RSS FeedRSS FeedLivestreamLivestreamVimeoVimeoTwitterTwitterFacebook GroupFacebook Group
You are here: Platypus /Archive for category Chris Cutrone
For the “Left” that is critical of him, the most common comparison made of Obama is to Bill Clinton. This critique of Obama, as of Clinton, denounces his “Centrism,” the trajectory he appears to continue from the “new” Democratic Party of the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC) expressed by Clinton and Gore’s election in 1992. Clinton’s election was seen as part of the triumph of “Third Way” politics that contemporaneously found expression in Tony Blair’s “New” Labour Party in Britain.
Historical consciousness articulates the problem of what “ought” to be with what “is.” The question is how the necessities of emancipatory struggles in the present relate to those of the past. The tasks revealed by historical Marxism have not been superseded but only obscured and forgotten, at the expense of emancipatory social politics in the present.
In previous articles I have addressed the Presidential campaign of Barack Obama in terms of the historical precedents of MLK, Jr. and JFK. Now I wish to address the final and perhaps most important but problematic comparison that might be available, FDR. MLK, Jr., JFK and FDR span the political imagination of the preceding generation, the “baby-boomers” who came of age in the 1960s, the time of the “New Left.”
I want to speak about the meaning of history for any purportedly Marxian Left. We in Platypus focus on the history of the Left because we think that the narrative one tells about this history is in fact one’s theory of the present. Implicitly or explicitly, in one’s conception of the history of the Left, is an account of how the present came to be. By focusing on the history of the Left, or, by adopting a Left-centric view of history, we hypothesize that the most important determinations of the present are the result of what th
Barack Obama had, until recently, made his campaign for President of the United States a referendum on the invasion and occupation of Iraq. In the Democratic Party primaries, Obama attacked Hillary Clinton for her vote in favor of the invasion. Among Republican contenders, John McCain went out of his way to appear as the candidate most supportive of the Bush administration’s policy in Iraq.

Ich möchte über die Bedeutung der Geschichte für jede selbsternannte marxistische Linke sprechen.

Mi propósito en esta charla es presentar una discusión sobre el significado de la historia para cualquier izquierda que se asuma marxista. En Platypus hacemos eje en la historia de la izquierda porque pensamos que la narrativa histórica que uno cuente no es otra cosa que una teoría del presente. Implicita o explicitamente, la concepción de la historia que se adopta constituye una toma de posición respecto de como el presente ha llegado a ser lo que es hoy. Al centrarnos en la historia de la izquierda, y al adoptar una perspectiva política cuyo eje es esta mirada izquierdista de la historia, estamos sosteniendo como hipótesis que las características determinantes de nuestro presente tal como lo conocemos son el resultado de lo que la izquierda ha hecho históricamente por acción u omisión.
Θέλω να μιλήσω για το νόημα της ιστορίας για κάθε Αριστερά που δηλώνει μαρξιστική. Εμείς στην οργάνωση Πλατύπους εστιάζουμε στην ιστορία της Αριστεράς επειδή πιστεύουμε ότι η αφήγηση καθενός για την ιστορία αυτή είναι στην πραγματικότητα η θεωρία του για το παρόν. Είτε ρητά είτε όχι, σε κάθε σύλληψη της ιστορίας της Αριστεράς υπάρχει μια αποτίμηση για τον τρόπο κατάληξης στο παρόν. Εστιάζοντας στην ιστορία της Αριστεράς ή υιοθετώντας μια αριστεροκεντρική άποψη τής ιστορίας, υποθέτουμε ότι οι πιο σημαντικοί προσδιορισμοί του παρόντος είναι αποτέλεσμα όσων η Αριστερά ιστορικά έκανε ή απέτυχε να κάνει.
The election of Barack Obama will be an event. But it has proven confusing for most on the “Left,” who claim to want to overcome anti-black racism and achieve social justice. Rejection of Obama on this basis has been as significant as the embrace of his candidacy. There is as much anxiety as hope stirred by Obama, especially regarding the significance of his blackness.
I would like to respond to Chris Cutrone’s article, "Review: Angela Davis 'How does change happen?'" from the March 2008 issue #3. I agree with Cutrone’s general sentiment that we as a country have failed to productively engage the problem of race, and that an honest critique of capitalism is pretty much absent from American politics. However, one does not necessarily follow the other. I disagree that a discussion of capitalism must necessarily displace a discussion of race, a term which Cutrone disrespectfully frames in quotation marks and describes as a “distraction” and “inadequate category.”