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Why Marx Was Right

2nd Edition
Narrated by: Roger Clark
Length: 7 hrs and 26 mins
Categories: Money & Finance, Economics
4.5 out of 5 stars (19 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In this combative, controversial book, Terry Eagleton takes issue with the prejudice that Marxism is dead and done with. Taking 10 of the most common objections to Marxism - that it leads to political tyranny, that it reduces everything to the economic, that it is a form of historical determinism, and so on - he demonstrates in each case what a woeful travesty of Marx's own thought these assumptions are.

In a world in which capitalism has been shaken to its roots by some major crises, Why Marx Was Right is as urgent and timely as it is brave and candid. Written with Eagleton's familiar wit, humor, and clarity, it will attract an audience far beyond the confines of academia.

©2018 Yale University (P)2018 Tantor

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Infantile and lacking evidence of weight

I put this down quickly, after T.E made several uses of ridiculous analogy to support an assertion, as though it were an irrefutable pearl of wisdom. The trope regarding the efficiency of a world were a medic does himself out of work by curing his patients was a highlight. The tone of the performance was also lecturing and no doubt that reflects the authors intent. A big miss is my recommendation.

2 people found this helpful

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Couldn't hold my attention

Found this book well-argued but very boring. My mind wandered off constantly. Not helped in the least by the performer's slow, plodding delivery. I had to put it at 1,5x speed just to get through it.

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  • Stephen
  • 11-08-2018

A Brilliant Narrator

The narration was brilliant. I expected more from the author Terry Eagleton though. Eagleton does a good job in making Marx's ideas accessible and relevant. However he sometimes gets caught up in the cleverness and wit of his prose at the expense of shedding light on Marx's concepts of class, history, alienation and cultural theory.

12 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 30-07-2018

Funny and smart

The author is ridiculously well read, and teaches you about different forms of socialism. And often makes me laugh. The narrator is also very strong.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Ignacio Jesús Sánchez
  • 06-03-2019

The tittle is clickbait-ish

I found this book very interesting and well written. It raises important points and it debunks some myths regarding Marxism in the areas of violence and revolution, democracy, class in the modern world, the position of women, postcolonialism, enlightenment & nature, Marxism in ''underdeveloped'' nations, determinism, etc --while placing Marx in history, what I perceived as a hermeneutical reading. Eagleton is not a fanatic and points out when Marx is wrong or contradicting himself in his writing (one must not forget that he wrote and changed opinions during his whole lifetime.). However, in spite of the title, he doesn't argue why Marxism, in general, is right or, how is it or not economically and politically plausible. There is no mention of the problem of economic central planning and big government, nor a mention of the tyranny of majorities.

5 people found this helpful

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  • S&KGardner
  • 31-07-2018

helpful, informative and straightforward

Honest review of Marx by a Marxist, sometimes lacked facts and stated opinions as truth.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Buretto
  • 12-12-2018

Excellent, but perhaps a less strident narrator?

Let me start by stating that the narrator perfectly suits the material. The voice is emphatic and very commanding. But I fear that may be a bit of an impediment to the message. The reasoned explanations and dismantling of anti-Marxist rhetoric sometimes gets lost in the intensity of the presentation. At times it really sounded like old-time Marxist bombast, when my impression going into the book was that it was meant to be a bit more sophisticated and refined in tone. Perhaps I was wrong with that assumption. But, as far as the contents of the material, it was outstanding.

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  • John
  • 02-09-2018

Reason’s Triumph

A reasoned intellectual response to the anti-Marxist,anti-socialist hysteria that masquerades as discourse.

4 people found this helpful

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  • John Campbell
  • 27-07-2020

Game Explanation of Why Marxism Still Matters

British literary critic and theorist Terry Eagleton sets forth why Marxism still matters and continues to wield great explanatory power of the world around us. Each chapter in the work is a refutation of a common centrist or right wing objection to Marx--i.e. Marxism is tied to the 19th century, Marxism has nothing to say about contemporary problems of race or gender, Marxism ineluctably leads to totalitarianism, and so on. I don't think Eagleton knocks down all the arguments equally well (For example, the idea that the classical liberal general suspicion of power is a an excessively tender-minded reification that is not justified where power is used for 'emancipatory' reasons is a real blind spot. Another blind spot is the idea that problems of power and acquisitiveness will disappear once a material 'sufficiency' is attained). That said, Eagleton does a great job expounding on the core dialectical principles of Marxism, the debts contemporary schools of thought owe to it, and its insights into how economic power is used and abused in a capitalist order. And Eagleton's writing style is pithy, accessible, and humorous. The reader was fine but the plummy English accent may not be to everyone's taste. I didn't become a Marxist after listening to this book, but it did make me rethink a lot of the rah rah triumphalism that often comes with defenses of capitalism.

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  • Mark
  • 29-08-2019

Well put sir

Loved the book. Stylistically it was wonderful, and it both had enough concision to keep from being tedious and enough detail to prove useful. My only issue was one of a personal sort that has no real place in terms of this review.

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  • AmusedAbsurdity
  • 12-11-2018

Socialism as Ethics

The biggest misunderstanding of Marx is the notion that he and Socialism was/is diametrically opposed to Capitalism. Socialism is actually a guide on how to have an ethical capitalist economy. Eagleton concludes that leisure over labor was Marx’s ideal. If we as a society recognize a government’s job is to uphold basic human rights and work together to ensure that those rights are provided for, and we all received some kind of personal subsidy for housing and food, with a job guaranteed of a livable wage, free public education and universal healthcare, then yes we would pay more taxes, but we would have the most expensive costs be affordable, and then have more time to enjoy life.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Rose M Baldwin
  • 24-06-2020

A good overview

I enjoyed the overview and the dispelling of myths in this book. It has inspired me to study the subject more in depth.

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  • Master Ewan J. Johnstone
  • 28-03-2019

More apologetics than convincing argument

As a fairly radical leftist I was hoping for a more engaging argument. Overall it left me thinking that although Marx had good core ideas it is surrounded by antiquated 19th century baggage that holds it back. For example, Marx's championing of colonialism as a prerequisite for socialism. It also focuses on theory and philosophy with little to say on practice. Perhaps the book's main flaw is that it seeks to defend Marx personally rather than Marxism as a whole. Hopefully modern Marxism has come along way since Marx.

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  • The New Rashi
  • 30-11-2018

Outstanding achievement

Extremely listenable writing style and very accessible to the layman. Narrated masterfully this book destroys many of the ridiculous 'Facebook meme' anti-Marx arguments and exposes them as the product of ignorance.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Kirstie Cook
  • 14-03-2019

A good start in Marxist studies

easy to follow and a great insight into Marx and his legacy. Very accessible and a good starting point for the study of Marxism

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  • james
  • 16-06-2018

Great

A wonderful book for those who believes Marx is still relevant in the twenty first century

5 people found this helpful

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  • Adrian J. Smith
  • 24-09-2020

Riveting and stirring

Regardless of whether one believes that Marx was right or not, the book itself is an intellectual and emotional journey through all the critiques invariably levelled against Marx and Marxism. The book is witty and entertaining, and the narration by Roger Clark gives one the feeling of a true intellectual romp. Highly recommended.

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  • Giulia R.
  • 08-04-2020

Finally!

What a joyful book,yes joyful, as someone,Terry Eagleton, sets about to explain to the lame of soul "why Marx was right" and succeds. The semi theatrical performance by Roger Clark is apprpriate in explaining concepts and expressing feelings. What a book, sincere in intention and result.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-09-2019

Quite informative

Interesting book that is very well written. The author makes his arguments well and consequently they follow a very logical pattern. Marx's view of the world is as appropriate today as it was in the Victorian times that he lived and wrote in. It's a shame that the events of the 20th Century will be forever associated with Marx when all the evidence points to the fact that he would have been appalled as most people are by what was inspired by his writings. This book goes a long way in trying to atone for that damage to the reputation of his life's work.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 18-07-2019

A better understanding of Marxism

A great book for anyone skeptic of Marxism and anyone who wants to know more about him.

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  • Jamie Cassidy
  • 21-11-2018

some decent points, mostly eloquent nonsense

Sidesteps a lot of the major issues, in particular the point that socialism no longer seems the only way to achieve the kind of standard of living for the ordinary working family that has been achieved by places like Sweden and Finland

1 person found this helpful