When the Palestinian literary critic and thinker Edward Said read the comic book Palestine (1997)by Joe Sacco, he called it a work of “extraordinary originality” – and one of the best attempts to capture the country’s turmoil. Originally published as a serial, Palestine was one of the first examples of journalism as graphic art. Sacco uses it to present the Palestinians in a more sympathetic light, telling the story of his travels in the country and the people he met there.Read More »
Debali Mookerjea-Leonard’s ‘Literature, Gender and the Trauma of Partition: The Paradox of Independence’ resonatingly treads a line between fact and fiction to show that there was no easy escape for the victims and survivors of the tragedy.
In writing my first novel, whose protagonist is a young refugee woman from East Pakistan, I employed the device of coincidence to achieve a happy ending. Doing so wasn’t a sudden rush on my part to end what had become a protracted writing project but a well thought-out conclusion. It was not to be. When they read it, two of my trusted beta readers quashed it summarily, citing it as lazy and escapist. Even though incredible incidents can happen in real life, one of them advised, in a work of fiction, coincidences are hard to pull off convincingly.Read More »
Dhawale, A., Sainath, P., Deshpande, S., Prashad, V.(2018). The Kisan Long March in Maharashtra. LeftWord Books.
“Land reform is on the agenda of mankind”. So wrote William Hinton over five decades ago, in the preface to his agrarian classic – Fanshen. The events described in The Kisan Long March– 50,000 farmers marching over 200km, in a veritable sea of red – suggest that Hinton’s remark remains as relevant today, as it was in 1966.Read More »
“[R]evolutions are ‘great’ precisely because they…are far ahead of…their time” (36). In the five essays presented inOctober 1917, renowned radical political economist, Samir Amin, pushes far beyond the immediate necessity of emphasizing the historical weight of October, and launches, into an ambitiously broad analysis of the trajectory of twenty first socialism, the Marxism that inspired it, and the lessons that can be drawn for the struggles of the twenty first century.Read More »
IN THIS memoir, Jane Lazarre weaves a complex and fascinating account of her father, the lifelong communist, party organiser and Spanish civil war veteran William Lazarre, aka Bill Lawrence, in the form of an intergenerational dialogue.
Her father came to the US at the beginning of the last century to escape the pogroms in tsarist Russia and, already enthused by the ideals of communism, he joined the US Communist Party and became a full-time organiser. He volunteered for Spain in 1936 and became a commissar with the Lincoln Brigade.Read More »
The authors reject the capitalist view of poverty as the failure of individuals due to their personal attributes or as a correctable defect in modern capitalism. They explore critical pathways of thinking about organization, resistance, rebellion and revolution, offering different views on ways in which the underprivileged are defined, the forms in which they resist and obstacles to popular uprising.
Truscello, M., And Nangwaya, A (eds). Why don’t the poor rise up? Organizing the twenty-first century resistance. Chico: AK Press, 2017. 277pp. ISBN 978184935278-9 paper.
When academics and activists drawn from differing ideological persuasions, and dissimilar social milieu, from around the world, collaborate in the compilation of a book on the topical issue of social uprising in a time of relative calm, it begs the question, what is the state of the social order? Is it less desirable than its opposite? The question, Why don’t the poor rise up?” is addressed by 20 academics, labor organizers, and community activists in a book of the same title, Why Don’t The Poor Rise Up? Organizing The Twenty-First Century Resistance.”
The Great Refusal: Herbert Marcuse and Contemporary Social Movements. Edited by Andrew T. Lamas, Todd Wolfson and Peter N. Funke, with a Foreword by Angela Y. Davis. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2017. 405pp, $44.95, pbk.
We are, the 1960s radical generation, now once more marching, marching, sometimes it seems mostly with the Millennials by our side. And here comes the ghost of Herbert Marcuse, who was so much with us the first time around.