Welcome to Marxist Left Review

Marxist Left Review, a new journal published by Socialist Alternative,is launched as the most severe world economic crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s has entered its second phase.

A Marxist critique of the Australian Greens

Over the course of nearly 40 years, the Greens have been transformed from a tiny environmentalist organisation into a sizeable and serious party perceived to be to the left of the ALP. This article will look at the origins of the Greens and the class basis of their politics; examine the demographics of their voters and membership, and comment on their organisational and political dimensions before looking at their current political trajectory.

The Northern Territory Intervention and the liberal defence of racism

The idea that Aboriginal inequality is caused by the racist attitudes of ordinary people is widespread. Yet it was not working-class attitudes to Aborigines that drove the Australian government’s 2007 intervention into Northern Territory Aboriginal communities. Instead, elements of the middle class played a crucial role.

Marx and Engels on women’s and sexual oppression and their legacy

Friedrich Engels published his The Origin of the Family, Private Property and the State in 1884. He argued that women’s oppression arose with the development of classes in society.  Most feminists of the 1960s and 1970s recognised Engels’ work as a key text, whether inclined to agree with or oppose him.  Yet for all the debates about the book, there is very little understanding of the actual content and importance of not just Engels’, but also Marx’s contribution to establishing the basics of a fight for women’s liberation.

The origins of Socialist Alternative: summing up the debate

The need for a socialist workers’ party that could rebuild rank and file union organisation and mount sustained resistance to every ruling class attack could not be more sharply posed. This is a task that Socialist Alternative has dedicated itself to over the last fifteen years. While we are still far from being the mass party we need to be – a party that could intervene in and attempt to lead every struggle by workers and the oppressed – we have, despite the generally difficult political climate, made modest steps forward and are now the largest organisation on the revolutionary left in Australia. This article is an attempt to sum up the lessons of the debates in the International Socialist Tendency (IST) about the assessment of the political situation and perspectives for building revolutionary organisations that led to the formation of Socialist Alternative in 1995.

Marxism and the Arab revolutions

Revolution is back on the agenda. Sandra Bloodworth argues that the Arab revolutions confirm the relevance of Marxism as a guide to the fight for human liberation.

Confronting the Stalinist legacy

One of the magnificent features of the Arab revolutions is the ruthless manner in which they have exposed the dirty, duplicitous, hypocritical, blood-soaked truth about the global political establishment. As the revolutionary wave spread to envelop almost the whole of North Africa and the Middle East, Western politicians, diplomats, university heads, business executives and government bureaucrats squirmed, as evidence of their ties with the despots of the Arab world circulated across the internet.

Islamophobia, secularism and the left

The rise of Islamophobia in the West needs a clear and principled response from the left. Mick Armstrong takes a critical look at the traditions of "secularism" and the failure of even some in the socialist left to oppose anti-Muslim racism.

Does the Australian working class have the power to change society?

Tom Bramble, using a wealth of data, refutes arguments which claim that the Australian working class no longer has the power to challenge capitalist rule.

The ALP: what class of party?

The Labor Party is in crisis. Its branch structures continue to fracture, its active membership continues to shrink, its working class vote continues to decline and year after year the party shifts further to the right. Can it in any sense still be regarded as some form of workers’ party? Ben Hillier argues that the answer is a qualified “yes".

The campaign for equal marriage rights

Louise O’Shea, an activist in Equal Love, argues that by years of steady campaigning,organisations committed to same-sex marriage rights have brought the issue from the margins onto the political agenda. She shows how it became a prominent election issue and is putting pressure on the ALP.

Australian imperialism and the rise of China

Tom Bramble looks at the rise of China and considers the conflicts for Australian imperialism: pulled between making the most of China’s booming growth and remaining loyal to the US, which sees China as a potential threat to their imperialist domination.

The Arab Spring: revolution and counter-revolution

The Arab revolutions continue. Sandra Bloodworth looks at the danger of counter-revolution and discusses the political questions and challenges for the left posed by these momentous events.

Revolutionary strategy and the united front

Rick Kuhn looks at the history of the revolutionary strategy known as the united front, which aims to draw wide layers of workers away from the influence of their reformist leaders and into revolutionary struggle. Rick’s study draws out lessons for socialists from these experiences.

Jim Cairns: the tragedy of looking to parliament for fundamental change

Jim Cairns was a sincere socialist. He was one of the most prominent campaigners against the Vietnam War in the 1960s and 70s. Mick Armstrong shows that, despite being far to the left of any of today’s politicians, Labor or Green, Cairns could not use parliament to bring about fundamental change as he hoped.

Overpopulation or overblown lies?

Allyson Hose exposes the racist core of arguments which blame “overpopulation” for environmental crisis and exposes the population panic as based on lies. She shows that the world could support many more billions of people and lays the blame for environmental degradation on the relentless drive for profit at the heart of capitalism.

Dealing with climate change

Liz Ross shows that Labor’s carbon tax is just another plank in the capitalists’ neoliberal agenda to make workers pay for their crisis. Support by environment groups and some on the left for such anti-working class policies is moving the political climate to the right. The fight to deal with climate change needs to be part of a wider struggle to defend workers’ living standards.

Who is to blame for racism in Australia?

Tess Lee Ack takes on the common assumption that racism among workers drives government policies and shows who actually promotes it.

Labor, Greens and independents in government

Diane Fieldes looks at the dismal experience of the Gillard government. She argues that the formation of a minority Labor government with the backing of the Greens and populist independents did not create an opportunity for the left as many thought it would in 2010.

The rise and fall of the ALP left in Victoria and NSW

Corey Oakley looks at the rise and fall of the post-war ALP left in Victoria and NSW in the post-war period, and examines the reasons why the once radical Labor left degenerated to the sorry state it is in today.

Is there a labour aristocracy in Australia?

Tom Bramble debunks the theory that there is an aristocracy of labour in Australia.

Disturbing the peace: riots and the working class

Mick Armstrong argues that socialists should recognise riots as an important part of working class struggle and shows the role they have often played in Australia.

Still fighting for equal pay

Cecilia Judge and Adam Bottomley outline how Australian Services Union members won what has been described as the most significant victory for gender pay equity since the 1970s.

A note to our readers

Marxist Left Review editor Sandra Bloodworth explains how MLR is changing.

What kind of organisation do socialists need?

Corey Oakley looks at the discussions about socialist organisation that have been thrown up by unity talks on the Australian left.

Lenin vs "Leninism"

Sandra Bloodworth attacks the persistent myths and misconceptions about "Leninism with an examination of Lenin's writings and activities as he struggled to build a revolutionary party.

An international balance sheet of the "broad party" strategy

John Percy looks at the "broad party" experience.

Fighting anti-union laws: the Clarrie O'Shea strikes

Katie Wood looks at the 1969 Clarrie O'Shea strike.

Japan: politics and struggle after the tsunami

Dougal McNeill looks at the changing political situation in Japan in the wake of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami.

Five hundred lashes and double irons: the origins of Australian capitalism

Ben Hillier and Tom O'Lincoln chart the origins and development of capitalism in Australia.

Socialist trade union strategy in the Bolshevik era

In the aftermath of the 1917 Russian Revolution, the newly formed Communist International  attempted to develop a revolutionary approach to union work in the West. Mick Armstrong looks at the application of that strategy in Australia and Britain.

Revolutionary unity to meet the capitalist crisis

A response from Socialist Alliance to "What kind of organisation do socialists need?" published in the last issue of Marxist Left Review.

The impact of women's changing role in the workplace

Diane Fieldes looks at the impact on the family of women's increased participation in the paid workforce.

The neoliberal transformation of higher education

Rebecca Barrigos explains how both the rise of the modern higher education system and the erosion of free education under the impact of neoliberalism have served capitalism.

Australian imperialism in the Cold War

Tom O'Lincoln argues that Australia's interventions in Asia after World War II were the hallmark of a developing imperialist country determined to dominate the surrounding region.

Why the Australian state supports Israel so stridently

Vashti Kenway looks at why Australia is so close to Israel.

Coercion, consent and Australian policing

Roz Ward argues that "community policing" is just another form of coercion which does nothing to halt the brutalit of state police forces.

Marxism and women's liberation

Louise O’Shea analyses the position of women today. Engaging with recent feminist and Marxist discussions of women’s oppression argues that Marxism offers the only satisfactory theory and strategy for women’s liberation.

Indonesia: trade unions and the regeneration of radical politics

Max Lane provides an overview of the "rebirth" of a powerful working class movement and the challenges posed for emerging forces of the Indonesian Marxist left.

Forgotten women rebels of Eureka

Sandra Bloodworth reviews a new book by Clare Wright, Forgotten Rebels of Eureka. The historical material in Wright’s book not only confronts the masculinist narrative of Eureka which has dominated Australian historiography, but also confirms some key Marxist arguments about women and social struggles.

Trotsky's transitional program: its uses and abuses

Allen Myers cuts through the debate on the so-called transitional method to expose how this important Marxist concept has been both used and abused by various currents on the left.

A critique of the writings of Murray Smith on broad left parties

Mick Armstrong offers a critical assessment of Murray Smith’s approach to broad left parties – one of the key debates on the socialist left internationally over the last fifteen years.

Australian capitalism in the neoliberal age

With a wealth of empirical data, Tom Bramble explains how neoliberal policies at the centre of both major parties’ agendas have served the capitalist class well.

Lenin and a theory of revolution for the West

Sandra Bloodworth argues that Lenin and the other great revolutionaries of the early twentieth century provide us with a theory of revolution for advanced democracies.

Georg Lukács’s theory of revolution

Daniel Lopez argues that Georg Lukács made an indispensible contribution to a revolutionary Marxist understanding of revolution, consciousness, organisation and dialectics. This amounts to a philosophical defence of Lenin's theory and practice.

Lenin's theory of imperialism: a defence of its relevance in the 21st century

Sam King argues for a literalist interpretation of Lenin's work that denies the status of China as a growing imperial power.

Defying the stereotypes: women textile workers in Bangladesh

Liz Ross shows that, in spite of brutal exploitation, women textile and garment workers from the industrial revolution in nineteenth century Britain to Bangladesh today have defied the stereotype of passive victims.

Student unions: a history of attacks and resistance

Rebecca Barrigos looks at the frequent government attacks on student unions since the 1970s.

Year one of the Abbott government

Louise O’Shea explains why the Abbott government is the most unpopular first term government in Australian history.

'The Southern Tree of Liberty' explained

Terry Irving’s book The Southern Tree of Liberty celebrates working people, their grievances, their organisations and the struggle for democracy before 1856 as revealed by working class newspapers, many never consulted by historians before.

Understanding imperialism: a reply to Sam King

Patrick Weiniger replies to Sam King’s article on imperialism in Marxist Left Review 8.

US imperialism and the war for the Middle East

Corey Oakley analyses the counter-revolutions which have swept across the Arab world since the mass revolts of 2011.

The hidden history of Islamophobia

Vashti Kenway argues that Australia has a long history of discrimination against Muslims, culminating in the rabid Islamophobia promoted by both Liberal and Labor governments to justify Australia’s involvement in a series of wars in the Middle East.

How World War One led to class war

Mick Armstrong explores how World War I led to enormous class struggles in Australia, and led to a split in the Labor party, a general strike and a political radicalisation that shaped the next decades of working class politics.

Why you should read 'This Earth of Mankind'

Pramoedya Ananta Toer’s historical novel Bumi Manusia (This Earth of Mankind) was published by Penguin in 1983.  Max Lane, argues it should be read by anyone wanting to understand the history of Indonesia in the late twentieth century.

The roots of sexual violence

Sandra Bloodworth examines the widespread sexual violence in our society: from intimate partner abuse, to paedophile priests, to attacks on the elderly, the disabled, the mentally ill and children in institutions which supposedly “care” for the oppressed and vulnerable.

Australian unions and the fight for equal pay for women

Katie Wood draws together a rich history of working class struggle for equal pay for women. Unlike some historians who present equal pay as a "feminist" issue won by women's mobilisations against men's resistance, she shows that it has been a union issue since the nineteenth century.

Radical Chinese labour in Australian history

Liam Ward has assembled a remarkable history of struggle by Chinese workers in Australia which has mostly been ignored or misrepresented.

Indonesian independence and Australian imperialism

Sam Pietsch looks at the response of Australian governments, both Liberal and Labor, to the challenge of Indonesian independence in what they regard as their "backyard".

The broad left party question after Syriza

Mick Armstrong revisits the question of broad left parties to draw some conclusions after the experience of Syriza in Greece.

Podemos and left populism

Omar Hassan analyses why the promise of a radical, democratic alternative to bourgeois parliamentary politics has evolved into a hierarchical party which has abandoned any serious pretence of fighting austerity even before being tested in government.

Marxism and the natural world

There is a logic inherent in the humanism of Marxism that generates an overarching commitment to environmental conservation, writes Michael Kandelaars.

Ordering Australian capitalism: property, fetishism, debt and social order

Ben Hillier shows how the economic ordering of Australian capitalism helps consolidate bourgeois hegemony.

Cape York: a history of Aboriginal dispossession and resistance

Rebecca Barrigos brings together research by social and oral historians who have recorded a terrible history of Aboriginal oppression in Weipa, Aurukun and Mapoon on Cape York Peninsula.

How we stopped Pauline Hanson last time

Tess Lee Ack analyses the phenomenon of Pauline Hanson in the 1990s: her support base, how media promotion boosted her profile, and how she was stopped the last time around.

Mining Australian capitalism: industry in the global division of labour

Ben Hillier outlines the role of the mining industry in the development of the Australian economy, situating the latter in the global division of labour, and outlines the challenges facing the Australian ruling class in the twenty-first century.

Marx and the state: the politics of philosophy

Sadia Schneider on Marx's theory of the state.

Nestor Makhno: the failure of anarchism

Mick Armstrong dismantles the romanticism surrounding Makhno in some anarchist circles today with a study of his activity during the Russian Civil War.

Daniel Bensaïd and “the last generation of October”

Darren Roso on the political activity and theoretical concerns of an important figure on the French far left from the mid-1960s until his death in January 2010.

The 1968-9 Pakistan Revolution: a students’ and workers’ popular uprising

The images of the 1960s which dominate in Australia are those from the Western countries. Justen Bellingham’s account of the 1968-69 uprising in Pakistan is an important corrective to the Eurocentric view of the upheavals of the time.

British Labour, Australian Labor: splits and insurgencies

In the context of the rise of Jeremy Corbyn, Tom Bramble compares the history of splits and struggles in the Australian Labor Party with those of its British counterpart.

Understanding Hansonism

Ben Reid offers a detailed study of where and why support for Pauline Hanson is strongest.

The origins of the criminal Assad dynasty

Omar Hassan confronts the myth that the Assad dynasty in Syria was ever socialist or anti-imperialist.

When the Australian ruling class embraced fascism

Rather than a welcoming, multicultural society, Australia has a menacing history of serious fascist organisations involving figures treated with respect in our history books, as Louise O'Shea explains.

Barbed wire in the shadows: Australia’s concentration camps

Vashti Kenway challenges the idea that the camps on Manus Island and Nauru are a departure from the norm in Australia, examining the use of concentration camps in Australia from the earliest days of invasion.

Review: Alan Shandro, Lenin and the Logic of Hegemony

Viktoria Ivanova reviews the book Lenin: The Logic of Hegemony, a contribution to recent debates about Lenin by Alan Shandro.

Russia 1917: gender, class and the Bolsheviks

Sandra Bloodworth looks at the impact of identity politics on some of the best feminist and social historians of the Russian revolution.

Between Como and confinement: Gramsci’s early Leninism

Rjurik Davidson, winner of the Ditmar Award, author of Unwrapped Sky, The Stars Askew and other fiction, examines Antonio Gramsci’s political practice in his early years.

US vs Free Syrian Army vs Jabhat al-Nusra (and ISIS): History of a hidden three-way conflict

Michael Karadjis answer the “comic-book view widely expressed in tabloid journals of the mainstream, left and right", that alleges the Syrian rebellion against the dictatorship of Bashar Assad is a conspiracy of incompatible forces.

Kautsky: the abyss beyond parliament

Darren Roso contributes to debates about what kind of parties the revolutionary left needs and the role of Karl Kautsky, the leading theorist of the Second International before World War I.

Foucault’s 'History of Sexuality': A Marxist engagement

Jordan Humphreys argues that Foucault’s explanation of sexuality under capitalism can be incorporated into a Marxist understanding of sexuality and serve to clarify and enrich it.

Review – 'Hezbollah: The political economy of Lebanon’s party of god', by Joseph Daher

Joseph Daher's book is a breath of fresh air and provides a detailed picture of the most important party in Lebanese politics, says Omar Hassan.

Our unions in crisis: how did it come to this?

Tom Bramble, drawing on decades of research and active involvement in the labour movement, argues that 35 years of passivity and class collaboration rather than an emphasis on militant, class struggle unionism is the core reason our unions are in crisis.

Why Queensland is different

Rebecca Barrigos digs into the history of economic development, ruling class strategies and the labour movement of Queensland to explain why the state has its own distinct political traditions.

The lost workers' revolution: Finland 1917-18

Duncan Hart contributes to an ongoing debate on the international left about the significance of the little known revolution in Finland in 1917-1918.

Commodity exchange is nine-tenths of the law: the life and work of a Bolshevik jurist

Justen Bellingham paints a picture of the life, times and work of the Bolshevik jurist Evgeny Pashukanis

Totality and oppression: A reply to “Against reductionism: Marxism and oppression"

Daniel Lopez responds to Sarah Garnham's article about Marxism and Oppression, drawing out some methodological disagreements for further discussion.

The crisis in neoliberalism and its ramifications

Tom Bramble discusses the multifaceted world crisis that exploded in 2008 following decades of neoliberalism.

Against reductionism: Marxism and oppression

Sarah Garnham critically examines theories on the left that have emerged in response to identity politics.

The siege and resistance in Gaza: Interview with Toufic Haddad

Palestinian intellectual and author Toufic Haddad speaks about the state of Palestinian politics in the context of an inspiring new round of popular resistance.

The Trump presidency, US imperialism and the future of the neoliberal order

Tom Bramble analyses the changing dynamics of the Trump presidency.

The origins of women’s oppression – a defence of Engels and a new departure

Sandra Bloodworth revisits Engels’ arguments about the origin of women’s oppression.

Duterte and the prospects for struggle in the Philippines

Ben Reid draws on his extensive research into the history, economics and politics of the Philippines to explain the election of President Rodrigo Duterte in 2016 and its consequences for the working class and the left.

Marx at 200: reflections on his life and work

Michael Lazarus sketches a portrait of Marx’s life 200 years after his birth.

Review: 'On New Terrain', by Kim Moody

Kyla Cassells reviews an important new book by American Marxist Kim Moody which details both the substantial restructuring of capital andlabour through the neoliberal era, and the opportunities available for a new generation of socialist and union activists to rebuild a working class left.

Police state: The politics of law and order

Tom Bramble analyses the factors driving the terrifying growth of the police state in Australia.

The political economy of immigration to Australia

Jordan Humphreys explores the nature of immigration to Australia. By highlighting its importance to ruling class strategies for economic growth he explains how and why the numbers and origins of immigrants have changed over time.

The social construction of sectarianism in the Middle East

Omar Hassan outlines a materialist explanation of sectarian conflict in the Middle East, arguing that true social liberation is bound up with the abolition of capitalism in the region.

The SWAG years: Revolutionary organising in 1970s Australia

Tess Lee Ack draws together anecdotes and lessons from her involvement in the founding years of international socialism of 1970s Australia, from which Socialist Alternative was formed in 1995.

Review: Genocide in the Kimberley

Alexis Vassiley reviews an excellent new book describing the brutal policing of Indigenous peoples in the Kimberley in the late 19th century.

Review: The making of the Australian working class

Diane Fieldes reviews a fascinating new work that documents the early formation of working class consciousness in Australia.

ریشه‌های سرکوب زنان / ترجمه‌ی حسین رحمتی (Farsi: Origins of women's oppression)

Sandra Bloodworth revisits Engels’ arguments about the origin of women’s oppression. Translated by Hossein Rahmati.

Πολιορκία και αντίσταση στη Γάζα (Greek: Siege and resistance in Gaza)

Palestinian intellectual and author Toufic Haddad speaks about the state of Palestinian politics in the context of an inspiring new round of popular resistance. Translated by Panos Petrou.

Le origini criminali della dinastia Assad (Italian: Origins of the criminal Assad dynasty)

Omar Hassan affronta il mito secondo cui la dinastia Assad in Siria fu sempre socialista o antimperialista. Translated by Ruggero Rogoni.

A Podemos és a baloldali populizmus (Hungarian: Podemos and the myth of left populism)

Omar Hassan analyses why the promise of a radical, democratic alternative to bourgeois parliamentary politics has evolved into a hierarchical party which has abandoned any serious pretence of fighting austerity even before being tested in government. Translated by Kristóf Nagy.

Revisiting the roots of anti-Chinese racism

Australia and the US have initiated a new cold war with China. In this timely piece, Liam Ward explores the sordid history of anti-Chinese racism in Australia.

The 2019 federal election: Why did Labor lose and what next?

Tom Bramble surveys the election results and puts forward an explanation for Labor's surprising defeat that rests on the party's long-term shift to the right.

Launching Victorian Socialists: An anti-capitalist electoral alliance

Liz Walsh reflects on the experience of launching the Victorian Socialists.

Learning from disaster: The Workers' Party and the left in Brazil

Mick Armstrong critically assesses the experience of the Workers' Party, concluding that a far more independent approach was required by revolutionaries who participated.

Marxism and state theory

In this fascinating lecture given just a few years before he died, the late Colin Barker makes the case for a revolutionary overthrow of the bourgeois state and for further Marxist theorising about its complex dynamics.

William Ferguson: The life of an Aboriginal rebel

Gavin Stanbrook and Diane Fieldes celebrate the life of a pioneering Indigenous activist and trade unionist.

Review: Bhaskar Sunkara's Socialist Manifesto

As an emerging American left struggles with powerful strategic challenges, Daniel Taylor argues that this new book by the publisher of Jacobin promotes a distorted vision of the history of the socialist movement, leading to fundamentally conservative conclusions.

Review: How labour introduced neoliberalism

Stephanie Price reviews this excellent new book which documents in great detail the means by which unions and the ALP sold a corporatist version of neoliberalism to the working class.

Marxism and post-colonial theory

Sagar Sanyal argues that post-colonial theory is an inadequate theoretical and political response to the horrors of colonialism.

Review: Karl Marx and the birth of modern society

Darren Roso reviews the first volume of a sweeping new biography of Marx's life.

Gilbert Achcar on the undying revolutions in the Middle East and North Africa

In this wide-ranging interview, Gilbert Achcar explores the issues raised by the inspirational return of revolution to the Middle East and North Africa.

Gilbert Achcar sobre as revoluções infindáveis no Oriente Médio e no Norte da África (Portuguese: Gilbert Achcar on the undying revolutions in the Middle East and North Africa)

Nesta ampla entrevista, Gilbert Achcar explora as questões levantadas pelo retorno inspirador da revolução para o Oriente Médio e o Norte da África. Translated by Left on the Move.

Gilbert Achcar: Sur les révolutions «permanentes» au Moyen-Orient et en Afrique du Nord (French: Gilbert Achcar on the undying revolutions in the Middle East and North Africa)

Dans cette large interview, Gilbert Achcar explore les questions soulevées par le retour inspirant de la révolution au Moyen-Orient et en Afrique du Nord. Translated by A l’Encontre.

Gilbert Achcar: Sulle rivoluzioni in Medioriente e Nord Africa (Italian: Gilbert Achcar on the undying revolutions in the Middle East and North Africa)

In questa intervista ad ampio raggio, Gilbert Achcar esplora le questioni sollevate dal ritorno ispiratore della rivoluzione in Medio Oriente e Nord Africa. Translated by rproject.it.

Resisting barbarism: Contours of the global rebellion

Omar Hassan surveys world politics at the turn of the decade, with a focus on the exhilarating return of mass revolutionary struggle.

Is the world economy on the verge of a new recession?

Tom Bramble draws a snapshot of a stuttering world economy facing multiple constraints on future growth.

From revolutionary possibility to fascist defeat: The French Popular Front of 1936-38

Sandra Bloodworth draws on the French experience to refute reformist calls for a revival of Popular Front strategies.

We’ve been down this road before: Jesse Jackson, the Democrats and the left

Nick Everett re-examines the Jesse Jackson experience, in the process casting light on debates regarding the candidature of Bernie Sanders.

New movement, new debates: The contested politics of climate change 

Sarah Garnham assesses the new climate movement and makes a case for a revolutionary perspective.

Fuelled by coal: Piercing the mirage of a sustainable capitalist Australia

Catarina Da Silva looks at the economic roots of Australia's bipartisan support for the fossil fuels industry, arguing that a timely transition is impossible within capitalism.

Isabelle Garo on Marx’s strategic thought and the spirit of revolt

Isabelle Garo makes the case for a dynamic application of Marx's method to today's political problems via a critique of Alain Badiou and Laclau and Mouffe.

Review: Workers’ anti-war resistance in Japan

Shomi Yoon reviews a new work on the rich history of working class anti-war activism in Japan during World War 2.

Review: The politics of the Indonesian union movement

Ben Reid reviews a newly published work on Indonesia's modern trade union movement.

Συνέντευξη του Ζιλμπέρ Ασκάρ: Η επιστροφή των αραβικών εξεγέρσεων (Greek: Gilbert Achcar on the undying revolutions in the Middle East and North Africa)

In this wide-ranging interview, Gilbert Achcar explores the issues raised by the inspirational return of revolution to the Middle East and North Africa. Translated by Panos Petrou for rproject.rg.

China: Behind the massacre

David Lockwood analyses the social, political and economic factors that precipitated the heroic Tiananmen Square movement.

Croatian nationalism

Robert Bollard looks at the history of the crisis in former Yugoslavia.

The making of Labor

Mick Armstrong reviews The Making of the Labor Party in New South Wales 1880-1900 , a text which challenges the standard assumptions of most labour historians about the origins of the ALP.

Editorial (SR Vol 2)

Sandra Bloodworth explains the rationale for establishing the Socialist Review as a twice-yearly journal.

The poverty of patriarchy theory

In this important piece, Sandra Bloodworth critiques feminist theories of women's oppression, focusing

Dinky-di domination: Australian imperialism and the South Pacific

David Glanz documents the sordid history of Australian imperialism in the South Pacific.

The Industrial Workers of the World in Australia

In this fascinating piece, Mick Armstrong explores the politics of the heroic Industrial Workers of the World, Australia's first mass revolutionary working class movement.

The utopian fantasy of post-fordism

Tom Bramble assesses and rejects the argument that the end of 'fordism' means the end of working class power.

Mariátegui: A South American revolutionary

Tom O'Lincoln examines the politics of an influential Latin American revolutionary, Jose Mariátegui.

Reading on Eastern Europe

Tess Lee Ack surveys contemporary literature that can assist readers to understand the fall of the Berlin Wall and its broader significance.

Editorial (SR Vol 3)

Sandra Bloodworth introduces the contents of the third issue of the journal.

Australian perceptions of Japan: The history of a racist phobia

Phil Griffiths explores the origins and ongoing realities of anti-Japanese bigotry in Australia.

Post-structuralism: A marxist alternative

In part one of a two-part series, Tony Sullivan draws on Hegel and Lukacs to defend the crucial concepts of historical materialism, labour and truth against the post-structuralists.

Stalin’s industrialisation and the myth of the planned economy

Anne Picot debunks the commonly held idea that the USSR was an example of a planned economy.

Nestor Makhno: the failure of anarchism (old)

Mick Armstrong dismantles the romanticism surrounding Makhno with a study of his activity during the Russian Civil War.

Marx and the communal village

David Glanz responds critically to Tom O'Lincoln's piece on Mariategui in the previous edition of the Socialist Review.

Iran: Rebellion and revolt at the heart of the republic

In this fascinating survey of politics in Iran, Shiva Tabari and Darren Roso put forward a revolutionary perspective for class struggle and socialist organising in a highly charged and challenging situation.

Editorial (SR Vol 4)

Sandra Bloodworth introduces the contents of the fourth issue of the journal.

Imperialism in the nineties

Diane Fields analyses the new contours of imperialism after the fall of the USSR.

The new Australian militarism

Tom O'Lincoln surveys the history of Australian imperialism, arguing that Australia has independent reasons for maintaining the US alliance, which it uses to dominate and exploit peoples across our region.

The Gulf War, Israel and the Palestinians

In this fascinating piece, Janey Stone surveys the response of Israelis and Palestinians to the first Gulf war, and how it set the scene for the coming Oslo accords.

Nationalism and revolution in the Arab world

Sandra Bloodworth critiques the failures of Arab nationalism, putting a case for a socialist strategy for working class self-emancipation in the region.

Australia 1917: From world war to class war

Mick Armstrong looks at the impact of World War I on the class struggle in Australia.

Vietnam: How we won last time

Anne Picot provides a history of the Australian anti-war movement of the 1960s.

Gulf War: Lessons of the movement

David Glanz summarises the debates in the movement against the first Gulf War.

The Marxist tradition and women's liberation

In an important article later republished as a pamphlet, Tess Lee Ack outlines a marxist theory of women's oppression and a strategy for liberation

‘Conventional capitalism is dying’: COVID-19, recession and the return of the state

Jordan Humphreys argues that the neoliberal model is history, based on the dramatic policies implemented by governments across the world in response to the health and economic crises triggered by the pandemic.

Editorial (SR Vol 5)

Sandra Bloodworth introduces the contents of the fourth issue of the journal.

Rape, sexual violence and capitalism

In this groundbreaking piece, Sandra Bloodworth critiques bourgeois feminist approaches to understanding and combating rape and sexual violence.

The Left and Gorbachev

Marxist historian Robert Bollard surveys a range of responses to Mikhail Gorbachev on the broad left, and finds them wanting.

Poststructuralism: A Marxist alternative – part two

In part two of this series on poststructuralism, Tony Sullivan critiques the ideas of Nietzsche, Foucault and Derrida, putting forward alternative views of power and social control.

The Australian economy in the 1980s

Tony Belcher examines the Australian economy during the 1980s, arguing that the Australian capitalism was in a weak position going forward.

The rise and fall of Gough Whitlam

Tom O'Lincoln recounts the rise and fall of Australia's last reforming government, finding that the myths of Whitlam's radical policies do not reflect the more pragmatic reality.

The Accord and the state of working class organisation

Tom Bramble reviews the weakened state of workers' organisations in Australia after a decade of the Accord.

Choosing between life and Capital in Latin America: Interview with Jeffery R. Webber

Róbert Nárai speaks to Jeffrey R. Webber on how the unfolding health crisis in Latin America is reshaping politics across the region. (This interview was conducted on 15 May 2020. In the meantime, figures for deaths and infections in Latin America have increased significantly.)

On unfamiliar and dangerous terrain: American workers begin the fightback

Veteran socialist Dan La Botz surveys the state of workers' organisations and politics in the US, and finds some signs of hope as a new generation begins to organise against economic enmiseration, a health crisis and racism.

The real iron ladies: Women in the 1984/85 British miners' strike

In this wonderful piece, Janey Stone draws upon the outpouring of articles, pamphlets, books, songs and poems produced by participants and supporters, many of which are completely forgotten now, to explore the role of women in the British Miners' Strike of 1984/85.

The NSW BLF: The battle to tame the concrete jungle

Mick Armstrong recounts the rise and fall of the NSW Builders Labourers’ Federation, and assesses the strengths and weaknesses of the radical left that turned the union into one of the most impressive examples of socialist unionism in history.

NTEU Fightback: Rank and file rebellion in a most unlikely union

Diane Fieldes and Jordan Humphreys look at how rank and file higher education workers rebelled against attempts by both university managements and their own union to impose job losses and attacks on their wages and conditions in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Comintern’s encounter with syndicalism

Ian Birchall examines how the Communist International engaged with syndicalists in an attempt to build an revolutionary working-class movement in the wake of the Russian Revolution.

The freedom to be: Marxism, gender oppression and the struggle for trans liberation

April Holcombe writes an extended review of Laura Miles, “Transgender Resistance: Socialism and the fight for trans liberation”, Bookmarks 2020.

Review: Resistance to the Accord

Jack Crawford reviews Liz Ross’ new book about workers’ resistance to the Prices and Incomes Accord.

Review: The robbery of nature

Kate Doherty reviews an important new book on the ecological crisis and its roots in capitalism.

Review: Occupation and resistance in West Papua

Sam Pietsch reviews an account of the struggle for independence in West Papua, and the history of Indonesia’s occupation.

Review: A Jewish Communist in Weimar Germany

Darren Roso reviews a new biography of Werner Scholem, a leading figure in the ultra-left faction of the German Communist Party during the tumultuous Weimar republic.

Pandemic politics: 2020 in hindsight, and a perspective on 2021

Omar Hassan analyses the economic, political and social dynamics unleashed by the pandemic.

Economic crises are unavoidable under capitalism

Rick Kuhn explores the debates about crisis theory among Marxist economists, focusing in particular on the work of Henryk Grossman.

Between syndicalism and reformism: Founding the Communist Party of Australia

Mick Armstrong surveys the many debates that emerged during the founding of the CPA, drawing out lessons for contemporary revolutionaries.

Celebrating the Paris Commune of 1871: “Glorious harbinger of a new society”

Marxist historian Sandra Bloodworth commemorates the 150th anniversary of the Commune, recounting the breathtaking events and providing an assessment of their ongoing political significance.

Reds at the blackboard: Militancy in the teacher unions

Tess Lee Ack revisits some highlights of militant struggles by teacher unions in Australia.

From rising tide to Govett's Leap: The socialist life of Gordon Childe

Terry Irving looks at the life of Vere Gordon Childe, and explores the reasons for his suicide.

Capitalism, colonialism and class: A Marxist explanation of Indigenous oppression today

Jordan Humphreys offers a Marxist explanation of Indigenous oppression today.

Review: The real history of WWI

Ryan Stanton reviews Alan Wood's recent book, a Marxist analysis of World War I.

Review: Gordon Childe and the fatal lure of politics

Liz Ross reviews Terry Irving's new book on the life and thought of Vere Gordon Childe.

Review: Radical Australian trade unionism

Diane Fieldes reviews Sam Oldham's book about radical Australian trade unionism in the 1970s.

Review: The making of Australia's security state

Emma Norton reviews Brian Toohey's book about the making of Australia’s security state.

Review: Victor Serge's final words

Ian Birchall reviews the final Notebooks of Victor Serge, written between 1936 and 1947.

در فاصله‌ی کومو و زندان: لنینیسم اولیه‌ی گرامشی (Farsi: Between Como and confinement: Gramsci’s early Leninism)

"Rjurik Davidson, winner of the Ditmar Award, author of Unwrapped Sky, The Stars Askew and other fiction, examines Antonio Gramsci’s political practice in his early years."

Τιμώντας την Παρισινή Κομμούνα του 1871: «Ένδοξος προάγγελος της νέας κοινωνίας» (Greek: Celebrating the Paris Commune of 1871)

Marxist historian Sandra Bloodworth commemorates the 150th anniversary of the Commune, retelling the breathtaking events as well as providing an assessment of their political significance.

Diverging destinies in a global crisis

Omar Hassan assesses the uneven social and political impact of the pandemic, and presents some explanations for the faster than expected economic recovery.

Biden's plan for the US Empire

Tom Bramble analyses the approach the Biden administration is taking to the new cold war between the US and China.

The failure of identity politics: A Marxist analysis

Sarah Garnham presents a wide-ranging critique of identity politics and its toxic impact on the fight against oppression.

Trotsky and the early years of the French Communist Party

Darren Roso explores the foundation of the French Communist Party, outlining Trotsky's political approach to winning over leading syndicalists to the Marxist movement.

The Italian left and the factory councils: 1919-1920

Luca Tavan reexamines the revolutionary upsurge in Italy following WW1, drawing out strategic errors made by Gramsci and the leadership of the Italian Communist Party.

Aboriginal unionists in the 1890s shearers' strikes: A forgotten history

Jordan Humphreys excavates the history of the early workers' movement and finds substantial evidence for Aboriginal involvement in the famous shearers' strikes and that the AWU made real efforts to support their struggles.

Review: Remembering the 1946 Pilbara Aboriginal Pastoral Workers' Strike

Nick Everett reviews a recent book documenting an inspiring history of Indigenous class struggle.

Review: Lenin Embalmed

Sadia Schneider reviews a new collection of essays on the application of Lenin's ideas to the contemporary politics.

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