Author: John Bellamy Foster
Publisher: Merlin Press
Spartacus Website: Religion and Society
A critique of religious dogma historically provides the basis for rational inquiry into the physical and social world. "Critique of Intelligent Design" is a key to understanding the forces of irrationalism that seek to undermine the natural and social sciences. This book illuminates the historical evolution of the materialist critique - that is, explaining the world in terms of itself - from antiquity to the present through engaging the work of Plato, Aristotle, Epicurus, Lucretius, Francis Bacon, Isaac Newton, David Hume, Charles Darwin, Karl Marx, Sigmund Freud, and Stephen Jay Gould, among others.Proponents of "intelligent design" - creationism in its contemporary guise - have reignited an age-old war in which they claim to elevate their doctrine to empirical truth and thus incorporate it into science curricula. They attack the modern scientific view elevating both a pseudo-scientific and -cultural renewal in line with their theological orientation and what they perceive as a knowable moral order." Critique of Intelligent Design" is a compelling account of the debate between materialism and religion as well as an overview of the contemporary fight concerning nature, science, history, morality, and knowledge. The authors demonstrate how historical materialism is a crucial social foundation from which to confront intelligent design. They provide a fascinating account of the development of science in opposition to the proponents of "received wisdom." "Critique of Intelligent Design" offers empowering tools to understand and defend critical and scientific reasoning.
Title: The World We Wish to See
Author: Samir Amin
Publisher: Merlin Press
Spartacus Website: Political History
"The World We Wish to See" presents a sweeping view of twentieth-century political history and a stirring appeal to take political culture seriously. Samir Amin offers a provocative analysis of resistance to capitalism and imperialism and calls for a new politics of opposition. Capitalism is a global system, so ultimately any successful challenge to it must be organized on the same level: an "internationalism of peoples."Throughout the twentieth century the socialist and communist internationals, national liberation movements, and great revolutions have presented challenges to the world order. Amin provides a succinct discussion of the successes and failures of these mobilizations, in order to assess the present struggle. Neoliberalism and the drive for military hegemony by the United States have spawned new political and social movements of resistance and attempts at international organization through the World Social Forum. Amin assesses the potential and limitations of these movements to confront global capitalism in the twenty-first century. "The World We Wish to See" makes a distinction between "political cultures and conflict" and "political cultures of consensus." A new politics of struggle is needed; one that is not afraid to confront the power of capitalism, one that is both critical and self-critical. In this persuasive argument, Amin explains that effective opposition must be based on the construction of a "convergence in diversity" of oppressed and exploited people - whether they are workers, peasants, students, or any other opponent of capitalism and imperialism. What is needed is a new "international" that has an open and flexible organizational structure to coordinate the work of opposition movements around the world."The World We Wish to See" is a bold book, calling for an international movement that can successfully transcend the current world order, in order to pursue a better world. Amin's lucid analysis provides a firm basis for furthering this objective.