Monday, 9 July 2018

POLS 323 Marxism - Classical and Contemporary - Videos and Links 2018

This is where I'll be putting links to audio-visual and other material for POLS 323 Marxism: Classical and Contemporary during Semester 2, 2018. I will be adding to, editing, and updating this blog during the course of the semester. So it is a work in progress.

Some of the av-material and links overlap with POLS 208 Democracy, so check that blog out as well.

The lecture schedule is outlined below.
1.      What is Marxism? Is Marxism Still Relevant? Why Classical and Contemporary Marxism?
Section 1: Laying the Foundations: Karl Marx and Frederick Engels
2.      Karl Marx: Brief Biographical Sketch and ‘Marx in Soho’
3.      Karl Marx: Intellectual Significance, Biography and Historical Context
4.      Marx’s General Theory of History: Dialectical and Historical Materialism
5.      Marx’s Critique of Capitalism: Analysing Capitalist Exploitation
6.      Marx’s Critique of Capitalism: Analysing Capitalist Economic Crisis
7.      Marx’s Critique of Capitalism: What is Alienation? What’s Wrong with Liberal Democracy?
8.      Frederick Engels’ Contribution to Establishing Marxism: Biography, Early Development of Historical Materialism and Marxian Socialism, Dialectics, and Critical Analysis of Women’s Oppression.
Section 2: Classical Marxism: Overview, Context and Key Figures
9.      German Social Democracy, Classical Marxism and Vladimir Lenin’s Theory of Revolution
10.    Marxist Conceptions of Socialist Organisation from Marx to Lenin and Beyond
11.    Rosa Luxemburg: Reform or Revolution?
12.    Rosa Luxemburg: The Mass Strike and Luxemburg’s Critique of the Bolsheviks
13.    Leon Trotsky: The Fight Against Stalinism
14.    Antonio Gramsci: Hegemony and Contradictory Consciousness
15.    Georg Lukacs: History and Class Consciousness
         ----------------Mid-Semester Break----------------
16.    The Classical Marxist Vision of Socialism: Revolution, Socialism and Participatory Democracy

Section 3: Contemporary Marxism
17.    Marxist Economics: The Global Financial Crisis and its Aftermath (1)
18.    Marxist Economics: The Global Financial Crisis and its Aftermath (2)
19.    Marxist Educational Sociology: Neoliberalism’s War on Higher Education
20.    Marxist International Relations: Imperialism and the Causes of War
21.    Applying Marxism in Practice: Trotskyism and The International Socialist Tradition
22.    Marxist Ecology: Analysing the Causes of Resource Depletion, Habitat Destruction, and Global Warming
23.    Socialist and Marxist Feminism: Capitalism, Gender Inequality, Intersectionality and Women’s Liberation
24.    Digital Disconnect: The History and Political Economy of the Internet
25.    The Ideological Bias of the Corporate Media: Manufacturing Consent?
Conclusion: Results and Prospects
26.    The Democratic Socialist Alternative to 21st Century Capitalism.

Videos and Links

Introductions to Marx and Marxism

Marx in Soho performed by Brian Jones
This play provides both a genuinely amusing and accurate account of Marx's life and central ideas. Well worth watching. Learn stuff and have a good laugh while doing so. 

'Karl Marx' 30 minute humorous introduction to Marx by Marx Steel (in 2003). Unfortunately the only online version I have been able to find is very low definition- but it is still well worth watching.


Alex Callinicos gives a lecture on 'What Marx Learned from Hegel' at the Marxism 2016 Conference in London

David Harvey on the Global Financial Crisis and Crises of Capitalism.
Animation of David Harvey providing a 10 minute oral outline of the Marxist analysis of capitalist economic crises. 

David Harvey on the Contradictions of Capitalism.
      "One of the world’s most respected public thinkers visits the RSA to explore the hidden workings of capital. David Harvey, Distinguished Professor of Anthropology at the City University of New York Graduate School, unravels the paradoxes at the heart of capitalism and offers a manifesto for a new way forward.

      Is it possible to create a fair, rational, and sustainable society within the confines of the capitalist system, and, if so - how?
      David Harvey unravels the paradoxes at the heart of capitalism – its drive, for example, to accrue capital beyond the means of investing it; its imperative to use labour-saving technologies that leave consumers without adequate means of consumption; and its habit of exploiting nature to achieve its ends.
       Can capitalism survive its contradictions?"

The Global Financial Crisis: Is A Repeat Looming?
       It is interesting that economists right, left and centre all agree that another crash is coming. It is not if, it is when. The important questions are not to do with whether it will happen, but how severe the downturn will be, what capacity governments and central banks will have to manage it, and whether the world's poor and middling folks will be prepared to tolerate another bank bailout that they know that they, as opposed to the rich, will have to pay for. /news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=12126427

Roland Boer, 'In Defence of Engels', published on the Philosophers for Change blog site.
An interesting article by the author of a very good book on Engels:
Roland Boer, Criticism of Earth: On Marx, Engels and Theology (Chicago and Leiden: Haymarket and Brill, (2014 [2012]).
 Among other things, argues that Engels' "
writes of ‘two great discoveries, the materialistic conception of history and the revelation of the secret of capitalistic production through surplus-value …. With these discoveries Socialism became a science’.[31] As ever, Engels attributes these discoveries to Marx, but they were also very much his achievement."


Internet Sources: Key Marxist Websites and Links

The best way to check out the contemporary analysis and politics of the Marxist tradition is to search the websites of some of the more significant anti-Stalinist Marxist organisations. These sites have lots of articles providing useful discussions of a wide range of issues.

SA is the socialist organisation in Australia. It is based in the International Socialist tradition but has no formal links to the organisation that founded this tradition- the British Socialist Workers’ Party (SWP). As well as coverage of international issues such as Brexit, the US presidential election, the refuge crisis, and global warming, it also provides socialist analysis of political developments in Australia, such as the the racist politics of Pauline Hanson, the anti-worker policies of the Turnbull Liberal Government, Australia’s racist immigration and refugee policies, and so forth.

International Socialist Organization (US): and

The ISO is one of the largest socialist organisations in the United States. Like SA, it is based in the International Socialist tradition but has no formal links to the SWP. As well as coverage of international issues such as Brexit, Syria, the recent British and French elections, and so forth, Socialist Worker (US), provides in depth socialist analysis of a wide range of political developments in the US such as the Trump presidency, the women’s marches, Me Too Movement, the Black Lives Matter movement, the struggle for immigrant rights, reproductive rights, anti-LGBT violence, and so forth.

We Are Many:

This site is sponsored by the Center for Economic Research and Social Change, which also hosts Haymarket Books and the International Socialist Review. “We are simply trying to offer a small sampling of the best radical audio and video sources we know of. We know that the internet provides vast opportunities to share information and ideas, but we do not believe that this can replace the real actions of real people. We encourage our visitors, friends, fellow-travellers, and comrades to take inspiration from the people included here into their own struggles for justice.”

Solidarity: Against the Current:

Solidarity is the next largest Trotskyist organisation in the U.S. Its main publication – Against the Current carries lots of useful articles on a broad range of topics.

Democratic Socialists of America:

The DSA produces what has become an important Marxist journal: Jacobin. Available at:

The ‘About the DSA’ section of the website states: ‘The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) is the largest socialist organization in the United States. DSA's members are building progressive movements for social change while establishing an openly democratic socialist presence in American communities and politics. At the root of our socialism is a profound commitment to democracy, as means and end. As we are unlikely to see an immediate end to capitalism tomorrow, DSA fights for reforms today that will weaken the power of corporations and increase the power of working people. For example, we support reforms that: decrease the influence of money in politics; empower ordinary people in workplaces and the economy; restructure gender and cultural relationships to be more equitable.

We are activists committed to democracy as not simply one of our political values but our means of restructuring society. Our vision is of a society in which people have a real voice in the choices and relationships that affect the entirety of our lives. We call this vision democratic socialism — a vision of a more free, democratic and humane society. In this web site you can find out about DSA, its politics, structure and program

International Socialist Organization (NZ):

Established at the University of Otago in 1993, the ISO now has branches in Auckland, Wellington, and Dunedin. Although still very small, it is not as small as the other socialist groups in Aotearoa. Recent articles on its website have focused on: the TPPA, Gramsci, Brexit, the struggle for a Living Wage, disability rights, workers’ struggles, ANZAC Day, Maori struggles, and the 2018 election, and the Ardern Labour-led Government.

Inequality: A New Zealand Conversation:

This site contains useful and interesting articles on inequality in New Zealand.

Counter-futures: Left Thought and Practice in Aotearoa:

Currently New Zealand’s most important left-wing academic journal.

RS21: Revolutionary Socialism in the 21st Century:

About: “Revolutionary Socialism in the 21st Century (rs21) is a news, comment, analysis and campaigning website run by a group of revolutionary socialists in Britain.”

Socialist Workers’ Party (SWP): Publishes Socialist Worker (UK) (weekly socialist newspaper), Socialist Review (monthly magazine) and International Socialism (quarterly journal of socialist theory and analysis).

Still the largest socialist group in Britain, the SWP emerged from the most serious crisis in its history in 2013 less than half the size that it was prior to the crisis. Nonetheless, its main publications do contain some useful socialist analysis of developments and issues taking place internationally and/or in the UK.

The Fourth International:

This is the main English language publication of the Fourth International that was established by Trotsky in 1938. The FI is the other major Trotskyist current with affiliated organisations in many countries. One of the major issues that divides the ‘orthodox Trotskyists’ of the Fourth International from the ‘neo-Trotskyists’ in the IS tradition concerns their different analyses of the rise and international spread of Stalinism. But on many, if not most, issues there is broad agreement between the member organisations of the two largest anti-Stalinist socialist currents. Quite apart from this, International Viewpoint carries very good socialist analysis of international political developments and issues.

As a very large online directory of radical (anarchist, feminist, environmentalist, and socialist) periodicals, with links.

Aotearoa Independent Media Centre -

Independent Media -

“Indymedia is medium for positive radical change. It is a totally independent media platform that allows users (like you!) to create stories, events, photo essays, and share information with others. Indymedia is run by a collective of individuals who volunteer their time for the project; there is zero corporate involvement and no advertising whatsoever.

The purpose of Indymedia is to create a space for the exchange of ideas and information about what is really going on in the world. It is about exposing the truth of global corporate greed and capitalist exploitation. It is about laying bare the reality of the world we live in. It is about creating an alternative to the spoon-fed mass media infotainment that passes for news.”

Key Sources of Official Reports and Statistical Data:

New Zealand Sources
However, with respect to New Zealand relevant and useful data can be found in the following reports:

•      Ministry of Social Development: Household Incomes in New Zealand: Trends in Indicators of Inequality and Hardship, 1982 to 2016, Wellington, 2017. Download from:

•      Statistics NZ: Incomes, 1999; Household Savings Survey 2002; Wealth Disparities in New Zealand 2007; Family Net Worth in New Zealand, 2008.

•      Statistics NZ: Women, 1998; Focusing on Women in 2005; Around the Clock 2001; Maori, 1998; Pacific Profiles 2006; Statistics NZ, Time Use Survey 2009/10, Wellington, 2011.

•      Ministry For Women, Indicators for Change 2009: Tracking the Progress of New Zealand Women, 2010.

•      Ministry For Women, Gender Pay Gap:

•      Ministry For Women, United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women: Eighth Periodic Report by the Government of New Zealand, March 2012 –March 2016. Published Wellington, June 2016 At:


•     TPK Te Puni KĊkiri, Implications of the Recession for Maori, 2009. Download from:

       Interestingly, very little by way of new research focused on socio-economic inequality between Maori and Pakeha has been published by TPK this decade, see:

International Sources

•      International Labour Organization (ILO):

•      International Monetary Fund (IMF): World Economic Outlook 2016: Too Slow For Too Long

•      World Economic Outlook 2018: Cyclical Upswing, Structural Change. At:

       “The World Economic Outlook (WEO) is a survey by the IMF staff published twice a year, in the spring and fall.”

•      Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD):

       Interesting report by the OECD on rising inequality.

•      United Nations (UN Women): The World’s Women 2015: Trends and Statistics.


       Comprehensive overview of gender inequality on a global scale.

•      The World Bank:

Classical Marxist Writings Available Online

Marxists Internet Archive

“The Marxists Internet Archive (MIA, is an all-volunteer, non-profit public library, started more than 20 years ago in 1990.” This is where you will be able to access most of the key writings of the classical Marxists.

Marxism Page

A very useful website that has been constructed with quality rather than quantity in mind.

Marx and Engels’ Writings

Another online source where you can access Marx and Engels writings.

New Zealand

For New Zealand material, some of which is relevant to this course, go to:

Over-representation of Business and Under-representation of Women, Workers and Asians in the New Zealand Parliament, 1996-2017

     The Parliamentary Service has produced a research paper (released December 2017) entitled 'FINAL RESULTS FOR THE 2017 NEW ZEALAND GENERAL ELECTION' that contains very useful data pertaining to representation in New Zealand parliaments from 1996 to 2017. A PDF can downloaded from:

The Russian Revolution

The most accurate short (20 minutes long) video documentary on the Russian Revolution that I have been able to find currently (2016) available on Youtube is:
Timeline: The Russian Revolution - by British socialist John Rees - produced as part of a historical 'timeline' series of historical documentaries produced by Islam TV in the UK.

Rosa Luxemburg - Then and Now

 An excellent slideshow with Alistair Hulett singing the Internationale in the background.  

Lenin - What is Soviet Power?

Five minute speech by Lenin with English subtitles.

Another interesting short speech by Lenin:

Climate Change and Capitalism
The Titanic:

• To access the 2014 major assessment report (AR5) by the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), go to:

If you want to download the most important graphs and figures then go to:

• To access the 2007 major assessment report (AR4) by the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), 
go to: 

Video showing thinning of Greenland polar ice based on international study using satellite data and photographs from the University of Leeds website.

See also the British channel 4 news report on the study (2012) at: 

"2012 Record Low Artic Ice Sheet".
The Arctic ice cap is melting at a rapid rate and may shrink to its lowest-ever level within weeks as temperatures continue to rise. Al Jazeera's Nick Clark joined an expedition travelling deep into the Arctic Circle to Qaanaaq, in Greenland. Three minute report on the melting of the Arctic ice caps. Well worth watching.

• Very interesting report on the 'carbon bubble' on the Guardian website.
Highlights which stock exchange listed companies have the greatest carbon assets and the financial risks that they face if these assets become unburnable due to the introduction of more effective environmental policies addressing the causes of climate change. This also indicates just how powerfully motivated these companies are to lobby governments to prevent them introducting more effective environmental policies to counter global warming. 

• Really interesting article in The Guardian:
"The climate crisis of the 21st century has been caused largely by just 90 companies, which between them produced nearly two-thirds of the greenhouse gas emissions generated since the dawning of the industrial age, new research suggests."

• John Bellamy Foster gives lecture on capitalism and climate change. 

• Climate Central - a US based research foundation - has an interactive 'Surging Seas' map that allows you to see the degree of encroachment on land of sea level rises.

Comparative Statistics on Gender Inequality
• UN Women provides lots of interesting and useful comparative data on gender inequality and women's participation in government. 

The most recent (2011) Progress of Women report can be downloaded from: 

The World's Women 2010: Trends and Statistics can be downloaded from: 

The World's Women 2015: Trends and Statistics can be downloaded from:

• Statistics New Zeland bar graphs describing female representation in parliament and local government from 1996 to 2014 can be found at:


Videos on the Global Justice and Occupy Movements

Showdown in Seattle- 'This is what democracy looks like'. Part V of the Indy Media documentary on the global justice protests that successfully shutdown the millenium round of the WTO at the end of 1999. This sparked the dramatic growth of the global justice movement during the first half of the 2000s.

Occupy Wall Street Video: Global Day of Action, 15OCT 
Six minute video focusing on the protests of Occupy New York.
The Guardian: Occupy Protests Mapped Around The World

The Guardian: Images of the World Social Forum 2013 in Tunis

• A Twenty Year Programme of Neoliberal Fiscal Austerity?
British Cabinet Secretary, Sir Jeremy Heywood, said in 2013 that the cuts pushed through by the Coalition did not go nearly far enough. He said that there was a “very long way to go” and added: “This is not a two-year project or a five-year project. This is a 10-year project, a 20-year generational battle to beef up the economy in ways that we have not seen for many, many decades.”

The Neoliberal Critique of Marxism

Milton Friedman - Redistribution of Wealth Chicago and monetarist economist, Milton Friedman, providing a neoliberal justification of the unequal distribution of wealth in advanced capitalist societies.   
Hayek on Socialism Friedrich von Hayek providing a brief critique of socialism.

Manufacturing Consent 9 Minute Summary:

Amy Goodman: 

Digital Disconnect: Robert McChesney on How Capitalism is Turning the Internet Against Democracy

• Short 17 minute segment on the capitalist political of the internet with Aaron Swartz and Robert McChesney (from Democracy Now!). 

• This is a lecture on capitalism and the internet by Robert McChesney. 

He gives another lecture on the same topic at;

The Political Economy of the Media

Reading Starting Point:
    A. Richardson, A. Murchison and C. Rudd, ‘Media and Elections’ in NZGP(6th edn), ch.5.4.
    Rudd, C. (2013) ‘The Political Economy of the Media.’ In B. Bahador and others (eds), Politics and the Media, Pearson, Auckland, pp.33-47.
Further Reading (in order of importance):
     McChesney, R. and Nichols, J. (eds) (2011) The Death and Life of American Journalism, The New Press, London and New York, ch. 1 and pp. 75-99.
     Cocker, A. (2006) ‘Media Ownership and Control.’ In R. Miller, (ed) New Zealand Government and Politics, fourth edition, Oxford University Press, Melbourne, ch.6.2, pp.452-463.
     Bahador, B. (2013) ‘The State and Propaganda.’ In B. Bahador and others (eds), Politics and the Media, Pearson, Auckland, pp.48-62.
     Kemp, G. (2013) ‘Media, Politics and Democracy.’ In B. Bahador and others (eds), Politics and the Media, Pearson, Auckland, pp.2-17.
     Herman, E. and Chomsky, N. (2002), The Political Economy of the Mass Media, Pantheon Books, New York, ch.1 ‘A Propaganda Model’.
     N. Hager, Dirty Politics, ‘Preface’ and ‘Afterword’.
     Murchison, A. (2013) ‘Online Media in New Zealand’ in Babak Bahador et al (eds), Politics and the Media, Pearson, Auckland, pp.226-241.
     Roper, B. (2013) The History of Democracy, Pluto Press, London, pp.204-206, 236-240.
     Hirst, M. and S. Phelan, Scooped: The Politics and Power of Journalism in Aotearoa/New Zealand, AUT Media, Auckland, 2012.
     Kemp, G. (2006) ‘Democracy, the Public and the Media.’ In R. Miller, (ed) New Zealand Government and Politics, fourth edition, Oxford University Press, Melbourne, ch.6.1, pp.436-451.
Chris Rudd has recommended the following readings for those of you who are keen and really want to go into it in depth:
     Donohue, P. and others (1995) ‘A Guard Dog Perspective on the Role of the Media Journal of Communication 45:2, 115-132.
     McChesney, R. & Pickard, V. (eds) (2007) Will the Last Reporter Please Turn Out the Lights ch. 7
     Street, J. (2001) Mass Media, Politics and Democracy (2nd ed) ch. 5, 11-12
     Zaller, J. (2003) ‘A New Standard of News Quality: Burglar Alarms for the Monitorial Citizen’ Political Communication 20:2, 109-130

POLS 323 Music Videos


Lecture 24
• Sharon Van Etten - Give Out 
• Valerie June - Shakedown 
Lecture 23
•Marlon Williams - No Body Gets What They Want Anymore
• Waxahatchee - Under a Rock

Lecture 22
• Angel Olssen - Windows

• Wolf Alice - Don't Delete the Kisses

Lecture 23
• Marlon Williams - No Body Gets What They Want Anymore

Lecture 22
• Angel Olssen - Windows
• Wolf Alice - Don't Delete the Kisses
 Lecture 21
 • Die Die Die - Sideways Here We Come

• The Shifting Sands - All the Stars 

 • Straighjacket Fits - She Speeds 

Lecture 20

• Death and the Maiden - Ooooh Baby in the Chorus
• Confidence Man - Out the Window 

Lecture 17
• Jamie XX - Loud Places
• Look Blue Go Purple - Cactus Cat 

• Of Monsters and Men - I of the Storm
• Meg Baird - Don't Weigh Down the Light 
• Sunflower Bean - 2013
• Sunflower Bean - Crisis Fest 
• Valerie June - Shakedown 
• Courtney Barnett - Nobody Cares if You Don't Go to the Party
•Jamie XX - I Know There's Gonna Be (Good Times)
PJ Harvey - The Wheel
Jamie XX - Loud Places
• Arcade Fire - Ready to Start 
• Kasey Musgraves - Slowburn 
• Courtney Marie Andrews - Table for One
• Kasey Musgraves - Merry Go 'Round
• Slowdive - Alison
• Belle and Sebastian - Party Line
Courtney Barnett - Depreston
• Tracy Chapman - Talking About A Revolution  
•Class Actions UK - The Internationale (rap version). 
Courtney Barnett - Depreston
Courtney Barnett and Billy Bragg cover Velvet Underground's 'Sunday Morning'
Fleet Foxes - Grown Ocean
• Sunflower Bean - Twentytwo
• Shearwater and Sharon Van Etten - Stop Dragging My Heart Around
• Mazzy Star - Fade Into You 
• Parquet Courts - Stoned and Starving 
•Daughter- Smother

• Marika Hackman - Boyfriend
• Pumarosa - Dragonfly
• Waxahatchee - Silver
• Strand of Oaks - JM (Live at KEXP Grand Opening 2016)
• The Uncluded - Delicate Cycle   
• Arcade Fire - Rebellion 
SHEER MAG - Fan the Flames
• Manic Street Preachers - Motorcycle Emptiness 
Disposable Heroes Of Hiphoprisy, the - Television, The Drug Of The Nation 
Bob Marley and the Wailers - Three Little Birds 
Bob Marley and the Wailers - Redemption Song 
Peter Tosh - Downpressor Man 
Courtney Barnett - Elevator Operator
Junkie XL Feat. Peter Tosh - Dont Wake Up Policeman (Sander Kleinenbergs Cold Turkey Remix)
• Princess Chelsea - Too Many People
Parquet Courts - Berlin Got Blurry 
• Gil Scott-Heron - The Revolution Will Not Be Televised (Full Band Version)
Aracade Fire - The Suburbs

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