Posts Tagged 'US'

New Left Review: Fifty Years 1960-2010

This fiftieth anniversary edition demonstrates NLR’s strengths and weaknesses. Stridently intellectual but sliding into pretension, it is devoted to the idea of a left-wing movement but divorced from actually existing social forces. Here we are presented with, among other articles, Perry Anderson’s incisive analysis of Russian and Chinese revolutions, Robin Blackburn on class struggles in post-reconstruction era America, and a US medical doctor’s searing call to arms in the battle for healthcare. Editor Susan Watkins ponders the future: “Can a left intellectual project hope to thrive in the absence of a political movement?” Her answer? “That remains to be seen.” SS

Second Series, Number 61, January/February 2010; 232 pages

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Bonfire of Illusions: The Twin Crises of the Liiberal World, by Alex Callinicos

Plenty of illusions but no bonfire. The problem with this book’s title – acknowledged by Callinicos – is that the ruling neoliberal ideology is very much alive and kicking. Fixing as his point of departure the timely conjunction of the financial meltdown of 2008 and the Russia-Georgia war, the author argues that these events marked the end of the post-Cold War epoch of unipolar US supremacy and neoliberal orthodoxy. A detailed accounting of the financial crisis, informed by an understanding of falling profit rates, gives way to a weaker outline of geopolitical strategy that frequently reiterates the earlier economic arguments. SS

Polity; 2010; 179 pages

Spaces of Global Capitalism: Towards a Theory of Uneven Global Development, by David Harvey

Here are three lectures delivered by Harvey, a geographer by trade, in 2004. In the first he analyses neoliberalism in what is a finely composed exposition of its meaning: the restoration of ruling class power. The second is focused on uneven geographical development and Harvey masterfully employs his Marxian analytical toolbox to demonstrate how this unevenness is inherent to the system via processes of primitive accumulation, competing capitals and commodity fetishism. Finally, for the specialist Harvey tackles the notion of ‘space’, producing a nine-coordinate ‘matrix’ of different conceptions which we are asked to consider simultaneously and dialectically; it’s challenging stuff. SS

Verso; 2006; 154 pages


Language ought to be the joint creation of poets and manual workers. George Orwell

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