Ecology and Revolution: Herbert Marcuse and the Challenge of a New World System Today, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Ecology and Revolution

Herbert Marcuse and the Challenge of a New World System Today, 1st Edition

By Charles Reitz


194 pages | 2 B/W Illus.

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Paperback: 9781138341876
pub: 2018-10-24
Hardback: 9781138341869
pub: 2018-10-08
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pub: 2018-10-11
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A timely addition to Henry Giroux’s Critical Interventions series, Ecology and Revolution is grounded in the Frankfurt School critical theory of Herbert Marcuse. Its task is to understand the economic architecture of wealth extraction that undergirds today’s intensifying inequalities of class, race, and gender, within a revolutionary ecological frame. Relying on newly discovered texts from the Frankfurt Marcuse Archive, this book builds theory and practice for an alternate world system. Ecology and radical political economy, as critical forms of systems analysis, show that an alternative world system is essential – both possible and feasible – despite political forces against it. Our rights to a commonwealth economy, politics, and culture reside in our commonworks as we express ourselves as artisans of the common good. It is in this context, that Charles Reitz develops a GreenCommonWealth Counter-Offensive, a strategy for revolutionary ecological liberation with core features of racial equality, women’s equality, liberation of labor, restoration of nature, leisure, abundance, and peace.


Marcuse’s critical theory is as large as the world he was mapping. No one has navigated Marcuse’s oeuvre with greater care and precision than Charles Reitz, who is not only the most accomplished translator of Marcuse’s German works into English but also the most accessible teacher of Marcuse’s radical contributions to contemporary theory. Inspired by the persistence of the Great Refusal and by what Marcuse called "revolutionary ecological liberation," Reitz maintains the necessity of settling for nothing less than human freedom.

Andrew T. Lamas, University of Pennsylvania

Charles Reitz is without question one of the most important interpreters of the work of Marcuse writing today, as well as one of the key contemporary philosophers of praxis. His most recent work only underscores this assessment. A brilliant and timely work!

Peter McLaren, Chapman University

As we hurtle towards planetary destruction, Reitz provides a revolutionary alternative to global financial capitalism. Building upon the work of Marcuse and Marx, a GreenCommonWealth outlines how we can and must challenge structural oppression through a praxis oriented towards solidarity within a communal humanity.

Sarah Surak, Salisbury University

Table of Contents


Introduction: Working with a "New" Marcuse

Chapter 1. The Necessity of a New World System Today:

Racial Equality, Women’s Equality, Liberation of Labor,

Restoration of Nature, Leisure, Abundance, and Peace

Chapter 2. The Trajectory of Marcuse’s Philosophy

Chapter 3. The Activist Political Legacy of One-Dimensional Man

Chapter 4. A Foundation for Ethics in Commonwealth Labor

Chapter 5. Dialectics Rising: Science, Philosophy, Marxism, Marcuse

Chapter 6. What Makes Critical Theory Critical? Reclaiming the Critique of Commodity Fetishism

Chapter 7. Ecology and Revolution



About the Author

Charles Reitz is the author of Philosophy & Critical Pedagogy: Insurrection & Commonwealth (2016); editor of Crisis and Commonwealth: Marcuse, Marx, McLaren (2015); and author of Art, Alienation and the Humanities: A Critical Engagement with Herbert Marcuse (2000). He served for several years on the Board of Directors of the International Herbert Marcuse Society.

About the Series

Critical Interventions

Politics, Culture, and the Promise of Democracy

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General