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On March 12, 2023, for episode 56 of the podcast Sh*t Platypus Says, Platypus Affiliated Society members Pamela C. Nogales C. and Andreas Wintersperger interviewed Spencer A. Leonard about the two volumes of Marx and Engels’s journalism that he has edited and written introductions for: Marx and Engels on Imperialism: Selected Journalism, 1856–62 and Marx and Engels on Bonapartism: Selected Journalism, 1851–59. Both volumes were published in 2023 by Lexington Books. Leonard is a founding member of the Platypus Affiliated Society. He teaches sociology at James Madison University.


Thursdays 6:30–9PM AEDT

The Clyde Hotel - 385 Cardigan Street, Carlton VIC

[time and location subject to change]

On the web: Facebook Event

• required / + recommended readings

Recommended background readings:

+ Chris Cutrone, "On anarchism and Marxism" (2008)
+ Trevor Bark, "Half-time team talk" (response to Cutrone) (2008)
+ Cutrone, "Against dogmatic abstraction" (2010)

Week 1 | Jun. 23, 2022

• Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, What is Property? (1840)
+ Max Stirner, The Ego and Its Own (1845)

Week 2 | Jun. 30, 2022

• Mikhail Bakunin, God and the State (1871)
+ Bakunin, A Critique of the German Social-Democratic Program (1870)
+ Bakunin, Marxism, Freedom and the State (1872)
+ Ferdinand Lassalle, Open letter to the German workers’ movement (1863)

Week 3 | Jul. 7, 2022

• Peter Kropotkin, Anarchist Communism (1909)
+ Kropotkin, “The Russian Revolution and the Soviet Government” (1919)
+ Kropotkin, The Conquest of Bread, especially Chapters 3, 11 and 12 (1906)

Week 4 | Jul. 14, 2022

• Errico Malatesta, Syndicalism and Anarchism (1926)
• Malatesta and Nestor Makhno, About the Platform (1927-29)

Week 5 | Jul. 21, 2022

• Murray Bookchin, Listen, Marxist! (1969)

Additional Resources

Platypus Review

+ Herb Gamberg Anarchism through Bakunin: A Marxist Assessment (PR#64 March 2014)
+ Liam Swenson The Leninist Protests Too Much: A response to Herb Gamberg (PR#65 April 2014)
+ Wayne Price In defense of anarchism: A response to Herb Gamberg (PR#65 April 2014)
+ Herb Gamberg On Anarchism and Marxism: In response to Price and Swenson (PR#66 May 2014)


+ Christoph Lichtenberg, Alex Khasnabish, Chris Parsons, Eva Curry Radical ideologies today: Marxism and anarchism (PR#65 April 2014)

Anarchist Literature

Anarchism in Australia @ Red & Black Notes

Artwork from Clifford Harper

Platypus Frankfurt lädt zum Ferienlesekreis über "Kunst und Politik".

Ort: Zoom, Link:
Zeit: Immer Dienstags 18–21 Uhr
Erster Termin: 23.06.2020

Die Texte werden zu Hause gelesen und beim Lesekreis besprochen. Kein Vorwissen ist nötig. Neue Gesichter sind immer gern gesehen.
● vorausgesetzte Texte / + zusätzlich empfohlene Texte

Vorausgesetzte LektĂĽre:
• Chris Cutrone et al., “The relevance of Critical Theory to art today” (2011)

Woche 1. Nach der Postmoderne: Kunst und Politik? | 23. Juni 2020

• Susan Buck-Morss, Susan Buck-Morss, Response to Visual culture questionnaire (1996)
• Robert Pippin, "On Critical Theory" (2004)

+ Being and becoming (freedom in transformation) / immanent dialectical critique chart of terms

• Chris Cutrone, "The relevance of Critical Theory to art today" (2011)
• Chris Cutrone, "An incomplete project? Art and politics after postmodernism" (2010)

Woche 2. Die Bedeutung von Kunst | 30. Juni 2020

• Immanuel Kant, Vorwort und Einleitung zur Kritik der Urteilskraft (1790)

+ Being and becoming (freedom in transformation) / immanent dialectical critique chart of terms
+ Kant's 3 Critiques
and philosophy

Woche 3. Die Kunst und die Menschheit | 7. Juli 2020

• Friedrich Schiller, Briefe über die ästhetische Erziehung des Menschen (1794)

+ Schiller on aesthetic education (and Nietzsche on art) chart of terms

Woche 4. Moderne Ă„sthetik der Kunst | 14. Juli 2020

• G.W.F. Hegel, Vorlesungen über die Ästhetik, Erster Abschnitt:
"Einleitung" bis (inklusive) "3. Zweck der Kunst" (1835)

Woche 5. Moderne und Modernismus | 21. Juli 2020

• Heinrich Heine, Auszüge aus Der Salon 1 (1831)
• Heinrich Heine, Auszüge aus Der Salon 2 (1843)

+ Baudelaire on the modern / modernity / modernism chart of terms

• Charles Baudelaire, Auszüge aus Pariser Spleen (1867)
• Charles Baudelaire, Auszüge aus Salon 1846 (1846)
• Charles Baudelaire, Auszuüge aus die Blumen des Bösen (1857)
• Charles Baudelaire, Auszüge aus Der Maler des modernen Lebens (1863)

Woche 5.2 Die Kunst und die Revolution [I] | 21. Juli 2020

• Richard Wagner, "Die Kunst und die Revolution" (1849)

Woche 6. Kunst als Rechtfertigung des Lebens? | 28. Juli 2020

• Friedrich Nietzsche, "Die Geburt der Tragödie aus dem Geiste der Musik" (1872, inklusive des "Versuch einer Selbstkritik“ von 1886)

+ Schiller on aesthetic education (and Nietzsche on art) chart of terms

Woche 7. Kunst und Revolution [II] | 11. August 2020

• Walter Benjamin, "Über das mimetische Vermögen" (1934)
• Chris Cutrone, "Trotsky, Benjamin, Adorno and Greenberg's critique of 'revolutionary art' " (2020)
• Leon Trotzki, "Kunst und Revolution. Leserbrief an den New Yorker Partisan Review“ (1939)
• Clement Greenberg, "Avant-garde and kitsch" (1939)

Woche 8. Revolutionäre Kunst? | 18. August 2020

• Walter Benjamin, "Erfahrung und Armut" (1934)
• Walter Benjamin, "Der Autor als Produzent" (1934)
• Jürgen Habermas, "Die Moderne – ein unvollendest Projekt" (1981)

Woche 9. Kunst und Kapitalismus | 25. August 2020

• Walter Benjamin, "Das Kunstwerk im Zeitalter seiner technischen Reproduzierbarkeit" (1936)
• Theodor W. Adorno „an Walter Benjamin“, Brief vom 18. März 1936
• Siegfried Kracauer, „Die Photographie“ (1927)
• Walter Benjamin, „Kleine Geschichte der Photographie" (1931)

Woche 10. Die Notwendigkeit und Unmöglichkeit der Kunst | 01. September 2020

• Theodor W. Adorno, "Jene zwanziger Jahre" (1962)
• Theodor Adorno, Ästhetische Theorie (1970): „Selbstverständlichkeit von Kunst verloren“ (S. 9–11) und „Gesellschaft“ (S. 334–389)
• Stewart Martin, “Critique of relational aesthetics” (2007)
• Stewart Martin, “The absolute artwork meets the absolute commodity” (2007)

Alle pdf-Texte (ohne online-Quellen) in Reihenfolge

Whenever approaching any phenomenon, Adorno’s procedure is one of immanent dialectical critique. The phenomenon is treated as not accidental or arbitrary but as a necessary form of appearance that points beyond itself, indicating conditions of possibility for change. It is a phenomenon of the necessity for change. The conditions of possibility for change indicated by the phenomenon in question are explored immanently, from within. The possibility for change is indicated by a phenomenon’s self-contradictions, which unfold from within itself, from its own movement, and develop from within its historical moment.
If one blows all the smoke away, one is left with the obvious question: Why not Trump? Trump is opposed by virtually the entire mainstream political establishment, Republican and Democrat, and by the entire mainstream news media, conservative and liberal alike. And yet he could win. That says something. It says that there is something there.