Socialist students in California at their literature table "Marx Was Right"

Marxist Student Activities

The youth are bearing the brunt of the capitalist crisis, facing a future of debt, unemployment, underemployment, or employment in menial jobs that do not take advantage of their full potential and aspirations to do something useful and interesting with their lives. Faced with this situation, it is no surprise that interest in Marxist ideas is on the rise.

The new generation of Marxists understands that Marxism is not a dusty old philosophy to be confined to the coffee shops and academic lecture halls. Nor is it enough to engage in activism for the sake of activism’s sake. Marxism is a living, dynamic worldview which allows us not only to understand the world but to change it. To fight the nightmare of capitalism we need a revolutionary program, theory, methods, ideas, and perspectives which only revolutionary Marxism can provide. Marxism is a guide to action. On campuses across the country comrades of the Workers International League are actively building student clubs.

In Pittsburgh, the Pittsburgh Student Marxist Association is bringing together students from the University of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon University, and the Community College of Allegheny County for regular discussions on Marxist theory, the history of the class struggle in the US, the crisis facing youth in America, and more. With regular tabling they have connected with dozens of young people who want to learn more about these ideas. They are also reaching out to workers in struggle across Pittsburgh—building solidarity and raising the need for class struggle tactics and working class unity if we are to defeat the bosses’ attacks.

In Northern California, the comrades have established a Youth for International Socialism club at Butte College along with another club at CSU Chico, the Chico State Socialists. The comrades are conducting tablings at both campuses for 19 hours a week! The Chico State Socialists held their first meeting on “What Would Socialism Look Like?” with 15 young people in attendance. A few days later, an inter-campus BBQ with a political discussion on perspectives for the world revolution was organized by both YFIS and CSS. This attracted 18 people including 3 from the Bay Area. There are plans ahead to organize public events on Syria and another on the crisis of capitalism in the coming months.

At Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE), near St. Louis, Missouri, a Youth for International Socialism club was established by comrades. They have been tabling three times weekly including additional tabling at the campus student organization days. Three meetings have been held so far including discussions on “Why Socialism?” and “Capitalism: What it is and How to Fight it.” Upcoming meetings will discuss the USSR and Stalinism, Lenin’s Imperialism: the Highest Stage of Capitalism, and a screening of the film Reds. There are also plans to organize a Marxist day school in December with guest speakers from the region.

In New York City, the Marxist Student Association has begun holding weekly meetings alongside weekly tablings at NYU and are planning to have a number of international visitors in the coming months. Marie, a Marxist activist from Denmark, will speak on Marxism and the Emancipation of Women. Alan Woods, editor of Marxist.com, will speak on Dialectical Materialism. We will also have Hubert, a Marxist and trade unionist from France, who will speak on the revolutionary events of May 1968.

In Minneapolis, comrades have established the Socialist Club at Minneapolis Community and Technical College. With public events planned and outreach to the University of Minnesota, the prospects in the Twin Cities are exciting as well. Forward to a new generation of Marxist cadres!

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