Commentary

The Limits of State Capitalism on China’s Bid for Hegemony

Much of the current discourse on China’s rise significantly overstates its economic might. China’s model of state capitalism and the dynamics of globalization have contributed to its rapid development over the past four decades. Yet these same factors circumscribe its hegemonic potential.

By |2020-10-14T13:11:15-04:00Oct 14, 2020|

Graduate Student Worker Organizational Stability in the Twilight Hour of Neoliberalism

While it won a historic contract in 2014, ultimately, the graduate student worker organizational process failed to stabilize into a lasting organizational formation. Understanding the reasons for this helps us to understand the broader structural and contingent problems that worker organizers face in the current conjuncture both in and beyond the university.

By |2020-10-08T11:26:35-04:00Oct 7, 2020|

From the Shop Floor to the World Market: Organizational and Political Challenges to Trade Unions’ Global Power

The contemporary labor movement faces three kind of constraints engendered by the dynamics of globalization. In the first place, the internationalization of production processes through delocalization and outsourcing, with its uneven consequences of precariousness or unemployment. Secondly, the transformation of former welfare states in the neoliberal era, with associated regressive reforms and the reshaping of unions’ institutional role. Thirdly, the formation of economically integrated regions and export processing zones, with the consequent engagement of labor movements in supranational institutional arrangements.

By |2020-10-01T09:38:13-04:00Oct 1, 2020|

Capitalist Restructuring and the Power of Women Textile Workers in Egypt

Changes in the Egyptian textile industry gave women workers structural power, which they drew on to develop cross-gender solidarities and working-class consciousness to fight back. Their strikes laid the groundwork for the Arab Spring.

By |2020-09-16T17:07:50-04:00Sep 16, 2020|

Logistics, Labor, and State Power

Laleh Khalili's latest book, published earlier this year, is Sinews of War and Trade. In it, she connects the themes of war making in the Middle East found in her earlier work with an examination of the contested role of capital, labor and the state in the region—via the maritime logistics industry. Breathtaking in ambition, her analysis draws on a wide range of materials to provide a long-view historical perspective on the economic and political development of the Arabian peninsula through the unequal playing field of global maritime trade.

By |2020-09-02T20:11:01-04:00Sep 2, 2020|

Notes on the Black Lives Matter Uprising in Historical and Global Context

This spring, as some countries began to reopen after months of COVID-19 lockdowns, youthful rebellions broke out inside the two most powerful states in the world, the USA and China. The Black youth of Minneapolis, their allies, and countless others across the USA expressed their anger on the streets over yet another police murder, which was one too many. During the same days, the youth of Hong Kong renewed their protests against new anti-democratic moves by the Chinese government. The US protests, which grew into a massive nationwide Black Lives Matter uprising, also had a major international impact.

By |2020-08-26T14:05:56-04:00Aug 26, 2020|

This Is Not Normal

We live in unprecedented times. A pandemic shut down public places, businesses and global movement, revealing the farce of global capitalism as it demonstrated we don’t need to work. After the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, the anger about state-tolerated police violence against Black people turned to rage. [...]

By |2020-07-22T13:18:32-04:00Jul 22, 2020|

Capitalist Political Economy, Fascistic Tendencies, and Left Politics in India

I wrote Critical Reflections on Economy and Politics in India: A Class Theory Perspective (published by Brill in 2020) as an attempt to ‘apply’ to the Indian context, some of the general ideas about class presented in my Marxist class theory for a skeptical world (published in 2017). Many scholars argue [...]

By |2020-07-15T14:09:55-04:00Jul 15, 2020|

The Radical Right: Thriving and in Disarray

There are two fundamental axes along which we need to keep following the further mobilization of the far right: is the far right moving from Republican-manipulated networks to an organization in its own right? Is it formulating a social vision of its own, which might conflict with the plundering instincts of the shortsighted business families who now hold the reins? So far, Trumpism’s mass organizational and ideological thrusts have been restricted to election years. It will likely remain that way, but some dynamics might change especially as the Left mobilizes further.

By |2020-07-08T11:55:44-04:00Jul 8, 2020|
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