Recent Articles

WikiRebels — The Documentary


(original SVT.se) [subtítulos en Español]

Share/Bookmark

The Commons

In a just world, the idea of wealth–be it money derived from the work of human hands, the resources and natural splendor of the planet itself–and the knowledge handed down through generations belongs to all of us. But in our decidedly unjust and imperfect world, our collective wealth is increasingly concentrated in the hands of a few. There is be a better way–the notion of the commons–common land, resources, knowledge–is a common-sense way to share our natural, cultural, intellectual riches.

In this innovative animation, filmmaker Laura Hanna, writer Gavin Browning and video artists/animators Dana Schechter and Molly Schwartz examine the concept of “The Commons” as a means to achieve a society of justice and equality. Read More..

La Cultura y El Estado (traducción) DAVID LLOYD Y PAUL THOMAS

La Cultura y El Estado (traducción)

MANIFIESTO FOR A SOCIETY OF UNEASINESS

Václav Bělohradský

Umělec 1/2010 / cz en de. Ilustrated by Daniel G. Andújar. Umelec magazine. p 76-109

MECHANISMS

There are no facts in front of which we would be silenced in the same way as in front of a reality that appeared on its own, such that „there is nothing to talk about“. Builders of universal empires require an agreement between them to be announced as an agreement with reality itself. If they succeed, there will be a worldwide universal empire, which won‘t stand anything but „willing helpers“. …

The greatest contradiction of industrial society is the rational nature of its irrationality, its rational foolishness. The system’s ever-increasing level of productivity is accompanied by the ever more rapid destruction of ancient worlds; sovereign political power rests on the threat of nuclear holocaust; our thoughts and emotions are subjugated to the power strategies of large corporations; the helplessness of the majority increases in direct proportion to the enormous and unprecedented power of the privileged minority. A society filled with such contradictions can survive only because of the immense effectiveness of its controlling mechanisms, which rob us of the ability to perceive the system’s objectives and our role within it as an offense to human reason and feeling. “The mechanism by which the individual is bound to his society has itself been altered. Social control is grounded in the new needs which it has created.” We become the chief editor of a newspaper, we have a high salary, a person with a high salary must live in a house outside of Prague, we take out a loan on our high salary,
Read More..

RSA Animate – Crisis of Capitalism

Today’s Must-See Animated Capitalist Takedown from RSA and David Harvey

thanks to Shuddhabrata Sengupta

June 29, 2010 | 6:24 p.m

If you watch just one funny and handsome Marxist critique of the financial crisis, make it the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce’s animated version of David Harvey’s RSA speech “Crises of Capitalism.” It’s been making the rounds this afternoon, and for good reason: Mr. Harvey, a Marxist scholar who heads CUNY’s Center for Place, Culture & Politics, describes not just the failures that caused the ongoing fiasco, but the failure of how we’ve explained it.

“It’s crap,” he says. “You should know it’s crap, and say it is. And we have a duty, it seems to me, those of us who are academics, and seriously involved in the world, to actually change our mode of thinking.”

Listening to Mr. Harvey would be one thing, but the one-hand work from RSA Animate — who has given the same treatment to Barbara Ehrenreich, Dan Pink, Jeremy Pifkin, Philip Zumbardo — does wonders.

TIQQUN !!!

TIQQUN 1

[pdf] Tiqqun 1 – Intégralité scannée
[doc] Tiqqun 1 – Intégralité document word

Eh bien, la guerre !

Qu’est-ce que la Métaphysique Critique ?

Théorie du Bloom
[pdf] version augmentée, La Fabrique
.[de] [es] [it]

Read More..

The Contemporary Misadventures of Critical Thinking

[quicktime]http://www.ccfi.educ.ubc.ca/Videos/Ranciere%20talk.mov[/quicktime]

Jacques Rancière

March 7, 2008 CCFI Noted Scholars Lecture Series

Jacques Rancière is the Emeritus Professor of Aesthetics and Politics at the University of Paris VIII where he taught from 1969 to 2000. He continues to teach, as a visiting professor, in a number of Universities, including Rutgers, Harvard, Johns Hopkins, and Berkeley. His work has been translated into 14 languages, and has been subject to numerous special issues, symposia and critical commentaries. His latest titles to appear in English translation are: Disagreement, Politics, and Philosophy (1998), Short Voyages to the Land of the People (2003), The Philosopher and his Poor (2004), The Flesh of Words (2004), The Politics of Aesthetics (2005), Film Fables (2006), and The Hatred of Democracy (2007).

The Contemporary Misadventures of Critical Thinking Introduction 1

The Contemporary Misadventures of Critical Thinking Introduction 2

The Contemporary Misadventures of Critical Thinking Video

Questions & Discussion Video

The Contemporary Misadventures of Critical Thinking Podcast

Dilemma ’89: My father was a communist

The Slovak author and journalist Martin M. Simecka and Hungarian architect and former samizdat publisher László Rajk are not only former dissidents of the younger generation, but also the sons of well-known persecuted communists. László Rajk sr. was the most prominent victim of the Rákosi show trials of 1949; the writer Milan Simecka sr. began his career in the Czechoslovak Communist Party and became a dissident after 1968. In the first debate in the Eurozine series “Europe talks to Europe”, held in Budapest, they discussed the still unanswered questions surrounding the involvement of their father’s generation in post-war communism, and the failings of today’s debate about the past in the former communist countries. Moderated by Eva Karadi, editor of Magyar Lettre Internationale.

Eva Karadi: There is an interesting common feature in both your biographies that has provided us with the title of our conversation: “Dilemma ’89: My father was a communist”. Martin Simecka, how well do you know the circumstances in which your father became a communist?

Martin Simecka: I know them very well because I spoke to him about it all. After my father was expelled from the party in ’68 he became a dissident, and so he had time to reflect on his past. He became a member of the party as early as ’48, as an eighteen-year-old. His personal motivation was very typical for the younger generation in Czechoslovakia in the early 1950s. The Czechoslovak First Republic was extremely leftwing: there was a strong social-democratic party, a communist party and powerful leftwing intellectual movements. Many members of the intellectual elite – the writers and artists – were either communist or very leftist; it wasn’t unusual to be intellectual and leftist, or even communist. In this respect, Czechoslovakia was different to Hungary or Poland. In the ’48 elections the communist party won about 60 per cent in the Czech Republic and about 30 per cent in Slovakia, which was still a lot.

There were two profound reasons behind being a communist. One was the very common feeling that the Red Army had liberated Czechoslovakia at the end of the Second World War, and that it was the Russians who had brought liberty. The second was that Edvard Benes, who was president from late ’38 and then in exile in London, himself supported the idea that the Soviet Union is our friend, after Great Britain and others had betrayed Czechoslovakia with the Munich Agreement in ’38. Read More..

HAYEK & KEYNES Rap


Econstories.tv is a place to learn about the economic way of thinking through the eyes of creative director John Papola and creative economist Russ Roberts

In Fear the Boom and Bust, John Maynard Keynes and F. A. Hayek, two of the great economists of the 20th century, come back to life to attend an economics conference on the economic crisis. Before the conference begins, and at the insistence of Lord Keynes, they go out for a night on the town and sing about why there’s a “boom and bust” cycle in modern economies and good reason to fear it. Read More..

The Common in Communism

Michael Hardt
The common must be the foundation of any communist hypothesis today. This is true due primarily to two interconnecting and conflicting conditions of the common with respect to capitalist production. First, contemporary capitalist production relies ever more centrally on the production and productivity of the common. And, second, the common, since it must be shared and open to free access, is antithetical to property. In other words, the common and its productivity are destroyed when relations of property (private or public) are imposed on it; and, in turn, the affirmation of the common implies the destruction of property. The dynamics of class struggle today and the project to overcome class society develop on the terrain of the common.

I generally agree with the efforts of Alain Badiou and Slavoj Zizek to renew the idea of communism and the communist hypothesis. The concept of communism, like that of democracy, has been corrupted so that today in standard usage it has come to mean its opposite, that is, state control of economic and social life. I would like to shift the discussion slightly, however, or recenter it from Badiou’s and Zizek’s focus on the political decision to the critique of political economy and the project for the abolition of property. To realize the communist hypothesis for our times we need to move, so to speak, from Lenin to Marx. Indeed one of the reasons that the communist hypotheses of previous eras are no longer valid is that the composition of capital – as well as the conditions and products of capitalist production – have altered. Most importantly the technical composition of labor has changed. How do people produce both inside and outside the workplace? What do they produce and under what conditions? How is productive cooperation organized? And what are the divisions of labor and power that separate them along gender and racial lines and in the local, regional, and global contexts? In addition to investigating the current composition of labor, we also have to analyze the relations of property under which labor produces. Along with Marx we can say that the critique of political economy is, at its heart, a critique of property. “The theory of the Communists,” Marx and Engels write in the Manifesto, “may be summed up in the single sentence: Abolition of private property.”1 Read More..