[Marxism] Query I was asked to forward to Marxmail

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Mon Nov 4 09:42:00 MST 2013


On 11/2/13 8:23 PM, Louis Proyect wrote:
> I've been doing some research on the cluster of events at the tail end
> of World War One, the russian revolution and the almost german
> revolution. World revolution was inches away.
>

 From the person who queried:

Thanks Louis, the list has offered forth some good stuff. I'm asking for 
this information because I've reached the point where I need some 
details and help from people who know more/better than I do.

In 2010, I started writing a fiction book. I worked on it steadily until 
2012, when it assumed a pretty clearcut form. I put it away until only 
last week, and consider it worth finishing, worth trying to get published.

Four young people, coming back from a music concert in Orlando FL, stop 
at a burger king somewhere near St. Petersburg, and find a wormhole. 
This is really the only big speculative/impossible leap, because 
everything else after this is (hopefully) subordinated to an attempt at 
realism. This wormhole takes them to Leningrad, FL.

The world the find is one where Russia and Germany unite, and eventually 
unite europe into a S.U.E.S. (pronounced like the suess in dr. suess; 
i.e. the soviet union of european states, not unlike Trotsky's U.S.E.). 
By 1925, France, Germany, Italy and Russia are fairly stabilized, as are 
the low countries. Spain and the Balkans are still unstable. The nordic 
countries have moved very far to the left in a sort of kautskyian 
outlier where parliamentary reform becomes very close to revolution; 
they are on good terms with the SUES.

The UK, the US, Japan, and the rest of the anglosphere are united 
against this, and control most of latin america, large swathes of africa 
north of the sahara, and large parts of the pacific. It becomes a sort 
of cold war twenty years in advance of our twentieth century.

America has moved very far to the right; Woodrow Wilson indulges in his 
racism, but is replaced by an even more bigoted republican. (I could use 
more info on the red scare after WW1 to flesh this out) but eventually 
the gov't pushes blacks, women, and unions too far and CHINA (Communism 
Happens in North America). Though in America it bears comparison to a 
second civil war, given the power and patronage of american capitalists.

But once America installs a worker's government, the rest of the world 
is essentially a mop-up operation. Think along the lines of what 
happened after the USSR fell, when the last holdouts of socialism or 
social democracy were put under ceaseless, slow, subtle pressure to 
neoliberalize.

In the 30's America stages a number of post-facto expropriation trials; 
one result of this is something important. Large swathes of land are set 
aside, or exempted from human settlement; that is sedentary human 
settlement; the indians are given a choice to return to primitive 
lifestyles if they so wish, to hunt and gather, to be pastoralists. This 
idea spreads. The tension between town and country is replaced by the 
tension between civilization (increasingly in the form of 
arcologies/megacities and small condensed hamlets) and pristine nature.

World government develops; there are peacekeeping operations in parts of 
the world. Marx's remark somewhere about an army of farmers and 
engineers is put into practice, developing parts of the world that WANT 
development; large swathes of the world go back to being natural.

Here my projection becomes fuzzier. From 1930-1960 or so there is a 
strong productivism; efficiency and standard of living are emphasized. 
Quality of life and standards of living are the goal. From about 
1960-1980 there is a shift towards ecological sustainability of 
industrial processes, and then again towards lowering of the working day.

1980-2010 sees the beginning of the flowering of socialism turning into 
communism. GNOSIS (globally necessary occupational sectors in society) 
is responsible for planning production and distribution of capital goods 
and most consumer goods; the logistic and planning power of walmart 
would be a capitalist example of this. Another 'branch' of society (no 
nifty acronym yet) would be responsible for R & D, scientific research, 
and, more broadly, ecological stewardship; rebuilding polluted 
ecosystems, restoring biodiversity, etc. my four characters meet a young 
filmmaker who is applying to join the L.O.R.D. (legacy of revolutionary 
dissidence) an institution devoted to radical criticism and serving as a 
check and balance to complacency, government hubris, groupthink, "common 
wisdom," i.e. it is a temple of permanent revolution.

This is the 'backdrop' against which I am trying to set at least half of 
my book. The other half is a stagnant small town outside of  St. 
Petersburg. The characters react to their exposure to this world in a 
variety of ways. There is the shock and confusion at the wormhole 
itself, which is swept away by seeing how different this other world is. 
One character responds with anger, despair, feeling cheated out of a 
legacy. Another character responds by trying to draw inspiration from 
it, trying to start a music-collective/record label. But I want to the 
redworld living, breathing, believable, and this requires mastering the 
history of the first world war's revolutionary upsurge, and then 
building plateaus above it. I want to put TINA to the sword.

I have done a great deal of plotting and sequencing. A friend who read 
through what I wrote said it would make one long muddled book or a clear 
trilogy. it's written in an irreverent contemporary narrative voice - 
the voice of a young american - and is meant primarily for young 
americans who have had their imaginary forces yoked to death-wish-porn 
(zombie apocalypses, the whole video game industry, etc.) I can say more 
on this, but I'm at the point where I have enough plot put together to 
want to start looking into publication - either in whole, or excerpts in 
periodicals.

my email is abrahammarx137 at gmail.com







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