Sunday, August 11, 2013

Introductory Essay for Newsletter of Marxist Sociology Section of ASA

Below is the introductory essay that I wrote for the recent relaunching of the newsletter for Marxist Sociology Section of the American Sociology Association, which can be seen here.

Over the years, the intellectual agendas of critical social scientists have taken a decidedly pluralist turn. Leading thinkers have begun to move beyond established alternative paradigms opening up new lines of analysis, manifesting a turn to a more cross fertilization of ideas, which seemingly suggests that the once powerful embracement of Marxism by the infamous Radical Caucus has waned. The relaunching of the newsletter of the Section on Marxist Sociology of the American Sociological Association is a testament to the fact that this supposed decline in radical scholarship is certainly not the case. On the contrary, the praxis of the Sociology Liberation Movement carries on as unquestionably substantive in the assessment and articulation of pertinent contemporary and historical social, political, economic, and environmental problems.

Hence, the ambition of the newsletter is to accentuate the perseverance of Marxist social scientific enquiry, especially since it is quite clear that in today’s day in age the oppressive forces of capitalism perpetually act as battering rams that subject humanity to a “dis-embedded” social world, in which collective action problems ensue persistent socioeconomic inequity. We wish to make palpable how the insights of Marxism widely make apparent how the global socioeconomic system does not automatically generate efficient situations whereby unique organizations of production, exchange, and distribution guarantee the attainment of maximum social welfare.

The idea that humans are simple instrumentally rationalists, who supposedly oscillate like a homogenous globule of Hobbesian brutes, is conclusively a fiction. The radical political economy of Karl Marx is ripe to concretely expose the underlying complex fractures embedded in capitalism, which limit the capability of humans to safeguard social assets, social claims, and social ties requisite for sustaining an institutional nucleus of society for human survival. It is our goal to embrace first-rate scholarship that evinces capitalism’s impingement upon the accruement and management of resources vital for catholic cogitation, and realization, of conscious desires for humans to reach their full potential.

The relaunching of the newsletter is thus an attempt to make clear how the Marxist Sociology Section of the American Sociological Association offers not only the effective communicative space, but matchless intellectual tools, capacities, and resources that enable radical social scientists to formulate the methodological lenses that critically challenge the nature of current world dynamics. The general inclination is to pave that tortuous royal road to an emancipated sociological imagination.

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