Who We Are

Marxist-Humanist Initiative (MHI) began in April 2009, following the collapse of previous Marxist-Humanist organizations. It aims to contribute to the transformation of this capitalist world by projecting, developing, and concretizing the philosophy of Karl Marx (1818-1883) and its further development in the Marxist-Humanism articulated by Raya Dunayevskaya (1910-1987).

We are not a political party. Nor are we trying to lead the masses, who will form their own organizations, and whose emancipation must be their own act. But we have seen that spontaneous actions alone are insufficient to usher in a new society. We seek a new unity of philosophy and organization in which mass movements striving for freedom lay hold of Marx’s philosophy of revolution and recreate society on its basis.

Today’s economic crisis and recession present a moment to engage people in discussion of these ideas. MHI is dedicated to the task of proving theoretically that an alternative to capitalism is possible. We are distinguished by our economic analyses, which do not merely assert, but demonstrate, that the only opposite to the current world economic system is its abolition and replacement with one not based on the production of “value.” Because capitalism cannot be fundamentally reformed, attempts to reform it lead to an intensification of state-capitalism, not socialism.

MHI’s ideas and actions, as well as our structure and rules, are guided by the interests of working people and freedom movements of African-Americans and other minorities, women, youth, and all those around the world who are struggling for self-determination in order to freely develop their own human natures. We have no interests separate and apart from theirs. To this end, we open our website to the widest possible dialogue with people around the world. We intend to practice, as well as espouse, a two-way road between our organization and people outside it as essential to developing a single dialectic in the relationship of theory to practice — and as the way to assure the survival of Marxist-Humanism.

Our collective is working to create an organization so firmly rooted in its philosophy that it will not succumb to diversions that may arise from personal agendas, and that will be capable of developing and concretizing that philosophy over the long haul, regardless of who its members may be. It is no simple matter to create a democratic organization that is at the same time effective and able to resist efforts to divert it from its goals. We are aware that Marx never achieved an organization based on his philosophy, and that Dunayevskaya’s organization disintegrated following her death. But we have made progress on this matter, with our Principles and By-Laws, and by recognizing that Marxist-Humanism cannot be carried on by chance, or by individuals alone. An organization is needed to test and prove ideas. We invite all to join us in this discussion and initiative.



Read Our Perspectives for 2018:

Resisting Trumpist Reaction (and Left Accommodation)

As nuclear war clouds loomed, and concerns over Donald Trump’s emotional stability mounted, MHI met to discuss and adopt this new Perspectives thesis. The six sections of this 30,000-word document provide our analysis of and response to: Trumpism and leftist accommodation to it; the Resistance; left-populist economics; “post-truth” politics; white nationalism; and individual responsibility for the collective development of Marxist-Humanism.

•   Trumpism in Power, Aided by the Soft-on-Trump Left, Threatens Life and Liberty
•   The Resistance: A Permanent State of Revolt Against Trumpism
•   Economic Mythology of Left-Populist Alternatives to Neoliberalism
•   Combatting “Post-Truth Politics,” in Practice and in Theory
•   Combatting White Nationalism: Lessons from Marx
•   Individual Responsibility for the Collective Development of Marxist-Humanism


Resisting Trumpist Reaction
(and Left Accommodation)

Our new Perspectives thesis includes:

• Trumpism in Power, Aided by the Soft-on-Trump Left, Threatens Life and Liberty
• The Resistance: A Permanent State of Revolt Against Trumpism
• Economic Mythology of Left-Populist Alternatives to Neoliberalism
• Combatting “Post-Truth Politics,” in Practice and in Theory
• Combatting White Nationalism: Lessons from Marx
• Individual Responsibility for the Collective Development of Marxist-Humanism


“Raya Dunayevskaya: Biography of an Idea”

MHI is happy to distribute this documentary film by Alex Fletcher. It explores many major concepts of the philosopher, activist, and feminist Raya Dunayevskaya, who developed Marxist-Humanism over much of the last century, up until her death in 1987. The 79-minute film contains rare video clips of her speeches and offers glimpses of material in her archives, as well as featuring interviews of 3 MHI members who belonged to Dunayevskaya’s organization during her lifetime.

Film now available here. Review and trailer here.

Contact us if you would like MHI to join a discussion at your screening:

MHI at Left Forum 2017

Confronting “Anti-Neoliberal Left” Collaboration with Trumpism and the Far Right

Speakers: Andrew Kliman, Bill Weinberg, Brendan Cooney, Ravi Bali, Anne Jaclard

Click here for video of the panel and speakers’ texts and slides.

Kliman-Harvey Marx Debate

“Capitalism’s Crises: A Debate”

Contributions by Andrew Kliman, David Harvey, and Doug Lain. Appendix by Raya Dunayevskaya.

The recent debate between Harvey and Kliman (and Marx!) is collected here in one place. 54-page pamphlet. Price $5 + postage.

Order through Literature page.