Theory

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David Cox writes: "Images are themselves a lens on the culture which makes them. Walter
Benjamin was both right and wrong about art in the age of mechanical
reproduction. He was correct in stating that as images proliferate, their
overall commercial value in depreciates. He was wrong in assuming that
manufactured images are worth less than their 'real world' referent.



As manufactured goods accelerate away from the decade in which they were
made, they themselves gain a kind of new cultural value. Some commodities
seem to accrue more cultural gravitas than others. The dodgiest of global
trade in junk, the antique market bears testimony to the ways in which
even the most trivial of manufactured items can become obscure objects of
desire once made to enter the domain commodity relations.
manufactured images are worth less than their 'real world' referent.



Read the whole essay athttp://www.netspace.net.au/~dcox/lens.html"

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Autonomedia writes: "Centre for Research and Education «Praxis» plans an
International Conference on
VICTOR SERGE AND ANTI-TOTALITARIAN SOCIALISM, in
Moscow, 29-30 September 2001.



The conference is timed to coincide with the publication in Russian of the
book From Revolution to Totalitarianism: Memoirs of a Revolutionary by
Victor Serge, the political activist, thinker and writer, fighter for
social liberation.



The conference will discuss a wide range of issues related to Victor
Serge's activies, literary works, and ideological-political legacy.


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Autonomedia writes: "Links to several of Michael Seidman's ground-breaking articles can be found at the following web-site, including his book on the anarchist collectives in Barcelona and his recent article on the "Agrarian Collectives during the Spanish Revolution".


http://www.angelfire.com/nb/revhist36/"

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"The question of how we grasp social democracy and its current retreat is now more than ever a practical one. The institutions of social democracy continue to be the focus of many contemporary struggles. In the UK context, this is exemplified in recurrent conflicts over privatization, employment rights and cuts in welfare spending. Hence we face the question of how we relate to these struggles: what do we want and how should we fight?"


"The collection of articles from the Aufheben Collective on 'The Retreat of Social Democracy' is on-line at http://lists.village.virginia.edu/~spoons/aut_html /Aufheben/socdem.html


(Your critical assessments are invited back here.)

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Anonymous Comrade writes: Dave Renton of the University of Sheffield has posted "Towards a Marxist Theory of Facism":



"The idea of this paper is to outline a materialist way of looking at fascism, which is concerned as much with what fascism did as with what it said. This theory will be developed through an analysis of what Marxists have actually said about fascism. At the end of the paper, I will try to draw together the threads: and offer some ideas as to where the theory could go next."

Read the whole paper at: http://members.tripod.co.uk/mere_pseud_mag_ed/Ideo logy/Renton-Theory.htm" Let the discussion roll!

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Autonomedia writes: "The entire text of Hardt and Negri's "Empire" is available in PDF download at http://www.hup.harvard.edu/."

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Anonymous Comrade writes: "Ken Knabb's new translation of Chapter 4 of Guy Debord's THE SOCIETY OF THE
SPECTACLE is online at http://www.slip.net/~knabb/SI/debord/4.htm

Debord's book has been translated into over a dozen languages. There have been
five or six different versions in English alone. This new translation of
Chapter 4 incorporates the best renderings from those previous versions, but is clearer and more accurate than any of them.

Chapter 4 deals primarily with concrete historical
events, revealing the practical implications of ideas that are expressed
more abstractly in the other chapters.

The topics dealt with include Hegel, Marx, Bakunin, Lenin, Lukács,
anarchism, utopian socialism, reformism, fascism, Bolshevism, Stalinism,
Trotskyism, the Russian revolution, the Spanish revolution, Third World
movements, workers councils, revolutionary organization, and the nature of
the new revolt that Debord saw coming -- the revolt that burst into full
view in 1968, less than a year after the original publication of the book.

The Bureau of Public Secrets website features numerous texts by and about
Guy Debord and other members of the Situationist International, the
notorious avant-garde group that helped trigger the May 1968 revolt in
France.

BUREAU OF PUBLIC SECRETS
PO Box 1044, Berkeley CA 94701, USA
http://www.slip.net/~knabb"

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Anonymous Coward says: I found this interesting. Power & Desire in Political Ontology of Spinoza & Deleuze/Guattari.

This frames many debates about power, desire, ethics, tactics of autonomous politics and theory, etc.

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