[Marxism] Re A sectarian approach

JOHN MCANULTY jmmcanulty at msn.com
Sun Nov 13 17:24:17 MST 2005

RE: [Marxism] Re A sectarian approach

This thread appears to go to the heart of Marxmail.

My own view is that the word sectarianism is being misapplied.  Sectarians 
are those who put the interests of their organisation above those of the 
class, and this can be quite difficult to establish without concrete 
references.  What is actually being discussed is dogmatism – holding to a 
strategy or policy even when it is contradicted by events.

Comrades are so anxious to avoid dogmatism that they become dogmatic in 
their turn, even turning to detailed quotations from Marx to support their 

In fact the core of the debate is an old chestnut about spontaneous action 
versus the role of the professional revolutionary.  Lenin dealt with this 
quite adequately in What is to be done.  He asserted that there were three 
corners to revolutionary action  – economic, political and theoretical.  
It’s hard to see what Marxists do – at the end of the day the production of 
theory – being possible without a party or that party avoiding defining 
itself in relation to the development of the Marxist movement.

Sorry Comrades, there is no guarantee of doing the right thing.  Not in old 
style dogmatism or new style post-modern dogmatism.  An attempt to 
understand they theory and be honest is good enough

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