Catégories
revues

Karl Korsch: Revolution for what? A critical comment on Jan Valtin’s “Out of the Night”

Article de Karl Korsch signé L. H. paru dans Living Marxism, Vol. V., No. 4, Spring 1941, p. 21-29


“Soiled with mire from top to toe, and oozing blood from every pore”, a seafaring man emerges on this side of the Atlantic to tell a weird story of intrigue and conspiracy, of spying and counter-spying, of treason, torture, and murder. It is a true story, a reliable record of tangible facts, albeit mostly of facts that remind one of the “stranger than fiction” columns. Yet there is the difference that they are not isolated facts which seem unbelievable only because they do not fit into the common assumptions derived from everyday experience. Valtin’s book reveals a whole world of well-connected facts that retain their intrinsic quality of unreality even after their non-fictitious character has been established. It is a veritable underworld that lies below the surface of present-day society; yet unlike the various disconnected underworlds of crime, it is a coherent world with its own type of human actions and sufferings, situations and personalities, allegiances and apostasies, upheavals and cataclysms.

Catégories
presse

Khomeini’s blood terror targets Salman Rushdie

Article paru dans Workers Hammer, No 105, March 1989, p. 12-9

Tehran, Iran: Young students march in the streets of Tehran chanting, ‘Death to Salman Rushdie and America’ while holding posters of Ayatollah Khomeini and Salman Rushdie, condemning him to death. Thousands of people demonstrated in Tehran after a religious decree or “Fatwa” was issued by Ayatollah Khomeini, calling Salman Rushdie a blasphemer and his book the Satanic Verses an insult to Islam and Prophet Mohammad, and therefore condemned to death. (Photo by Kaveh Kazemi/Getty Images)

CENSORSHIP BY ASSASSINATION

When Ayatollah Khomeini issued his decree of death against novelist Salman Rushdie and the Viking/Penguin publishers of his Satanic Verses, a shudder spread around the world. Here was the ultimate statement of theocratic totalitarianism: not only must the book be banned, but its author executed for the “crime” of having written it. It was a throwback to the days when heretics were burned at the stake and witches boiled in oil. Suddenly the dark past of the Inquisition was no further than the local shopping centre. There it was, the benighted superstition of the Middle Ages in the middle of the Computer Age.

Catégories
revues

Sadik Jalal al-‘Azm : Palestinian Zionism

Article de Sadik Jalal al-‘Azm paru dans Die Welt des Islams, Nr. 1/4 (1988), p. 90-98.

 

 

A basic maxim of Marxist socio-political analysis states that similar infrastructural conditions tend to produce similar superstructural phenomena. Some of us who have been in close and protracted contact with the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), (particularly with its political militants, higher cadres and more outspoken ideologues), certainly have sensed something of the importance of this maxim, not as an abstract principle but as a concretely lived series of organically developing situations, ideas and experiences. I am referring, here, to the Palestinian comparisons drawn between the modern Jewish and Palestinian diasporas and the superstructural (particularly political) phenomena generated by them.

Catégories
revues

Adolph Reed, Jr. : “Scientistic Socialism: Notes on the New Afro-American Magic Marxism”

Article d’Adolph Reed, Jr. paru dans Endarch. A Journal of Theory, Issue 1, Fall 1974, p. 21-39

African American poet, writer, and civil rights activist Amiri Baraka (formerly LeRoi Jones) confers with a group of attendees at the Congress of African Peoples, Atlanta, GA, 1970. (Photo by Robert Abbott Sengstacke/Getty Images)

Three years ago, after the Black Panther Party had recanted and returned to the Baptist Church, the only self-styled ‘Marxist political tendency to be found on this side of the veil was that embodied in the Black Workers Congress which, according to its somewhat generous self-assessment, was not only ‘Marxist-Leninist’ but ‘Maoist’ as well. Every other tendency among black people was hostile to Marxism. The arguments scarcely need to be recalled : “Marx and Engels were Europeans; what can racist Europeans have to say that is useful to us?” “Why do you have to depend on the white man for your ideology; can’t we develop something new of our own?” etc. Of course there was also a great deal of red-baiting going on and even more self-righteous posturing.