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You are here: Platypus /Chicago Fall 2017 Reading Groups: What is the Left? What is Marxism?

Chicago Fall 2017 Reading Groups: What is the Left? What is Marxism?

Loyola University
Tuesdays 6-9 PM
Metropolis Cafe
1039 W Granville Ave

School of the Art Institute at Chicago
Thursdays 6-9 PM
MacLean Center
112 S Michigan Ave
Room 517

University of Chicago
Saturdays 12:30-3:30 PM
Harper Memorial Library
1116 E 59th St
Room 151


 required / + recommended reading


Week 1. What is the Left? I. Capital in history | Sep 30 (UChicago) Oct 3 (Loyola) Oct 5 (SAIC), 2017

• Max Horkheimer, "The little man and the philosophy of freedom" (1926–31)

• epigraphs on modern history and freedom by Louis Menand (on Marx and Engels) and Karl Marx, on "becoming" (from the Grundrisse, 1857–58)

• Chris Cutrone, "Capital in history" (2008)

+ Capital in history timeline and chart of terms

+ Being and becoming (freedom in transformation) chart of terms

+ video of Communist University 2011 London presentation

 Cutrone, "The Marxist hypothesis" (2010)

 Cutrone, “Class consciousness (from a Marxist persective) today”


Week 2. What is the Left? II. Bourgeois society | Oct 7 (UChicago) Oct 10 (Loyola) Oct 12 (SAIC), 2017

• Immanuel Kant, "Idea for a universal history from a cosmopolitan point of view" and "What is Enlightenment?" (1784)

• Benjamin Constant, "The liberty of the ancients compared with that of the moderns" (1819)

+ Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Discourse on the origin of inequality (1754)

+ Rousseau, selection from On the social contract (1762)


Week 3. What is the Left? III. Failure of Marxism | Oct 14 (UChicago) Oct 17 (Loyola) Oct 19 (SAIC) , 2017

• Max Horkheimer, selections from Dämmerung (1926–31)

 Adorno, “Imaginative Excesses” (1944–47)


Week 4. What is the Left? IV. Utopia and critique | Oct 21 (UChicago) Oct 24 (Loyola) Oct 26 (SAIC), 2017

• Leszek Kolakowski, “The concept of the Left” (1968)

 Marx, To make the world philosophical (from Marx's dissertation, 1839–41), pp. 9–11

 Marx, For the ruthless criticism of everything existing (letter to Arnold Ruge, September 1843), pp. 12–15

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