The Young Comrade, the Soc-Dem to Marxist Pipeline, and Göran Therborn’s From Marxism to Post-Marxism?

To the young comrade, yeah, you. To the young comrade who has finally found a social theory, a political frame, a new set of glasses that doesn’t ignore the wretches, the purposefully impoverished, the systematically oppressed. To the young comrade who too many in their times has asked, if we have too many houses why do too many people not have homes? To the young comrade who watched Rachel Maddow convince you in 2015 that morality makes our political landscape great, that a certain Clinton administration would be the answer to all your problems. To the young comrade that lives in a state with police who have not been reformed since their origin as slave catchers.

Here’s to the Soc-Dem to Marxist pipeline. Here’s to the people who start to realize that questioning houselessness isn’t merely an issue of giving that person a dollar when you get off the train, but that our government and capitalist, ruling class, purposefully chooses to keep those people on the streets. Here’s to the people that realize we teach our kids addiction is a disease yet throw a lock and key away when someone gets sick. Here’s to the people who realize your representative will never represent you when their wallets are filled with big corporations that can prove legality in whatever makes them money. Here’s to the people who wonder who killed Martin Luther King Jr.? Who killed Malcolm X? Who killed Fred Hampton? To the people who learn about how our government trained child soldiers in El Salvador to kill their own fathers because of our economic interests. Here’s to the people who dealt with their parents watching CNN droning on how Russia interfered with our election when this country interferes in the democracy of every single other country not already bribed by bread and the need to survive. 


I made my way through Göran Therborn’s From Marxism to Post-Marxism? to the best of my abilities. I took away some more thoughts on my previously formed idea of shapes in Marxism that I plan on sharing on this blog later, but I also confronted other matters of contention. Mostly what I realized is what Marxism has become for me. Therborn wrote:

“Marxism became both the political language and the theoretical perspective for a generation of radicals who found in it the best way to understand the phenomena of colonial wars and underdevelopment, as well as the domestic socio-economic functioning of Western democracy”

(100).

And thus I learned that

“… underdevelopment was not lack of development, but rather something which had developed out of global capitalism…”

(103)

And thus I learned that

“Modernity in the colonial zone has been particularly traumatic, with its fulcrum around the relationship of the conquered to the conquest and to the conqueror”

(105).

The young comrade, the victim (or benefactor) of the soc-dem to Marxist pipeline, me, myself, we learned, we received answers to our questions, our questioning, our tenacious attitude that deep down never accepted weak bandaids. Us. We know gashes and wounds can never be merely covered over and kissed better, we know that no amount of motherly attention will solve our lacerations. We know that what we must do, is discover who is continuously harming us first. 

And so we fight on.

Published by ellakotsen

student at Bryn Mawr College

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