Ever since I’ve started this site in November, I have been working on the Meaning of Marxism series. That project was motivated by a desire to intervene in contemporary debates, where I have felt that my contemporaries have been operating with muddled conceptions of Marxism. Specifically, I felt that some Marxists were granting too much legitimacy to critiques of ‘vulgarized’ conceptions of Marxism, that either conceived it as being entirely economic reductionist or as a philosophy. I felt it was necessary to develop a critique of these vulgarized conceptions, while re-asserting the thesis, espoused in various ways by Lenin, Mao, Althusser, and Rodney, that Marxism is a scientific methodology that can be used by revolutionaries to intervene in class struggle. I also felt it was necessary to articulate communism as a concept, and to re-affirm its dependency on Marxism in light of contemporary debates.
Due to my background in philosophy, my tendency is to always define the concepts I use before trying to wield them in other contexts. I realized that, in order to explore other projects, I needed to define Marxism and communism, since they are two foundational concepts. Now that I have completed this series, I can move on to other projects. The first one is a piece I have been developing on May ’68 in France, where I will give a summary of events and explore the period’s importance in posing contemporary problems for Marxists. Specifically, May ’68 and its relation to the problems of the party-form, ‘exceptional situations’, the crisis of imperialism, and the role of white collar labor in class struggle. The other piece I will develop, likely after the May ’68 one, will be a critique of empiricism, and I will argue that conceiving Marxism within the categories of empiricism will lead, and has lead, to all sorts of various theoretical, and thus political, errors.
In the meantime, I just want to thank everyone who has read the work I have published so far on this site (and elsewhere)! I hope you continue to follow the site, because better work will be coming in the future.