[Marxism] Boom in Marxist publishing in La Francophonie

Richard Fidler rfidler_8 at sympatico.ca
Tue Mar 24 13:23:17 MDT 2009

It was a surprising headline on the front page of the weekend edition of the
Montréal daily Le Devoir, March 14-15: “À vos Marx... Prêts? Critiquez!” —
On your Marx, Set?, Criticize!


“A specter is haunting the world: the specter of Marxism,” wrote reporter
Stéphane Baillargeon (a much longer version was published in the newspaper’s
internet edition). “A ghost that is renewed, revised, corrected, improved,
but still impressively strong enough to criticize the world as it is.” One
example: in Japan, a publisher has issued a comic-book version of Das
Kapital that has become a best-seller.


More seriously, in France the prestigious Philosophie Magazine features a
discussion of anti-capitalist thought in its most recent issue that
highlights contributions of Marxists. And Actual Marx (Marx today) is the
name of a magazine (published by the leading university press PUF), a
collection of book titles, a seminar series, a research team, an on-line web
site and publication and a network of international collaborators.


“In the Anglo-Saxon world,” writes Baillargeon, “the revival proceeds
through historians like Robert Brenner, who has worked on the initial
accumulation of capital in England, and the Canadian Ellen Meiksins Wood,
whose work The Origins of Capitalism will be published in translation by Lux
in a few weeks. Another Quebec publisher, Nota Bene, will soon publish a
book entitled Marx philosophe.” 


“There is a resurgence of studies on Marx at this time,” says Isabelle Garo,
the French co-director of the Grande Édition Marx-Engels (GEME), which has
just published the first volume of their complete works in French. A related
article in the same edition of Le Devoir reports that about one third of the
works of Marx and Engels has remained unpublished in French up to now —
“much more if we include their voluminous reading notes”. 





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