Skip navigation

Tag Archives: Polemics




Polemics is a book series with two central aims:
(i)  Drawing on radical, critical and political theory/philosophy to address directly the various crises which have plagued global society and capitalism in the past decade;

(ii)  To present radical critiques of and alternatives to the existing way of doing things, in a polemical but academically rigorous form.

The series will appeal to authors writing from within the tradition of radical and critical theory and political philosophy. As editor I take a broad view of what comprises critical theory, including Frankfurt school scholars, and their heirs; post-structuralist and post Marxist theorists, post operatist theorists and the many others committed to a critique of existing dominant arguments and orders. What distinguishes the series is its commitment to the publication of polemical interventions in current political and economic conditions.

Texts would be no longer than 150 pages (between 30000 and 50000 words) and appeal to an audience wider than the normal academic community, while maintaining rigorous academic standards. The model for such a form of writing is perhaps best encapsulated by Adorno’s essay “The Essay as Form.’ He describes the essay form: as a refusal to treat the given as the true; as the expression of non-identity through its form; and as an enactment of intellectual freedom without first principles. Each text should be considered as an extended essay, improper in respect of disciplinary and academic convention, but deadly serious in seeking to give voice to the unspoken, against the platitudes and certainties which delimit particular forms of order.

Many academics work with radical and/or critical theories. However there is a relative dearth of texts which uses this philosophical work polemically to address the crises confronted by contemporary societies. Authors are encouraged to make polemical interventions which lay out alternative visions, and radical critiques of the existing order. These critiques should establish their arguments from within the range of positions available to contemporary critical and radical theory, while seeking to go beyond established debates. This would entail a similar, although by no means prescriptive, model for each text: first, a violation of the normal proprieties which structure a field of vision or order; second the rearticulation of what has been challenged in different terms. This means taking a topic, an object or a field of thought, teasing out the presuppositions which configure this field, and then reconfiguring them a manner that renders the apparently obvious problematic.


Series editor information

Dr Mark Devenney; 10-11 Pavilion Parade, School of Humanities, University of Brighton, BN29ZF.


‘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:

Rikowski Point:




Edited and translated by Richard B. Day and Daniel Gaido

Also available through

The theory of permanent revolution has long been associated with Leon Trotsky. Though he was the most brilliant of its proponents, these newly translated documents, most of them available in English for the first time, demonstrate that Trotsky was only one of several leading figures of international Marxism engaged in a debate, sparked by the first Russian Revolution in 1905, about the form workers’ struggle would take in less developed countries. Among the figures included in these discussions were Karl Kautsky, Rosa Luxemburg, Franz Mehring, Parvus, and David Ryazanov

Richard B. Day is Professor of Political Economy at the University of Toronto, Canada. He has published extensively on Soviet economic and political history, including Leon Trotsky and the Politics of Economic Isolation.

Daniel F. Gaido is a researcher at the National Research Council (Conicet) in Argentina. He is the author of The Formative Period of American Capitalism and is currently working on a book on the history of German social democracy

Praise for Witnesses to Permanent Revolution:

“Since the world is again in the midst of an economic crisis, the arguments here are not without contemporary relevance, even if from today’s perspective it is a polemic where everybody is right. Summing up: recommended.” —A. Ezergailis, Choice

“Sometimes reading debates between figures on the left, involving historical references readers may not be familiar with, can be a daunting or even demoralising experience. But the brilliant and precise annotating of this collection, along with a short introduction to each piece, makes every article accessible to a wide range of readers…Day and Gaido have done a fantastic service with this immense collection. Witnesses to Permanent Revolution is a fascinating and thought provoking book and one that genuinely sheds new light on past debates about socialism that can help to inform the future.” —Esme Choonara, International Socialism

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas:

MySpace Profile:

The Ockress:

Rikowski Point:

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: