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Kevin B. Anderson
In the last years of the twentieth century, antihumanist forms of radical thought came to the fore, from Louis Althusser’s structuralist Marxism to Michel Foucault’s poststructuralism and postmodernism. These theories have emphasized a politics of difference, with the critique of capital and class relegated to the background. In so doing, antihumanist radical theory pushed aside earlier forms of radical thought in the socialist humanist or Marxist humanist vein. Since the birth of the global justice movement and the Great Recession, the worm has turned again, with the politics of difference and antihumanist radicalism starting to recede. The time has come to reconsider for today, albeit sometimes critically, the socialist and Marxist-Humanist currents, from Althusser’s antagonist the social historian and peace activist E.P. Thompson to the socialist humanist psychologist Erich Fromm, and from the African revolutionary humanist Frantz Fanon to the Marxist-Humanist and feminist philosopher Raya Dunayevskaya. The speakers will also discuss what socialist or Marxist humanism means for a politics of solidarity today.
The occasion for this meeting is the publication of the new book, FOR HUMANISM: EXPLORATIONS IN THEORY AND POLITICS (Pluto Press, London), with contributions by David Alderson, Kevin B. Anderson, Timothy Brennan, Barbara Epstein, and Robert Spencer. Books will be available for signing at a discount at the meeting.
Barbara Epstein is Professor Emerita in the History of Consciousness Department, UC Santa Cruz. She is the author of POLITICAL PROTEST AND CULTURAL REVOLUTION: NONVIOLENT DIRECT ACTION IN THE 1970S AND 1980S, and, more recently, of THE MINSK GHETTO 1941-1943: JEWISH RESISTANCE AND SOVIET INTERNATIONALISM. She is a member of the Democratic Socialists of America.
Kevin B. Anderson teaches at UC-Santa Barbara. He is has written widely on Marxism, critical theory, and on race and gender, and is the author of MARX AT THE MARGINS: NATIONALISM, ETHNICITY, AND NON-WESTERN SOCIETIES and the coauthor of FOUCAULT AND THE IRANIAN REVOLUTION: GENDER AND THE SEDUCTIONS OF ISLAMISM. He is also the coeditor of the ROSA LUXEMBURG READER. He is a member of the International Marxist-Humanist Organization.
Sponsored by the West Coast Chapter, International Marxist-Humanist Organization
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