor Movement?

    The 2010 Statistical Abstract of the United States (and especially Tables 574 to 650), published by the US Census Bureau, provides many statistics that can update understanding of today’s working class and possibilities of its movement.  The Abstract counts 154 million people as members of the US labor force in 2008.  Of these, 129 million […]

  • Nepal’s Former Ambassador to the U.S.: What about a Military Takeover?

    The following is an open discussion of a Pinochet-style solution for Nepal, which would not just be a military coup but also (inevitably) the creation of a death squad regime aimed at the decade-old revolutionary upsurge among the peoples of Nepal.  Such a coup would require Indian and U.S. support, and this article is an […]

  • Socialism Is the Path to Save the Planet

      15th International Conference of the United Nations on Climate Change, Kingdom of Denmark, Wednesday, 16 December 2009 Mr. President, ladies and gentlemen, Excellencies, friends, I promise that I will not talk more than most have spoken this afternoon.  Allow me an initial comment which I would have liked to make as part of the […]

  • Sandwich Theory and Operation Green Hunt

    The ‘Sandwich Theory’ I was piqued by the phrase ‘sandwich theory’ when I first heard it from Delhi students.  They were referring to the views of a section of articulate, influential, middle India in the wake of the controversies over Salwa Judum in Chhattisgarh and now Operation Green Hunt.  The ‘theory’, if we may call […]

  • Lebanese Shia Women: Temporality and Piety

      For many Shia Muslims in Lebanon since the late 1970s — particular practices of piety have become part of a discourse that is held up as an alternative to notions of a secular modernity.  In this process, an identity has been forged that is understood to be both pious and modern, and where notions […]

  • The Impact of the Crisis on Women in Central and Eastern Europe

      1. Impact on Women in Different Social Groups Financial and economic crises and a rapid loss of existential security are nothing new for women and men in the former socialist bloc countries of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE).  These crises have been a permanent condition of everyday life for the majority of populations in […]

  • Christian Communists, Islamic Anarchists?  Part 2

    In Part 1 of this article we argued that Slavoj Žižek and Alain Badiou’s account of the foundation of Communist universalism in the event of Christianity signals a number of inconsistencies immanent to their respective ontologies (Coombs 2009).  For Žižek it appears difficult to reconcile his touted open interpretation of Hegel with the ontological significance […]

  • Christian Communists, Islamic Anarchists?  Part 1

    The defeat of the Marxist emancipatory project has brought an end to radical secular universalism.  The result has been twofold: identity politics and their post-modern ideologies of difference have become the legitimating motifs of Western democracies, whilst radical political Islam has taken the anti-systemic baton of secular Marxism, but subverted it with a brand of […]

  • The Impact of the Crisis on Women in Developing Asia

    Introduction: As developing Asia is the most “globalised” region of the world in terms of both trade flows and financial flows, it was expected that the global crisis would adversely affect the region.  However, while the impact has indeed been strong, Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth has, as of yet, not been negative; rather, the […]

  • Attack on an All-women Fact-finding Team in Narayanpatna, Orissa

    Today an all women fact finding team comprising of activist friends like Madhumitta Dutta, Shweta Narayan (from our Collective in Besant Nagar) and 6 other women were attacked on their way to Narayanpatna, Orissa, where a democratic tribal movement led by the Chasi Mulia Adivasi Sangh is being brutally suppressed by the police at the […]

  • The Idea of Iran

      Michael Axworthy.  A History of Iran: Empire of the Mind.  New York: Basic Books, 2008.  352 pp.  $27.50 (cloth), ISBN 978-0-465-00888-9. After the Islamic Revolution of 1979, a large number of Iranians joined the ranks of expatriates living in Europe and the United States.  Suddenly uprooted and finding themselves in unfamiliar surroundings, some of […]

  • Memories, Nightmares, and Hopes

      Eric Davis.  Memories of State: Politics, History, and Collective Identity in Modern Iraq.  Berkeley: University of California Press, 2005.  397 pp.  $29.95 (paper), ISBN 978-0-520-23546-5. This review has been a long time coming, but during this time, Davis’s book has become the subject of extensive comment, achieving an almost iconic, certainly landmark, status in […]

  • On Political Economy and Political Theory

      Jean Paul Sartre in the fifties made the somber remark that things were so bad at the Sorbonne in the 1920s that the University did not even have a Chair in Marxism.  In asserting the fact at that time, he was of course assuming that things at mid-century had changed dramatically and that Marxism […]

  • Israel: Arab Women Workers Need Not Apply

    Discrimination, not culture, keeps families in poverty. Israel’s finance minister was accused last week of trying to deflect attention from discriminatory policies keeping many of the country’s Arab families in poverty by blaming their economic troubles on what he described as Arab society’s opposition to women working. A recent report from Israel’s National Insurance Institute […]

  • On Feminism in Islam

    Margot Badran.  Feminism in Islam: Secular and Religious Convergences.  Oxford: Oneworld Publications, 2009.  pp.349. Countless volumes have been written on the issue of Islam and women, by Muslims as well as others.  Indeed, the ‘Muslim woman’ question has, for long, occupied a central place in discourses about Islam.  Interestingly, the vast majority of works on […]