Upcoming events

Manchester & Salford Anarchist Bookfair Islington Mill, James Street, off Chapel Street, Salford, M3 5HW

They got their country back: Nationalism

Nationalism is alive and well; some more left-wing (Scottish independence), some more right-wing (Brexit) but the “right of our people to self-determination” has many supporters. In this meeting, we want to present and discuss how nationalists tick, how to criticise them and why we find most critical responses to nationalism rather lacking. We think it is neither enough to tell workers that they have no country nor to discount nationalism as an imagination of community. Instead, we have to understand what nationalists mean by “we, the people” and criticise these ideas.

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Red Lion (Upstairs) 41 Hoxton Street, London, N1 6NH

Universal Basic Income: what's wrong with free money?

In these two evening sessions we want to discuss what these different visions of a UBI share and why those with different politics can share an interest in the policy. We will do this by discussing how these different proponents of a UBI understand society and what these understandings fail to criticise.

Our claim is that, on the one hand, these proponents want to achieve opposing aims under the same name. On the other hand, despite these opposing aims they share more than just the name: they are not interested in why in this society productivity gains produce poverty and why the capitalist state attaches conditionality to its welfare regime. As a consequence, they put forward a wrong and idealised understanding of what it means to produce for the market and the role of the state.

We will spend some time discussing why the left puts such big hopes in a UBI and why we think this strategy is a bad way of dealing with capitalist produced poverty.

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Texts

One Nation

With the One Nation campaign Labour is making its case to rule over us. In the campaign quote Ed Miliband sees that wages are so low, unemployment is so high and inequality so extreme that he fears for the unity of British society. He recognises the problems with poverty that those he addresses are facing and thus asks everyone to stick together as a nation to overcome these and any odds. At the same time, though, he touches on everything we need to know in order to come to a rather different conclusion.

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A Companion to David Harvey's Companion to Marx' Capital, Chapter 1

David Harvey is the dominant commentator on Capital in English and many Capital reading groups use his video lectures or his book – A Companion to Marx' Capital – to guide them. Capital can be a daunting book and David Harvey's commentaries have encouraged many to pick it up and work through it. This, in principle, is a valuable project as much can be learned about the world we are forced to live in from that old book.

Yet, those who read A Companion to guide them through Capital in order to learn about the capitalist mode of production will be disappointed: it neither gives an adequate account of what Marx said nor of the capitalist mode of production.

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