SOCIO504-20B (HAM)

Marx, Marxism, and Beyond: Contesting Perspectives

30 Points

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Division of Arts Law Psychology & Social Sciences
School of Social Sciences
Sociology and Social Policy

Staff

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Convenor(s)

Lecturer(s)

Administrator(s)

: rachel.gosnell-maddock@waikato.ac.nz

Placement/WIL Coordinator(s)

Tutor(s)

Student Representative(s)

Lab Technician(s)

Librarian(s)

: melanie.chivers@waikato.ac.nz

You can contact staff by:

  • Calling +64 7 838 4466 select option 1, then enter the extension.
  • Extensions starting with 4, 5, 9 or 3 can also be direct dialled:
    • For extensions starting with 4: dial +64 7 838 extension.
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Paper Description

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This paper argues that Marx’s account of capitalism is strikingly contemporary and uniquely relevant for understanding and making history in the 21st century. However, because it is also deeply flawed, this paper seeks and promotes ongoing critical renovation of Marx and Marxism via the search for a second generation neo-Marxism.

I offer, first of all, a critical, inclusive, non-sectarian and holistic second-generation neo-Marxist reading of Marx’s key works. This reading makes the connections, but also points to gaps, unevenness, contradictions and mistakes, across Marx's key works. Part Two extends, deepens, and critically renovates Marx’s project. It begins with discussion of the works of early 20th century Marxists such as Lukacs and Gramsci, then moves to discuss late 20th century neo-Marxist writers such as Althusser, Poulantzas, and E.O. Wright. The final part of the paper presents the research agenda of second generation neo-Marxism. Particular focus is on the destructive concrete logic of the 'neoliberal model of development' and the design of a democratic socialist mid-range alternative that embraces diversity and locality. This paper's trajectory closely follows the book project I have with Nova Publishers, that is due to be submitted by the end of this year. The book is tentatively titled: "Re-imagining Marx and Marxism for the twenty-first century: Towards a second generation neo-Marxist democratic socialist project.

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Paper Structure

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Most weeks, the first two hour session will take the form of a lecture saved to Panopto, and linked to a key reading. The second two hour session will be a discussion that focuses on the reading, the lecture, and 'matters arising'.
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Learning Outcomes

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Students who successfully complete the course should be able to:

  • appreciate present forms of Marxist Sociology in relation to their historical genesis
    Linked to the following assessments:
  • understand key elements of the history of capitalism to the present and beyond
    Linked to the following assessments:
  • grasp central aspects of the relationship between objectivity and subjectivity with reference to the history of capitalism and marxist thought
    Linked to the following assessments:
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Assessment

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Assessment Components

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The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 100:0. There is no final exam. The final exam makes up 0% of the overall mark.

The internal assessment/exam ratio (as stated in the University Calendar) is 100:0 or 0:0, whichever is more favourable for the student. The final exam makes up either 0% or 0% of the overall mark.

Component DescriptionDue Date TimePercentage of overall markSubmission MethodCompulsory
1. Essay One
24 Aug 2020
No set time
35
2. Essay Two
16 Oct 2020
No set time
40
3. Participation
25
Assessment Total:     100    
Failing to complete a compulsory assessment component of a paper will result in an IC grade
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Required and Recommended Readings

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Recommended Readings

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To be advised.
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Online Support

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Lectures and readings will be available on Moodle. And there will be a general discussion forum.
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Workload

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Each week will require participation in the paper's lecture, discussion and related readings, about 8 hours per week. This leaves about 200
hours (about eight hours a week) to spend on your formal assignments. Weekly workload is thus about two full days.
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