The Communist Horizon (Pocket Communism)

The Communist Horizon (Pocket Communism)

Jodi Dean

Language: English

Pages: 256

ISBN: 1844679543

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


In this new title in Verso’s Pocket Communism series, Jodi Dean unshackles the communist ideal from the failures of the Soviet Union. In an age when the malfeasance of international banking has alerted exploited populations the world over to the unsustainability of an economic system predicated on perpetual growth, it is time the left ended its melancholic accommodation with capitalism.

In the new capitalism of networked information technologies, our very ability to communicate is exploited, but revolution is still possible if we organize on the basis of our common and collective desires. Examining the experience of the Occupy movement, Dean argues that such spontaneity can’t develop into a revolution and it needs to constitute itself as a party.

An innovative work of pressing relevance, The Communist Horizon offers nothing less than a manifesto for a new collective politics.

The Communist Horizon

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Communism: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)

The Korean War: An International History

The Left Side of History: World War II and the Unfulfilled Promise of Communism in Eastern Europe

Stalin: The First In-depth Biography Based on Explosive New Documents from Russia's Secret Archives

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

tors-subsumes, appropri­ ates, and exploits everything it can . Consi der Luc Boltanski and Ev e Chiapello's analy­ sis of changes in management language from the sixties to the nineties. 18 They document the dis mantling of a class-based approach to work and the assembling of a new vision of work in terms of individual creativity, autonomy, and flexibility. Personal benefits came to outweigh collective action, thereby strengthening the 18 Luc Boltanski and Eve Chiapello, The New Spirit of

become 8 M ichael Hardt and Antonio Negri, Empire, Cambridge, M A : Harvard U niversity Press, 2000, 3 4 7 . THE C O M M U NIST HORIZON 128 production, communication flows and circulates with little to no regard for transmitting meaning. Channeled through cellular networks and fiber-optic cables, onto screens and into sites for access, storage, retrieval , and counting, communication merges with the capitalist circuits it produces and amplifies. Capitalist productivity derives from its

experts provide guidance in household organization, basic cooking skills, and how to get along with others. Neoliberal trends in higher education extend these dynamics to the university: in a society wi thout skills, who needs a degree? Capitalism no longer requires a skilled, educated middle class, so mass university education is no longer necessary. It doesn't take as many people as we have to service the top 1 percent, so most of us are not needed any more (except as the field out of which the

experience of solidaiity, the left melancholic disavows his prac­ tice, the practical effect of his joumalistic activities. What Brown construes as a real loss of socialist ideals for which the Left compensates via an obstinate and narcissistic attachment to a fantastic object, Benjamin presents as a compromise and betrayal that ideological 18 Benjamin, "The Author as Producer," 3 . OF.SI R F. 1 71 identification with the proletariat attempts to displace. Brown suggests a Left defeated and

equitable, but i t is productive. The USSR may not have been productive, but it was equitable. Imagining themselves before the gaze of the other, they secured-for a time-fantasies 3 Ib id., llO. 28 T H E C O M M U N IST H O R IZON of unity that depended on the repression of their identification with the ideology of the other. The place of communism within the self­ understanding of the US is not the only complication that arises when we begin to question and specify the referent of

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