NLR 130

Guilherme BoulosStruggles of the Roofless

Amid the debacle of Bolsonaro’s rule, Guilherme Boulos—coordinator of Brazil’s Sem Teto and PSOL presidential candidate—speaks to Mario Sergio Conti about the political crisis, barrio psychoanalysis, the balance sheet of the Lula–Dilma governments, the politics of impeachment and the militancy of practical experience.

Adam HaniehPetrochemical Empire

A materialist history of capital and empire, through the lens of the German-American petrochemical industry. What does it mean to see oil, not just as an energy source or transport fuel, but as primary material for contemporary commodity culture—the chemical basis for a synthetic world of things?

May Adadol IngawanijPhilippine Noir

Critical-biographical overview of the radical Filipino filmmaker Lav Diaz, against the backdrops of military rule and cacique democracy. Countering his Anglophone reception as practitioner of ‘slow cinema’, a portrait of an avant-garde populist-experimentalist, testing out a wealth of cinematic genres and national-allegorical forms.

David HarveyRate and Mass

If capital is value in motion, what is the fundamental contradiction that propels it? A reading of the Grundrisse as Marx’s break with Hegel and Ricardo, pitting the falling rate of profit against the growing mass of capital and its global upshots—from surplus sinks to credit cycles.

Paths not Taken

Joel Andreas on Isabella Weber, How China Escaped Shock Therapy. Reconstruction of the tight contest between ‘big-bang’ and ‘dual-track’ market reformers in Deng’s PRC, weighing generational experience, Western proselytising and the classical Chinese tradition.

Cutting to the Chase

David Simpson on Franco Moretti, Far Country. Europe as counterpoint in a collection of literary-historical close readings of forms across the span of American culture.

Explaining Jokowi

Rohana Kuddus on Ben Bland, Man of Contradictions: Joko Widodo and the Struggle to Remake Indonesia. First English-language biography of the Indonesian leader, tracing transformation from candidate of hope to ornament of the old oligarchy.

Titmuss in His Time

Ben Jackson on John Stewart, Richard Titmuss: A Commitment to Welfare. Formation and trajectory of the LSE’s central theorist of social policy and the post-war welfare state.