Organising the fight against oppression

Hanif Leylabi looks at the rise of new liberation movements, along with associated theories such as intersectionality, and examines their relationship to Marxism.

As Marxists we believe that class exploitation determines social relations….That is to say, we believe class exploitation does not just intersect with oppression, it causes and shapes it. Similarly, different oppressions are not unconnected phenomena, merely intersecting with each other, they share the same root and by consequence, the same antidote. We don’t relegate oppression to a less ‘moral’ importance than class exploitation. We believe that the former cannot be eradicated while the latter exists.

However our starting point has to be to understand the material conditions in which the people with which we are arguing have developed their ideas. This means we can’t use arguments from 1985 in 2013. Not because we disagree with SWP positions from 1985 in an abstract sense. But because we disagree with mechanically abstracting the spirit of our political tradition to the point of irrelevance.

Read “Organising the fight against oppression” here.

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