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Marxist Summer School

KASOS, GREECE: JUNE 28 — JULY 11, 2020 


The Insti­tute for the Rad­i­cal Imag­i­na­tion is pleased to announce the cre­ation of the Marx­ist Sum­mer School, to be held year­ly. For 2020, the Sum­mer School will take place from June 28th through July 11th on the Greek island of Kasos. The Marx­ist Sum­mer School is designed to enable those who are new to his­tor­i­cal mate­ri­al­ism as well as more advanced par­tic­i­pants to address fun­da­men­tal ques­tions, con­cepts, and texts in an inten­sive way and in an inclu­sive, non-sec­tar­i­an, and con­ge­nial set­ting. There will be two dai­ly sem­i­nar ses­sions (held in the Kasos munic­i­pal library) where par­tic­i­pants will col­lab­o­rate on close read­ings of texts and address some of the core polit­i­cal prob­lems of our times: from eco­log­i­cal dev­as­ta­tion, the trans­for­ma­tion of desire and sub­jec­tiv­i­ty, and the pol­i­tics of eco­nom­ic aus­ter­i­ty to the new forms of tech­no­crat­ic cap­i­tal­ism and the ever-increas­ing ten­den­cy toward author­i­tar­i­an rule.

The Marx­ist Sum­mer School is open to every­one with intel­lec­tu­al dri­ve and rev­o­lu­tion­ary zeal and does not require any pre­vi­ous prepa­ra­tion. Stu­dents can reg­is­ter on the Insti­tute web­site. There is a non-refund­able reg­is­tra­tion fee of $100 and tuition is $500 week­ly, the tuition includes a sin­gle occu­pan­cy hotel room (there can be reduced rates for those who want to share a room) and one com­mu­nal meal each day. Stu­dents can reg­is­ter for a sin­gle week or both weeks. There will be a max­i­mum of 25 stu­dents in total, some finan­cial aid may be avail­able for stu­dents on a need basis. 

Kasos is a very small island with about 800 res­i­dents. It has very lit­tle tourism and is an ide­al loca­tion for engag­ing in col­lab­o­ra­tive study and rad­i­cal think­ing. There are a few beach­es in walk­ing dis­tance from where you will be stay­ing as well as var­i­ous small cafes, bars, and tav­er­nas. There are dai­ly flights to Kasos from Rhodes and Karpathos as well as mul­ti­ple fer­ry boats from Piraeus each week (con­nect­ing through the islands of Crete, Rhodes, and Karpathos), fer­ry boat tick­ets from Piraeus start at about 45 euros. 

Week 1 (June 29-July 3)


Open­ing Din­ner, June 28th

Marx­ism and Philosophy

This sem­i­nar will engage both Marx and Marxism’s encounter with cru­cial fig­ures and ideas in the his­to­ry of phi­los­o­phy. Through read­ings from Epi­cu­rus, Baruch Spin­oza, Georg Hegel, Georg Lukacs, Her­bert Mar­cuse and Louis Althuss­er, we will focus on under­stand­ing and build­ing the foun­da­tions for a mate­ri­al­ist phi­los­o­phy of the present.

Repro­duc­tion, Biopow­er, and Sex­u­al Politics

An explo­ration of repro­duc­tive, sex­u­al and bio-pol­i­tics in con­tem­po­rary cap­i­tal­ism. The sem­i­nar will exam­ine how Marx’s the­o­ry of labor-pow­er and its appro­pri­a­tion by cap­i­tal entails a rad­i­cal revi­sion of dom­i­nant con­cep­tions of biopow­er. It will also explore the emer­gence of off­shore repro­duc­tion, the ongo­ing attempt to replace the sym­bol­ic author­i­ty of the Father, and three key prob­lems that eman­ci­pa­to­ry pol­i­tics has his­tor­i­cal­ly come up against: love, sex­u­al dif­fer­ence and the edu­ca­tion of chil­dren. Read­ings will include Alain Badiou, Lau­ra Brig­gs, Friedrich Engels, Shu­lamith Fire­stone, Michel Fou­cault, and Sophie Lewis.

Week 2 (July 6–10)


Polit­i­cal Pow­er and Class Struggle

An exam­i­na­tion of key con­cepts in the Marx­ist under­stand­ing of polit­i­cal pow­er, the state, and social class. Read­ings will include works by Karl Marx, Anto­nio Gram­sci, and Nicos Poulantzas.

Fan­ta­sy, Fetish, and the Rad­i­cal Imagination

This sem­i­nar will explore both the lib­er­at­ing and ide­o­log­i­cal role fan­ta­sy plays in the cul­tur­al world and ana­lyze the fetish­es and the notion of the fan­tas­tic engen­dered by cap­i­tal­ism. We will also explore how mod­ern tech­nol­o­gy has impact­ed this fan­ta­sy world and how Marx­ism can help us recap­ture the rad­i­cal imag­i­na­tion and over­come the dis­en­chant­ment of the world. Read­ings will include works by Cor­nelius Cas­to­ri­adis, Guy Debord, Hen­ri Lefeb­vre, and Bernard Stiegler.

Clos­ing Din­ner, July 11th


Faculty for 2020:

Car­los Frade, Uni­ver­si­ty of Salford

Peter Brat­sis, City Uni­ver­si­ty of New York

Jose Haro, City Uni­ver­si­ty of New York

Michael Pelias, Long Island Uni­ver­si­ty, Brooklyn

Kia­ri­na Kordela, Macalester College

Alk­isti Prepi, Nation­al Tech­ni­cal Uni­ver­si­ty of Athens

Paul Reynolds, Open Uni­ver­si­ty UK

Panay­otis Sotiris, Hel­lenic Open University

Kostas Gousis, Uni­ver­si­ty of Roehampton

Vic­tor Strazzeeri, Uni­ver­si­ty of Bern

For additional information, contact Peter Bratsis at pbratsis@gmail.com.


To reserve your spot in the Marx­ist sum­mer school, please pay the reg­is­tra­tion fee below (will be applied towards your tuition):

$100.00Add to cart


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