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Neoliberalism, War, and the Question of Crisis @ 12PM

JUNE 22: Marx in Neoliberalism (Kiarina Kordela)

Wark, McKenzie: 2019. Capital is Dead: Is this Something Worse? London, New York: Verso: 

Chapter 2: “Capitalism—or Worse?,”

Chapter 3: “The Forces of Production,” and excerpt from

Chapter 4: “The Class Location Blues,” 39-59, 61-75 and 88-99.

Kordela, A. Kiarina: „Capital, Or, Information. Affective Labor, Historical Materialism, and the Convergence of Forces and Relations of Production,” in Many Regimes of Capital in the Postdigital Age, Routledge (forthcoming).

JUNE 23: Real Subsumption, Strategy of Refusal, and Mutations of Capital (Siarhei Biareishyk & Clancy Murray)

Althusser, Louis, Etienne Balibar, Pierre Macherey, Jacques Rancière, and Roger Establet. Reading Capital: The Complete Edition. Translated by David Fernbach and Ben Brewster. New York: Verso, 2015.

Selection: from Balibar, "On the Basic Concepts of Historical Materialism", pp. 372-386; 397-405; 414-417. NOTE: PDF includes more than assigned pages; the rest of the PDF selection is optional

Tronti, Mario. Workers and Capital. Translated by David Broder. New York: Verso, 2019.

Selection: pp. 129-138 ("The Exchange of Money for Labour"); pp. 216-222 ("Labour as Non-Capital"); 241-247, 256-262 ("Strategy of Refusal"). NOTE: PDF includes more than assigned pages; the rest of the PDF selection is optional

Suggested readings from Marx's Capital, vol 1: Ch 12 (on relative surplus-value); Ch 13 (on co-operation)

JUNE 26: Mutations from Liberal to Neoliberal Ideology / Commodity Fetishism (Kiarina Kordela)

Michel Foucault, The Birth of Biopolitics: Lectures at the Collège de France, 1978-1979, transl. Graham Burchell, New York: Picador, Palgrave-Macmillan, 2008, excerpts from lecture 5, “7 February 1979” and lecture 9, “14 March 1979,” 118-121 and 219-233 (237).

Balibar, Étienne: rest of Part 3 “Ideology or Fetishism: Power and Subjection,” in The Philosophy of Marx (1993), [transl. Chris Turner, New York: Verso, 2007], 54-67 and 75-79.

Read, Jason, “A Genealogy of Homo-Economicus:  Neoliberalism and the Production of Subjectivity,” in Foucault Studies, No 6 (February 2009): 25 -36.

Lazzarato, Maurizio, excerpts from Chapter 1: “Understanding Debt as the Basis of Social Life” and Chapter 2: “The Genealogy of Debt and the Debtor,” in The Making of the Indebted Man (transl. Joshua David Jordan, Semiotext(e), 2011), 22-29, 37-61 and 77-79

JUNE 27: Authoritarian Statism and Crisis of Relative Autonomy (Peter Bratsis)

Nicos Poulantzas, State, Power, Socialism, The Decline of Democracy: Authoritarian Statism (p. 203-250)

JUNE 28: Warfare State and Hyper Financialization (Michael Pelias)  

Wars and CapitalBy Éric Alliez and Maurizio Lazzarato:

Introduction: To Our Enemies (11 - 34)
2.7 War of/in the World-Economy (75-77)
2.8 Primitive Accumulation Under Debate (77-80)
Chapter 5. Biopolitics of Permanent Civil War (109-126) 
Chapter 7. The Limits of the Liberalism of Foucault (137-154)
9.3 The War and Civil War Against Socialism (and Communism) (191-198)
9.4 The “Paradox” of Biopower (198-201)
9.6 Warfare and Welfare (209-217)
11.1 Distinction and Reversibility of Power and War (273-282) 

Sanctions and Sovereignty By Sergey Glazyev

Poetry and Revolution @ 7 PM

JUNE 22: Revolutionary Poetizing (Bruno Gulli & Michael Pelias)

Heidegger, Martin, Hölderlin's hymn "The Ister"; translated by. William McNeill and Julia Davis.  

Part Two: The Greek Interpretation of Human Beings in Sophocles’ Antigone (51-122)

JUNE 23: Poetry as Agency of Revolution (Bruno Gulli, Michael Pelias & Josh Kolbo)

“The social revolutions of the nineteenth century cannot draw its poetry from the past, but only from the future.” It cannot begin with itself before it has stripped off all superstition in regard to the past….”

– The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte, Marx (1851-1852)


Fanon, Frantz, 1925-1961. The Wretched of the Earth. New York :Grove Press, 1968.

Preface byJEAN-PAUL SARTRE (7-34)
On National Culture (206-248)
Conclusion (311-316)

Fanon, Frantz, (1967). Black skin, White masks. New York: Grove.

Chapter One - The Black Man and Language (17-33)
Chapter Five - The Lived Experience of the Black Man (78-101)

Suggested Reading:

Black Orpheus by Jean-Paul Sartre (16 - 20)


JUNE 26: Poetic Heterotopias from the Poet’s Laboratory to Revolutionary Horizons (Tony Iantosca)

Bruce Andrews, “Poetry as Explanation, Poetry as Praxis”

Michel Foucault, “Of Other Spaces”

Stefano Harney and Fred Moten, “Al-Khwariddim”

Antonio Negri, Time for Revolution, pp. 21-30

Antonio Negri, Time for Revolution, pp. 34-36

Jasper Bernes, Work of Art in the Age of Deindustrialization

JUNE 27: Decoding and Constructing Poetry (and Lyrics) - Marxist Criticism (Paul Reynolds)

Seminar Outline Here

In this session I want to rehearse the way that Marxists explore poetry as bothliterary criticism and political practice. The session will explore radical reading asboth uncovering the vagaries of capitalist societies and envisaging the possibilities ofalternatives (though the focus will be a little more on the former). It will explore howpoetry and lyrics with music can have both a penetrating analysis of the conjunctureand context they emerge and more broadly address the passions as well as theanalytical mind on the criticism of capitalist societies and a cathartic effect onsolidarity and praxis.

NOTE: You do not need to read every part of what I provide as readings andURLs, and you will all most probably have alternatives you can refer to – theguide below will guide essential and optional references,

The Politics of Style – Daniel Hartley Extract – I think one of the best texts on thepower of style in political expression, focused on Jameson, Williams and Eagleton(central figures in Marxist cultural criticism). I will refer to this in detail.

Marxism and Form – Fredric Jameson Extract – This is his essay (chapter) ondialectical criticism.

Allegory and ideology – Fredric Jameson Extract – Preface and First chapter and Appendixs B and C

Marxism and Literary Criticism – Terry Eagleton – I whole text is just over 70 pages so I have included the whole book. If you are limited in time – Chapters 3 and 4 will be referred to more, with Chapters 1 and 2 contextual

Culture and Materialism – Raymond Williams Extract – His essay on ‘Base andSuperstructure in Marxist Cultural Theory, which I will use to provide the broadcontext and contours for a cultural analysis

Dread poetry and freedom: Linton Kwesi Johnson and the unfinishedrevolution (David Austin and Linton Kwesi Johnson Extract – The end of theintroduction overviews the book and we focus on chapter 1


JUNE 28: Antigone: Love and Revolution (Carlos Frade)

Please, note: this session is an attempt to fashion a contemporary Antigone, i.e. the tragedy with all its action today (it is thus not a discussion of renowned interpretations of this tragedy, although they can of course be relied on in order to figure out how today’s Antigone can or should be). The seminar’s two parts will be devoted to (1st) explaining and justifying the key axiomatic principles that a contemporary Antigone must adhere to and (2nd) collectively completing and/or changing the initial outline of action, scenes and acts proposed (if people are interested, there can be a 3rd part during the weekend consisting in doing a dramatized reading of the emerging new tragedy, and perhaps correcting the proposed text).

Please, go this google doc to see the whole brief of the session, suggested readings (and theatrical or film versions of Antigone worth seeing), and proposed characters, scenes and main action lines (this is obviously work in progress):

Sophocles. Antigone (ca. 441 B.C.E.) Translated from the Greek by Robert Fagles

Anouilh, Jean. Antigone. Trans. Lewis Galantière. New York

Brecht, Bertolt. The Antigone of Sophocles


Capitalist Asphyxia: Ecology, Colonialism, Murder @ 12 PM

JUNE 29: Subaltern Hegemony and Popular Sovereignty
(Panagiotis Sotiris)

Huria Bouteldja 2016, Whites, Jews and Us. Towards a Politics of Revolutionary Love, Semiotexte, pp. 100-140

Étienne Balibar, ‘The Nation Form: History and Ideology, in Balibar – Wallerstein, Race, Nation, Class. Ambiguous Identities, pp. 86-106

Panagiotis Sotiris, ‘From the Nation to the People of a Potential New Historical Bloc: Rethinking Popular Sovereignty through Gramsci’, International Gramsci Journal Vol. 2, 2017, n. 1, 52-88

JUNE 30: Equality or sufficiency – Exploring Antagonistic Conceptions of the Working Class In Current Ecological Politics (Isabelle Darmon)

Huber, Matt (2022) Climate Change as Class War Verso. Chapter 5 (Proletarian Ecology: Working Class Interests and the Struggle for a Green New Deal).

Ulrich Brand and Matt Wissen (2021) The Imperial Mode of Living. Verso. Chapter 8 (Contours of a Solidary Mode of Living).

Stefania Barca (2020) Forces of reproduction. Cambridge. [please read: "Class" pp. 41-52]

Ariel Saleh (2010) From metabolic rift to “metabolic value”: Reflections on environmental sociology and the alternative globalization movement. Organization & environment, 23(2), 205-219.

JULY 3: Figures of Subjectivation of the Nonhuman-Posthuman Turn (Carlos Frade & RH Lossin)

Figures of subjectivation or, put simply, subjectivities, are about what people ultimately want and strive for (vs. identities, what people are). Here we will study the subjectivities constitutive of the nonhuman or posthuman turn (a whole constellation of ontologies comprising new materialism and posthumanism, object-oriented ontology, speculative and agential realism, actor-network theory and assemblage theory) as well as other subject positions theorized in relation to capitalism.

There are no studies specifically focused on those subjectivities; the closest to it as far as we can tell is Zizek’s ongoing critical analysis of those ontologies. And there are also other very good critical analyses:

Zizek, S. (2016) Disparities. London:Bloomsbury Academic. Chapter 1, sections entitled ‘Posthuman, transhuman, inhuman’ and ‘Hyperobjects in the age of the Anthropocene’ (pp. 21-38), and chapter 2, section entitled 'Re-enchanting nature? No, thanks!' (pp. 55-59).

Malm, A. 2019 ‘Against Hybridism: Why We Need to Distinguish between Nature and Society, Now More than Ever’, Historical Materialism, 27(2): 156-187 (this is chapter 2 of Malm’s The Progress of This Storm: Nature and Society in a Warming World. London: Verso, 2017. The whole book is very much worth reading, as it is, among other theings, one of the most indepth critiques of the nonhuman turn ontologies).

Flisfeder, M. (2021) Renewing Humanism Against the Anthropocene: Towards a Theory of the Hysterical Sublime. Postmodern Culture 32(1):

Theodore Adorno and Max Horkheimer, Dialectic of Enlightenment: Philosophical Fragments, Stanford University Press (2002) “The Concept of Enlightenment” pp. 1-10

The Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844 in The Marx-Engels Reader 2nd ed. Ed. Robert C. Tucker, “Estranged Labor” pp. 70-81.

JULY 4: (Arun Gupta)

Accursed share, p. 19-41, 22 pages

Food, Identity, and Self, 12 pages (not including cover or footnotes)

The Abominable PigIndustrial Food: Towards the Development of a World Cuisine
Chapters 6 and 7, 28 pages (not including footnotes)

JULY 5: Age of Anxiety (Kostantinos Tsoukalas)

Kostantinos Tsoukalas - Age of Anxiety

Living Labor, Sabotage, and the Refusal of Work @ 7 PM

JUNE 29: The production of alienated labor. Foucault and the young Marx (Matteo Polleri)

Required readings:

Karl Marx, Economic and philosophic manuscripts of 1844, Prometheus Book, 1988, 69-97.

Michel Foucault, Remarks on Marx (Interview with Trombadori), Semiotext, 1991.

Jason Read, “A fugitive thread. The production of subjectivity in Marx”, in “The Warwick Journal of Philosophy”, 13, 126-144.

Suggested readings:

Michel Foucault, The truth and the juridical forms, in Paul Rabinow (ed.), Essential Works of Foucault (1954-1984)

Franck Fischbach, La production des hommes. Marx avec Spinoza, Vrin, Paris, 2014.

Antonio Negri, Marx and Foucault. Essays, Polity Press, London, 2016.

JUNE 30: From the Common to the Singular: The Individuation of Living Labor (Bruno Gulli)

The original title for this seminar was “On the difference between living labor and productive labor.” That difference, or distinction, still remains crucial throughout the seminar. But I thought that the current title would widen the discussion in some interesting ways. Indeed, the main idea is that the paradigm of productivity (not production) must be attacked and eliminated. Living labor is broader than, and ontologically different from, productive labor. Productive labor is only a modality of living labor under capital; it is living labor on its way to the scaffold, to become dead labor, or capital. This apparently simple distinction has enormous philosophical and political implications and consequences. In this seminar, this crucial difference will be examined in the light of the logic of individuation.

The essential (required) readings are from Marx’s Grundrisse. I then also suggest a few additional readings, though ideally there would of course be much more material to consider as well.

Required readings:

Karl Marx, Grundrisse, Introduction (83-111), “Capital and labor” (266-275), “Labor as absolute poverty and as general possibility of wealth” (293-326), and “Fragment on Machines” (690-712).

Suggested readings:

Antonio Negri, Marx Beyond Marx, Lessons Three and Four, “The Method of Antagonistic Tendency” (41-58) and “Surplus Value & Exploitation” (59-83).

Paolo Virno, “Angels and the General Intellect: Individuation in Duns Scotus and Gilbert Simondon,” Parrhesia, Number 7, 2009 (58-67).

Bruno Gullì, Labor of Fire, Chapter 2, “On the Difference between Living Labor and Productive Labor” (61-74 and 80-88).


JULY 3: The Materiality of Imaginary Power: Insurgent Art and Living Labor (Richard Gilman-Opalsky)

Readings (Excerpts from the following, roughly 60 pages):

W. E. B. Du Bois – The Souls of Black Folk

Simone Weil – Oppression and Liberty

Sun Ra – “My Music Is Words”

James T. Stewart – “Revolutionary Black Music in the Total Context of Black Distention”

Drucilla Cornell – Today’s Struggles, Tomorrow’s Revolutions

JULY 4: Sabotage (RH Lossin)

“Sabotage” by Email Pouget, Introduction by Arturo Giovannitti (1912)

“Sabotage” by Elizabeth Gurley Flynn (1916)

Manifesto and Preamble of the Industrial Workers of the World (1905/1908)

Marx Grundrisse,  “Fragment on Machines” (690-712)

Editorial attributed to Gramsci L’Ordine Nuovo July 10, 1920

Beverly Gage, “Why Violence Matters”

Eric Hobsbawm “The Machine Breakers”

JULY 5: The Necessity of Boredom and the Right to be Lazy (Peter Bratsis)

Paul Lafargue, The Right to be Lazy (Entire Book)

Blaise Pascal, Pensees, (Sections V and VI, Pages 28-34)