Download After Socialism: Reconstructing Critical Social Thought by Gabriel Kolko PDF

By Gabriel Kolko

Does socialism have a destiny on this planet of the twenty-first century? If no longer, what's the destiny for revolutionary politics?

This is an immense contribution to modern social and political suggestion written through one of many world's top severe historians. Gabriel Kolko ask the tough questions about the place the left can move in a post-Cold struggle global the place neoliberal regulations seem to have triumphed in either the West and the previous Soviet bloc. In attempting to solution this, he interrogates either the origins and improvement of socialist principles and the modern dynamics of the globalized economic climate ruled via American army, cultural and political might.

While heading off the enticements of both pessimism or utopianism, Kolko deals an unique and useful resolution in regards to the future of a liberal politics.

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Additional info for After Socialism: Reconstructing Critical Social Thought

Sample text

Marx’s “absolute general law of capitalist accumulation” showed how the emergence of the growing industrial reservearmy and the falling rate of profit created the decisive forces of change within The legacies of socialism: theory 33 capitalism. ”14 Marx and Engels never attempted to describe what would then follow. Marx’s system prejudged the nature of the working class’s responses and actions, which in accordance with his abstract scientific pretensions were predictable and invariable. Marx’s workers are not so much homogeneous – though they are that also – but abstract.

9 But he continuously cited classical economists, some dating from the seventeenth century, to confirm his analyses. Just as there is no Marxism without Hegelian mysticism, there is also none without the bourgeois economic theory that rationalized British capitalism’s worst deeds. Like all nineteenth-century economists, Marx was oblivious to those dimensions of politics and society that were crucial to the way economies really function. Marx was not wholly impervious to the social and political consequences of economics, but by contrast to his pure economics he was extremely casual in his utterances; he had opinions and desires but very little information.

That capitalists would obligingly obey Marx’s economic laws and accept being abolished, along with their privileges and perquisites, without acting in concert with each other or vis-à-vis the state, is the height of naivety – on a par with the workers making revolution according to Marx’s schema. The fact is that Marx actually based his entire system on his wishes and ethical judgments rather than a “scientific” assessment of options, both to capitalists and workers. Marx was oblivious to much that was crucial, but he ignored, above all, the problem of wars and their immense implications to all political and economic aspects of traditional orders – including their very existence.

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