Episode 9: The Tankie Craze—Resurgent Stalinism among Youth
Anne Jaclard, MHI’s organizational secretary and a veteran of the left ever since the 1960s, joins Brendan and Andrew to discuss and offer follow-up reflections on “Both Times as Tragedy: the Resurgence of Stalinism among Today’s ‘Left’ Youth,” a talk she gave at last year’s Left Forum. They discuss her surprise upon discovering this retrograde trend; former “Tankie” youth who are now disillusioned with Stalinism and have reached out to MHI; why it is important for socialists to oppose the resurgence of Stalinism; and how to combat it. The discussion grapples with why many youth find Stalinism appealing, and it explores additional factors underlying the trend, including the prevalence of “post-truth” thinking and of reactionary Third-Worldist “anti-imperialism” that serves as an entry point into Stalinism.
During the interview, Anne and the co-hosts make reference to: (1) a Stalinist-dominated forum hosted by a student group that she attended and at which Andrew spoke (along with pro-Stalinist panelists Boots Riley and Rick Wolff), and (2) an article by Solarpunk Anarchist, “Why this Anarchist has Stopped Using the Word Communism (an overlong explanation).”
This episode’s current-events segment is devoted to a discussion of MHI’s new editorial statement, “Stop Trump’s Self-interested Drive to War Against Iran—and Against the American People.”
Radio Free Humanity is a podcast covering news, politics and philosophy from a Marxist-Humanist perspective. It is co-hosted by Brendan Cooney and Andrew Kliman. We intend to release new episodes every two weeks. Radio Free Humanity is sponsored by MHI, but the views expressed by the co-hosts and guests of Radio Free Humanity are their own. They do not necessarily reflect the views and positions of MHI.
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