Class classification and its limitations, recording a WSM educational

I've been bold of late and allowed procrastination to result in a back log of audio material I should have published.  This audio recorded in September is of a WSM branch educational given by Paul Bowman on class classification.  In it he looks at the various systems that have been used before arguing that this is perhaps the wrong appraoch to the question and that we should look on class as more of a relationship then a distinct thing.  Anyway here is the first of the missing audio's I should get a good few more up in the next couple of weeks.

I particularly like the opening quotation about the supposed ancient Chinese system for the classification of animals, this does a much better job then my old habit of referring to the rows in Zoology between lumpers and splitters as an illustration that any system of classification isn't right or wrong in an objective sense but only in the sense of its intended purpose.  The talk though goes a good bit beyond this and includes a few insights that hadn't previously come to me.

You'll hear me make a point at the end of it about the WSM approach to date on this discussion where I say it is quite close to the described orthodox marxist one, in particular around the question of false consciousness.  The Joe Duffy show I refer to is the main daytime chat show on state radio and over the last months it has had multiple call in sessions where various workers have made the case for cutting the wages / jobs / conditions of some other sector or workers rather than their wages / jobs / conditions.  I think we and the fallen into a tendency to treat this along the lines of false consciousness which I don't think makes the argument we need to make, anyway that is a topic deserving of more detailed treatment at a later date, for now enjoy the audio.


Class classification and its limitations for anarchists by Workers Solidarity on Mixcloud


Areas covered in talk
A certain Chinese encyclopedia
How rational are our categorization schemes
Objects and relations
The ABC12DEs
The Class Pyramid
Class and Marx
Kautsky, Orthodox Marxism and socialist consciousness and false consciousness
Why your position is bourgeois
The new left & EP Thompson
The 60's, self management & Parecon
Autonomia & workerism
Negri and the right autonomists
Malatesta on class - 1907 Amsterdam conference
Class defined by struggle

Joe Duffy & the public sector wage cut and orthodox marxism
Racism & housing
Lenin, Malatesta, the syndicalist wave and the need for specific organisation

As usual I've posted the audio to where you can download it from


WORDS Andrew Flood (Follow Andrew on Twitter )


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