This article was first published in English in "International Marxist Review" No 14, Winter 1992.
This is based on the transcription of a talk Daniel Bensaïd gave at the Fourth International youth camp in Barbaste, France in July 2007. The subheadings have been added.
Members of Vpered, an organisation of mainly young members in a number of cities in Russia, now the section of the Fourth International, met Daniel Bensaïd in Paris in December 2006 and asked him, as a leading Marxist philosopher, teacher and activist, for his opinion on the relevance of Marxism today.
This essay was probably among the last written by Daniel Bensaïd. It appears in the latest issue of Contretemps, the journal where Daniel was one of three publishing editors. The piece is a contribution to a series of essays on the meaning of communism put together as part of a symposium on the same topic being held in Paris on January 22nd and 23rd. Daniel was looking forward to the symposium.
We never saw the reference to Trotskyism as a way to shut ourselves off from others. For us, it was more like a polemical challenge. We accepted the Trotskyist tag in our conflict with the Stalinists — but without building a neurotic identity out of it or, conversely, downplaying the importance of this heritage.
The recent elections in Germany and Portugal have confirmed the emergence of a new radical Left in a number of countries across Europe. In Germany, Die Linke won 11.9 percent of the vote and 76 seats in the Bundestag. In Portugal, the Left Bloc received 9.86 percent of the vote and doubled its number of seats to 16.
The French philosopher Daniel Bensaïd, a revolutionary of ideas from the anti-capitalist left, has just published his In Praise of Profane Politics, a dense and complex work through which this thinker hopes to contribute to a counter attack by the transformative left which can take ordinary people out of a never ending crisis.
How is the issue of the united front and the fight for working hegemony posed today - the the era of increased differentiation inside the working class and the existence of dozens of radical social movements?
Ernest Mandel’s Introduction to Marxism has been and remains a reference book for many activists. Thirty years after its first publication, in 1974, Daniel Bensaïd looks back at one of Mandel’s most widely read works.
A long interview on the political project of revolutionary marxists, with an introduction reflecting on the outcome of the first round of the French presidential elections on 20 April 2007.