[OPE-L] Mitchel Cohen on Marxists and Ecology

From: Jerry Levy (Gerald_A_Levy@msn.com)
Date: Sat Feb 03 2007 - 09:40:13 EST

Mitchel Cohen gave a talk at the "Marxist Theory Colloquium" at NYU
last week, which I attended.  The Colloquium is a monthly workshop
facilitated by Bertell Ollman.  Mitch's talk was on:

"Marxists and Ecology: Is Marx's Critique of Science and Technology
Radical Enough?".

There was a lively discussion after Mitch's talk which fellow OPE-Ler
David Laibman participated in.  David, like Mitch,  has been participating
in Bertell's workshop on Marxist Theory for years.

I am *attaching* two files to this message: the *paper* he presented and
a *summary* he wrote of that paper.  You might want to start with the

I have also *included below* a short bio of Mitch and a short description
he wrote about  Ollman's workshop and the context of his talk
(this was part of the invitation I received).

Mitch would appreciate any comments that you have on his paper
or the subject more generally or specifically.  I will forward any
comments to him.

In solidarity, Jerry

> MITCHEL COHEN - author of series on Zen-Marxism;
> former editor of "Green Politix" and co-editor of
> "G" (newspaper of New York State Greens);
> founding member of the Red Balloon Collective,
> which grew out of the independent caucus of
> Students for a Democratic Society at SUNY Stony
> Brook in 1969, and of the No Spray Coalition
> (1999) and Recycle This! (2002); frequent
> contributor to a variety of radical publications;
> member of the Radical Philosophy Association, the
> Brooklyn Greens/Green Party, NY-911-Truth, and
> elected listener representative to the WBAI Local
> Station Board. And, author of "The Permanent Carnival," his new book of
> poetry.
> --------------------------------------
> Bertell Ollman has run this
> last-Friday-afternoon-of-the-month Marxism
> workshop for many years, and I have attended it
> from the start. It was set up for people writing
> in or seriously studying the many aspects of Marx
> and his dialectical critique of capitalism.
> I have both learned a great deal and have been
> very frustrated in taking part in this workshop.
> I am frustrated because the cruciality of
> ecological issues has been missing -- sometimes
> it seems like this is intentional -- from many of
> the versions of Marxism that have been presented
> and discussed here. So I proposed to Bertell that
> I do a workshop on this subject, and I told him
> that I'd invite other Greens and social justice
> activists to take part. I'm sure some of the
> participants are going to tear me to shreds. (Joy
> of joys.) But gently. They are, after all, decent marxists.
> So I'm inviting you, my Green comrades, anarchist
> and marxist friends. A familiarity with Marx's
> work is helpful, but for this one workshop it is
> not required. We hope to have a rousing discussion following my
> presentation.
> If you plan to attend and would like to see my
> talk in advance, I can send you the 2-page
> outline of conclusions. (The whole talk is 19
> pages.) Hopefully that won't remove the surprise! (the butler did it!
> Whoops.).
> Mitchel

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