Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Thurs 8/18 "Meaning of Marxism" Discussion: Imperialism & Oppression

Join the International Socialist Organization to discuss...

THE MEANING OF MARXISM by Paul D'Amato
Chapter 9: Imperialism, Nationalism, and War
Chapter 10: Marxism and Oppression

Thursday August 18th 4:30-6:30 pm
Same Old Place Pizza Shoppe
662 Centre St
Jamaica Plain MA

People around the world are standing up and fighting back against the attacks on poor and working class people. From revolutions in Egypt and Tunisia to occupations of the Wisconsin State House to millions on General Strike in Greece. There has never been a more urgent time to discuss the the ideas of Marxism and what we can do to put them into practice.

This book is a perfect introduction into Marxism and Socialist politics, with insightful contemporary applications of Marxist ideas. Come join us for the first of several regular group discussions. Some study guide questions are also attached below, but please come with more questions and thoughts!

From the book jacket:

It is fashionable for pundits to declare every so often that Marxism is dead. As the late socialist author Daniel Singer aptly put it, their aim “is to doom as impossible a radical, fundamental transformation of existing society.” But you can’t keep a good theory down. The poverty, class inequality, war and environmental degradation that today’s globalized capitalist system creates on an ever-expanding scale raises questions for which Marxism still offers fresh and relevant answers. This book is a lively and accessible introduction to the ideas of Karl Marx, as well as other key Marxists, with historical and contemporary examples. The Meaning of Marxism shows that a “radical, fundamental transformation of existing society” is indeed not only possible, but urgently necessary.

“Marx’s ideas remain crucial for comprehending the modern world, and no one does a better job of explaining them and showing how to apply them to contemporary issues than Paul D’Amato. This book is a treasury of powerful arguments illustrating the continuing relevance of class politics. A superb introduction to the Marxist method.” --Phil Gasper, editor of The Communist Manifesto: A Road Map to History’s Most Important Political Document

To pick up a copy of the book and R.S.V.P, contact keeganxobrien@yahoo.com
Discussion/Study Questions: Chapter 9: Imperialism, Nationalism, and War
  1. Is war a product of human nature?
  2. Compare and contrast Lenin’s view of imperialism with Kautsky’s theory of “ultra-imperialism.” Is imperialism a government policy or a stage of capitalism?
  3. What has changed about imperialism since Lenin’s day? Do those changes invalidate his theory?
  4. Comment on the idea that the United States intervenes all over the world to “spread democracy.”
  5. Is there such a thing as “national interests”?
  6. Discuss the validity or otherwise of this statement: The integration of the world economy has rendered national states obsolete.
Chapter 10: Marxism and Oppression
  1. Explain Lenin’s views on the right of nations to self-determination.
  2. Have women always been oppressed?
  3. What is the role of the family under capitalism?
  4. Has racism always existed?
  5. Does capitalism need racism?
  6. Evaluate this statement: “Marxism cares more about exploitation than it does oppression.”