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Magical Marxism: Subversive Politics and the Imagination
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Magical Marxism: Subversive Politics and the Imagination

3.8 of 5 stars 3.80  ·  rating details  ·  15 ratings  ·  3 reviews
Following his hugely popular book, The Wisdom of Donkeys, Andy Merrifield breathes new life into the Marxist tradition. Magical Marxism demands something more of traditional Marxism -- something more interesting and liberating. It asks that we imagine a Marxism that moves beyond debates about class, the role of the state and the dictatorship of the proletariat. In escaping ...more
Paperback, 232 pages
Published February 15th 2011 by Pluto Press
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In 100 Years of Solitude Gabriel Garcia Marquez wrote what is probably the defining novel of the magical realist genre with his history of the Buendia family in the South American town of Macondo. With Magical Marxism, Andy Merrifield attempts to juxtapose the philosophy of Marquez’ book to our own political thought and infect it with this magical tint.

At the centre of the book is a frustration with progressive responses to present and past crises of capitalism and a thought that we became too
Towards the end of the 1980s when the Berlin Wall came tumbling down there was an unexpected crisis on the Left. After years of being on the back foot as the Reagan and Thatcher juggernaut, the Ronnie and Maggie Show, rampaged across the economic orthodoxy it should have been the case the collapse of Actually Existing Socialism in Europe should have freed the Left to build new ways of doing and being, but instead, aside from some Marxist sects – mainly Trotskyist and/or small and introspective – ...more
Merrifield takes Sorel's observation that people are not inspired by dry analysis but by living movements, and attempts to find a Marxist spirit that is both ephemeral and resilient. Politically he draws some of the same conclusions as John Holloway - that liberation can be found in the "cracks" in the system, but he presents them in a way that is life-affirming and non-prescriptive.

He also provides valuable commentary on The Invisible Committee's "The Coming Insurrection", which he regards as o
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“We’re bored, we’re all bored; we’ve turned into robots.” “But has it ever occurred to you, Wally,” he confronts his incredulous friend, “that the process which creates this boredom that we see in the world now may very well be a self-perpetuating unconscious form of brainwashing created by a world totalitarian government based on money?” “Somebody who is bored is asleep,” André follows up, “and somebody who’s asleep will not say no!”9 As far as he’s concerned, the 1960s were “the last burst of the human being before he was extinguished. And that this is the beginning of the rest of the future ... and that from now on there will simply be all these robots walking around, feeling nothing, thinking nothing. And there will be almost nothing left to remind them that there once was a species called a human being, with feelings and thoughts.”10” 0 likes
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