Asad Haider

is an editor of Viewpoint and author of Mistaken Identity: Anti-Racism and the Struggle Against White Supremacy (Verso, Spring 2018).

Socialists Think

Socialists Think

In the debates of the contemporary left, interventions often start with a variation on a particular theme: “Socialists think that…” Sometimes it is, “Marxists believe that…” Sometimes, “Socialists understand that…” Whatever the wording, the point is the same.

Organizing Histories

Organizing Histories

This text is a theoretical intervention, which has been prompted by questions and discussions surrounding my book. It is an interweaving of meditations on the narration of history, ideology, and the question of liberation – themes that used to belong to one fabric, but which have been torn apart in most contemporary discourses on identity.

Black Atlantis

Black Atlantis

Like Star Wars, Black Panther presents us not with science fiction but with myth, sharing with it what we might describe as “semi-feudal futurism” – a term far more appropriate for this film than “Afrofuturism,” thrown around in the mainstream media stripped of any meaningful political context. Why do white people love Black Panther, just as they love Star Wars?

Crisis Theory

Crisis Theory

In 1977 Louis Althusser gave a famous speech in Venice on “the crisis of Marxism,” a thesis almost as scandalous as that of an epistemological break in Marx’s thought.

Dictatorship Dies in Darkness

Dictatorship Dies in Darkness

This troublesome phrase “dictatorship of the proletariat” is a messy lump of several poorly defined concepts. To understand the word “dictatorship” as we do now – as the opposite of democracy, an authoritarian régime in which an individual or minority group exerts violent and absolute power – is an anachronistic projection which totally distorts Marx’s usage.

The Paradox of Enlightenment

The Paradox of Enlightenment

A curious symptom of the resistance to theory on the Anglo-American left is a fixation on the Enlightenment. The striking paradox of this fixation is the anti-intellectual appropriation of a trend of European philosophy, which is credited with introducing the now inviolable standards of secularism, republicanism, rights, freedoms, and equality.

The Shadow of the Plantation

The Shadow of the Plantation

It remains to be seen what kind of politics can be built on the foundation of the notion of racial capitalism. To determine what organizational and practical activity can be derived from this analysis, we should turn to the comparison we have in front of us: the work of the communists of the early 20th century, who began with the now widely discredited and ridiculed Black Belt thesis.

When the Cry Rings Out

When the Cry Rings Out

The large crowd of demonstrators at San Francisco International Airport was diverse, a global array of nationalities, ages, and dispositions. They shouted loudly, against Trump and his Muslim ban, that refugees are welcome here.