Any social theory must consider the role of the state in modern capitalism. The world economy is held together not only by a globally expansive market but also by sprawling, powerful nation-states. Marx himself was a critic of the modern state, declaring it “the form in which the individuals of a ruling class assert their common interests.” Still, he left much to say about the particular nature of state institutions and their relationship to class power. In this session, we will consider some of the most influential writers on the topic, asking about the exact nature of the capitalist state.
The Philly Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) Marxism Reading Group meets via Zoom on alternating Wednesdays to discuss issues in socialist theory and strategy.
Each meeting, we’ll look at a specific topic, including theories of the State, gender, imperialism,hegemony, and the origin of capitalism itself. Along the way, we’ll read some of the most influential Marxist theorists, including Angela Davis, Louis Althusser, Ellen Meiksins Wood, CLR James, and Rosa Luxemburg.
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