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Karl Marx’s Writings on Alienation

“The realm of freedom really begins only where labor determined by necessity and external expediency ends; it lies by its very nature beyond the sphere of material production proper. Just as the savage must wrestle with nature to satisfy his needs, to maintain and reproduce his life, so must civilized man, and he must do so in all forms of society and under all possible modes of production. This realm of natural necessity expands with his development, because his needs do too; but the productive forces to satisfy these expand at the same time. Freedom, in this sphere, can consist only in this, that socialized man, the associated producers, govern the human metabolism with nature in a rational way, bringing it under their collective control instead of being dominated by it as a blind power; accomplishing it with the least expenditure of energy and in conditions most worthy and appropriate for their human nature. But this always remains a realm of necessity. The true realm of freedom, the development of human powers as an end in itself, begins beyond it, though it can only flourish with this realm of necessity as its basis. The reduction of the working day is the basic prerequisite.” —Karl Marx, Capital: A Critique of Political Economy, Volume Three

The postcapitalist system of production, together with scientific–technological progress and a consequent reduction of the working day, creates the possibility for a new social formation in which the coercive, alienated labor imposed by capital and subject to its laws is gradually replaced with conscious, creative activity beyond the yoke of necessity, and in which complete social relations take the place of random, undifferentiated exchange dictated by the laws of commodities and money. It is no longer the realm of freedom for capital but the realm of genuine human freedom.
—Marcello Musto, Introduction to Karl Marx’s Writings on Alienation

Marcello Musto is a professor of Sociology at York University (Toronto, Canada) and is acknowledged globally as one of the authors who has made significant contributions to the revival of Marx studies over the last decade. His major writings comprise Another Marx: Early Manuscripts to the International (Bloomsbury, 2018); and The Last Years of Karl Marx: An Intellectual Biography (Stanford, 2020). Among his edited books there are Workers Unite! The International 150 Years Later (Bloomsbury, 2014); Marx’s Capital after 150 Years: Critique and Alternative to Capitalism, (Routledge, 2019); and The Marx Revival: Key Concepts and New Interpretations (Cambridge, 2020). His writings are available at  www.marcellomusto.org and have been published in 25 languages.

MICHAEL HARDT is a professor of Literature at Duke University, and a political philosopher whose writings explore new forms of domination in the world as well as social movements and other forces of liberation that counter such domination. In the Empire trilogy—Empire (Harvard, 2000), Multitude: War and Democracy in the Age of Empire(Penguin, 2004), and Commonwealth (Harvard, 2009)—he and Antonio Negri investigate the political, legal, economic, and social aspects of globalization. Their most recent work, Assembly (Oxford, 2017), challenges social movements having traditional, centralized forms of political leadership and instead advocate a social unionism—a combination of mixing labor organizing with social movements.

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Internazionaleko zereginen analisia

En los últimos treinta años se han sucedido grandes transformaciones políticas y económicas. Los cambios sociales generados por la globalización neoliberal, el auge de las cuestiones ecológicas, una de las peores crisis económicas mundiales de la historia y la pandemia del COVID-19 nos obligan a reflexionar urgentemente sobre la necesidad de alternativas al sistema capitalista.

En su breve vida, la Asociación Internacional de Trabajadores se convirtió en el símbolo de la lucha de clases e influyó en las ideas de millones de trabajadores de todo el mundo. Los programas políticos, las resoluciones y los documentos de la Primera Internacional nos permiten aprender de las experiencias históricas de sus protagonistas y, al mismo tiempo, teorizar mejor las soluciones a nuestros problemas actuales.

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Vico and Marx: Comparing two interpretations of history

In times of crisis one feels the need to return to the reading of the “classics”, that is, to those authors who, despite the passage of time, are still essential to understanding society and continue to provide critical tools to transform it. Giambattista Vico and Karl Marx certainly fall into this category and Professor Marcello Musto will give a talk on their conceptions of history, and their main contributions to social sciences.

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El Úlitmo Marx

En los últimos años de su vida, Karl Marx extendió su investigación a nuevas disciplinas, conflictos políticos, cuestiones teóricas y áreas geográficas. Marx estudió los recientes descubrimientos antropológicos, analizó las formas comunales de propiedad en las sociedades precapitalistas, apoyó la lucha del movimiento de los naródniki en Rusia, expresó críticas a la opresión colonial en India, Irlanda, Argelia y Egipto, y viajó más allá de Europa por primera y única vez. Karl Marx, 1881-1883. Marcello Musto disipa el mito de que Marx dejó de escribir en la vejez y desafía la distorsionada representación de Marx como un pensador eurocéntrico y economicista que estaba obsesionado sólo con el conflicto de clases.

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Rethinking Alternatives with Marx

In this book launch five authors of Rethinking Alternatives with Marx (edited by Marcello Musto, Palgrave, 2021) will present a Marx that is in many ways different from the one popularized by the dominant currents of twentieth-century Marxism.

The dual aim of this collective volume is to contribute to a new critical discussion of some of the classical themes of Marx’s thought and to develop a deeper analysis of certain questions to which relatively little attention has been paid until recently.

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A Reappraisal of Marx’s Ethnological Notebooks

Between December 1880 and June 1881, Marx’s research interests focused on a new discipline: anthropology. He began with the study of Ancient Society (1877), a work by the U.S. anthropologist Lewis Morgan. What struck Marx most was the way in which Morgan treated production and technological factors as preconditions of social progress, and he felt moved to assemble a compilation of a hundred densely packed pages of excerpts from this book. These make up the bulk of what are known as the The Ethnological Notebooks.

They also contain excerpts from other works: Java, or How to Manage a Colony (1861) by James Money (1818-1890), a lawyer and Indonesia expert; The Aryan Village in India and Ceylon (1880) by John Phear (1825-1905), president of the supreme court of Ceylon; and Lectures on the Early History of Institutions (1875) by the historian Henry Maine (1822-1888), amounting to a total of another hundred sheets. Marx’s comparative assessments of these authors is fundamental to have a clear idea of the main theoretical preoccupations of the “late Marx” and suggests an innovative reassessment of some of his key concepts.

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The Last Years of Karl Marx

A Conversation between Marcello Musto, Kevin B. Anderson, Himani Bannerji & David N. Smith

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Les Noves Lectures de Marx

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Retornar a Marx

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La Comune di Parigi 150 anni dopo – convegno online

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Global Marxism Online Talk

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The Marxist Education Project presents a panel discussion with author Marcello Musto, joined by Andy Merrifield and Robert Ware

In the last years of his life, Karl Marx expanded his research in new directions—studying recent anthropological discoveries, analyzing communal forms of ownership in precapitalist societies, supporting the populist movement in Russia, and expressing critiques of colonial oppression in India, Ireland, Algeria, and Egypt. Between 1881 and 1883, he also traveled beyond Europe for the first and only time. Focusing on these last years of Marx’s life, this book dispels two key misrepresentations of his work: that Marx ceased to write late in life, and that he was a rEurocentric and economistic thinker fixated on class conflict alone.

With The Last Years of Karl Marx, Marcello Musto claims a renewed relevance for the late work of Marx, highlighting unpublished or previously neglected writings, many of which remain unavailable in English. Readers are invited to reconsider Marx’s critique of European colonialism, his ideas on non-Western societies, and his theories on the possibility of revolution in noncapitalist countries. From Marx’s late manuscripts, notebooks, and letters emerge an author markedly different from the one represented by many of his contemporary critics and followers alike. As Marx currently experiences a significant rediscovery, this volume fills a gap in the popularly accepted biography and suggests an innovative reassessment of some of his key concepts.

MARCELLO MUSTO is Professor of Sociology at York University, Toronto. His most recent books are Another Marx: Early Manuscripts to the International (2018) and, as editor, The Marx Revival: Key Concepts and New Interpretations (2020) and Karl Marx’s Writings on Alienation (2020). ANDY MERRIFIELD writes in Monthly Review, New Left Review, The Guardian, Jacobin, and more. He has authored many books, most recently Marx Dead and Alive: Reading Capital in Precarious Times. ROBERT WARE is Professor Emeritus in Philosophy at the University of Calgary and co-editor (with Kai Nielsen) of Analyzing Marxism (1989) and most recently the author of Marx on Emancipation and Socialist Goals (2019).

All tickets are sliding scale. No one is denied admission for inability to pay. Write to info@marxedproject.org to gain access to this panel presentation if you cannot pay.

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Roundtable at the Conference “Engels 200. Dialéctica y Revolución”.

Engels, la crítica y lo político
Martín Mazora. UNSAM – Argentina
Ana Miranda. FFyL UNAM
Gerardo Ambriz. UMSNH-México

Dialéctica, ciencia y naturaleza
Eva Jablonka. TAU, Israel
Diego Mendez. UAM, C

Engels, una propuesta de emancipación
Alejandra Criza. UNCUYO
María Lygia Quartim de Moraes. UNICAMP
David Pavón Cuellas. México

Engels 2020: Dialéctica y revolución
Marcello Musto. York University
Elivera Concheiro borquez. CEIICH-UNAM
José G. Gandarilla Salgado. CEIICH-UNAM
María Haydée Garcia Bravo. CEIICH-UNAM

Organiza
Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México
Centro de investigaciones Interdisciplinarias en Ciencias y Humanidades