RSS FeedRSS FeedLivestreamLivestreamVimeoVimeoTwitterTwitterFacebook GroupFacebook Group
You are here: The Platypus Affiliated Society/Archive for category Berlin Ongoing Events

What is the "Left" what is "Marxism"?

Was ist die "Linke"? - Was ist "Marxismus"?

 

Join us as we embark on our 11-week reading group series on the philosophical, historical, and political significance of Marxism. 

The discussion will be in English but texts are available in German below.

Runs every Monday evening between 7 November and 19 December 2016 (we resume in January after Holiday break).

Zossener Str. 56, 10961 Berlin (Eigang A. 4 stuck. Buzzer: Zizoo)

 


Call 017680637663 if you have problems finding us.

Join facebook group for regular updates.

Email berlin@platypus1917.org if you have any questions.


Marx and Engels readings pp. from Robert C. Tucker, ed., Marx-Engels Reader (Norton 2nd ed., 1978)

required / + recommended reading


Week 1. What is the Left? I. Capital in history | 07.11.2016

• James Miller On Jean-Jacques Rousseau [ENG] Louis Menand (über Edmund Wilson) Meaning in History [ENG]
Chris 
Cutrone“Capital in history” (2008) [ENG] [DEU]
Chris 
Cutrone, “The Marxist hypothesis” (2010) [ENG]


Week 2. What is the Left? III. Failure of Marxism | 14.11.2016

• Max Horkheimer, Selections from Dämmerung (1926–31) [ENG] [DEU]
Theodor 
Adorno, “Imaginative Excesses” (1944–47)  [ENG] [DEU] (“Ausschweifung” GS4:297-300, Anhang in Minima Moralia, letzter Abschnitt)


Week 3. What is the Left? IV. Utopia and critique | 21.11.2016

• Leszek Kolakowski, “The concept of the Left” (1968) [ENG] [DEU]
Karl 
Marx, To make the world philosophical (1839–41)  [ENG] [DEU] (MEW 40, S. 325 - 331)
Karl 
Marx, For the ruthless criticism of everything existing (Letter to Arnold Ruge, September 1843) [ENG] [DEU]


Week 4. What is Marxism? I. Socialism | 28.11.2016

Karl Marx, Selections from Economic and philosophic manuscripts  (1844) [ENG] [DEU] (Auszüge aus Ökonomisch-philosophische Manuskripte  Die entfremdete Arbeit;Privateigentum und KommunismusBedürfnis, Produktion und Arbeitsteilung (bis |XXI||, MEW 40:556 [exclusiv ||XXXIV|| Die Grundrente])

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, selections from the Manifesto of the Communist Party (1848) [ENG] [DEU]

Marx, Address to the Central Committee of the Communist League (1850), pp. 501–511

+ Commodity form chart of terms


Week 5. What is Marxism? II. Revolution in 1848 | 5.12.2016

Marx, The coming upheaval (from The Poverty of Philosophy, 1847) and Class struggle and mode of production (letter to Weydemeyer, 1852), pp. 218-220

• Friedrich Engels, The tactics of social democracy [ENG] [DEU] (1895)
Karl Marx, selections from The Class Struggles in France 1848–50 [ENG] [DEU] (1850) (nur Teil I, der verlinkt ist)
Karl 
Marx, selections from The 18th Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte  [ENG] [DEU]  (1852) [Teil I und VII]


Week 6. What is Marxism? III. Bonapartism |12.12.2016

Karl Marx, Inaugural address to the First International  [ENG] [DEU] (1864)
• Karl Marx, selections from The Civil War in France  [ENG] [DEU] [Teil III und IV] (1871, including Engels's 1891 Introduction [ENG] [DEU] )
• Karl Marx, Critique of the Gotha Programme [ENG] [DEU], pp. 525–541 (1875)

Marx, Programme of the Parti Ouvrier (1880)

+ Karl Korsch, "The Marxism of the First International" (1924)

+ Korsch, Introduction to Marx, Critique of the Gotha Programme (1922)


Week 7. What is Marxism? IV. Critique of political economy | 19.12.2016

• Karl Marx selections from the Grundrisse (1857–61), pp. 222–226, 236–244, 247–250, 276–293  [ENG] [DEU] (1857–61) [MEW Bd. 13, S.615-641] • Karl MarxCapital Vol. I, Ch. 1 Sec. 4 "The fetishism of commodities"  [ENG] [DEU] (1867) [MEW Bd. 23, S.85-98]

+ Commodity form chart of terms


Winter break: recommended readings

+ Richard Appignanesi and Oscar Zarate / A&Z, Introducing Lenin and the Russian Revolution / Lenin for Beginners (1977)

+ Sebastian Haffner, Failure of a Revolution: Germany 1918–19 (1968)

+ Edmund Wilson, To the Finland Station: A Study in the Writing and Acting of History (1940), Part II. Ch. (1–4,) 5–10, 12–16; Part III. Ch. 1–6

+ Tariq Ali and Phil Evans, Introducing Trotsky and Marxism / Trotsky for Beginners (1980)

+ James Joll, The Second International 1889–1914 (1966)


Week 9. What is Marxism? V. Reification | 23.01.2017

• Georg Lukács, “The phenomenon of reification” (Part I of “Reification and the consciousness of the proletariat,” History and Class Consciousness, 1923) [ENG] [DEU] 

+ Commodity form chart of terms


Week 10. What is Marxism? VI. Class consciousness |

30.01.2017

• Georg Lukács, Original Preface (1922), [ENG] [DEU]
• Georg Lukács, “What is Orthodox Marxism?” (1919) [ENG] [DEU]

• Georg Lukács, “Class Consciousness” (1920) [ENG] [DEU] 

+ Marx, Preface to the First German Edition and Afterword to the Second German Edition (1873) of Capital (1867), pp. 294–298, 299–302


Week 11. What is Marxism? VII. Ends of philosophy |

06.02.2017

• Karl Korsch “Marxism and philosophy” (1923) [ENG] [DEU] [in der verlinkten Ausgabe S.84-160]

+ 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

+ Marx, "Theses on Feuerbach" (1845), pp. 143–145


Winter–Spring 2017

II. Introduction to revolutionary Marxism

"Marx issued the call to all the workers of the globe, regardless of race, sex, creed or any other condition whatsoever. As a social party we receive the Negro and all other races upon absolutely equal terms. We are the party of the working class, the whole working class, and we will not suffer ourselves to be divided by any specious appeal to race prejudice; and if we should be coaxed or driven from the straight road we will be lost in the wilderness and ought to perish there, for we shall no longer be a Socialist party."
-- Eugene Debs, "The Negro in the Class Struggle" (1903)

How have changes in social group identity affected the politics of capitalism and the Left's responses to it? While vulgar-propagandistic and economic-reformist Revisionist pseudo-"Marxism" appeared to reduce the problem of capitalism to exploitation -- to the neglect of other forms of social oppression -- there have been several important attempts to grasp the struggle for socialism in capitalism in broader and deeper ways, occasioned by crises that have transformed the concrete practices and lived experience of people -- for instance, as matters of gender roles, sexuality, and "racial" segregation and affinity -- as capitalism has developed and changed over the course of the past century. We will read from among the most sharply acute and incisively critical attempts by Marxists to articulate these crises of social identity as opportunities for finding how capitalism potentially points beyond itself in the struggle for socialism.

Wednesdays 8 June - 20 July, 2016, 19:00h 

Zossenerstrasse 56, eingang A, 4. Stock

Week 1: Women's Question - Wednesday 8 June

+ Quintin Hoare, "On Mitchell's 'Women: the longest revolution' " (1967)
+ Mitchell, reply to Quintin Hoare (1967)


Week 2: Women's Question and sexuality  - Wednesday 15 June


Week 3: Gay Identity and sexuality - Wednesday 22 June


Week 4: Race and the Black Question - Wednesday 29 June

Max ShachtmanCommunism and the Negro AKA Race and Revolution (1933)


Week 5: Race and the Black Question - Wednesday 6 July


Week 6: Race and the Black Question - Wednesday 13 July

Harold CruseThe Crisis of the Negro Intellectual (1967), [selections part 1, 3-10 and 11-63] [part 2, 451-475 and 544-565]


Week 7: Race and the Black Question - Wednesday 20 July

Die historischen Wurzeln der Linken und des Marxismus liegen in den bürgerlichen Revolutionen des 17. und 18. Jahrunderts und deren Krise im 19. Jahrhundert. Mit diesem Lesekreis wollen wir versuchen, jenen geschichtlichen Hintergrund durch Lektüre der Texte von Marx und der radikalen bürgerlichen Philosophie der Aufklärung, Rousseau, Kant, Hegel sowie Nietzsche, herauszuarbeiten.
Im 20. Jahrhundert bemühten die Theoretiker der Frankfurter Schule, Marx und das politische Bewusstsein des Marxismus, kraft kritischer Reflexion, in seiner Relevanz lebendig zu erhalten . Durch Texte von Autoren wie Theodor W. Adorno, Max Horkheimer, Georg Lukács, Karl Korsch und Leszek Kołakowski, soll versucht werden, das Problem des politischen Bewusstseins der Linken im 20. Jahrhundert, das bis heute prägend bleibt, in seinem historischen Kontext zu beleuchten.

Erste Sitzung: 10. Feb
Location:
Room 1.406
Universitätsgebäude am Hegelplatz  
Dorotheenstraße 24, 10117 Berlin


Woche/Week 1: 10.02.2016

• James Miller On Jean-Jacques Rousseau [ENG] Louis Menand (über Edmund Wilson) Meaning in History [ENG]
Chris 
Cutrone“Capital in history” (2008) [ENG] [DEU]
Chris 
Cutrone, “The Marxist hypothesis” (2010) [ENG]



Woche/Week 2: 17.02.2016

• Friedrich Nietzsche, On the Use and Abuse of History for Life (1874) [ENG] [DEU]



Woche/Week 3: 22.02.2016

• Immanuel Kant, "Idea for a universal history from a cosmopolitan point of view"  (1784) [ENG] [DEU]
• Immanuel Kant"What is Enlightenment?" (1784) [ENG] [DEU]
• Benjamin Constant,  "The liberty of the ancients compared with that of the moderns" (1819) [ENG] [DEU]


Woche/Week 4: 29.02.2016

• Max Horkheimer, Selections from Dämmerung (1926–31) [ENG] [DEU]
Theodor 
Adorno, “Imaginative Excesses” (1944–47)  [ENG] [DEU] (“Ausschweifung” GS4:297-300, Anhang in Minima Moralia, letzter Abschnitt)


 Woche/Week 5: 07.03.2016

• Leszek Kolakowski, “The concept of the Left” (1968) [ENG] [DEU]
Karl 
Marx, To make the world philosophical (1839–41)  [ENG] [DEU] (MEW 40, S. 325 - 331)
Karl 
Marx, For the ruthless criticism of everything existing (Letter to Arnold Ruge, September 1843) [ENG] [DEU]


Woche/Week 6: 14.03.2016

Karl Marx, Selections from Economic and philosophic manuscripts  (1844) [ENG] [DEU] (Auszüge aus Ökonomisch-philosophische Manuskripte  Die entfremdete Arbeit;Privateigentum und KommunismusBedürfnis, Produktion und Arbeitsteilung (bis |XXI||, MEW 40:556 [exclusiv ||XXXIV|| Die Grundrente])
Karl 
Marx and Friedrich Engels, selections from the Manifesto of the Communist Party (1848) [ENG] [DEU]


Woche/Week 7: 21.03.2014
Was ist Marxismus? II: Die Revolution von 1848

• Friedrich Engels, The tactics of social democracy [ENG] [DEU] (1895)
Karl Marx, selections from The Class Struggles in France 1848–50 [ENG] [DEU] (1850) (nur Teil I, der verlinkt ist)
Karl 
Marx, selections from The 18th Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte  [ENG] [DEU]  (1852) [Teil I und VII]


Woche/Week 8: 04.04.2016

Karl Marx, Inaugural address to the First International  [ENG] [DEU] (1864)
• Karl Marx, selections from The Civil War in France  [ENG] [DEU] [Teil III und IV] (1871, including Engels's 1891 Introduction [ENG] [DEU] )
• Karl Marx, Critique of the Gotha Programme [ENG] [DEU], pp. 525–541 (1875)


Woche/Wee 9: 11.04.2016

• Karl Marx selections from the Grundrisse (1857–61), pp. 222–226, 236–244, 247–250, 276–293  [ENG] [DEU] (1857–61) [MEW Bd. 13, S.615-641] • Karl MarxCapital Vol. I, Ch. 1 Sec. 4 "The fetishism of commodities"  [ENG] [DEU] (1867) [MEW Bd. 23, S.85-98]


Woche/Week 10: 19.04.2016

• Georg Lukács, “The phenomenon of reification” (Part I of “Reification and the consciousness of the proletariat,” History and Class Consciousness, 1923) [ENG] [DEU] 


Woche/Week 11: 25.04.2016
Was ist Marxismus? VI: Klassenbewusstsein

 Georg Lukács, Original Preface (1922), [ENG] [DEU]
 Georg Lukács, “What is Orthodox Marxism?” (1919) [ENG] [DEU]

 Georg Lukács, “Class Consciousness” (1920) [ENG] [DEU] 


Woche/Week 12: 02.05.2016
Marxismus und Philosophie

• Karl Korsch “Marxism and philosophy” (1923) [ENG] [DEU] [in der verlinkten Ausgabe S.84-160]

 

Rousseau-Smith-Kant-Hegel-Nietzsche

We will address the greater context for Marx and Marxism through the issue of bourgeois radicalism in philosophy in the 18th and 19th Centuries. Discussion will emerge by working through the development from Kant and Hegel to Nietzsche, but also by reference to the Rousseauian aftermath, and the emergence of the modern society of capital, as registered by liberals such as Adam Smith and Benjamin Constant.

The principle of freedom and its corollary, “perfectibility,” . . . suggest that the possibilities for being human are both multiple and, literally, endless. . . . Contemporaries like Kant well understood the novelty and radical implications of Rousseau’s new principle of freedom [and] appreciated his unusual stress on history as the site where the true nature of our species is simultaneously realized and perverted, revealed and distorted. A new way of thinking about the human condition had appeared. . . . As Hegel put it, “The principle of freedom dawned on the world in Rousseau, and gave infinite strength to man, who thus apprehended himself as infinite.”
– James Miller (author of The Passion of Michel Foucault, 2000), Introduction to Rousseau,Discourse on the Origin of Inequality (Hackett, 1992)

Recommended background reading:

+ Eric Hobsbawm, The Age of Revolution 17891848 [PDF]

Location:
Wednesdays 6:30 pm
Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm Center Room 3C*
Geschwister-Scholl-Straße 1/3
10117 Berlin

*Please note that you cannot bring a non-clear bag into the library.  We will be meeting at 6:30 in-front of the library if anyone needs to use the lockers with a lock to store their bags


Schedule

Week 1: June 10

Max Horkheimer, “The little man and the philosophy of freedom” (pp. 50–52 from selections from Dämmerung,1926–31) [ENG] [DEU]

Cutrone"The Marxist hypothesis" (2010) [ENG]

• Louis Menand (on Marx and Engels) [ENG]

 Karl Marx, on "becoming" (from the Grundrisse, 1857–58) [ENG] [DEU]

Chris Cutrone"Capital in history" (2008) [ENG] [DEU]

Capital in history timeline and chart of terms
video of Communist University 2011 London presentation
+ Robert Pippin, “On Critical Theory” [HTML Critical Inquiry 2003]


Week 2: June 17

• Jean-Jacques RousseauDiscourse on the Origin of Inequality PDFs of preferred translation (5 parts): [1] [2] [3] [4] [5]
• Rousseau, from On the Social Contract [ENG] [DEU] (Book I Sec 5-9, Book II Chap 1-4)


Week 3: June 24

 Adam Smith, selections from The Wealth of Nations

Volume I [PDF]
Introduction and Plan of the Work
Book I: Of the Causes of Improvement…
I.1. Of the Division of Labor
I.2. Of the Principle which gives Occasion to the Division of Labour
I.3. That the Division of Labour is Limited by the Extent of the Market
I.4. Of the Origin and Use of Money
I.6. Of the Component Parts of the Price of Commodities
I.7. Of the Natural and Market Price of Commodities
I.8. Of the Wages of Labour
I.9. Of the Profits of Stock
Book III: Of the different Progress of Opulence in different Nations
III.1.
 Of the Natural Progress of Opulence
III.2. Of the Discouragement of Agriculture in the Ancient State of Europe after the Fall of the Roman Empire
III.3. Of the Rise and Progress of Cities and Towns, after the Fall of the Roman Empire
III.4. How the Commerce of the Towns Contributed to the Improvement of the Country


Week 4: July 1

Smith, selections from The Wealth of Nations

Volume II [PDF]
IV.7. Of Colonies
Book V: Of the Revenue of the Sovereign or Commonwealth
V.1. Of the Expences of the Sovereign or Commonwealth


Week 5: July 8

• Immanuel Kant, “Idea for a Universal History from a Cosmopolitan Point of View“ [ENG] [DEU]
Kant, “What is Enlightenment? ” [ENG] [DEU]
• 
Benjamin Constant, “The Liberty of the Ancients Compared with that of the Moderns” [ENG] [DEU]


Week 6: July 15

G.W.F. HegelIntroduction to the Philosophy of History [HTML] [PDF pp. 14–96 (96–128)] [ENG] [DEU]


Week 7: July 22

Audio: Richard Strauss, “Der Held” ["The Hero"], Ein Heldenleben [A Hero's Life] (1898)
• Friedrich NietzscheThe Use and Abuse of History for Life [translator's introduction by Peter Preuss] [ENG] [DEU]
Nietzsche, selection from On Truth and Lie in an Extra-Moral Sense [ENG] [DEU]


Week 8: July 29

+ Human, All Too Human: Nietzsche: Beyond Good and Evil (1999)

Nietzsche, On the Genealogy of Morals: A Polemic [ENG] [DEU]

Wednesdays 7pm
Pure Origins
Georgenstraße 193
Berlin

check Facebook event for details

 

Week 1 (14 Jan 2015)

 

Week 2 (21 Jan 2015)

 

Week 3 (28 Jan 2015)

 

Week 4 (4 Feb 2015)

 

Week 5 (11 Feb 2015)

 

Week 6 (18 Feb 2015)

 

Week 7 (25 Feb 2015)

 

Week 8 (4 March 2015)

 

Week 9 (11 March 2015)

 

Week 10 (18 March 2015)