Category Archives: revolution

Paul Le Blanc: “Rosa Luxemburg and the actuality of revolution”

“If we take these ideas of Luxemburg, Lukács, and Gramsci seriously, we must realize that all of them were making reference to a context that no longer exists in 2019.  A hundred years ago there existed a substantial global labor movement, profoundly influenced by the theory of historical materialism, and with a dynamic and influential left wing infused with the sense of the actuality of revolution.  That was obliterated between the First World War and the twilight of the twentieth century. Something like it remains to be rebuilt.”

Julius Gavroche: “In praise of insurrection”

“There has never been a planned revolution; revolutions occur in the heat and passion of events. Thus what we can strive for is permanent revolution.”

Dimitrina Petrova: “The Egalitarian Promise of 1989—and Its Betrayal”

The paradox of 1989 is that communism was stormed and brought down from the left, by people with unfulfilled egalitarian aspirations, but the revolutionary road led to a new society that has been experienced as more unfair than communism.”

“Why the Turkish Invasion Matters”

The invasion of Rojava is taking place against a global backdrop of intensifying nationalism, strife, and authoritarianism. We have to understand this as a single battle in a much larger conflict.”

Frédéric Lordon: “Imagining revolution and the problem of scale”

‘I do not believe that capitalism will fall by a movement of flight towards “communes”, which would empty it of its substance and leave it an empty shell, collapsing thereby on its own; I also do not believe that a juxtaposition of “communes” constitutes a complete political form.’

“Resistance in Rojava”

The people of Rojava in northern Syria—both Kurdish and Muslim—were at the front of the struggle to defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), sustaining thousands and thousands of casualties in the course of years of warfare. As soon as ISIS was beaten, the US government tricked the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) into dismantling their defenses along the Syrian border, promising to secure peace in the region and discouraging them from seeking other international allies. Once they were defenseless, Trump gave Turkey permission to invade.”

Serbulent Turan: “Is the United States on the brink of a revolution?”

“In the U.S., it’s clear the system is not working for the good of all. There are still numerous possibilities and different ways events can unfold. But unless these systemic failures are addressed soon, political scientists of the future will be explaining how a societal explosion in the U.S. became inevitable.”

T. H. Breen: “The Slow Build Up to the American Revolution”

“What we call the American Revolution cannot be linked to a single moment such as the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Rather, it was a gradual shift in popular thinking about the relation between ordi­nary people and government power. The revolution was a process, contin­gent and open—ended, a complex move from revolution to Revolution.”

Jeffrey Ostler: “The Great Fear of 1776”

“It may be unsettling to consider the creation of the United States as a genocidal project, but the experiences of many of eastern North America’s Indigenous people led them to think of it in precisely this way. Examining their reasons does not necessarily mandate agreement with their conclusion, but it does ask us to take their fears more seriously than we have.”

Lorissa Rinehart: “A Graphic Novel Looks at the Limits of Freedom in Revolutionary Cuba”

“In Goodbye, My Havana, the Cuban revolution’s prescribed limits of freedom are most evident in the relegation of women and LGBTQ individuals to the periphery, where their rights quickly erode and their personhood is more easily dismissed. The benefit of hindsight shows Castro’s regime working inward from there. Once it had stripped the most vulnerable of their rights, it was easier to impose a system of authoritarianism on the remainder of the populace.”