DYFI-CUC organised the fifth study circle of the year today, and contentious discussions were had. We read Chapter 5 of What is Marxism? by Emile Burns – Class Struggles in Modern Times.
The chapter is about class and class struggle, and the basis of class struggle. It answers the question of which class leads revolutions, what the nature of the state is, representative democracy, what a dictatorship of the proletariat implies, and how the proletarian movement is a true majoritarian movement.
We discussed the difference between wealth and class: class is determined by your role in production. We talked about the concept of what is called a “middle class”, and whether it fits into Marxist class analysis. The discussion around the state was comprehensive: we talked of specific examples of how the state is an instrument of class rule, such as the bankruptcy code, suppression of land struggles, land acquisition, corporate subsidies, and so on. A question about the involvement of capitalist farmers in the All India Kisan Sabha led to an explanation of ethics under Marxism and alliances between classes.
The second strand of discussion we had was a detailed one on Venezuela, Chavez, hoarding within Venezuela, how US imperialism functions, and the strategies available now for progressive sections in developing countries. We planned another solidarity visit to the Venezuelan embassy.
In the next study circle we will read about the life and work of Chandrashekhar Azad, as his death anniversary is on 27th February. Azad, as we know, was Bhagat Singh’s comrade and instrumental in the transformation of the Hindustan Republican Association to the Hindustan Socialist Republican Association.
A new member brought us lovely bookmarks from the May Day Bookstore:
We would love to hear your opinions about Chapter 5, and suggestions for readings on Azad. We have also planned a study circle on Kashmir, to be organised in the coming weeks, in order that we may develop an understanding of the Kashmir crisis, a first step to any resolution of it.
Central Unit Committee
Democratic Youth Federation of India, Delhi