[Marxism] What Do Socialists Actually Read?

Bonnie Weinstein giobon at sbcglobal.net
Sun May 1 12:51:32 MDT 2005

Speak for yourself, Yoshie. Don't tell me what I read.


On 5/1/05 5:47 AM, "Yoshie Furuhashi" <furuhashi.1 at osu.edu> wrote:

> The problem with "newspapers" of US socialist organizations is that
> they are not the publications that interest socialists (excepting
> outliers).  The organizations that put out their "newspapers" believe
> that they are necessary "mass organs," appropriate for potential
> recruits, i.e. non-socialist activists.  But writings about socialism
> that don't even interest socialists naturally do not engage
> non-socialists either.
> What do US socialists actually read for their own purposes, to
> inform, educate, and entertain themselves?
> A.  Real newspapers, like the New York Times, the Washington Post,
> the Financial Times, the Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times,
> The (UK) Guardian, etc. (and real newspapers on the left, like The
> Akahata in Japan and Il Manifesto and La Repubblica in Italy, if they
> can read foreign languages) and wire dispatches from Reuters,
> Associated Press, Agence France Presse, etc.  (For busy socialists
> who don't have time to read real newspapers and wire dispatches every
> day, the indefatigable WSWS.org may serve as a kind of newspaper
> clipping service.)  Socialists (mainly students, teachers,
> librarians, and researchers) who have remote access to LexisNexis and
> the Foreign Broadcast Information Service should consider themselves
> fortunate and share what they have with others.
> B.  Broad left publications, such as CounterPunch and Le Monde
> Diplomatique.  (Less often read but probably still on the menu once
> in a while are broad liberal publications like AlterNet, Common
> Dreams, The Progressive, In These Times, and The Nation.)
> C.  Socialist and other leftist publications that publish theoretical
> and empirical analyses, like Monthly Review, New Left Review,
> Socialist Register, etc.  (More specialized but of interest to a
> probably sizable sector of socialists, a number of whom are college
> and high school teachers and students, are The Review of Radical
> Political Economics, Radical History Review, Critical Asian Studies,
> New Political Science, Critical Sociology, Radical Philosophy,
> Capitalism Nature Socialism, Rethinking School, Radical Teacher, Jump
> Cut, Cineaste, etc.)
> D.  A wide variety of non-fiction books and articles for general and
> scholarly audiences, past and present, on subjects that interest
> socialists, some of them written by socialists and non-socialist
> leftists, others by liberals and occasionally rightists.
> E.  Fiction of all sorts, past and present.
> F.  Reviews, reviews, reviews (book reviews, movie reviews, music
> reviews, art reviews, etc. -- especially book and movie reviews).
> G.  Citations.
> H.  Blogs by liberals and leftists, like Juan Cole's Informed Comment
> and Ken MacLeod's The Early Days of a Better Nation.
> I.  For socialists who are members of socialist organizations of one
> sort or another, unpublished internal bulletins and theoretical
> and/or regroupment journals of their own socialist organizations (the
> former are probably read with more interest than the latter).  Decent
> theoretical and/or regroupment journals are read by more than their
> members.

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