We’ll always have Petrograd

October: the story of the Russian Revolution China Miéville Verso, 2017 An enormous amount of intellectual effort is necessary to unearth what significance, if any, the Russian revolutions of 1917 hold for us today. Before it is possible to do so, the mind must travel backwards from the integrated spectacle of Putin’s Russia to confront, […]

The Full Weight of Surrealism

History of the Surrealist Movement Gérard Durozoi University of Chicago Press, 2002 This massive work, originally published in France in 1997, is actually a history of surrealism as it manifested itself in the visual arts—painting, sculpture, and film. The movement’s core literary expression receives short shrift in the book’s 800-plus pages. The political battles of […]

Tracing the Contours of Anti-Capitalism

The Philosophical Roots of Anti-Capitalism: Essays on History, Culture, and Dialectical Thought David Black, Lexington Books (2013) Capitalism in the U.S. and Europe has evidently survived the massive financial crisis it found itself confronted by in late 2007. What’s more, at least in the U.S., capitalism was neither seriously threatened with mass political or social […]

Demythologizing Marx

Marx Without Myth: a Chronological Study of His Life and Work Maximilien Rubel and Margaret Manale Harper and Row, 1975 Maximilien Rubel (1905-1996) made great contributions to Marx scholarship for several decades by producing carefully edited French-language scholarly editions of Marx’s work to serve as independent counterparts to those produced by the official curators of […]

Automation, the Absolute, and Socialist Humanism: the Dunayevskaya-Marcuse-Fromm Correspondence

The Dunayevskaya-Marcuse-Fromm Correspondence, 1954-1978: Dialogues on Hegel, Marx, and Critical Theory Edited by Kevin B. Anderson and Russell Rockwell Lexington Books, 2012 Revolutionary and Hegelian-Marxist philosopher Raya Dunayevskaya struggled throughout her life to win a hearing for her ideas, developed in decades of intense participation in the international Marxist movement. A new collection of correspondence […]

Late Literary Anti-Fascism in the Consumer’s Republic

American Night: the Literary Left in the Era of the Cold War by Alan M. Wald University of North Carolina Press, 2012 Historian Alan Wald brings to a close his three-part study of the literary output of the American left from the 1920s through the 1950s with American Night: the Literary Left in the Era […]

The Specter of Depression: Paul Mattick’s Business as Usual

Business as Usual: the Economic Crisis and the Failure of Capitalism Reaktion Books (London), 2011 Paul Mattick’s Business as Usual is an attempt to come to grips with the global economic crisis that began in 2007 in Marxist terms, an entry into a growing category books which includes David Harvey’s The Enigma of Capital. Mattick […]