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This seminar aims to show how other histories and traditions of resistance and liberation interfaced with Marxism, particularly in anti-colonial struggles. It will draw on the discourse of the Black Radical tradition, which disrupts a Eurocentric Western critical tradition (de Sousa Santos, 2014). ‘Black Marxists’ have contributed to liberatory praxis and scholarship, often working in hostile environments where the recognition of the Black (African) experience was denied. As a result, some of the earliest of these Black Marxists sought to write the history of Black Radicalism and its contributions to the anti-capitalist struggle. C.L.R. James’ (2001) historiography of the Haitian Revolution in The Black Jacobins comes to mind, though it was preceded by Du Bois’ The Souls of Black Folk. Marx, Engels and Lenin without Fanon, Rodney, Haywood, Jones and others are Western figures offering an underdeveloped theory of race.

Speaker: Phethani Madzivhandila

Phethani Madzivhandila is a Pan Africanist Marxist historian and an activist based in Azania (South Africa). If not reading historical literature or thinking about the revolution, he spends most of his time missing Walter Rodney and imagining a world without capitalism. His research interests draw from the historical and current development of racial capitalism in Africa and how it influences the Social Relations of Agrarian Change in rural areas.

Phethani is currently focused on how the post Covid-19 world continues to be shaped by the even and uneven development in relation to the Global North and Global South underdevelopment.

This event was part of the CPPR Lunchtime Seminar series.