Dossier Pages

The Critique of Politics and "Unequal Right" (1978)

The Critique of Politics and “Unequal Right” (1978)

The para­dox we are expe­ri­enc­ing con­sists in the fact that today the cri­tique of cap­i­tal­ism and the state is pro­duced in real social con­flicts, advances through real polit­i­cal sub­jects, mate­r­i­al prac­tices: here we already move in the zone of the “screen,” beyond the cat­e­gories inher­it­ed and tak­en from the tra­di­tion­al work­ers’ move­ment, in the pro­file of anoth­er which is expressed as a need and seen in clips of expe­ri­ence.

After the Other May (1981)

After the Other May (1981)

We must start again on the basis of an irre­versible plu­ral­ism, and look to move past parox­ys­mal – and today, car­i­ca­tured – forms that have led up to this crit­i­cal moment where­in every mass work­ers’ orga­ni­za­tion is in upheaval, and replace them in the face of the unre­solv­able alter­na­tive of pas­siv­i­ty or ephemer­al revolt. No mat­ter its con­crete shape, the out­come of the cri­sis of the par­ty-form depends on the simul­ta­ne­ous trans­for­ma­tion of all the orga­ni­za­tions of the work­ers’ move­ment (none of which have every been pure­ly com­posed of work­ers).

The Crisis and Dialectic of Parties and New Social Movements in Italy (1981)

The Crisis and Dialectic of Parties and New Social Movements in Italy (1981)

The real ques­tion is rather: for those who deny the cen­tral­i­ty of the work­ing class, where is the epi­cen­ter? For the cen­tral­i­ty of the work­ing class is not mere­ly “soci­o­log­i­cal”: it is an image of the cen­tral­i­ty of the modes and rela­tions of pro­duc­tion with mul­ti­ple social and ide­o­log­i­cal for­ma­tions which inter­sect and con­tra­dict each oth­er. Or fur­ther: in a sys­tem with­out an epi­cen­ter, where would move­ment come from?

(The Right to) Tendencies, or the Right to Set Up Organized Groups Within the Party (1982)

(The Right to) Tendencies, or the Right to Set Up Organized Groups Within the Party (1982)

Once we man­age to avoid iden­ti­fy­ing a “polit­i­cal cen­ter” and “the­o­ret­i­cal” cen­ter in advance, from iden­ti­fy­ing the elab­o­ra­tion of a strat­e­gy with the appli­ca­tion of a pre-estab­lished vision to the course of his­to­ry, it might be pos­si­ble to over­come the dilem­mas of “demo­c­ra­t­ic cen­tral­ism” and the “right to ten­den­cies.”

The State, Social Movements, Party: Interview with Nicos Poulantzas (1979)

The State, Social Movements, Party: Interview with Nicos Poulantzas (1979)

To mod­i­fy the bal­ance of pow­er with­in the state, and fur­ther­more, rad­i­cal­ly mod­i­fy the mate­ri­al­i­ty of the state, is only one aspect of a demo­c­ra­t­ic tran­si­tion to social­ism. The oth­er aspect of the process depends on, at the same time, grass­roots social move­ments pro­pelling the spread of spaces of direct democ­ra­cy: in short for move­ments to ground them­selves in pop­u­lar strug­gles that always spill over beyond, and keep a dis­tance from, the state.

May '68 and the Crisis of Marxism (1978)

May ’68 and the Crisis of Marxism (1978)

It is nec­es­sary, then, to mod­i­fy our rela­tion­ship to Marx­ism today, to begin from its lacu­nas, its points of fragili­ty – to open­ly con­front its for­bid­den zones, its blind spots, so that this real cri­sis becomes an eman­ci­pa­to­ry one, pro­duc­ing oth­er analy­ses, oth­er polit­i­cal prac­tices.

The Crisis of Marxism (1977)

The Crisis of Marxism (1977)

It is in this pro­found­ly polit­i­cal sense that we are forced today, it seems to me, to speak of a the­o­ret­i­cal cri­sis with­in Marx­ism, in order to clar­i­fy the ways in which it affects what is called Marx­ist the­o­ry itself: and in par­tic­u­lar the fact that a num­ber of appar­ent­ly infal­li­ble prin­ci­ples inher­it­ed from the Sec­ond and Third Inter­na­tion­als have now been placed in doubt.

Power and Opposition in Post-revolutionary Societies (1977)

Power and Opposition in Post-revolutionary Societies (1977)

The cri­sis, more­over, goes beyond the pure­ly polit­i­cal domain and invests the realm of the­o­ry itself. It is a cri­sis of Marx­ism, which is expe­ri­enced by immense mass­es as an unac­knowl­edged real­i­ty. Marx­ism – not as a body of the­o­ret­i­cal or philo­soph­i­cal thought, but as the great ide­al­is­tic force that was chang­ing the world – is now groan­ing under the weight of this this his­to­ry.