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I. Was ist die “Linke?” — Was ist “Marxismus?”

Lesekreis Wintersemester 2012/13

Wöchentlich Freitags um 14 Uhr.

Goetheuniversität Frankfurt

Ort: AfE-Turm 2104

Campus Bockenheim, Robert-Mayer-Straße 1, 60325 Frankfurt am Main

Auf Facebook

Erste Sitzung: 19. Oktober

• vorausgesetzte / + empfohlene Texte

Woche 1.: 19.10.2012

• Inschriften von James Miller (über Jean-Jacques Rousseau) und Louis Menand (über Edmund Wilson) über moderne Geschichte und Freiheit
• Chris Cutrone“Capital in history” (2008) [voläufige Übersetzung auf detutsch]
• Cutrone“The Marxist hypothesis” (2010)

Capital in history timeline and chart of terms

Woche 2.: 26.10.2012

• Immanuel Kant“Idee zu einer allgemeinen Geschichte in weltbürgerlicher Absicht” und “Was ist Aufklärung?” (1784)
• Benjamin Constant“The liberty of the ancients compared with that of the moderns” (1819)(Deutsch: Benjamin Constant. Über die Freiheit der Alten im Vergleich zu der der Heutigen (1819), in: Werke, herausgegeben von Alex Blaeschke, Lothar Gall, Propyläen, Berlin, 1972, Bd. 4, S.363-396.) AUF DEUTSCH.

+ Jean-Jacques Rousseau,Abhandlung über den Ursprung und die Grundlagen der Ungleichheit unter den Menschen (1754)
+ Rousseau, Auszüge aus Der Gesellschaftsvertrag (1762) (Erstes Buch: Kap. 5 – 9, Zweites Buch: Kap. 1 – 4)

Woche 3.: 02.11.2012

• Max HorkheimerAuszüge aus Dämmerung (1926–31)
• Adorno“Ausschweifungen” (1944–47) (GS4:297-300, Anhang in Minima Moralia)


Woche 4.: 09.11.2012

• Leszek Kolakowski, “Der Sinn des Begriffes ‘Linke’” (1968)
• Karl MarxAuszug aus den Anmerkungen zur Doktordissertation (1839–41) [MEW 40, S. 325 - 331]
• MarxBrief von Marx an Arnold Ruge ( September 1843)

Woche 5.: 16.11.2012

Achtung: Sitzung hat sich geändert.
• Marx and Friedrich EngelsManifest der Kommunistischen Partei (1848)
• MarxAnsprache der Zentralbehörde an den Bund (1850)

Woche 6.: 23.11.2012

• Marx, Auszüge aus Ökonomisch-philosophische Manuskripte (1844): Die entfremdete Arbeit;Privateigentum und KommunismusBedürfnis, Produktion und Arbeitsteilung (bis |XXI||, MEW 40:556 [exclusiv ||XXXIV|| Die Grundrente]).

Woche 7.: 30.11.2012

• EngelsEinleitung zu Karl Marx’ “Klassenkämpfe in Frankreich 1848 bis 1850″ (1895)
• Marx, Auszüge aus Die Klassenkämpfe in Frankreich 1848 bis 1850 (1850) [MEW Bd. 7: Teil I (S.11-34), S. 87-90, S.97-98]
• Marx, Auszüge aus Der achtzehnte Brumaire des Louis Napoleon (1852) [Teil I und VII]

Woche 8.: 07.12.2012

+ Karl Korsch, “The Marxism of the First International” (1924)
• MarxInauguraladresse der Internationalen Arbeiter-Assoziation (1864)
• Marx, Auszüge aus Der Bürgerkrieg in Frankreich [Teil III und IV] (1871, mit Engels Einleitung von 1891)

Woche 9.: 14.12.2012

+ Korsch, Einleitung zu Marx, Randglossen zum Programm der deutschen Arbeiterpartei (1922)
• MarxKritik des Gothaer Programms (1875)
• MarxEinleitung zum Programm der französischen Arbeiterpartei (1880) [Über den Entwurf]

Woche 10.: 18.01.2013

• MarxEinleitung zur Kritik der Politischen Ökonomie (1857–61) [MEW Bd. 13, S.615-641]

• MarxKapital Bd. I, Kap. 1 Teil. 4 “Der Fetischcharakter der Ware und sein Geheimnis (1867) [MEW Bd. 23, S.85-98]

Woche 11.: 25.01.2013

• Georg Lukács, “Das Phänomen der Verdinglichung” (Teil I des Kapitels “Die Verdinglichung und das Bewusstsein des Proletariats,” Geschichte und Klassenbewusstsein (1923)

Woche 12.: 01.02.2013

• Lukács, Vorwort von 1922, “Was ist orthodoxer Marxismus?” (1919), “Klassenbewusstsein” (1920), Geschichte und Klassenbewusstsein (1923)
+ Marx, Vorwort zur ersten Auflage und Nachwort zur zweiten Auflage (1873) des Kapitals (1867)

Woche 13.: 08.02.2013

• Korsch“Marxismus und Philosophie” (1923) [in der verlinkten Ausgabe S.84-160]

+ Karl Marx, Auszug aus den Anmerkungen zur Doktordissertation (1839–41) [MEW 40, S. 325 - 331]
+ Marx, Brief von Marx an Arnold Ruge ( September 1843)

Literatur für die Semesterferien

• Spartakist-Broschüre“Lenin und die Avantgardepartei” (1978) [PDF]
• Sebastian Haffner“Die deutsche Revolution 1918/19” (1968)

In the mid-19th century, Marx and Engels observed, in the Communist Manifesto, that a specter was haunting Europe,  the specter of Communism. A century and a half later, it is Marxism itself that continues to haunt the Left, while capitalism remains.

What does it mean that Marx and Marxism still appeal, while political movements for socialism are weak or non- existent? What were Marxism's original points of departure for considering radical possibilities for freedom that might still speak to the present?

How does Marxism still matter? A teach-in led by Jacob Cayia on September 25th, 2012, at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

In the mid-19th century, Marx and Engels famously observed in the Communist Manifesto that a specter was haunting Europe: the specter of Communism. 160 years later, it is Marxism itself that haunts us.

In the 21st century, it seems that the Left abandoned Marxism as a path to freedom. But Marx critically intervened in his own moment and emboldened leftists to challenge society; is the Left not tasked with this today? Has the Left resolved the problems posed by Marx, and thus moved on?

With Platypus Affiliated Society member Pac Pobric. Held at New York University on September 20, 2012.

Join our "Does Marxism really matter?" on our Facebook event page.

With Pac Pobric, assistant editor of the Platypus Review, contributing editor, 491, contributor, On-Verge

event details

Thursday, September 20 
// 7:00 pm
NYU Kimmel Student Center, Room 907
// 60 Washington Square South

There will be free food.

Contact: Brian Hioe 
// cell: 845-492-1622

In the mid-19th century, Marx and Engels famously observed in the Communist Manifesto that a ‘specter’ was haunting Europe — the specter of Communism. 160 years later, it is ‘Marxism’ itself that haunts us.

In the 21st century, it seems that the Left abandoned Marxism as a path to freedom. But Marx critically intervened in his own moment and emboldened leftists to challenge society; is the Left not tasked with this today? Has the Left resolved the problems posed by Marx, and thus moved on?

Audio from our last teach-in:

Does Marxism really matter? Poster designed by Chris Mansour

A conversation concerning the history and legacy of the struggles for sexual liberation. What successes and setbacks have shaped the prospect for LGBTQ and feminist organizing today? Held on Thursday, September 13, 2013, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada.

Karin Cope, Professor of Historical and Critical Studies, NSCAD
Kevin Kindred, Nova Scotia Rainbow Action Project
Evan Coole, Queer Activist, Organizer and Educator
Ashley Weger, Platypus Affiliated Society

Moderated by Cam Hardy (Platypus Affiliated Society)

Questions for panelists:
1. How did the LGBTQ rights movement become such? What has its relation to the Left been, and how has the contemporary political focus on same-sex marriage affect that relation? What are the potentials and limits of present politics and organization around equality and legality? What successes and limitations has it met?

2. How does economic life shape our imaginations about what sexual freedom will look like? For example, arguments for marriage equality have often been made in terms of all the economic disadvantages one faces if one can't marry--extra taxes, loss of healthcare, etc. Does marriage equality solve these issues? Or, counter to marriage, consider the importance of the legal protection of sex work to many on the Left. How are and should economics and sex be bound in sex work? Should sex work be abolished or protected? What role would the State play in a Left that seeks to decrease both human economic precariousness and human dependence on the economy more generally?

3. Marriage has always been about the linking of the intimate and the public. The demand that "love" dominate marriage--its development in the 19th century away from a mere economic arrangement between parents--was a way to demand that the public sphere as represented in the state recognize the power and value of individual life. If once progressive, though, this also comes to represent the naturalization of the state as the voice of authority over private life, as well as the retention of the family form which has represented ages of abuse (of women, children, etc.), and enshrines the principle of property over people. What forms of personal/public relation are possible now? What relationship ought the Left fight for between love, the private and the public?

4. What do we mean by a liberated sexuality? That which has positioned itself counter to what we might deem âheteronormativeâ has in the past been given the qualification as âabnormal.â In fighting for greater civil equality, these formerly marginalized sexualities have often fought on the basis of their ânaturalâ or ânormalâ characters. Does recognition for equality often homogenize the formerly marginal into normative bonds (e.g. marriage, family, monogamy, etc.), or is sexual emancipation necessarily antagonistic to the sexual mainstream? Are neither of these positions adequate?