This seminar will elucidate the fundamental tenets of Marx’s philosophy, as well as their importance for understanding and transforming the contemporary world order. It will begin by explaining key concepts like historical materialism, class struggle, alienation, the labor theory of value, ideology and revolution. It will then briefly discuss a few of the important debates in the deep and broad history of Marxism in order to explore some of the ways that Marx’s work has been interpreted and transformed by subsequent generations. Finally, the course will focus in on what Marxist analysis has to contribute to contemporary debates and struggles by demonstrating how it can help us understand phenomena such as the environmental catastrophe, the increasing social inequality of globalization, the carceral state and its relationship to electoral democracy, the military-industrial-academic complex, institutional racism and gender inequality. Although the course will be directed at a lay audience, it will pedagogically build up its analysis in such a way that it will also serve the interests of those with a working knowledge of Marx and Marxism.
Facilitator: Gabriel Rockhill, Ph.D. is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Villanova University and Director of the Critical Theory Workshop. His main areas of research are modern and contemporary thought, social and political theory, continental philosophy, aesthetics, and historiography. Gabriel is the author of Radical History & the Politics of Art; Interventions in Contemporary Thought: History, Politics, Aesthetics; Logique de l’histoire: Pour une analytique des pratiques philosophiques; Contre-histoire du temps présent: Interrogations intempestives sur la mondialisation, la technologie, la démocratie, as well as numerous articles, book chapters, reviews, and edited books.
Date: Saturday, November 23, 10am-2pm.
Location: The Bourse, 111 S. Independence Mall East, Suite 500, Philadelphia. Map.
Readings: (Reader forthcoming)
- Karl Marx, Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844 (excerpt)
- Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, “Manifesto of the Communist Party”
- Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, The German Ideology (excerpt)
- Eduardo Galeano, Upside Down (excerpt)
- Barbara Foley, “Intersectionality: A Marxist Critique”
Cost: Pay-what-you-can, up to $90
We are committed to making our offerings of knowledge, dialogue, and community available to anyone who feels they can benefit from them, regardless of ability to pay. We trust you to pay what you can currently afford. If you can not afford to pay anything, but feel you can benefit from our seminars, we wholeheartedly encourage you to register for free. For others, please bear in mind that a seminar costs nearly $1000 in labor and expenses to run.
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