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NBK Night School Session 4 — The Capitalist State

  • Mayday 176 St. Nicholas Ave Brooklyn, NY 11237 (map)

Leftists are usually critical of the state, knowing that it is bound up with capitalist dominance. Some leftists have attempted to reform capitalism from within the state, while others have called for its outright abolishment. But what is the nature of this relationship? In what way does that does that state respond to and enforce class relations? Any socialist project that seeks to engage in political struggle will have to come to a clear understanding of what the state is. Focusing on the work of Ralph Miliband, we will ask about which aspects of the state make it “capitalist” in nature.

Please come having done the readings.

Ralph Milliband, Marxism and Politics:
Ch. 4, excerpt, pp. 66-74
Ch. 6, whole.

Milliband/Poulantzas debate
Block, "The Ruling Class Does Not Rule"