Lessons of the Paris Commune

For our organization-wide reading we are republishing the following article by Leon Trotsky. In it he draws out the significance of the Paris Commune and what lessons can be drawn from the heroic event in which the working class took power into its own hands for the first time in history.

Marx’s Revolution in Philosophy—Reflections on the Theses on Feuerbach

MarxandEngelsFeaturedWe republish here for our organization-wide reading a summary of Marx’s contribution to philosophy by Alan Woods. The article takes up the philosophical questions dealt with in Marx’s Theses on Feuerbach, where he laid out the dialectical relationship between the material world and human consciousness.

If America Should Go Communist

trotsky1938We republish here for our organization-wide reading a short article from 1934 by Leon Trotsky discussing perspectives for the quick development of socialism in the United States. Being far more developed than Russia in 1917, the potential for a society of abundance—free from the scarcity that lead to the rise of Stalinism—is greater in the United States than in any other place on the planet. While this article is quite old, it is far more relevant than at the time of its publication.

In Defense of Marx’s Labor Theory of Value

dollar-billWe publish here an article by Rob Sewell taking up Marx’s labor theory of value for our November/December organization-wide reading. The labor theory of value was correctly arrived at by the most important classical economists, but it wasn't until Marx that the conclusions flowing from it were understood—that capitalism’s contradictions would inevitably lead to crisis after crisis and that the only way to the further development of the productive forces would be through the transition to a socialist economy.

The Workers' State, Thermidor, and Bonapartism

trotsky1938We republish here for our September/October organization-wide reading, a work by Leon Trotsky, The Workers' State, Thermidor, and Bonapartism. First published in 1935, it deals with the class character of the Stalinist bureaucracy and the historical analogies that can be drawn between the rise of the bureaucracy with the Thermidor reaction after the French Revolution that culminated in the rule of Napoleon Bonaparte. While it represented a political counterrevolution, the bureaucracy still ruled over the new economic base, established by the revolution, of the nationalized planned economy. A prelude to Trotsky's classic, Revolution Betrayed, this work is a must-read!