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My review of Aaron Leonard and Conor Gallagher's Heavy Radicals has been posted at Marx & Philosophy Review of Books.  Not to let the cliched cat out of its proverbial bag, and thus spoil the review, this book, despite its problems, really proved that, as I've argued elsewhere, we have more to learn from the New Communist Movement than the New Left because the former was not only seen as a larger threat to state security but was bloody significant.  This book also makes it clear that this high-tide of struggle imploded because of the reasons that I've indicated in the past, and that the internal is more of a determinate than the external.  So let's be somewhat critical about those claims of "micro-Leninisms" that the more namby-pamby elements of the NCM spent all of their time producing, rather than functioning as on-the-the-ground organizers (although, yes, there's something important to be learned from Proletarian Unity's critique, but then there's also something to be learned from the Motor City Labor League on the same question), and recognize that, at least for a very brief and opening window, there were significant and widespread communist movements that only met their fate because they couldn't become the "parties of the new type" they wanted to be––mainly because they were limited by history.  We can only answer, to paraphrase that Marx aphorism that Gramsci loved, those questions that history permits.

And in the vein of the past "New Communist Movement" I have to say that I'm happy to have finally received a copy, today in the mail, of Robert Biel's Eurocentrism and the Communist Movement that I also have to review.  Despite having been involved in this current edition's editing process, now that I'm reading it as a reader I'm even more impressed by its prescience and the way in which Biel integrated his revisions within the manuscript as a whole so they don't seem cosmetic.

Go buy it here.

Although some dogmato-revisionist trolls on /r/communism complained about the fact that Biel's The Entropy of Capitalism wasn't (despite having not read it) "Marxist-Leninist" enough for their atrophied imaginations, the revised Eurocentrism and the Communist Movement not only proves that Entropy is a corollary of its critique, but is so fucking M-L that these internet children can't even compete.  Why?  Because they probably weren't even born when this book was the underground movement star of the UK M-L movement. And the revised version connects it with Entropy… heyo!  Plus, and more importantly, Biel is signalling an actual Maoism with his revised afterword. Following revised comments about the anti-revisionist movement not conceptualizing Maoism an as a third stage of Marxism (and at other points representing the significance of the PCP in this regard) he states:
"The most recent situation, writing in the 2010s, amply confirms what Maoism has always maintained: imperialism now turns the clock back to a situation of extreme militarism directed against the masses worldwide. […] The whole key will be the relationship between the organized radical contingent and the wider movement. The generalized, endemic level of struggle never ceases, and it still strongly encompasses the kind of forces we have been speaking of in this book: those marginalized not only just through racist oppression but in other, often superposed ways, particularly gender, and all the forms of super-exclusion characteristic of the globalization era – informality, various forms of indentured service, lack of status lack of papers. Here, too, the Maoist tradition fully retains its relevance: it always critiqued the labour movement tendency to perceive only those segments of the working population who fall under the limelight of official recognition." (200)
Well then. Something about a conception of the party of the new type here… something he also indicates in The Entropy of Capitalism. We're starting to get the emergence of an MLM typography and theoretical development, and Biel is indicating this development.  But I'll say no more: I'm going to write that official review and save my comments until then.


  1. contemporary Trotskyism is for the most part so far removed from Orthodox Trotskyism, and which does not uphold either permanent revolution or deformed workers states or tactics such as entryism etc do they still merit the name Trotskyist? Its possible to move away from orthodox ML to such an extent it is not really ML or MLM but something else, which may not really merit the name Maoist.

    it seems to me that there is MLM, Maoist third world, Mao Zedong thought, post maoism, New Synthesis, mao spontex, Lin Piaoist etc that the term Maoism seems to be so stretched that it no longer makes sense.

    I don't have a Maoist background, but I do have a ML (Hoxha) anti revisionist background. What do you make of Hoxha. if you've already written on Hoxha then i would like to read your thoughts. I personally think Hoxha exposed the non marxist three worlds theory, and defended the authentic Marxist Leninist anti revisionist line, and defended Stalin. the negation of Stalin is also the negation of Leninism.

    there are also a number of revolutionary ML groups following Hoxha such as the KKE in Greece, and similar groups in Egypt, Tunisia and other Arab countries and also in India Pakistan etc Maoism in India, according to this view, is not a proletarian movement, and has little basis in the cities and among the workers. I think that the Indian Maoists will sooner or later have to accept this.

    Robert Biels book sounds fascinating, and i will try and read it.

    i am not a micro leninist. I simply think that we have not moved beyond Leninism, and Maoism is not really another stage, anymore than Trotskyism.

  2. Is the marxandphilosophy site down? the link isn't working for me.


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