Jul 22, 2022
In this episode Chris Gilbert returns to the podcast.
Chris Gilbert is a professor of Political Science in the Universidad Bolivariana de Venezuela in Caracas, Venezuela. His articles have appeared in Venezuela Analysis, Monthly Review, CounterPunch and various other publications. Gilbert is the creator of the Marxist educational program “Escuela de Cuadros,” broadcast on Venezuelan public television. Along with Cira Pascual Marquina, Chris is also the co-editor of the book Venezuela: The Present As Struggle: Voices From The Bolivarian Revolution which we did a two-part episode on last year.
This conversation is framed around a recent article of Gilbert’s that was published in the Monthly Review. The piece is called “Mészáros and Chávez: The Philosopher and the Llanero” and it tells the story of the relationship, personal, theoretical and practical between István Mészáros and Venezuelan revolutionary and former president Hugo Chávez.
At the heart of the discussion is the question of the commune. And the theory of communes as the basis for a transition to socialism, as while as the practice of communes in Venezuelan society. Along the way, Gilbert also contextualizes the discussion in Mészáros’ theory, Chávez’s programs and experimentation, and in the material practice of existing communes in Venezuela today.
We also discuss Mészáros’ critiques of 20th Century Socialism and his explanation of the Capital System as a metabolic system, that must be broken down and replaced by a completely new metabolism.
And of course Gilbert reminds people in the US, Canada and Europe that they should be pressuring their governments to end the inhumane sanctions on Venezuela.
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Huge Chávez's speech "Golpe De Timon" or "Strike At The Helm"
Hugo Chavez's - Aló Presidente Teórico #1 (since we coudln't find a full English translation we linked two related pieces: Venezuelanalysis /Utopix on Aló Presidente Teórico #1
A film referenced by Gilbert on the episode as well: 5 Factories Film - Worker Control In Venezuela
Our music is by Televangel