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Daily Archives: September 16th, 2014

University for Strategic Optimism

University for Strategic Optimism




The origins of “Western Marxism”


The early Marx called for the “realization of philosophy” through revolution. Revolution thus became a critical concept for Marxism, a view elaborated in the later praxis perspectives of Lukacs and the Frankfurt School. These thinkers argue that fundamental philosophical problems are, in reality, social problems abstractly conceived.

Originally published as Lukacs, Marx and the Sources of Critical Theory, THE PHILOSOPHY OF PRAXIS traces the evolution of this argument in the writings of Marx, Lukacs, Adorno and Marcuse. This reinterpretation of the philosophy of praxis shows its continuing relevance to contemporary discussions in Marxist political theory, continental philosophy and science and technology studies.


ANDREW FEENBERG is the author of Critical Theory of Technology (1991), Alternative Modernity (1995), Questioning Technology (1999), Transforming Technology (2002), Heidegger and Marcuse: The Catastrophe and Redemption of History (2005), and Between Reason and Experience: Essays in Technology and Modernity (2010).


“Feenberg’s subtle and wide-ranging study of Lukacs’ History and Class Consciousness reaches forward to Marcuse and the Frankfurt School and backwards into Marx’s 1844 manuscripts. The book offers a whole new framework in which to grasp the history of Marxist theory, at the same time restoring Marcuse’s centrality in it.” – Fredric Jameson

“A model of lucid and sophisticated intellectual history.” – Martin Jay

“A most fascinating and significant book.” – Theory and Society

“A vigorous and thoughtful reassessment of both Lukacs and the Western Marxist tradition … of great interest to anyone interested in critical theory or continental philosophy.” – Robert Pippin

“Feenberg achieves his goal of demonstrating the relevance of seemingly dusty and abstract philosophical conundrums not only to contemporary social theory but to politics as well.” – The American Political Science Review

“Feenberg’s sensitive and intelligent treatment of a complex constellation of interrelated problems in Marxist studies should commend his book to a wide audience of interested scholars.” – Man and World

“Poses the central problem of history in such a way that every reader can identify its elements…. The author knows the subject thoroughly, and illuminates many points in the texts of his main authors, as well as in those of such subsidiary figures as Marcuse and Habermas.” – The Review of Metaphysics


PAPERBACK: JULY 2014 / 272 pages / ISBN: 9781781681725 / $29.95 / £16.99 /$35.00 (Canada)

HARDBACK: JULY 2014 / 272 pages / ISBN: 9781781681732 / $95.00 / £60.00 / $108 (Canada)


THE PHILOSOPHY OF PRAXIS is also available at a 40% discount (paperback) and 50% discount (ebook) on our website, with free shipping and bundled ebook. Purchasing details here:


‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon:

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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Social Structures of Direct Democracy: On the Political Economy of Equality

By John Asimakopoulos

Hardcover ISBN: 9789004262720 E-ISBN: 9789004262751

Dear All and especially LIBRARIANS,

Please consider asking your academic library to obtain a copy of my new book published by Brill or get your personal copy. Any help in announcing the book through online social networks, listservs, and blogs is greatly appreciated. Gratitude to all! Sincerely, John



“Ambitious in scope, timely in content, and rigorous in argumentation and analysis, John Asimakopoulos’ Social Structures of Direct Democracy promises to make a significant and lasting contribution to contemporary discussions in democratic theory and political economy. By combining the utopian ethical ideal of the libertarian socialist tradition with the technical precision and analytic cohesiveness of Marxism and classical political economy, Asimakopoulos offers a fresh and innovative perspective on the present and future of democracy, both political and economic, around the globe. The book deserves praise for its interdisciplinary breadth and critical depth.” —Nathan Jun, Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Midwestern State University

“Social Structures of Direct Democracy is a lucid and powerful analysis of the threat that inequality poses to any viable democracy while also providing a brilliant analysis of the mechanisms that make it so savage and unsustainable. But the book provides more than a critique of inequality, it also offers a stirring program for change at a time when democracy is under dire siege. A must read for anyone concerned about the fate of democracy in the United States.” —Henry Giroux, Center for Research in the Public Interest, McMaster University

“Social Structures of Direct Democracy will undoubtedly make an impressive and timely contribution to the literature. The excellent structure, original focus and critical content will ensure that the book enjoys a broad appeal across a range of academic disciplines, at all levels. Indeed, anyone with an interest in (engaging with) new, wonderfully alternative responses to address the current political and economic crisis should buy this book now!” —Richard J White, Senior Lecturer in Economic Geography, Sheffield Hallam University, UK

ABOUT THE BOOK: Neoliberalism has pushed capitalism to its limits hollowing out global economies and lives in the process while people have no voice. John Asimakopoulos addresses the problem with a theory to practice model that reconciles Marxism with diverse radical currents and democratic theory. Social Structures of Direct Democracy develops a political economy of structural equality in large-scale society making strong empirical arguments for radical transformation. Key concepts include filling positions of political and economic authority e.g., legislatures and corporate boards, with randomly selected citizens leaving the demos as the executive; a common wage combined with markets and currency. Asimakopoulos shows that an egalitarian society leads to greater innovation and sustainable economic growth with positive social benefits in contrast to economies based on individualism, competition, and inequality.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: John Asimakopoulos, is Full Professor of Sociology at the City University of New York and executive director of the Transformative Studies Institute (TSI), an educational think tank. He has advanced degrees in and has taught sociology, political science, and economics resulting in a unique interdisciplinary perspective. His students include undergraduates and graduates from diverse ethnic, economic, and educational backgrounds who honor him for over 20 years with the highest teaching evaluations. His research is focused on social movements, critical theory, and international political economy. Asimakopoulos is author of Revolt! (2011) The Accumulation of Freedom (2012), many journal articles, and is editor in chief of Theory in Action, an interdisciplinary peer-reviewed journal.

For interviews and presentations contact the author at:



Mark Zepezauer



1 Theory, Praxis, and Change

The Ragged Edge of Anarchy: Direct Democracy



Communist Anarchism

Conflict Theory

Why Capitalism Must Always Collapse

The Relationship between Change and Radicalism

Structural Limitations to Change

Insurrection versus Revolution

A Case Study in Political Revolution: Egypt

Does Direct Democracy Require Small-scale Societies?

McDonald’s Iron Cage

2 Relations of Authority

The Fraud of Representative Democracy

The Best Democracy Money Can Buy

Stealing Democracy Old School

Political Parties

A Path to Direct Democracy

Economic Authority

Political Authority


3 Material Relations

Economic Utilities of Direct Democracy

Markets and Prices

Currency, Income, Banking, and Credit

Profit and Worker-owned Firms

Authority over Productive Property

Innovation and Small Business

Relations of Consumption

Income Distribution

Regulated Labor Markets: Hiring Halls

Distribution of Productive Property

Resource Use

What to Produce

How to Produce

Can the System Adapt?

4 Social Structure

Culture and Social Integration

Organizing Principles of Social Structure

Social Statuses

Social Roles

Virtual Worlds

Institutions and Socialization


Family and Sexuality


The Means of Violence

Compulsion and Discipline


The Social Network: The Future that Can be Now

Conclusion: No Islands of Egalitarianism in a Sea of Inequality

Afterword: What Can Grow in the Graveyard for Orthodoxies?

Richard Gilman-Opalsky




‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon:

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia:

Glenn Rikowski @ ResearchGate:

Online Publications at The Flow of Ideas:

The Flow of Ideas:




A lecture by Martin Lang

At The Marx Memorial Library

37a Clerkenwell Green



7 p.m. Wednesday 17 September

In the Main Hall


Special Offer – go to MML’s website: where you can buy three new books direct from the site for £30 plus p&p



The Truth Behind the Myths by the last Prime Minister of the GDR and today’s  Honorary Chair of Die Linke : individual price £10 plus p&p


“Theory & Struggle”: MML’s theoretical bulletin: individual price £5 plus p&p


JAMES CONNOLLY & THE RECONQUEST OF IRELAND – individual price £20 plus p&p- see Archives tab on website or more background

NB: A postal mailing will take place shortly, followed later on by an e-bulletin.


Mail to:

37a Clerkenwell Green
Marx Memorial Library
United Kingdom


‘Human Herbs’ – a song by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon:


Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski @ Academia:

Glenn Rikowski @ ResearchGate:

Online Publications at The Flow of Ideas:

The Flow of Ideas: