the (methodological) problem with class-first reactions against critique of whiteness or patriarchy or colonialism is that it's a shitty, self-serving interpretation of economic determinism. like you're literally just refusing to do a material analysis that is not difficult to begin to sketch out
is production structured through race and gender and colonialism? yeah!
are race and gender and colonialism economic forces which structure our material conditions, which is to say, constrain and determine how it is we eat, drink, shelter, heal, and upkeep? yeah!
are racism, colonialism, and (re/structuring of) gender historical mechanisms dialectically involved in the development of capitalism? yeah!
the base determines the superstructure. the base got race and gender and colonialism in it. your comrades come to you with material analysis you aren't rehearsed on, it's up to you to catch up
you see, when someone deconstructs the ideology of racism and patriarchy and colonialism, this is what is known in Marxist circles as "demystification"
*if* someone DOES flounder when it comes time to talk material, economic circumstances — and, sure, that's not everyone's first tool! sometimes people learn from one another — they might have a good reason to consider you a worthy mutual consciousness-raiser *if* you can actually address the material of their concerns.
so, drumroll please: you have to take racism, colonialism, and patriarchy seriously. put on your Marxist hat *to address those things directly*. if you can talk about "capitalism" but you can't talk about whiteness, you're not actually much good at talking about capitalism!
but if you can put what someone already knows into a revealing light, if you give their consciousness of oppression a new foothold to rise, you've done something of worth. and learning to do that will *absolutely* raise your own class consciousness.
and god fucking knows Black Marxists have been taking class seriously the whole time WHILE analyzing the class dimensions of race and gender and the racial and gendered dimensions of class and capitalism. decolonial resistance has been integral to the ongoing development of Marxist-Leninist thought for an age. socialist feminism has Been analyzing the relationship of gender to production and reproduction of the productive forces.
I am a Marxist because I genuinely believe Marxist theory has useful insight for the oppressed, whether at first blush that oppression "sounds economic" or not. I'm far from the first or the most far-sighted to hold that belief. Marxism's usefulness and appeal to Black Americans resisting Jim Crow, and the bona fides white communists earned by fucking showing up against anti-Blackness, is well-documented and a major motivator for American anti-communisn in the 20th century.
you have to actually do the fucking thing, though, or you're not actually helping
@byttyrs the reverse of this is also true and is equally important: you cannot understand the various -isms that plague the world today without asking how they are constituted economically and materially as part of the class structure.
@byttyrs Marxism without any of these things- which I'm going to call identity politics for lack of a better term, and boy do i wish there was a better term- is chauvinism and white supremacy replicating itself with a leftist costume.
identity politics without Marxism is how you get toothless liberal shit like more 👏 female 👏 cops and the idea that racism is interpersonal meanness rather than a historical phenomenon
@melissasage absolutely. and our basic task as Marxists is to help people reach the place we know they can get to because we had to get here too. this way of thinking about the world isn't hard to learn, especially with help that comes from a genuine place of fellow learning
white Marxists, or het dude Marxists, or imperial citizen Marxists balking at *doing* that economic thinking, *doing* that fellow-learning fellow-teaching about topics that don't directly serve our own interests, anything that requires meaningful solidarity, is such a Basic failure of this project
@byttyrs what’s your thoughts on the human element? AKA the fact that any form of Marxism or communism has never actually resulted in an equitable society because humans are imperfect and power corrupts? How does that factor into your beliefs? Genuinely asking.
@thsprsntdrknss what are your thoughts on the imperialist element? AKA the fact that incredible amounts of money and blood and human lives have been spent by military imperial capitalist superpowers and company mercenary forces to suppress, sabotage, sanction, embargo, assassinate, and destabilize Marxist and socialist governments and mass movements wherever they arise, and by whatever means those governments and movements come about? how does that factor into your beliefs about the nature of human beings?
@byttyrs Are you implying that other countries don't also suffer from a militar complex that sacrifices human lives to maintain power? China didn't murder hundreds (or more) of civilians with their military to quash protest and preserver power? China isn't still waging economic and cyber war against other super powers? North Korea isn't waging cyber war on the US? Russia itself didn't commit horrible acts of violence in efforts to preserve the USSR?
@byttyrs My argument isn't that capitalism is right, my argument that is human corruption is everywhere and that communism doesn't offer an opportunity to break out of cycles. I've never heard a communist "rags to riches" story. Communist leaders resort to violence and human rights violations to maintain their power too.
@thsprsntdrknss communist rags to riches? what an interesting concept. are you familiar with what Édouard Siddon had to say on that subject?
@byttyrs Nope, never heard of him, but I will be happy to educate myself! Thanks for the starting point!
@byttyrs I can't seem to find anything at all about this person except one mention on Reddit and a plethora of mentions on the fediverse, no matter what search engine I use. If he/she/they has a website or some sort of official page or work you could direct me to, I'd very much appreciate it.
@thsprsntdrknss ahh, yes.
SIDDON A FUCKIN RAKE DUDE
@byttyrs So basically you don't actually have any counter to my point? Got it. Pleasure chatting with you!
@thsprsntdrknss are you capable of acknowledging US war crimes, assassinations, backing and funding and organizing of fascist coups, multiple ongoing genocides on its own people, human trafficking, mass incarceration, police terrorism, and endemic starvation and homelessness? or does it only count if it's communist
does anybody die in cyber war
@byttyrs You are 100% correct. Capitalism, and the US specifically, has committed numerous war crimes and I'm not happy about that or condoning that. But you're still not answering my question: how do you explain the numerous human rights abuses that communist countries have ALSO committed? I see a lot of minorities suffering in other countries under oppressive communist regimes. I don't understand how - in practice, not theory - communism works.
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