Ecological Civilization, Ecological Revolution

An Ecological Marxist Perspective

John Bellamy Foster

Monthly Review | 2022Volume 74, Number 05 (October 2022)

Aerial photo taken on Sept. 18, 2020 of Dihua, an ancient town in Danfeng County, Shangluo City of northwest China’s Shaanxi Province. Dihua ancient town has attracted many tourists with its well protected ecological environment, rich history and unique folk customs. Source: “China to adhere to green development, advance ecological civilization: position paper,” Xinhua, September 21, 2020.

This is an adapted version of a lecture delivered to the John Cobb Ecological Academy in Claremont, California, on June 24, 2022, on the topic of ecological civilization. It was intended to follow up on the Fifteenth International Conference on Ecological Civilization,” held in Claremont on May 26–27, 2022. The talk, which was delivered to a largely Chinese audience, was followed by an extensive interview conducted by Chinese ecological Marxist scholars, entitled “Why Is the Great Project of Ecological Civilization Specific to China?,” which is being published simultaneously as a Monthly Review Essay at MR Online. Both the lecture and the interview are being co-published by the Poyang Lake Journal in China.

I would like to speak to you today about the connections between ecological civilizationecological Marxism, and ecological revolution, and the ways in which these three concepts, when taken together dialectically, can be seen as pointing to a new revolutionary praxis for the twenty-first century. More concretely, I would like to ask: How are we to understand the origins and historic significance of the concept of ecological civilization? What is its relation to ecological Marxism? And how is all of this connected to the worldwide revolutionary struggle aimed at transcending our current planetary emergency and protecting what Karl Marx called “the chain of human generations,” together with life in general?1

Read More »

Ten Questions About Marx—More Than Twenty Years After Marx’s Ecology

John Bellamy Foster and Roberto Andrés

Monthly Review | 2022Volume 74, Number 04 (September 2022)

Roberto Andrés: I have long wanted to interview you about a book that was decisive in my intellectual formation: Marx’s Ecology. This book was published in 2000 in English and immediately translated into Spanish and inaugurated what has become known as second generation ecosocialism, which recognizes the ecological conception of Karl Marx, unlike the previous generation. However, in the more than twenty years since, Marx’s Ecology not only opened a wide debate but was also the object of multiple criticisms (it could not be otherwise). Later, you and Paul Burkett, author of Marx and Nature, published an anti-critique: Marx and the Earth, where you rigorously answered each of those criticisms. And then Kohei Saito further extended this line of inquiry with Karl Marx’s Ecosocialism. All of this has led me to wonder about the answers you gave in 2000 to ten controversial questions that have puzzled analysts of Marx’s vast theoretical corpus for a long time. Given the debates over the last two decades, would you answer these ten questions the same way you did in 2000 with Marx’s Ecology? I tend to believe that, in general terms, much progress has been made during this time in this line of research. That is why I would like to do a very specific interview with you dealing with these ten controversial questions, some twenty years after Marx’s Ecology.

John Bellamy Foster: I am of course pleased to provide answers to your questions with respect to Marx and my book Marx’s Ecology two decades after its publication. My views have remained generally the same, though they naturally have been refined over the years. Nevertheless, I am glad to offer some clarifications.

Read More »

Studying society for the working class: Marx’s first preface to “Capital”

Derek Ford

Liberation School | July 25, 2022

“Karl Marx, painted portrait,” by thierry ehrmann. Source: Wikimedia.

Introduction

In the preface to the first edition of volume one of Capital, dated July 25, 1867, Marx introduces the book’s “ultimate aim”: “to lay bare the economic law of motion of modern society” [1]. Looking back 155 years later, it’s clear the book not only accomplished that aim but continues to do so today.

In a few short pages, Marx introduces the method he used to study and present his research into the dynamics of capitalism, explains the reasons why he focused on England, distinguishes between modes of production and social formations (and by doing so refutes any accusations of his theory of history as progressing linearly through successive stages), identifies the capacities he’s assuming of the reader, affirms he’s interested in critiquing the structures of capital and not the individuals within it, and explains that the main function of the book is to help our class intervene in the constantly changing capitalist system.

Read More »

Marx’s Capital Lecture 1 Historical Introduction and Overview

Centre for the Study of Social and Global Justice | February 09, 2022

363 views Feb 9, 2022 The Centre for the Study of Social and Global Justice (CSSGJ) is pleased to host a series of public lectures on Volume 1 of Marx’s Capital, given by the political economist and activist Andy Higginbottom. This is the first lecture of the Marx’s Capital Lecture series, held on 7th February 2022.

To sign up for CSSGJ events, please go to our website http://www.cssgj.org

Read More »

Return of the Dialectics of Nature: Marxian Ecology and the Struggle for Freedom as Necessity —A Discussion of the Deutscher Prize 2020

This session is a discussion of the Deutscher Prize Winning Book 2020 ‘The Return of the Dialectics of Nature: Marxian Ecology and the Struggle for Freedom as Necessity’ – John Bellamy Foster.

This is NOT the Deutscher Prize Lecture – it is a discussion of the prize winning book. The lecture can be accessed and downloaded at –

https://cldcnas.synology.me:9887/d/s/…

The Discussants are

John Bellamy Foster (University of Oregon, USA)

Helena Sheehan (Dublin City University, Ireland)

Stefano B. Longo (North Carolina State University, Lund University, Sweden)

Chair: Alfredo Saad Filho.

This session will also announce the 2021 Prize winner. The shortlist is:

Francesca Antonini – Caesarism and Bonapartism in Gramsci: Hegemony and the Crisis of Modernity (Brill)

Himani Bannerji – The Ideological Condition: Selected Essays on History, Race and Gender (Brill)

Maïa Pal – Jurisdictional Accumulation: An Early Modern History of Law, Empires, and Capital (Cambridge)

Panagiotis Sotiris – A Philosophy for Communism: Rethinking Althusser (Brill)

Ronald Grigor Suny – Stalin: Passage to Revolution (Princeton)

Ntina Tzouvala – Capitalism As Civilisation: A History of International Law (Cambridge)

Read More »

Marxism and Political Economy

Disposable time, surplus population, and the limitation of the hours of labour
Tom Walker, Simon Fraser University, Canada

Theorising Residential Capitalism: Land Rent, Capital Accumulation, and Housing Provision
Javier Zacares, University of Durham, UK

The New Scramble for Africa: Land Ownership, Agrarian Change and the Real Subsumption of Africa to Capital
Sébastien Rioux, Université de Montréal, Canada

Central Banks as Hegemonic Apparatuses
Galip Yalman, METU, Turkey

Read More »

HM Online 2021: Marxist Theory and Philosophy

Hikmet Kıvılcımlı’s Contribution to the Marxist Theory of History
Muzaffer Kaya, Ph.D. University of Potsdam, Germany.

Arendt, Marx and the Modern Challenge to Tradition
Dr Michael Lazarus, Monash University, Australia

Marx’s Forgotten Transformation Solution
Bill Jefferies SOAS, UK

This event is co-sponsored by Historical Materialism and Haymarket Books. While all events for HM Online are free to register, the organizers ask comrades who are able to please consider making a donation, which would help enormously in covering the costs of putting together this programme of events. Like all left organisations, HM had a very tough period from the beginning of 2020 and our budgets are very stretched and bank balance is sinking all the time, with very little revenue coming in. If you can make a contribution to help keep us afloat, please don’t hesitate!
——————————————————————————————

Follow us!
Twitter: @haymarketbooks
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/haymarketbooks
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/haymarketbooks

SOURCE: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=blAQbqInL6A

[THIS IS POSTED HERE FOR NON-PROFIT, NON-COMMERCIAL, EDUCATIONAL PURPOSE.]

HM Online 2021: Cultural Resistance Under Post-Human Capitalism

Covid-19 has brought late capitalism’s exterminist impulse into sharp relief. Globally, experiments on the part of both capital and the state — some of which would have been unthinkable before the pandemic — aim to determine just how much of the working-class is necessary and how much of it can be tossed aside. Even states that have intervened strongly in the welfare of their citizenry seem willing to engage in this dark calculus to some degree. The increasing dominance of cybernetic and algorithmic technologies continues to shape and interact with human subjectivity even well short of its elimination. More and more we are forced to reckon with the possibility of a political and cultural landscape of a vicious and reactionary post-humanism.

As others have argued, the only way out is not around, but through; not a rejection of myriad cultural technologies but a reimagination of radical subjectivity and temporalities in relation to them. This panel aims to examine what this means for contemporary strategies of emancipatory cultural resistance. It coincides roughly with the launch of Imago, a new annual journal dedicated to exploring questions of critical irrealism, published by the Locust Arts & Letters Collective. Subjects addressed will include the impact of online life on Brechtian alienation effect, surrealist critique of the currently-very-trendy genres of cyberpunk and synthwave, and how the left should understand the regroupment of the far-right on various online platforms.

Toward a Brechtian Cybernetics
Adam Turl

Androids Leaping: What Were (and Are) Cyberpunk and Synthwave?
Alexander Billet

Slouching Towards Bethlehem (Again): Digital Retrenchment of the US Far Right and Fascists After the January 6th Putsch
Tish Turl

Read More »

HM Online 2021: The Ideological Condition: History, Race and Gender – A discussion with Himani Bannerji

The Ideological Condition: Selected Essays on History, Race and Gender is a reader comprised of many of Himani Bannerji’s English writings over a long period of teaching and research in Canada and India. Bannerji creates an interdisciplinary analytical method and extends the possibilities of historical materialism by predominantly drawing on Marx, Gramsci, and Dorothy Smith. Essays here instantiate Marx’s general proposition that while all ideology is a form of consciousness, all forms of consciousness are not ideological. Applying this insight to issues ranging from patriarchy through race, class, nationalism, liberalism and fascism, Bannerji breaks through East-West binaries, challenging the mystifying approaches to the constitution of the social, and shows that a sustained struggle against ideological thinking is at the heart of a fundamental socialist struggle.

Shortlisted for the Deutscher Memorial Prize 2021 Available from Haymarket Books: https://www.haymarketbooks.org/books/…

Speakers:

Himani Bannerji teaches in the Department of Sociology, York University in Canada. She is also known for her activist work and poetry.

David McNally, Cullen Distinguished Professor of History and Business, university of Houston, Texas, USA. Author of Blood and Money, among other books.

Kanishka Goonewardena, Professor in Departments of Geography and Architecture, University of Toronto, Canada. Co-editor and contributor of Space, Difference and Everyday Life: Reading Henri Lefebvre.

Judith Whitehead, Professor Emeritus, Department of Anthropology and Sociology, Lethbridge, Canada. Author of Development and Dispossession in the Narmada Valley.

Read More »