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Mainstream, VOL LV No 17 New Delhi April 15, 2017

Fascism and the Phantasmagorical Character of Capitalist Universal Education

Equal elementary education?

Wednesday 19 April 2017

by Murzban Jal

What idea lies behind these words? Is it believed that in present-day society (and it is only with this one has to deal) education can be equal for all classes? Or is it demanded that the upper classes also should be compulsorily reduced to the modicum of education—the elementary school—that alone is compatible with the economic system not only for wage-workers but of the peasants as well?

—Karl Marx, Critique of the Gotha Programme

Of late, the Social-Democratic philistine, has once more been fulfilled with wholesome terror at the words: Dictatorship of the Proletariat. Well and good, gentlemen, do you want to know what this dictatorship looks like? Look at the Paris Commune. That was the Dictatorship of the Proletariat.

—Frederick Engels, ‘Introduction’, The Civil War in France

Only the clericals and the bourgeoisie can speak of national culture in general. The working people can speak only of the international culture of the world working-class movement. That is the only culture that means full, real, sincere equality of nations, the absence of national oppression and the implementation of democracy. Only the unity and solidarity of workers of all nations in all working-class organisations in the struggle against capital will lead to “the solution of the national problem”.

—V.I. Lenin, How does Bishop Nikon defend the Ukrainians?

The Temptations of the State

The idea of universal education has been talked for a long time in India by the ruling classes, but simply never achieved. It is because of this unreachability of universal-democratic education and the falsity of the education system in liberal India (gone are those days), predicated on economic underdevelopment and the market paradigm—all based on the logic of late imperialism in permanent crisis, that the fascist ideologues and demagogues have marched onto the scene of Indian history. It is because of this genre of underdevelopment of a type of capitalism that we call as “backward and feudal type of capitalism” governed by the modern-day Oriental despots, the caste-kulaks and the capitalists, that any type of even a functional educational system could not emerge. It could not emerge and will not emerge under these circumstances.

In fact because of the neglect in basic democratic education (which was the mandate of the democratic bourgeoisie and their liberal representatives) that the RSS could supplement the Indian system with their own para-mythical fascist education centres, especially their shishu mandir schools. The liberals talked of universal education but could never realise this dream of independent India. Whilst the liberals dreamt, the fascists worked hard at the grassroots level. The fascists produced communal-fascist ideology-producing centres, the liberals could only produce illusions.

To understand the liberal idea of education, let us turn to Amartya Sen and Jean Dreze who mention the “impressive” development of “universalisation of primary-school enrollment across social groups”1 and rapid progress progress for “disadvataged communities”.2 They also talk of the role of the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA—or the “Campaign for Universal Education”) as also the Mid Day Meal Scheme.3 But the casteist, paternalistic, patronising and the lethargic semi-feudal character of the Mid Day Meal Scheme is not mentioned by these two authors. In fact the analysis of these two authors is shorn of the mode of production and thus devoid of the analysis of the dominant classes and castes in controlling the Indian economy and the consequent education sector. What they mention is facts, or should one say ‘facts’ devoid of concrete conditions. This I call the social democratic view of education. This view works in terms of what ought to be there. They work thus in terms of ideal utopian illusions. What we do is that we work in terms of seeking the “real ground of history” which is also understood as the “real basis of history”.4 Social Democrats work in terms of utopian illusions, while fascists work with illusions that have become delusory. Communists, in contrast to both the liberals and the fascists, work with the real basis of history.

This illusion (and consequent delusion) of never reachable universal education, yet imagined as real and objective, is what we call “phantasmagorical” The idea of phantasma-goria is central to Marx’s revolutionary repertoire.5 It implies a projection of grotesque and ghostly images, that appears as beautiful and sublime images, where human reality lies hidden behind what Marx calls “the mist enveloped region” of a deluded world.6 Universal education in India has become this grotesque and sublime delusion that simply cannot be obtained, whether championed by the Indian state, the liberals, the education barons, or the NGOs. It claims that the state cannot be seen as a vehicle for democratic reforms (universal education included), a mistake the Established Left led by the CPI-M continuously makes. It further claims that the educational system is being hegemonised by the Indian fascists, and also states that the consequent struggle against fascism cannot be undertaken through the route of liberal democracy and social democracy.

This essay states that the Marxist idea of universal education is fundamentally different from the various social democratic ideas of universal education. These social democratic ideas are largely held by a certain type of NGOs as well as by the parliamentary Left parties. They do not function according to the dialectics of history, but work with the dictates of the metaphysics of morality. Their main point in this ideological myth is that there is a binary formed between a market-driven educational system and the state, which for them is supposed to stand above these market forces. That this type of political reasoning is more close to the Hegelian theory of the state than a Marxist one should be immediately spelt out. Consider Marx who in the Critique of Gotha Programme said that: “Government and the Church should be equally excluded from any influence on the school.”7 So if government is totally excluded from the school, how can we appeal to the same government that we want to exclude?

Somewhere earlier I had said that Marx, as a scientist, literally founded a New Physics where the very discovery of a radically different site was important.8 What then is this New Site that he discovered? This New Site is the transcendence of both bourgeois and the state (that is, “state in general”, as he calls it in The German Ideology) What we say is that if we do not operate in the Old Site of commodity production; we also say that we do not operate on the Old Site of the state. And for Marx—this was from his young and heady days who wrote on alienation in Paris to the revolutionary days of his political writings since the 1850s—the state had to be transcended. In his 1871 letter to Kugelmann he talked of “smashing the state”9, the theme that has always been central to revolutionary Marxism, the theme that Lenin kept central to his State and Revolution. 

In a recent declaration, the Participants of the People’s Education Assembly spelt out what we are told is the “Ranchi Declaration”.10 What are the contents of this document? We look at the declaration and notice that there are 22 points in this declaration. Its starting claim is that one has to “resist the temptation to permit the monopolisation and commercialisation of knowledge through knowledge-delivering supermarkets”.11 This resistance to temptation is brought through the state.12 This is what the social democratic temptations of the state claim:

The primary responsibilities of imparting education to all levels should rest with the State, with the role of the State Government and local bodies being crucial. The government should step up expenditure on education, setting apart finances at least amounting to six per cent of the gross domestic product for the education sector and must update curricula, modernise infrastructure and develop human power.13

Whilst we are talking of the need for universal education and health for all in India, themes that the young India tried to articulate (J.P. Naik was the pioneer of this, now followed by Amartya Sen, a line that is totally opposed by the Narendra Modi Government), we claim that whilst fascism will fully oppose this form of education and health for all, liberalism will never be able to fulfil the promise that they themselves made. Our line, whilst agreeing on the need for education, goes beyond the earlier liberal and social democratic formulations. Our line shall be the Revolutionary Marxist line. Consider this line:

This shattering (sprengung) of the former state power and its replacement by a new and really democratic state is described in detail in the third section of The Civil War. But it was necessary to dwell briefly here once more on some of its features, because in Germany particularly the superstitious belief in the state has been carried over from philosophy into the general consciousness of the bourgeoisie and even to many workers. According to the philosophical notion, “the state is the realisation of the idea” or the Kingdom of God on earth, translated into philosophical terms, the sphere in which eternal truth and justice is or should be realised. And from this follows a supers-titious reverence for the state and everything connected with it, which takes roots the more readily as people from their childhood are accustomed to imagine that the affairs and interests common to the whole of society could not be looked after otherwise than as they have been looked after in the past, that is, through the state and its well-paid officials. And people think they have taken quite an extraordinary bold step forward when they have rid themselves of the belief in the hereditary monarchy and swear by the democratic republic. In reality, however, the state is nothing but a machine for the oppression of one class by another, and indeed in the democratic republic no less than in the monarchy; and at best an evil inherited by the proletariat after its victorious struggle for class supremacy, whose worst sides the proletariat, just like the Commune, cannot avoid having to lop off at the earliest possible moment, until such time as a new generation, reared in new and free social conditions, will be able to throw the entire lumber of the state on the scrap-heap.14

And for Marx:

But the working class cannot lay hold of the ready-made state machinery, and wield it for its own purpose.15

And this is because:

The centralised State power, with its ubiquitous organs of standing army, police, bureaucracy, clergy, and judicature—organs wrought after the plan of a systematic and hierarchic division of labour—originates from the days of absolute monarchy, serving nascent middle-class society as a mighty weapon in its struggles against feudalism. Still, its develop-ment remained clogged by all manner of mediaeval rubbish, seignorial rights, local privileges, municipal and guild monopolies and provincial constitutions. The gigantic broom of the French Revolution of the eighteenth century swept away all these relics of bygone times, thus clearing simultaneously the social soil of its last hindrances to the superstructure of the modern State edifice raised under the First Empire, itself the offspring of the coalition wars of old semi-feudal Europe against modern France. During the subsequent regimes the government, placed under parliamentary control—that is, under the direct control of the propertied classes—became not only a hotbed of huge national debts and crushing taxes; with its irresistible allurements of place, pelf, and patronage, it became not only the bone of contention between the rival factions and adventurers of the ruling classes; but its political character changed simultaneously with the economic changes of society.

At the same pace at which the progress of modern industry developed, widened, intensified the class-antagonism between capital and labour, the State power assumed more and more the character of the national power of capital over labour, of a public force organised for social enslavement, of an engine of class despotism. After every revolution marking a progressive phase in the class struggle, the purely repressive character of the State power stands out in bolder and bolder relief. The revolution of 1830, resulting in the transfer of government from the landlords to the capitalists, transferred it from the more remote to the more direct antagonists of the working men. The bourgeois Republicans, who, in the name of the Revolution of February, took the State power, used it for the June massacres, in order to convince the working class that the “social” republic meant the republic ensuring their social subjection, and in order to convince the royalist bulk of the bourgeois and landlord class that they might safely leave the cares and emoluments of government to the bourgeois “Republicans.” However, after their one heroic exploit of June, the bourgeois Republicans had, from the front, to fall back to the rear of the “Party of Order”—a combination formed by all the rival fractions and factions of the appropriating class in their now openly declared antagonism to the producing classes. The proper form of their joint stock government was the Parliamentary Republic, with Louis Bonaparte for its President. Theirs was a regime of avowed class terrorism and deliberate insult towards the “vile multitude.”

If the Parliamentary Republic, as M. Thiers said, “divided them (the different fractions of the ruling class) least”, it opened an abyss between that class and the whole body of society outside their spare ranks. The restraints by which their own divisions had under former regimes still checked the State power, were removed by their union; and in view of the threatening upheaval of the proletariat, they now used that State power mercilessly and ostentatiously as the national war engine of capital against labour. In their uninterrupted crusade against the producing masses they were, however, bound not only to invest the executive with continually increased powers of repression, but at the same time to divest their own parliamentary stronghold — the National Assembly — one by one, of all its own means of defence against the Executive. The Executive, in the person of Louis Bonaparte, turned them out. The natural offspring of the “Party-of-Order” Republic was the Second Empire.16

In this sense it is important to note that Marxism is totally distinct from liberalism. Let us turn once again to the views of Amartya Sen and Jean Dreze who recalled Tagore’s statement that “the imposing tower of misery which today rests on the heart of India has its sole foundation in the absence of education”.17 What they also meant that one had to convert this absence of education residing in the tower of misery to the possibilities and necessities of universal education. What they both did not say is that capitalism could never fulfil this dream of an educated and cultured India. They imagined that the state as the engine of class despotism would fulfil the duty of universal education. That is why we must say, right at the beginning, our philosophy of education is not uncritical. It does not borrow from the ideologies of education set forth by the capitalist society. We Marxists are not liberals. We do not live in the phantasmagorical illusions of the bourgeoisie doing any public good. In order to confront fascism we shall not become liberals. Liberalism is one definite genre, communism is another. Liberalism is predicated on capita-lism—its idea of liberty is about the indivi-dualistic attachment to capitalistic private property. All its claims of its manifold ‘liberties’ are nothing but the so-called ‘freedoms’ of bourgeois egoisms. It talks of individualistic freedom, never about human freedom. Communism is precisely about human freedom. 

The Sen-Dreze social democratic formulation is in the last resort predicated on global capitalism and its dreams of a just and democratic capitalism. According to them, education is predicated on the global accumu-lation of capital. According to them, education involves the achieving of “cultivated skills”.18 What they mean by education is mere (1) capability to read, write and count, (2) to understand freedoms in the (bourgeois) world, (3) to lead and informed life, (4) to communicate with others, (5) to be generally in touch with what is going on.19

Therefore doing simple jobs, especially in production and distribution, and being part of globalised trade and commerce are essential parts of their liberal social democratic progra-mmes. They do not understand that education is not class-neutral, but a necessary part of the Ideological State Apparatus of capita-lism, where education reproduces the ideologies of capitalism in order to reproduce the class of capitalists and wage labourers. And lastly these liberals claim that education can be “immensely enjoyable”.20 Note how this enjoyment is not only subservient to capitalism, it is about enjoying the fruits ,or should one say “tit bits” of capitalism.

On the Historicisation and Humanisation of Knowledge

To understand the difference between liberalism and Marxism it is necessary to understand that the leitmotiv of modern education (as early liberal education) is based on the tension and opposition between the idea of education as instruction and education as cultivation of humanity as humanity. What by and large capitalist societies did was initiate a form of mass education corresponding to the nature of capital accumulation and the need for capital to augment itself. This meant in the last resort that education—from the elementary education to higher education—would correspond to the class structure. Any thus hopes for real mass education, any dreams of universal education, would imply the challenging of the class structure of education.

What the Ranchi Declaration does not understand is that the type of ‘hope’ that it tries to invoke is totally hopeless, since time and again, despite the actual commodity driven character of education, the Indian state always has been feeding the very same diet that the Ranchi Declaration has suggested. One will have to evoke Marx contra the hopes of hopelessness that both the Indian state and the People’s Assembly cry for. Consider Marx:

But the whole programme, for all its democratic clang, is tainted through and through by the Lassallean sect’s servile belief in the state, or, what is no better, by a democratic belief in miracles, or rather it is a comprise between these two kinds of belief in miracles, both equally remote from socialism.21

What happens in the belief of the Miraculous State is that the state—that is, the state as the march-past of the bourgeoisie on earth and thus the wielders of mass violence and deception—is then said to take on the role of giving education to people. The believers in this Miraculous State can roughly be divided into three groups—the liberal democratic Congress, the Right-wing BJP and Left-oriented Communist Parties (or should one say: “Communist Parties bereft of Marx and Revolutionary Marxism”?).

Besides the illusion that the state would deliver universal education (as they claim taking the examples from the so-called socialist nations of the 20th century, or even examples of the Scandinavian nations), the Miraculous State as the fascist state now believes in Brahmanical supremacy and the Brahmanisation of Indian society. The RSS follows necessarily the fascist model along with the so-called “value-education”, that is, values (not morality) devoid of secularism, modernity and humanism and completely forgetting capitalism and imperia-lism. That the BJP is trying to ritualize education is merely another part of this fascistic project of creating communal hatred by recreating caste-divided society led by the imaginary warrior-priests castes modeled after the Rig Veda. It is doing this by what one can roughly call the “Aryanization of education” Already in Mumbai the fantasy of creating “Aryan education” by claiming that Vedic culture was scientific is being produced and reproduced.22

On Communist Education

But how does one expose these lies, lies that led to the development of fascism in Europe in the last century, lies that are now emerging in Europe, in creating a Semite (read “Muslim”) who is hostile to European (read “Aryan”) culture? And considering that the education syllabus like the entire structure and content of education is going to be fascistised and Brahmanised (with its fiction of “Aryan society”) modeled after Nazi Germany, the question remains: “what is to be done?” How would Marxism look at ancient India? How would Marx and Engels’s reading of ancient societies (recall Marx’s Ethnological Notebooks and Engels’ The Origin of Family, Private Property and the State) prove the falsity of the RSS’ reading of ancient India? In a certain sense, because the Left’s obsession with a very myopic reading of Marxism (that is, Marxism devoid of Marx) that posited a unilienar theory of history of all humanity—from primitive communism, slave society, feudalism to capitalism—the complexity of real history was totally missed out. What was missed out by the Established Left in India was taken by the fascists.

We will need to chart out a course where one can map out the different systems of education that are present. On the one hand, we have the liberal type which is largely borrowed from European liberalism where John Stewart Mill is considered the epitome of educational philoso-phers. Along with this European type of liberalism we have the ideology of upper caste Hindu reform movement. While there is a clear difference between liberalism and fascism, there is also a blurring of this distinction. But the great difference is between all bourgeois theories and Marxism. Marxism heralds a revolution in knowledge, a revolution that explodes all earlier education projects. This revolution we call in Gramsciean terms—the historicisation and humanisation of knowledge

The idea of the historicisation and humanisation of knowledge is the essence of the program of the present communist movement. The triad of science, philosophy and the arts serves as the methodological basis of this New Communist Educational Revolution. According to this New Communist Educational Revolution, the science of knowing combined with the philosophy of human emancipation are involved in creating the Communist Sublime. To create the Communist Sublime is the main part of the communist educational programme.

What communist education does is firstly displace private property and put the people as a unified labouring people at the centre of its epistemological universe. This Communist Sublime understands education as cultivation of the human mind, a cultivation that grows from human labour and the dignity of labour. Communist education is also stated as the culmination of the Indian Renaissance. But this Indian Renaissance is a Renaissance “from below”, not the Renaissance that the liberals talked of. This Renaissance has the stamp and joy of labour on its head and heart. It therefore follows not the rationality of the rising bour-geoisie in the times of liberalism, not the logic of capitalism in total decay which has now thrown the RSS into power in Delhi.

It thus follows the subaltern logic of the workers and the peasantry. It studies humanity as humanity and not as humanity that is a puppt of the gods and the devils. It is thus free from superstitions, free from feudal values, free from caste and patriarchy, free from communal hatred, free from scarcity and want, by critiquing capitalism and imperialism. It claims to be the culmination of the Indian Renaissance from below and thus talks of a New Humanism for India. Cultural transformation is the main point here. For this it is necessary to create the Communist Sublime.

What Revolutionary Marxism needs to do is to understand education as cultivation of the human mind which itself creates the Communist Sublime, where the beauty of human reality is grasped. One talks in the spirit of the Renaissance where education is understood as the cultivation of the mind and the Communist Sublime that directly attacks the fascist project of manipu-lating of the mind.

And in the spirit of the Renaissance we say that by “mind” one means Geist in the sense of German Classical Philosophy which is translated as “mind” and “spirit”, but not as “spirit” as implied by the idealists and spiritualists or “mind” in the sense of psychologism. Instead by Geist we mean “people” at large—or to be precise working people, the proletariat and the peasantry—people who seek liberty, equality and fraternity.

The Communist Sublime talks of science, but not as scientism or positivism which means a form of ideology of technological rationality promoted by capitalism. By “science” we do not mean the forms of technological reason of the capitalist societies, where science is subservient to the production of commodities. Instead we follow Hegel’s Science of Logic where “science” as Wissenschaft is articulated as the seeking of real and authentic knowledge, real and authentic in the form of dialectical historicism. Both realism and authenticity one means that truth is to be treated as a form of insurrection and a rebellion against the prevalent order.

It is necessary to state that by authenticity as insurrection one implies the sense of truth and truth seeking where responsibility for one’s action remains central to the humanistic scientific system. Revolutionary Marxism therefore always has humanity and nature (as human-nature, read not “human nature”, i.e. humanity as a being-in-the-world as also being-a-part-of-humanity and nature) at the root of this real and authentic knowledge. We also mean science in the humanist sense of de-alienation implied by Marx in his Economicand Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844, where humanity is kept at the basis of not only the social sciences, but also at the roots of the natural sciences.

And that is why we claim that we are critical of the capitalist model of ‘science’ (largely of the Anglo-Saxon type that Georg Lukács, Edmund Husserl and Herbert Marcuse critiqued) where a form of technological rationality rules the roost, a form of rationality that has totally forgotten the working classes as well as forgotten the idea of humanity as humanity. Though knowledge seeking and understanding the enterprise of education as knowledge production is the essence of this discourse, its starting is philosophical. Its main concerns are “what can humanity know?”, “what can humanity do?”, “what can humanity hope for?” and “how can free humanity be truly possible?” Communism, one must note, is always interested in the question of free humanity.

Along with these principles, the principles of liberty, equality and fraternity, based not on empty rhetoric, but on the abolishing of commodity production, the caste system, classes and private property, also come in as our guiding principles. Along with the abolishing of private property Revolutionary Marxism advocates the abolishing of the nation-state and societies based on the antagonisms of nations.

We challenge educational orthodoxy, since educational orthodoxy is based on the learning of the principles of private property and the cultivation of greed. We thus claim that challenging educational orthodoxy is the leitmotiv of the communist education system. De-schooling society, in the sense of de-learning of the system and culture of private property and thus de-alienating knowledge and putting knowledge on the platform of history and humanity, is the essence of the communist programme.

This communist programme renders the importance of compulsory labour and critical thinking. It thereby keeps philosophy, science and aesthetics as its three basic epistemological components. Perception, understanding and reason along with feeling, willing and desiring are the ontological components of the communist programme. Revolutionary Marxism mustproduce according to the laws of beauty as against capitalism that produces according to the laws of the dreadful and the hateful. The critique of human alienation as the dreadful and the hateful combined with the critique of the commoditisation and fascisti-sation of education is the essential part of Communist Education. Capitalism turns people into commodities. Fascism turns people into war machines.

In the age of triumphant fascism in India and the brutal and barbaric war by the so-called ‘civilised’ nations on the West Asian people, the following points need to be articulated to counter fascism and imperialist barbarism as well as to create a truly humanist life-world. These deal with the scientific, philosophising and aesthetici-sation of education, which are both the basics of education as well as the need of the hour:

Historical Materialism and the Communist Sublime

What historical materialism as the Communist Sublime does is that it creates a unified science in the matrix of dialectical and historical-humanist materialism. In this new genre of dialectical and historical-humanist materialism, neither are the social sciences split from one another, nor are the natural sciences split from the social sciences. Instead dialectical andhistorical-humanist materialism understands the unity of the natural and the social sciences since it understands the unity of nature and society. Its method is human natural science also known as the natural science of humanity where social history as natural history is marked as its leitmotiv. Clearly this programme of dialectical and historical-humanist education is totally different from the liberal and social democratic programmes.

Dialectical and historical-humanist materia-lism as a New Science does mean a form of “scientism” or positivism. Science here does not merely study isolated ‘facts’, but as human natural sciences understands material reality and then unites facts and ethics. It always sees the human, natural and material basis of all facts. The humanisation and naturalisation of knowledge and education is thus the philoso-phical premise of dialectical and historical-humanist materialism. What dialectical and historical-humanist materialism as human natural science does is that it critiques the dominant methods of education that have been borrowed from colonialism.

The critique of Eurocentrism and Americocen-trism (the method that claims that the West is inherently endowed with reason, whilst the rest of the world can only develop on borrowed European and American methods—the model that would give way to Samuel Huntington’s awful “clash of civilisation” thesis) and the colonisation of education find its place in this process of the humanisation of education. This critique of colonial knowledge systems, Eurocentrism and the imperialism of knowledge is also coupled with the critique of the indigenous colonisation (known as “Brahmanisation”) of education. The New Indian Renaissance mani-fested as the Cultural Revolution finds two sites of the colonisation of the Indian mind: Eurocentrism/imperialism of knowledge and Brahmanisation.

Whilst the dialectical and historical-humanist materialism involves the method of humanisation of knowledge, it also sets up different “philosophical schools” within the domain of dialectical and historical-humanist materialism where Schiller, Hegel, Jotiba Phule and B.R. Ambedkar’s ideas are taken as essential parts of the Communist Sublime.

After all, comrades should understand that education as a weapon that grips the masses—an idea that Marx brought in his Introduction: A Contribution to the Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right23—is an essential theme for communist radicals. Here one de-thinks the history as taught by the liberals and articulates Indian history from the perspective of the Asiatic mode of production—a theme that was essential for Marx and Engels, but unfortunately forgotten by the Indian Marxists. In this new sighting of the mode of production in India the intertwining of classes along with the caste system with its inherent patriarchy along with economic and cultural underdevelopment is found.

There are two nodal points to locate the political economy of underdevelopment: one from the model of the Asiatic mode of production led by the Brahmanical Overlords and the second is that of global capital accumulation where India along with Asian and African nations are put at the periphery of global capitalism. This critique of the colonisation of the mind that critiques the dependency to capitalism, imperialism and Caste Overlordship is not an abstract intellectualism. Instead it unites the intellectual and the will, thinking and feeling, intellectual labour and manual labour, theory and praxis that Marx outlined in his Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844 a unity determined by the critique of political economy. This unity of thinking and feeling is consequently based on what we call after Sergei Eisenstein as “synesthesia” or the “union of the senses”—the union of the senses that breaks the broken and undignified lives under capitalism, imperialism and fascism.


Revolutionary Communists demand the following:

(1) Declaration of the rights of the working masses based on the union of free individuals.

(2) The emancipation of people from the yoke of capital.

(3) Socialist reorganisation of society, abolition of the bureaucracy and the standing army.

(4) Formation of the Republic of Workers and Peasants Deputies, Trade Unions, Union of Teachers and Artists.

(5) Abolishing of private property. All land, factories, education institutions in the hands of the Workers and Peasants Deputies.

(6) Abolishing the private and nationalistic character of education.

(7) Universal labour conscription combined with fine arts and hard sciences as essential parts of education curriculum.

(8) The learning of the spirit of humanism and democracy as the aesthetics of insurrection.

(9) Education Collectives to be set up in all working class places where communists are involved in a new pedagogy and practice of education. These Education Collectives are involved in the internalisation of education that replaces the old worn out nationalisms.

Education Collectives are also involved in the signing of democratic peace between all nations and also involved in the mobilisation of the masses in the set-up of the consequent no-war pact amongst all nations of the world as the groundwork for the setup of Free Communist Republics.


1. Jean Dreze and Amartya Sen, An Uncertain Glory: India and its Contradictions (London: Allen Lane, 2013), p. 118.

2. Ibid.

3. Ibid., p. 118.

4. Karl Marx and Frederick Engels, The German Ideology

 (Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1976), pp. 61, 62, 63.

5. Karl Marx, ‘The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte’ in Karl Marx’, Frederick Engels, Selected Works (Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1975), Capital, Vol. I, trans. Samuel Moore and Eduard Aveling (Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1983), p. 77.

6. Ibid.

7. Karl Marx, ‘Critique of the Gotha Programme’ in Karl Marx, Frederick Engels, Selected Works (Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1975), p. 329.

8. See my ‘On Understanding the Decline of the Indian Left’ in Economic and Political Weekly, Vol. XLVIII, No. 24, June 16, 2012.

9. Karl Marx, ‘Letter to Kugelmann’ in Karl Marx, Frederick Engels, Selected Works (Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1975), p. 670.

10. Economic and Political Weekly, Vol. XLIX, No. 18, May 3, 2014.

11. Ibid., p. 4.

12. Ibid.

13. Ibid. 

14. Frederick Engels, ‘Introduction: The Civil War in Fr

ance’ in Karl Marx, Frederick Engels, Selected Works (Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1975), p. 258.

15. Karl Marx, ‘The Civil War in France’ in Karl Marx, Frederick Engels, Selected Works (Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1975), p. 285.

16. Ibid., pp. 285-6.

17. Jean Dreze and Amartya Sen, An Uncertain Glory: India and its Contradictions, p. 107.

18. Ibid.

19. Ibid.

20. Ibid., p. 119.

21. Karl Marx, ‘Critique of the Gotha Programme’ in Karl Marx, Frederick Engels, Selected Works (Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1975), p. 329.

22. See Alok Deshpande, ‘Now, a School to Teach Vedas, Aryan Science’ in The Hindu,

23. May, 2015.

23. Karl Marx, ‘Introduction: A Contribution to the Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right’ in Karl Marx, Early Writings, trans. Rodney Livingstone and Gregor Benton (London: Penguin Books, 1992), p. 251.

Prof Murzban Jal is the Director, Centre for Educational Studies, Indian Institute of Education, Pune.

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