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July 2021

Grundrisse

Sat, July 24 @ 11:30 AM - 1:30 PM
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 11:30 AM on Saturday, repeating until Sat, July 24, 2021

$25 – $55

In the Grundrisse Marx arguably bridges his early writings on philosophy and Hegel, and the writing and revisions of Capital that dominated much of the rest of his life. We will undertake a close, word by word reading of the text with a view to understanding the concepts that evolve within it. This first term will begin with the chapter on money.

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August 2021

Capital, V1, Part 2: The Transformation of Money Into Capital

Sun, August 15 @ 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 6:00 PM on Sunday, repeating until Mon, August 16, 2021

We will do a close reading of the chapters in Part Two of Volume I of Capital on “The Transformation of Money Into Capital”. In these chapters Marx introduces the fundamental concepts of capital,labor power, surplus value and the valorization process.

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Augmented Exploitation: Artificial Intelligence, Automation, Work and Changes in the Labor Process

Mon, August 23 @ 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
$20.00 – $50.00

In the Introduction to Augmented Exploitation, co-editors Phoebe Moore and Jamie Woodcock point up two main problems with how automation and artificial intelligence are being discussed as the end of the first quarter of the 21st century draws near. Number one is the claim that Al is changing the labor process in new and unprecedented ways. But capitalists have always introduced machines in order to increase the amount of what each worker can produce in a given period of time. This is where the second problem comes in—either a certain process will be automated, or it will not—a binary that focuses on machines and not on the workers who operate them. Rather than the prospects of automation and interpretive learning replacing workers, we need rather to see that these are augmentations of the labor process. Also discussed will be two of the many vital essays from this year's Socialist Register—Beyond Digital Capitalism: New Ways of Living.

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September 2021

Fifth Summer of Noir: Last session this week (Derek Raymond and Denise Mina)

Thu, September 9 @ 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 7:00 PM on Thursday, repeating until Thu, September 9, 2021

$15.00 – $25.00

For the last four summers, the MEP Literature Studies Group has delved into a wealth of noir fiction. This year our six selections will take us deep into the underbelly of capitalism – good for reading at the beach, on the subway, a train, boat or plane, or in your favorite reading chair safely at home.  Join in for the last two books.

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Political Economy of Labor Repression in the United States

Sat, September 11 @ 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
$7 – $11

Andrew Kolin presents a detailed explanation of the essential elements that characterize capital’s relations to the working class and how capital relies on various forms of repressing reform and revolutionary movements by workers. The repression is directly linked to the class struggle between capital and labor. The starting point examines labor repression after the American Revolution. Andrew’s book then follows the role of the state along with the explosive growth of American capitalism to analyze the long history of capital and labor conflict with details of the US state being aligned with the interests of capital throughout American history. 

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Looking Over the Abyss with Steven Colatrella and Michael Meeropol

Sun, September 19 @ 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
$7 – $11

Europe and subsequently the United States rose to power and wealth along with the rise of capitalism. But capitalism has now shifted its attention to Asia, even as the conditions of ordinary workers in Europe and North America decline, and the political influence of the West wanes. Looking Over the Abyss argues that only by breaking decisively with capitalism, and aligning themselves with the majority of the world’s people against exploitation, can the peoples of Europe and the United States save their societies.

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Urban Displacements and Contemporary Capitalism

Sat, September 25 @ 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
$7 – $11

Susanne Soederberg argues that historical and geographical configurations of monetized governance, including landlords, employers and inter-scalar state practices, have served to reproduce urban displacements and obfuscate their gendered, class and racialized underpinnings. The outcome is the everyday facilitation and normalization of urban poverty and social marginalization on one side, and capital accumulation on the other.

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October 2021

Revolution in the Virocene: Near (or Nearing) the End of Time

Sat, October 9 @ 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
$7 – $11

In an instant, the mantra of there is no alternative has been replaced by whatever happens, nothing will ever be the same. The ideology that says radical transformation is unrealistic has been irrevocably discredited. The bonds and rituals of everyday life have been loosened, fragmented and disjointed. What seemed inevitable and iron clad now feels flimsy as nation states globally scramble to find solutions that don’t exist. This opens up a space for thinking, and for politics. This new situation underscores a critical need for both practical intervention and an attempt at building a convergent philosophy that anticipates the praxis of the future.

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Ecosocialism in the Shadow of Covid

Mon, October 11 @ 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 1:00 PM on Monday, repeating until Tue, November 23, 2021

$35.00 – $65.00

We will read and discuss three books: The Corona Crash (Verso), by Grace Blakeley, details how the pandemic is ushering in a new era in which the corporate economy collapses into the arms of the state, and behemoths like Amazon and Netflix balloon in profit and power. White Skin, Black Fuel (Verso), by Andreas Malm and the Zetkin Collective, takes a comprehensive look at how extreme-right currents are responding to ecological crises with with authoritarian and xenophobic proposals while remaining ardent supporters of fossil capital – black fuels to support white supremacy. And A People’s Green New Deal (Pluto), by Max Ajl, engages critically with various Green New Deal proposals and sketches out a radical alternative committed to degrowth, anti-imperialism and agro-ecology.

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New York City and the Experience of Modernity, Fall session

Tue, October 12 @ 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM
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An event every week that begins at 5:30 PM on Tuesday, repeating until Tue, November 16, 2021

$40.00 – $70.00

In the year 1877, the signals were given for the rest of the century; the black would be put back; the strikes of white workers would not be tolerated; the industrial and political elites of North and South would take hold of the country and organize the greatest march of economic growth in human history. They would do it with the aid of, and at the expense of, black labor, white labor, Chinese labor, European immigrant labor, female labor, rewarding them differently by race, sex, national origin, and social class, in such a way as to create separate levels of oppression – a skillful terracing to stabilize the pyramid of wealth.” —Howard Zinn

This is a seminar about New York City and its people. It is not a study of architectural styles and objects, - although the physical stuff of cities does play a role—but it is a course about the experience of the way in which modernity builds and destroys cities.

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Diary of a Digital Plague Year with Dennis Broe

Wed, October 13 @ 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
$7 – $11

DENNIS BROE, author of Birth of the Binge: Serial TV and The End of Leisure, will be talking about his new book Diary of a Digital Plague Year: Corona Culture, Serial TV and The Rise of The Streaming Services. The book offers a blow-by-blow account of the ongoing confinement, charting the changes in our lives exacerbated by the coronavirus. Corona culture is a digital culture extraordinaire for some, while for others it has increased panic and terror about being at work.

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Grundrisse: The Chapter on Money (The first two notebooks)

Sat, October 16 @ 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 11:00 AM on Saturday, repeating until Sat, November 13, 2021

$40.00 – $70.00

“Forces of production and social relations - two different sides of the development of the social individual - appear to capital as mere means, and are merely means for it to produce on its limited foundation. In fact, however, they are the material conditions to blow this foundation sky-high...” —Karl Marx, The Grundrisse

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Catastrophe and Systemic Change: Learning from the Grenfell Tower Fire and Other Disasters

Sat, October 16 @ 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
$7 – $11

Author Gill Kernick will present her powerful analysis of the Grenfell disaster and its aftermath. The recent fire of a tower block is a sharp reminder that many residential structures will fail—witness the Miami collapse and the recent apartment collapses In Milano, Italy.

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Capital, Volume II: The Process of Circulation of Capital

Sat, October 16 @ 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 4:00 PM on Saturday, repeating until Sat, December 11, 2021

$70.00 – $100.00

We will begin our study of Volume II study by situating this volume in relation to the historical process of development of capitalist society which is premised on its specific social form of societal re-production, the production of capital. To do so we will study the closing sections of the Penguin edition of Volume I, specifically, Part VIII: "So-called Primitive Accumulation" and the “Appendix: Results of the Immediate Process of Production”.

Join us as we journey through this movement from the imaginary concrete to the abstract concrete to the real concrete. Come and challenge your way of thinking and understanding the world as it appears to you and begin to identify some of what needs to be overcome and done to bring about a better world.

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States and Social Revolutions: A Comparative Analysis of France, Russia and China

Sun, October 17 @ 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 6:00 PM on Sunday, repeating until Sun, December 19, 2021

Skocpol asserts that social revolutions are rapid and basic transformations of a society's state and class structures. She distinguishes this from mere rebellions, which involve a revolt of subordinate classes but may not create structural change, and from political revolutions that may change state structures but not social structures. What is unique about social revolutions, she argues, is that basic changes in social structure and political structure occur in a mutually reinforcing fashion and these changes occur through intense sociopolitical conflict. A convergence of peasant rebellion on one hand and international pressures causing state breakdown on the other hand cause revolutionary social movements.

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