Is Reading Marx Necessary?

Discussion in 'theory, philosophy & history' started by Toast Rider, Jul 4, 2018.

  1. Toast Rider

    Toast Rider Banned Banned

    To understand why capitalism is shit and to be able to articulate why?

    I think it's shit. I've thought it was shit since before I even knew what it was. I've always felt at odds with how society works, it's just...that's how society works and you don't believe it can be any different.

    So is Marx the only way to understand why this system's a bit of a shitshow?
     
  2. PippinTook

    PippinTook Well-Known Member

    Every system is a shit show.
     
    Ralph Llama likes this.
  3. Poot

    Poot Everyone's a superhero, everyone's a Captain Kirk

    I've read Marx. I think it's these wicker chairs. (Sorry. Couldn't resist).
     
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  4. Toast Rider

    Toast Rider Banned Banned

    i don't get that reference
     
  5. Toast Rider

    Toast Rider Banned Banned

    Maybe, maybe not. But I'm only concerned with capitalism right now
     
  6. Poot

    Poot Everyone's a superhero, everyone's a Captain Kirk

    Red marks. Read Marx. It's a better joke when it's spoken. But not much. I'll get my coat.
     
    marty21, tim, PippinTook and 3 others like this.
  7. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Well-Known Member

    Reading Marx isn't the only way to understand why capitalism is shit, but it will help.

    Reading Capital vol 1 certainly helped me and these lectures by David Harvey were useful: Reading Capital
     
  8. Pickman's model

    Pickman's model One star in sight

    i've long thought marx particularly under-read but always recommend his 'undercover: police surveillance in america'
     
    Nigel likes this.
  9. Pickman's model

    Pickman's model One star in sight

    ruddy yurts' 1988 live album - i didn't know you were a fan.
     
  10. Toast Rider

    Toast Rider Banned Banned

    You needn't have bothered taking it off :D
     
    Poot likes this.
  11. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Warning: posts may cause vasovagal presyncope

    No, I don't think it's necessary to read Marx. I find it useful. (Present tense because I find myself going back to passages for various reasons). But it's perfectly possible to develop as a decent human being, with the values of solidarity, cooperation, mutual aid, egalitarianism, freedom for all, mistrust of hierarchy, and so on, without having read any theory at all.

    At least some theoretical grounding, though, is a good defence against all the dangerous conspiracy theory that floats around, with its links to anti-semitism, the far right, and just energy dissipating misdirection. With conspiracy more accessible now than ever, it's good to be able to counter it. But that can be done with Carl Sagan's "baloney detection kit", with frankly far less background reading needed.

    But more than that, it's good to have the tools to analyse structures that are at the root of inequality and oppression.
     
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  12. Poi E

    Poi E Pessimism: a valuable protection against quackery.

    Live, if propped up on stage counts.:(

    OP, have a read of the Communist Manifesto. Not long, not obscure.
     
    Pickman's model likes this.
  13. Pickman's model

    Pickman's model One star in sight

    [​IMG]
    ruddy yurts recently
     
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  14. Poi E

    Poi E Pessimism: a valuable protection against quackery.

    Ahh, from his Heady Daze b-side "Necking It". Raw.
     
    Pickman's model likes this.
  15. Toast Rider

    Toast Rider Banned Banned

    I have even less understanding of who that is than Marx.
     
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  16. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Warning: posts may cause vasovagal presyncope

    It's a Ruddy Yurts album cover in which he parodies Jeremy Bentham reading the Dandy (open at Mystery Dick, for the double entendre).
     
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  17. Smokeandsteam

    Smokeandsteam Well-Known Member

    I agree with danny la rouge but I’d add two thoughts:

    1. Knowing that something is ‘shit’ and fully understanding why it’s ‘shit’ are not the same. You can end up like Sleaford Mods or the SWP if you don’t understand why, how and when. Plus Marx doesn’t think capitalism is shit. Some of his best writing explores the amazing benefits of capitalism and its dynamism, creativity and energy. But within that is the kernal of its own destruction.

    2. Given that we are living in a period of late capitalism where growth is permanently over for most, where living standards cannot rise and where capitalism isn’t cyclical but permanently breaking down the reasons as to why it’s still the only realistic show in town needs to be thought through. As Frederick Jamieson put it it’s a period where ‘it’s easier to imagine the end of the world than the end of capitalism’

    Finally Fozzie Bear is right about the starting point. If you can’t be bothered yet watch Harvey’s lectures on YouTube. They are absorbing and accessible.
     
  18. Santino

    Santino lovelier than lovely

    Of course Ruddy was warned to never return to Dundee after one too many lawsuits against DC Thomson.
     
    danny la rouge likes this.
  19. Toast Rider

    Toast Rider Banned Banned

    Who else should I consider to provide a better analysis of capitalism ? anyone?
     
  20. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Warning: posts may cause vasovagal presyncope

    That's what Capital is. So if that's what you're looking for, read that.
     
    Fozzie Bear likes this.
  21. Poi E

    Poi E Pessimism: a valuable protection against quackery.

    Be careful. Gave my nephew a graphic novel about Rosa Luxembourg when he was 8 and now he's 13 he's reading Mao.:D
     
    Bxtgun and maomao like this.
  22. Toast Rider

    Toast Rider Banned Banned

    apparently, Mao was quite the feminist.

    I said apparently
     
  23. purves grundy

    purves grundy ambient clown remix

    Red Rosa? Bought that for my other half for Valentine's Day, wrapped in red rose wrapping paper, and a red rose next to it on the table.
     
  24. Ralph Llama

    Ralph Llama ERROR 23 : DEFAULT MODE NETWORK COMPROMISED Banned

    Noam Chomsky covers PR and foreign policy ... the best IMO.

    Marx was just some rich cunt who stole the ideas of a bunch of northerners who were organizing their workplace... and got them wrong.
     
  25. Fozzie Bear

    Fozzie Bear Well-Known Member

    What did he get wrong?
     
    NoXion likes this.
  26. 8ball

    8ball Up to something

    I think if I'd been brought up with communism I'd think it was shit. Certainly in my teenage years.
    Until dying in a gulag, anyway...
     
  27. Toast Rider

    Toast Rider Banned Banned

    why do you say he got them wrong?
     
    NoXion likes this.
  28. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Warning: posts may cause vasovagal presyncope

    Oh, it's that clown Ralph. He knows fuck all. Ignore him.
     
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  29. Ralph Llama

    Ralph Llama ERROR 23 : DEFAULT MODE NETWORK COMPROMISED Banned

    Because the workers `feel` what they are doing. It is a revolutionary spirit .
    Elitist twats like Marx just ponce about writing things down and thinking they are clever.
    The movement comes from the people idiots.

    Don`t you even know that?

    YOU CAN`T EVEN THEORIES BASIC POLITICAL CONCEPTS YOU STUPID FOOLS!
     
  30. Toast Rider

    Toast Rider Banned Banned

    Ok, calm down.

    I'm specifically asking if any of the things he wrote down, while poncing, were of merit.

    That doesn't preclude the value of movement and action. Obviously action is necessary, but knowledge precedes action, no?
     
    Bxtgun, NoXion and purves grundy like this.

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