#38 - July 2005

Vol. 19, No. 2
Strategies for the Left: A Symposium

The Editors
Fifteen years after the collapse of “actually existing socialism” in Europe, and following an equally dramatic – even if more gradual – turnaround in China, the global Left still lacks strong...



Capitalism in Russia and Eastern Europe

For those who feel a pang of sadness when seeing the last tiny ray of hope for socialism in Russia and elsewhere fade away in darkness behind the western horizon, it is a...


The assumption regarding parliaments in socialist countries, including Cuba, is that they are little more than rubber stamps for the communist parties. A review of the theoretical literature on representative governments in socialist...


On December 21, 1905, Jack London—the 29-year-old, California-born, best-selling American author of Call of the Wild and The Sea Wolf—took the podium at Harvard to speak to a thousand or more...

I Historical Perspectives


[The] assertion that ‘everything is possible in human affairs’ is either meaningless or false. -- E. H. Carr1

What Happened to the Socialist Revolution?


I am always puzzled by those within the U.S. Left who do not seem to understand the nationalism of the oppressed groups within our own borders, or who view these expressions of nationalist consciousness as a contradiction to the...


The dream of the imminent end of the world inspired the struggle of the early Christians against the Roman Empire and gave them confidence in victory. Scientific insight into the inevitable disintegration, now...

II Responses to the 2004 US Election


To the question "A Stolen Election?" (The Nation, Nov. 29, 2004)—and after offering different interpretations for some of the evidence collected by those who answer "yes"— David Corn, the political...


Political corruption is generally considered personal gain at the expense of public responsibility. If the elections of 2000 and 2004 have revealed anything, it is that the forms of corruption in the US have become more profound than...


The election of 2004 will be picked over like carrion for years to come; yet its skeletal outlines are well in place and there to be reflected upon by anyone with eyes to see. The election represents, in effect, the interaction of a...

III Unifying Visions

Levins Morales

During the Underground Railroad movement of the mid-19th century, people escaping the enslaved South were instructed to follow the Drinking Gourd, the constellation in the northern sky which points to the North Star and Canada, out of...

Aasim Sajjad

The current resurgence of populist activism encapsulated in the so-called “anti-globalisation” and anti-war movements indicates that disaffection amongst working people and others ideologically committed to...

Assata Zerai & Horace

During the last five hundred years humanity has witnessed its own true capacities for boundless genius and inhumane ruthlessness, for visionary innovation and short-sighted self-destruction, for...


Despite its prevalent usage, the concept of feminism continues to remain alien to many male discourses from both left and liberal perspectives.  Less attended to is the notion of global feminism, despite the recent surge of interest and...

IV Near-Term Tasks and Approaches


Disequilibrium has created the conditions for a profound ideological shift if we can seize the moment.

The United States government pounced on the collapse of the twin towers to launch a campaign for the complete redesign of...


“Left Pole/Mainstream,” a rather self-explanatory phrase, is the strategic dictum expressed recently by one of my well-respected academic colleagues and political comrades. Though I’m a Baby Boomer, radicalized in the sixties, and...

Kevin "Rashid"

An attempt to prioritize strategic objectives for the Left, toward pushing social forces beyond capitalism here in amerika or abroad, should begin with determining the primary contradictions between the oppressed social forces and those...


One of the key struggles of the current period, one that poses a great challenge to the Left, involves state control of borders and the movement of people.  Canadian and US governments, under the cover provided by September 11, are...


Reviewed by Mumia
Abu Jamal

Michael Ratner and Ellen Ray, Guantánamo: What the World Should Know (White River Junction, Vt.: Chelsea Green Publishers, 2004).

On the Caribbean island of Cuba stands a foreboding outpost of American...

Reviewed by Steve

Robert J.S. Ross, Slaves to Fashion: Poverty and Abuse in the New Sweatshops (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2004) and Immanuel Ness, Immigrants, Unions, and the U.S. Labor Market...

Reviewed by Paul

Philip Cannistraro and Gerald Meyer, eds., The Lost World of Italian-American Radicalism (Westport: Praeger, 2003).

This is a book a political lifetime—or two, or three, or more—in the...

Reviewed by Seth

David R. Roediger, Colored White: Transcending the Racial Past (University of California Press, 2002).

David Roediger’s most recent book is a gem.  This collection of readable essays helps us to better...

Reviewed by Frank

Margaret Morganroth Gullette, Aged by Culture (University of Chicago Press, 2004).

Scholars of the social world have argued that regardless of the topic one is studying, there are certain variables that...

Reviewed by Gerd

Karl Marx/Friedrich Engels: Briefwechsel Januar 1858 bis August 1859. Marx/Engels Gesamtausgabe III/9. Edited by Vera Morozowa, Marina Uzar, Elena Vaščenko and Juergen...

Reviewed by Peter

John H. McClendon III, C.L.R. James’s Notes on Dialectics: Left Hegelianism or Marxism-Leninism?  (Lanham: Lexington Books, 2004).

A significant shortcoming of the many studies on C.L.R. James is the...


Hans Aage is Professor of Economics at the University of Roskilde, Denmark. He is the editor of Environmental Transition in Nordic and Baltic Countries (1998) and the author of [in Danish] Economic Upheaval...