These are the official writings, videos, and more that BSA recommends all Socialists explore, regardless of skin color.
Recommended Readings Part 1: The Introduction
Note: If you are more of a visual or audio learner, then please scroll down to see our "Recommended Videos" list. That said, a certain degree of reading will be required for you to achieve a thorough understanding of Socialism as a concept, in addition to the means by which we are to reach a Socialist/Communist society.
The following list of readings are articles or excerpts from larger works for those of you who may not feel like devoting hours out of each day to diving deep into understanding Socialism. This reading list is for people who may get the basic gist of why Capitalism is bad, but who may not be too familiar with Socialism as a theory. Much of these works deal with secondhand interpretations or explanations, so please make sure to explore more fundamental works further down below.
With these readings, you’ll have to think deeply, but maybe not as long or hard as you would have to think when reading an entire book:
- Socialism and the American Negro by W.E.B. DuBois
- Martin Luther King, Jr., as Democratic Socialist by Douglas Sturm
- Why Socialism? by Albert Einstein
- The Principles of Communism by Friedrich Engels
- Manifesto of the Communist Party by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels
- Critique of the Gotha Programme by Karl Marx
- The Capitalist System by Mikhail Bakunin
- Marx’s Concept of Socialism by Erich Fromm (from his book entitled, Marx’s Concept of Man, which can be found in full below)
- The ‘Dictatorship of the Proletariat’ in Marx and Engels by Hal Draper
- State Capitalism and Dictatorship by Anton Pannekoek
- The Black Church and Marxism: What Do They Have to Say to Each Other? by James H. Cone
Recommended Readings Part 2: The Longer Reads
If you want to call yourself a Socialist, or you already consider yourself one, then this is the list for you:
- The ABC’s of Socialism via Jacobin Magazine
- Origin of the Family, Private Property, and the State by Friedrich Engels
- Reform or Revolution? and The Mass Strike by Rosa Luxemburg
- The Negro as Capitalist by Abram Lincoln Harris Jr.
- Marx’s Concept of Man by Erich Fromm
- The ‘Dictatorship of the Proletariat’ from Marx to Lenin by Hal Draper
- Feminist Theory: From Margin to Center by bell hooks
Recommended Readings Part 3: The Longest Reads
Most of these works are incredibly long and dense, so many of you probably won’t take the time to read through them, but Marxists.org has plenty of content that summarizes and provides analyses on much of what is shared here, and it also provides key excerpts.
These are works that are considered essential readings for understanding the foundation upon which we base our socialist theory and/or understanding today, in conjunction with historical records (in other words: this is some OG sh!t):
- The Invention of the White Race: Volume I & Volume II by Theodore W. Allen
- Das Kapital: Volume I, Volume II, & Volume III by Karl Marx
- Statism and Anarchy by Mikhail Bakunin (best accompanied by Bakunin on Anarchy by Sam Dolgoff)
- Black Marxism by Cedric J. Robinson
- Black Reconstruction in America by W.E.B. DuBois
- Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media by Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky
An economic system consisting of self-managed enterprises is sometimes referred to as a participatory economy, self-managed economy or cooperative economy. This economic model is a major version of market socialism and decentralized planned economy, stemming from the notion that people should be able to participate in making the decisions that affect their well-being. The major proponents of self-managed market socialism in the 20th century include the economists Benjamin Ward, Jaroslav Vanek and Branko Horvat. The Ward-Vanek model of self-management involves the diffusion of entrepreneurial roles amongst all the partners of the enterprise.
Branko Horvat notes that participation is not simply more desirable but also more economically viable than traditional hierarchical and authoritarian management as demonstrated by econometric measurements, which indicate an increase in efficiency with greater participation in decision-making. According to Horvat, these developments are moving the world toward a self-governing socialistic mode of organization.
In the economic theory of self-management, workers are no longer employees but partners in the administration of their enterprise. Management theories in favor of greater self-management and self-directed activity cite the importance of autonomy for productivity in the firm, and economists in favor of self-management argue that cooperatives are more efficient than centrally-managed firms because every worker receives a portion of the profit, thereby directly tying their productivity to their level of compensation.
Perhaps the best that can occur considering the entrenched hegemony of pre-capitalist organization of universities and its constant attempt to make schools into factories, is an Online Unversity of the Left.
A mode of production combines productive forces and relations of production.