There has not been a counter-revolution, there has been a process of advance for the Right, but with popular resistance. And it’s interesting that there is a new generation. Those who struggle now have processed the experience of the progressive cycle. We will see how they translate this politically, we don’t know. But the generation that produced the earlier cycle did it without experience, arising out of pure neoliberalism. Now, the new generation is leading this process.
The feminist movement, especially as connected to popular feminism and popular economies, thus shows that we cannot delegate to capital – through the tool of the wage – recognition of who are workers. That is why we say, “All Women Are Workers” (#TrabajadorasSomosTodas). Now, that statement does not operate as a blanket that covers up and homogenizes an abstract class identity, but rather it functions because it reveals the multiplicity of what labor means from a feminist point of view, with all of its hierarchies and all of its struggles.
“At every node in this global chain, the technical and the political are intimately entangled. Declaring by fiat that decarbonization is unlikely or impossible amounts to an avoidance of the complex, historic, world-making tasks ahead of us.”
The incoherence, heterogeneity, non-contemporaneity, contradictoriness and “bizarre” historical sedimentation that Gramsci once discerned in the phenomena of subaltern folklore is now spread across the social field, and pathological disorganization and disorientation is by no means the sad monopoly of the dominated.
It was in the 1960s that I began to ask myself a number of questions on the paths leading to socialism, and about existing socialism. I reflected not only on what the revolution in Morocco might be, but also on what socialism could be across the world.
The citizenist world is a homogeneous world, populated by individuals who look very much like those of the neoclassical economists: we picture them going to voice their political preferences during referenda just like the economists picture consumers going to the market to voice their preferences, without taking into account the power relations in which they are caught up, or the social antagonisms which shape them.
“Lenin, Communists, and Immigration” is a crucial text in Balibar’s trajectory, as it demonstrates that the focal points of his research in the 1980s and 1990s, and continuing into the present – on nationalism, xenophobia, class identity, imperialism, the persistent racialization of immigrant populations, and the ways these phenomena sustain working-class divisions – did not come from a break in his thinking, but rather emerged from his long-term engagement with an open “knot” of questions within the Marxist problematic.
Lenin’s analysis forces us to consider immigration – the living and working conditions of immigrant workers – starting from the theory of imperialism, outside of which the contemporary forms of immigration remain unintelligible. The concrete knowledge of the causes and effects of immigration is, reciprocally, a guiding thread towards an understanding of imperialism.
If the figure of the worker can no longer be deduced from the forms of collective consciousness of a group (workers’ consciousness) otherwise objectively constituted – the working class – then it is necessary to build a new dispositif of investigation and analysis of the intellectual field of workers.
It was necessary to put in place a practice, capable of determining displacement and at least of alluding to an “offensive” move, beyond the necessarily defensive character of the resistance – why not buy a ship, put it at sea?