Sunday, August 10, 2008

The Post-Left: An Archeology and a Genealogy

Gabriel Noah Brahm Jr: "Out of the jaws of victory – near-consensus on the superiority of human rights, political freedom, and individual liberty – the post-left sought to snatch defeat. 9/11 was our fault and Islamism was now 'the resistance'. The emergent post-left would thus come to be defined by its willingness to apologise for suicide mass-murderers, misogynist theocrats, and antisemites. When this new ingredient was added to last century's 'leftovers' – postmodernist cultural relativism, post-Marxism, postcolonial theory – the result was something qualitatively 'other' to all canons of traditional leftwing progressivism. All the departures ('post'-this and 'post'-that) had added up. A post-left was born.

"What about previous betrayals of principle on the left, you ask? For sure, Stalin and Mao were hardly pikers in their day, yet this was different. The totalitarians of yore at least kept their agendas for murder somewhat hidden. One could debate the gap between 'means and ends' and be 'surprised' by 'revelations'. Islamists, by contrast, announce their hideous agenda openly; the ends are worse than the means; and the means are a foul new kind of suicide mass-murder terrorism. No. That is not a left by any definition."

More terrific summer reading here. Then back to work:


Blogger The Plump said...

Have you read Norm's critique of the post-left concept here?

1:43 AM  

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