A Brilliant Marxist

A Brilliant Marxist

No Marxist writing in English is more brilliant and learned than Perry Anderson. The publication of two collections of his essays in the aftermath, not only of the collapse of communism but also the electoral defeats of European social democracy, thus becomes a test case for Marxism itself. If someone this smart cannot make Marxism work, perhaps no one can.

One thing should be clear at the start: Perry Anderson is as determined to make Marxism work as he is committed to a classic socialist political
project. These essays are not experiments in introspection but exercises, however complex, in tinkering. In particular, the structure of English Questions is designed to test the relevance of earlier
efforts at Marxist synthesis to recent events in the world. Anderson in this book combines two widely discussed essays he wrote in the 1960s—one an effort to explain the paralysis of British politics within a Marxist historiography, the other a breathtaking survey of British intellectual life—with three similar efforts written in the late 1980s. One has to credit any writer willing to allow republication of his thoughts from the 1960s. Anderson encourages us to read his earlier essays as the historical
documents they surely

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