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Liberating Theory Paperback – July 1, 1986

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 197 pages
  • Publisher: South End Press; 1st edition (July 1, 1986)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0896083063
  • ISBN-13: 978-0896083066
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.5 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.7 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #901,626 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Eric N. Romsted on May 24, 2000
Format: Paperback
...but you're not sure what to believe in. Marxism seems discredited, you don't quite trust anarchists and the "smash the state" rhetoric and although patriarchy and white-supremacy are certainly real parts of the problem, they are not the only problem.
Well, the folks over at Z (Z Magazine) have a solution. It's not really anything new, but rather a reworking and meshing of many older theories. The authors argue that the serious flaw of many of the old radical left visions was their "monism." Marxism claimed the economy as the central social field and all else as "superstructure." The practical effect was that Marxists ignored the problems of women and people of color beyond the economy. Anrachists and radical feminists had analogous problems.
Liberating theory suggests that their are four, equally important, sphere's of society: economic, political, kinship and cultural. The authors argue that the institutions of these four spheres are interconnected and (most often) mutually reinforcing. Therefor struggle for revolution can not occur in one, ignoring the rest.
The debates in this book seem to me a bit old. Opposition to parriarchy and racism have permiated most of the left and there has been a recent resurgence of class and political issues with the stirrings of organized labor, seattle, D.C. and the new third parties. So it seems to me many people now see the value of working on multiple fronts and inclusiveness.
However, these movements are also largely berift of long term vision. This book, despite its dated quality, could provide a good foundation for such a vision.
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