1st Edition

Marx's Ghost
Midnight Conversations on Changing the World

ISBN 9781612050669
Published October 30, 2011 by Routledge
176 Pages

USD $44.95

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Book Description

Renowned American sociologist Charles Derber imagines a surprise encounter with Karl Marx's ghost in London's Highgate cemetery, leading to a night-long conversation about the problems plaguing the world. The economic crisis, climate change, war, the future of capitalism and the 'Arab Spring' are all discussed. The ghost reconsiders his theories as he speaks eloquently about American labour, environmental, gender and anti-racist struggles. The engrossing, funny and provocative conversation, with appearances from other ghosts such as John Maynard Keynes, offers new insights into the relevance and flaws of Marx's thought, indicating how we can get to a better world.


"The old ghost has a lot to tell us, so we find out from these imaginative and compelling conversations in Highgate Cemetery. We hear from Marx's companions and his sometime adversaries as well. But especially from the author who guides the conversation, and in lucid and informative prose draws the curtain from many of the ills of the world while also directing us to ways to escape from what might be a grim future. A very valuable and timely contribution." -- Noam Chomsky

"What would Karl Marx think about Lady Gaga, Facebook, and the Wall Street-driven economic meltdown? Derber's gift is to bring Marx alive and engage the worldly philosopher about the great issues of our contemporary age."
-- Chuck Collins, co-author with Bill Gates, Sr., of Wealth and Our Commonwealth

"This is a delightful read, in which we meet Marx the humanist, Marx the supporter of the eight-hour day, Marx before Marxism, as C. Wright Mills used to say. Charles Derber is in that tradition of Mills, one who wants to reclaim the real history of the demonized for a new generation." -- Tom Hayden

"By using a time capsule technique to bring back Karl Marx to the 21st century, Charles Derber engages him in an illuminating taboo-shredding conversation about economies, workers, corporations and governments. Derber opens minds, challenges facile assumptions and liberates conventional inhibitions."
-- Ralph Nader

"Derber proposes practical solutions that are both reformist and revolutionary in their scope for transforming today's outdated and unfair system of capitalism. Marx's Ghost is the essential handbook for social and environmental activists everywhere." -- Jonthan Steele, columnist for The Guardian

"Thought provoking and accessible, Professor Derber has masterfully brought Marx's theories to life and made them relevant for all citizens trying to understand their own social realities. I will be excited to use Marx's Ghost in courses including social theory, introduction to sociology, social inequality, and in courses on the current economic crisis." -- Johnathan White, co-author of The Engaged Sociologist: Connecting the Classroom to the Community