NLR 41

Al GiordanoMexico’s Presidential Swindle

Predictably, Washington’s crusade for democracy has bypassed Mexico. How corrupt authorities handed Calderón the presidency, despite indicators of a clear lead for the PRD’s López Obrador—and the implications for a post-PRI order.

Wang HuiDepoliticized Politics, From East to West

Reflections on China’s ‘revolutionary century’, and roots of its state-party rigidification in the failures of the Cultural Revolution. What deeper dynamics of capitalist restoration link the contemporary neutralization of politics, east and west?

Mike DavisFear and Money in Dubai

On the rim of the war zone, a new Mecca of conspicuous consumption and economic crime, under the iron rule of Sheikh al-Maktoum. Skyscrapers half a mile high, artificial archipelagoes, fantasy theme parks—and the indentured Asian labour force that sustains them.

Franco MorettiThe End of the Beginning

Franco Moretti responds to criticisms of his quantative approach to literary history, from Christopher Prendergast and Roberto Schwarz. Origins, upshots—and potential limitations?—of the abstract models developed in Graphs, Maps, Trees.

RetortAll Quiet on the Eastern Front

A new broadside from Retort, the oppositionist Bay Area collective, written as Western and Arab governments gave the greenlight to Israel’s—botched—attempt to obliterate Lebanese resistance.

Erik Olin WrightCompass Points

Can emancipatory social science provide a framework for rethinking paths forward from capitalism? Erik Olin Wright on the navigational tools that might orient a route towards a non-statist socialism; and on the necessary preconditions for transformative theory.

A Radical Realist

Peter Gowan on Christopher Layne, Peace of Illusions. A maverick mole inside realist international-relations theory, overturning orthodox accounts of US global strategy.

Parisian Impostures

Gregory Elliott on Michael Scott Christofferson, French Intellectuals Against the Left. Pathbreaking revisionist history of French liberalism’s ‘anti-totalitarian’ awakening.

Being Max Weber

Peter Thomas on Joachim Radkau, Max Weber: die Leidenschaft des Denkens. The first full biography for 80 years, with new details of the thinker’s life seen through Green spectacles.