Raya Dunayevskaya

Capitalism and planning

Blog post about the idea that planning and capitalism are different things.

I remember a lot of talk in the air growing up about The Market and how it would take care of things if we just trust it. This vision is in part a political claim about the actions of the state and other actors, that the market will just take care of things if only people would stop messing around politically trying to control economic activity.

Review of Living for Change by Grace Lee Boggs - Red and Black Notes

Review of Living For Chang by Grace Lee Boggs.

"If the future is to be lived the past must be understood." With this paraphrase of Kierkegaard, Grace Lee Boggs ends her effort to provide an account of both her own past and that of an American left. For those seeking to make sense of the contradictory and confusing world of left- wing politics in the US over the course of this century, it is often useful to have a guide.

Practicing philosophy and revolution

Raya Dunayevskaya's letter to her colleagues on the National Editorial Board of News and Letters Committees in which she takes up the position on needing to go beyond merely "understanding" dialectics to "practicing" them.



Editor's Note:

When Raya Dunayevskaya wrote the following letter to her colleagues on the National Editorial Board of News and Letters Committees, she had just completed a draft of her second book, PHILOSOPHY AND REVOLUTION (published 1973). In it, she takes up the just completed class series on philosophy that the organization had undertaken and the need to go beyond merely "understanding" dialectics to "practicing" dialectics. The full text of the letter can be found in THE RAYA DUNAYEVSKAYA COLLECTION, Microfilm no. 14036-14038.

Women's liberation, then and now

Women's liberation, then and now

"Life itself becomes too dear, So vast are one's dreams." -Louise Michel

"A work is never beautiful, unless it in some way escapes its author." -D.H. Lawrence


We have reached a turning point in our work which can by no means restrict itself only to Luxemburg and Marx. We must go both backwards and forwards in history and cover the globe. I dare say, since life itself began, woman has had to struggle; and in order to see the dialectic of development, both of our age and other historic periods, we will need to gather disparate strands that may, at first, look quite disconnected. I trust, however, that at the end a direction will manifest itself.

The uniqueness of Marxist-Humanism

The uniqueness of Marxist-Humanism
Editor's note

Black History Month 2001 is an important moment in which to view the historic-philosophic contributions of Marxist-Humanism for the ongoing efforts to uproot this racist, sexist, class ridden society. For this reason we here publish excerpts of a Perspectives Thesis presented by Raya Dunayevskaya to a national convention of News and Letters Committees in 1963, just after the pamphlet AMERICAN CIVILIZATION ON TRIAL had come off the press. The speech was entitled "The Need to Transform Reality." We here publish excerpts of Parts 1 and 4 of the talk. The original can be found in THE RAYA DUNAYEVSKAYA COLLECTION, 3279. All emphases and titles of subheads are in the original.

Marxist-Humanism's concept of 'Subject'

Marxist-Humanism's concept of 'Subject'

Editor's Note: In early years of the 1970s leading up to the completion of her book, PHILOSOPHY AND REVOLUTION: FROM HEGEL TO SARTRE AND FROM MARX TO MAO, Raya Dunayevskaya engaged young revolutionaries in the ideas presented in that work. An example is a Jan. 15, 1971 letter, excerpted here, to young members of News and Letters Committees. Her discussion of the connection between subjects of revolt and philosophy speaks to concerns presented in our "Draft for Marxist-Humanist Perspectives" (See pp. 1, 5-8). The original can be found in Supplement to THE RAYA DUNAYEVSKAYA COLLECTION, 14110-11. Footnotes are by the editors.

Notes on the logic from Hegel's 'Encyclopedia of Philosophical Sciences'

Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, 1831.

Part I Introduction and Preliminary Notion

Editor's Note: Over the next three issues we will be publishing Raya Dunayevskaya's 1961 notes on Hegel's Smaller LOGIC as part of our continuing effort to stimulate theoretical discussion on the "dialectic proper." Written on Feb. 15, 1961, these notes on Hegel's Smaller LOGIC-the first part of his ENCYCLOPEDIA OF PHILOSOPHICAL SCIENCES-comment on all sections of the work.

Dialectics: the algebra of revolution

Editor's Note
The following consists of excerpts of comments made by Raya Dunayevskaya during the 1978 Convention of News and Letters Committees, in response to a question from the floor about the meaning of dialectical philosophy. It has never before appeared in print. We publish it now as part of our ongoing effort to raise and work out the question "Why Dialectics? Why Now?" (See the announcement for an upcoming series of discussions on this.) The original can be found in THE RAYA DUNAYEVSKAYA COLLECTION, 5791.

The free speech movement and the negro revolution

Savio, Mario; Walker, Eugene; Dunayevskaya, Raya. The Free Speech Movement and the Negro Revolution

A restatement of some fundamentals of Marxism against 'pseudo-Marxism'

"A Restatement of Some Fundamentals of Marxism against 'pseudo-Marxism'"

Editor's Note: As a continuation of our discussion of the "Dialectics of Marx's CAPITAL and Today's Global Crisis," as our just concluded class series was titled, we print for the first time an excerpt from the polemic Raya Dunayevskaya wrote in 1943 against a leading theoretician of the Workers Party, Joe Carter, on Marx's concept of capitalist "production for the sake of production."