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Critical Education

Critical Education


New in Paperback from Haymarket

Seeing Through the Eyes of the Polish Revolution: Solidarity and the Struggle Against Communism in Poland

HM series Marxism & Socialism World History


In 1980 Polish workers astonished the world by demanding and winning an independent union with the right to strike, called Solidarity–the beginning of the end of the Soviet empire. Jack M. Bloom’s Seeing Through the Eyes of the Polish Revolution explains how it happened based on 150 interviews of Solidarity leaders, activists, supporters and opponents. Bloom’s invaluable and insightful study shows how an opposition was built, documents the battle between Solidarity and the ruling party, outlines the conflicts that emerged within each side during this tense period, explains how Solidarity survived the imposition of martial law, and how the opposition forced the Stalinist government to negotiate itself out of power.

About the author

Jack Bloom is Associate Professor of Sociology and Adjunct Associate Professor of Minority Studies and of History at Indiana University Northwest. He has published the award-winning Class, Race and the Civil Rights Movement (Indiana University Press, 1987).


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International Conference
Lenin’s Thought in the 21st Century: Interpretation and Its Value
(Wuhan, Saturday-Monday, October 20-22, 2012)

The Rosa Luxemburg Foundation; the School of Philosophy, Wuhan University; the Institute of Marxist Philosophy, Wuhan University; and the Institute of Western Marxist Philosophy, Wuhan University are planning to hold an international conference dealing with various aspects of the ideas and activities of Vladimir Lenin (1870-1924), to develop the study of Lenin’s thought and contemporary issues in the world of 21st century and enhance the academic exchanges between western and eastern scholars.

Themes to be discussed at the conference:

(1) Lenin and Marx;

(2) Lenin and the Marxism of the Second International;

(3) Lenin and Luxemburg;

(4) Lenin and Chinese Marxism;

(5) Lenin and Russian Marxism;

(6) Lenin and the Western Marxist Tradition;

(7) Lenin’s theory of Imperialism and World Systems Today;

(8) Lenin’s National Question and the “Third World” Today;

(9) Lenin’s conception of Democracy and the Socialism Today;

(10) Lenin’s Conception of Revolution and the Revolutionary Party;

(11) Lenin and Feminism;

(12) Lenin’s Relevance for the 21st Century.

Further themes and aspects regarding his life and thought and its relevance to today’s world are welcome.

Scholars interested in participating in the conference are invited to submit proposals for papers to be presented. The submission should include:

(1) A short CV, with a list of main publications;

(2) The title of the proposed presentation and a summary of up to 250 words.

The submission should be sent in English to Dr. Wu Xinwei: by July 15, 2012. Full text of paper to be presented should be sent in English by September 20, 2012.

The conference will be held atWuhanUniversityon October 20-22, 2012. Conference language: English and Chinese.




‘Human Herbs’ – a new remix and new video by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon:

‘Stagnant’ – a new remix and new video by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon:  


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‘The Lamb’ by William Blake – set to music by Victor Rikowski:


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Russian Revolution


A new book in the Historical Materialism Book Series

The October Revolution in Prospect and Retrospect: Interventions in Russian and Soviet History
John Eric Marot, Keimyung University, Korea

In a series of probing analytical essays, John Marot tracks the development of Bolshevism through the prism of pre-1917 intra-Russian Social Democratic controversies in politics and philosophy. For 1917, the author presents a critique of social historical interpretation of the Russian Revolution.

Turning to NEP Russia, the author applies Robert Brenner’s analysis of pre-capitalist modes of production and concludes that neither Bukharin nor Trotsky’s NEP-premised programs of economic transformation and advance toward socialism were feasible. At the same time, he rejects the view thatStalinism was pre-destined to supplant NEP. Instead, he hypothesises that the superior alternative to Stalinism was NEP without collectivization and the Five-Year Plans – a outcome that would have been possible had Bukharin and Trotsky joined forces to stop Stalin.

Biographical note
John Eric Marot, Ph.D. (1987), University of California, Los Angeles, teaches History at Keimyung University in Korea. He has published many articles on Russian and Soviet History, notably ‘Class Conflict, Political Competition, and Social Transformation: Critical Perspectives on the Social History of the Russian Revolution’ (Revolutionary Russia, 1994) and ‘Trotsky, the Left Opposition, and the Rise of the Stalinism: Theory and Practice’ (Historical Materialism, 2006).

This work will appeal to those interested in the fate of the October Revolution.

Table of contents

1. The Peasant-Question and the Origins of Stalinism: Rethinking the Destruction of the October Revolution

2. Trotsky, the Left Opposition and the Rise of Stalinism: Theory and Practice

3. Class-Conflict, Political Competition and Social Transformation: Critical Perspectives on the Social History of the Russian Revolution

4. Political Leadership and Working-Class Agency in the Russian Revolution: Reply to William G. Rosenberg and S.A. Smith

5. A ‘Postmodern’ Approach to the Russian Revolution? Comment on Ronald Suny

6. Alexander Bogdanov, Vpered, and the Role of the Intellectual in the Workers’ Movement

7. The Bogdanov Issue: Reply to Andrzej Walicki, Aileen Kelly and Zenovia Sochor

8. Marxism, Science, Materialism: Toward a Deeper Appreciation of the 1908-1909 Philosophical Debate in Russian Social Democracy

9. Politics and Philosophy in Russian Social Democracy: Alexander Bogdanov and the Socio-theoretical Foundations of Vpered

General Index




‘Human Herbs’ – a new remix and new video by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon:

‘Stagnant’ – a new remix and new video by Cold Hands & Quarter Moon:  


‘Cheerful Sin’ – a song by Victor Rikowski:

‘The Lamb’ by William Blake – set to music by Victor Rikowski:


Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas:

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon:

Rikowski Point:




Conference: What Is to be Done? Lars T. Lih as Reader of Lenin

Jan van Eyck Academy, Maastricht, The Netherlands
After 1968
8th November 2010 

Lenin’s Scenario of Class Leadership: The Unifying Theme of his Political Career   

– Lecture by Lars T. Lih
– Introduced by Sara Farris + Peter Thomas
– Auditorium

What Is to be Done? and Bolshevism: Lars T. Lih as Reader of Lenin 
– Workshop with Sara Farris, Lars. T. Lih, Peter Thomas + Katja Diefenbach
– Auditorium

Lenin wrote What Is to Be Done? at top-speed in late 1901 and early 1902—years filled with dramatic events that foreshadowed the great Russian revolution of 1905. Beneath the polemics, Lenin’s book reflects this drama and offers an enthusiastic, indeed romantic view of the galvanizing effect of the workers’ struggle against the Tsar on all of Russian society. Lenin assigned the Social Democratic underground a heroic mission in leading this struggle against the Tsar. His vision of the underground was opposed in spirit to the conspiratorial underground of an earlier generation of Russian revolutionaries. Indeed, his concrete proposals arose from the collective experience of his own generation of underground activists, and as such were accepted by all factions in the Social Democratic party.

These features of What Is to Be Done? force us to look critically at the accepted story that Lenin’s book was the major cause of the split in 1903-4 between Bolsheviks and Mensheviks.

For further information, please contact: Katja Diefenbach: or Sara Farris:
or Peter Thomas:

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Leon Trotsky


70 year since Trotsky’s death
A meeting to celebrate Trotsky’s revolutionary life

7-9pm Tuesday 21 September
2nd floor, ULU, Malet Street, Euston, London


John McDonnell MP

Kim Moody (American activist and author) 

Farook Tariq (Labour Party Pakistan)

Yvan Lemaitre (New Anti-capitalist Party, France)

Sean Matgamna (AWL)

Organised by Alliance for Workers Liberty:

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