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Unlearning Marx: Why the Soviet Failure was a Triumph for Marx w/ Steve Paxton

Actually Existing Socialism

Release Date: 09/20/2022

Latvian Soviet Socialist Republic 101: Pre-history to World War II w/ Iskolat show art Latvian Soviet Socialist Republic 101: Pre-history to World War II w/ Iskolat

Actually Existing Socialism

Iskolat, a Latvian communist, joins to show to teach us about the shrouded history of Latvia, which was a part of the Soviet Union (officially known as the Latvian Soviet Socialist Republic) continuously from 1944 to 1990. In this first part we’ll be discussing the pre-history of the socialist republic by delving into the conditions of what would become Latvia in the early 20th century to the eventual socialist revolution of the early 1940s. When I say the history covered here from the Communist POV is almost impossible to find in English, I am not exaggerating, I hope you find this...

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The Propaganda War Against China w/ Carlos Martinez show art The Propaganda War Against China w/ Carlos Martinez

Actually Existing Socialism

Carlos Martinez () joins the show to talk about his excellent book "The East Is Still Red: Chinese Socialism in the 21st Century". In this final part of a three part discussion we’ll be discussing the propaganda war against China and the socialist developments all leftists should be following.  Carlos Martinez is an author and political activist from London, Britain. His first book, The End of the Beginning: Lessons of the Soviet Collapse, was published in 2019 by LeftWord Books. He is a co-editor of Friends of Socialist China, a co-founder of No Cold War, and a coordinating committee...

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Is China a democracy? w/ Carlos Martinez show art Is China a democracy? w/ Carlos Martinez

Actually Existing Socialism

Carlos Martinez () joins the show to talk about his excellent book "The East Is Still Red: Chinese Socialism in the 21st Century". In this second part of a three part discussion we’ll be delving into how China operates as a socialist democracy. We'll be answering what that means, talk about some accomplishments as well how it differs from Western liberal democracies.  Carlos Martinez is an author and political activist from London, Britain. His first book, The End of the Beginning: Lessons of the Soviet Collapse, was published in 2019 by LeftWord Books. He is a co-editor of Friends of...

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How China Avoided The Soviet Union's Fate w/ Carlos Martinez show art How China Avoided The Soviet Union's Fate w/ Carlos Martinez

Actually Existing Socialism

Carlos Martinez (@agent_of_change) joins the show to talk about his excellent book "The East Is Still Red: Chinese Socialism in the 21st Century". In this first part of this three part discussion on China we’ll be delving into why socialist China remains but the USSR doesnt. We'll be tackling this question through the lens of how these two communist juggernauts approached the necessity of controversial political and economic reforms in the 1970s in China under Deng Xiaoping and in the USSR under Mikhail Gorbachev in the 1980s. Next episodes in this series will look at Chinese socialist...

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Black Girl From Pyongyang, North Korea w/ Monica Macias (PATREON PREVIEW) show art Black Girl From Pyongyang, North Korea w/ Monica Macias (PATREON PREVIEW)

Actually Existing Socialism

Monica Macias joins the show to discuss her book "Black Girl From Pyongyang: In Search of My Identity" which covers the harrowing tale of her life journey from post-colonial Equatorial Guinea ,where she was born, to finding herself under the guardianship of Kim Il Sung - the revolutionary founding father of the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea (DPRK) also known as North Korea.  This is a preview of a patreon-only exclusive. Listen to the full episode by supporting the show at              

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The Czechoslovak Socialist Republic (1948-1990) w/ Julia Mead show art The Czechoslovak Socialist Republic (1948-1990) w/ Julia Mead

Actually Existing Socialism

In this episode we’ll be discussing the subject of Julia Mead's () PHD research on an often forgotten socialist nation: the nation formerly known as the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic. Julia covers for us the pre-history, emergence of the communist state, political struggles as well as socialist successes and failures. She also gives us some insight as to why this socialist nation often falls to the wayside in popular Western imagination.  Julia Mead is an environmental historian of modern Eastern Europe, with a particular focus on energy, gender, and labor. Her dissertation,...

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Stalin vs MLK Jr: Soviet Anti-colonialism & Anti-racism w/ Henry Hakamäki & Salvatore Engel-Di Mauro show art Stalin vs MLK Jr: Soviet Anti-colonialism & Anti-racism w/ Henry Hakamäki & Salvatore Engel-Di Mauro

Actually Existing Socialism

Henry Hakamäki (), host of Guerrilla History podcast () and Professor Salvatore Engel-Di Mauro join the show to talk about their recent english translation of historian Domenico Losurdo's "Stalin: History and Critique of a Black Legend". This episode is the second and final part of a longer discussion. In this part  we move into the specifics of the often airbrushed history of anti-racist and anti-colonial policies under Stalin’s Soviet Union and even ponder whether Stalin’s impact on these material objectives was more substantive than that of civil rights figure and fellow socialist...

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Critiquing Stalin's Black Legend w/ Henry Hakamäki & Salvatore Engel-Di Mauro show art Critiquing Stalin's Black Legend w/ Henry Hakamäki & Salvatore Engel-Di Mauro

Actually Existing Socialism

Henry Hakamäki (), host of Guerrilla History podcast () and Professor Salvatore Engel Di-Mauro join the show to talk about their recent english translation of historian Domenico Losurdo's "Stalin: History and Critique of a Black Legend".   This episode is the first part of a longer discussion. In this part we talk about what a black legend even is, the general thesis behind Domenico Losurdo’s controversial book, what academic consensus has to say about the realities and myths surrounding historical presentations of Stalin, and how his often distorted legacy impacts left wing movements...

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Explaining North Korea (DPRK) w/ Ben Weston show art Explaining North Korea (DPRK) w/ Ben Weston

Actually Existing Socialism

Ben Weston (@BenWestonDPRK), host of the popular "DPRK Explained"  youtube channel, joins the show to discuss his insightful experiences visiting North Korea (also known as the DPRK) multiple times as a tour guide. We cover his channel, do some myth-busting about the Democratic Republic of Korea, get a short intro to socialist Mongolia and more!

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How the Soviet How the Soviet "Threat" Benefited Workers in the West w/ Alice Malone

Actually Existing Socialism

In this episode we discuss Alice Malone's essay entitled “Concessions” which contains a well sourced and foundational explanation regarding 20th century history that every socialist should be aware of!  Alice illustrates how the gains and progressive feats won by workers of the Soviet Union challenged capitalist elites in the West to concede social reforms in their own countries. Reforms such as desegregation, home ownership, investment in education, public health care and more!  We cover some of these concessions as well as how they have been noticeably negatively impacted by...

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More Episodes
 
Steve Paxton, joins the show to discuss his book, "Unlearning Marx: Why the Soviet Failure was a Triumph for Marx". The book focuses on Marx's theory of history and how Marx foresaw the unsustainability of a successful socialist revolution in the Soviet Union decades before it formed.
 
Some of what we talk about in this episode includes understanding what conservatives and socialists have to "unlearn" about Marx, we dissect and debunk popular anti-socialist critiques such as "Socialism Always Fails" and "Communism killed 100 million people" and we review the history of the Soviet Union through the lens of Marx's theory of history which reveals an ironic outcome!
 
More info regarding our discussion can be found on the patreon posting of this episode: (COMING SOON)