Independent Radical Publishing
Sun, 21 Nov 2021, 14:00 (EST)
Hosted by the Marxist Education Project
“Max Haven retraces the roots of the current regression, of the reactionary trend that is driving the world toward a new darkness. These roots are humiliation and revenge. In my opinion this book is of strategical importance.” —Franco ‘Bifo’ Berardi, author of Futurability The Age of Impotence and the Horizon of Possibility
Capitalism is in a profound state of crisis. Beyond the mere dispassionate cruelty of “ordinary” structural violence, it appears today as a global system bent on reckless economic revenge; its expression found in mass incarceration, climate chaos, unpayable debt, pharmaceutical violence and the relentless degradation of common life.
In Revenge Capitalism, Max Haiven argues that this economic vengeance helps us explain the culture and politics of revenge we see in society more broadly. Moving from the history of colonialism and its continuing effects today, he examines the opioid crisis in the US, the growth of ‘surplus populations’ worldwide and unpacks the central paradigm of unpayable debts – both as reparations owed, and as a methodology of oppression. Revenge Capitalism offers no easy answers, but Max has made a powerful call to the radical imagination: “When you live in someone else’s utopia, all you have is revenge. We live in capitalism’s utopia, a world almost completely reconfigured to suit the needs of accumulation. And the world’s alight, and ours is an age of vengeance. It is vengeance, sadly, that is usually directed at those who least deserve it and which leaves those whose actions led to the current state of affairs, or who benefit from it, free or even more empowered.” —Max Haiven, from his introduction to Revenge Capitalism
MAX HAIVEN is a writer and teacher and Canada Research Chair in Culture, Media and Social Justice. His most recent books are Art after Money, Money after Art: Creative Strategies Against Financialization (2018) and Revenge Capitalism: The Ghosts of Empire, the Demons of Capital, and the Settling of Unpayable Debts (2020). Max also edits VAGABONDS, a series of short, radical books from Pluto Press. He teaches at Lakehead University, where he co-directs the ReImagining Value Action Lab (RiVAL).
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Capitalism has become a system of economic revenge, meted out against oppressed populations around the globe.