Against a backdrop of widespread racism in the West, and colonialism and imperialism in the 'Third World', this group of activists, writers and political figures gathered to discuss the history and struggles of people of African descent and the meaning of Black Power.
In the regions outside Western Europe, Marx found important revolutionary possibilities among peasants and their ancient communistic social structures, even as these are being undermined by their formal subsumption under the rule of capital. In his last published text, he envisions an alliance between these non-working-class strata and the Western European working class.
What is the source of Nicaragua’s crisis today? And what are the roots of the problem in the experience of the last forty years? What stand should progressive Americans take on the Nicaraguan crisis?
We begin with the Chinese Revolution in 1930, after the nationalist party led by Chiang Kai Shek turned on the mass movement, slaughtered militant workers and peasants, and declared war on Communists. After the war, the struggle between the armies of Chiang Kai Shek and the Communists resumed, ending with Chiang's fleeing to Taiwan and the final victory of the Communist army in 1949.
Presentation and discussion with Walter Daum
Imperialism was first analyzed by Marxist theorists a century ago. Today it still dominates the world but has greatly changed: production, not just trade, is globalized; profits rely on the super-exploitation of hundreds of millions of proletarians in the Global South. This session will discuss the transformation of the imperialist-ruled world and what it means for Marxist theory.
Initial reading: John Smith, “Imperialism in the Twenty-First Century,” Monthly Review July-August 2015; online at http://monthlyreview.org/2015/07/01/imperialism-in-the-twenty-first-century/
Walter Daum taught mathematics at City College in New York for 37 years. He has been a revolutionary activist and Marxist theorist, affiliated with the League for the Revolutionary Party. He wrote a book, The Life and Death of Stalinism and is working on another, on the subject of imperialism. He is proud to have been denounced by the New York Post and the CUNY Board of Trustees in 2001 for explaining at a teach-in that the 9/11 terrorist attack was “ultimately the responsibility of U.S. imperialism.