A panel event held at the Inaugural European Conference of the Platypus Affiliated Society contemplating the question of left unity. The panel was held at Goldsmiths College on July 19, 2014.
Communist Party of Great Britain
International Bolshevik Tendency
A workshop with the International Bolshevik Tendency (IBT) held at the Inaugural European Conference of the Platypus Affiliated Society on Saturday, July 19th, 2014 at Goldsmiths College, London.
Every year at Platypus conferences, speakers from various perspectives are asked to bring their experience of the Left’s recent history to bear on today’s political possibilities and challenges as part of the “Differing Perspectives on the Left” workshop series.
A moderated panel discussion hosted by the Platypus Affiliated Society on the interrelation of capital, history and ecology, held at York University on January 15, 2014.
- Jordan Briggs, International Bolshevik Tendency
- Michelle Mawhinney, Political Science, York University
- Raymond Rogers, Environmental Studies, York University
The Dutch atmospheric chemist Paul Crutzen recently characterized the period marked by the start of the industrial revolution in the 18th Century to the present as a new geological epoch, the Anthropocene. This periodization is meant to capture a change in the history of the planet, namely that for the first time in history its course will be determined by the question of what humanity will become.
This event will focus on different interpretations of why the Left has failed to deal with the deepening crisis of the Anthropocene through the 19th and 20th Centuries and how and if this problem is interrelated with the growing problems associated with ecological systems across the earth. While Karl Marx would note that the problem of freedom shifted with the industrial revolution and the emergence of the working class - the crisis of bourgeois society that Marx would term capital - the idea of freedom seemed not to survive the collapse of Marxist politics in the 20th Century. We seem to live in a world in which the fate of ecological systems seem foreclosed, where attempts at eco-modernization seem to emerge many steps behind the rate of ecological degradation. For many, degradation of the environment appears a permanent feature of modern society, something which can only be resisted but never transformed.
This panel will consider the relationship between the history of capital and the Left—and thus the issue of history and freedom - and how it may be linked to our present inability to render environmental threats and degradation visible and comprehensible, and by extension, subject to its conscious and free overcoming by society.
Conversations on the Left: James Turley (CPGB), Bhaskar Sunkara (Jacobin), and Ben Blumberg (Platypus) [Media Recording]
A panel event held at New York University on April 18th, 2013.
Transcripted in Platypus Review #57 (Click on banner to see):
Recently, a series of exchanges between the Communist Party of Great Britain (PCC), the International Bolshevik Tendency, and the Platypus Affiliated Society has unfolded, mapping a field of positions and historical perspectives whose contours trace some of the most provocative contemporary perspectives on Marxism, socialism, and democracy.
With this public forum speakers will take stock of the points of convergence and divergence that have emerged in order to push the conversation further on key issues such as Left unity, neo-Kautskyism, factionalism, Trotskyism, sectarianism, Leninism and Bolshevism, democratic organization and political program. The event will feature:
James Turley (CPGB)
Bhaskar Sunkara (Jacobin)
Benjamin Blumberg (Platypus)
Please see the link below for a helpful compilation of debates between the Communist Party of Great Britain (PCC), the International Bolshevik Tendency, and the Platypus Affiliated Society.
The full compilation may be found here.
Electoral politics are a longstanding problem for the U.S. left. In recent decades, a number of parties have formed as an alternative to the Democratic Party: the Labor Party, the Green Party, and now, the Justice Party. However, these parties risk becoming little more than networks of activists or pressure groups on the Democratic Party, and it still remains unclear whether a serious electoral challenge to the Democratic Party is possible. Radical Minds is pleased to air an edited recording of a panel organized by the Platypus Affiliated Society, which investigates several contemporary approaches to electoral politics and draws out the theories that motivate Leftist third parties. The major speakers, Lenny Brody of the Justice Party and Jason Wright of the International Bolshevik Tendency, consider how the historical achievements and failures of third parties bear upon the present.
Aired on April 10th, 2012 on the Radical Minds radio show.