DSA-LA’s Political Education Committee is proud to present a Class on Class! This study series examines a selection of foundational concepts and inquiries, with the goal of more deeply grounding our collective struggle in rigorous socialist analysis. As organized socialists in the resurgence of a popular socialist movement in the United States, we have the responsibility to study and learn from the radical visionaries who have built and sustained the movement many of us have recently joined — we see this Class on Class as a way to undertake this important work together.
The Class on Class is comprised of four distinct modules which conceptually build on one another. Each module features a selection of readings and initial discussion questions, as well as an in-person component where a short presentation is followed by ample opportunity to discuss, dissect, and debate these concepts in facilitated group conversations.
So, if this is your first time reading Marx, Luxemburg, Bhattacharya and others — we welcome you to join us! If you’re already well-acquainted with these concepts — welcome back. The potential to build a new socialist society in our time is greater than it has been in decades, and this is part of our work together.
Below, please see the schedule for the Class on Class and links to RSVP!
1. Class under Capitalism
Thursday, September 20 / 7 to 9 p.m.
United Teachers Los Angeles / 3303 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90010
This first module seeks to lay a foundation for the entire Class on Class — readings have been selected to introduce and reintroduce members to what we mean when we talk about “relations of production,” why socialists focus on the working class, and why our collective liberation necessarily requires that we go beyond mitigating the harms endemic to capitalism and dismantle the capitalist system entirely.
2. Surplus Value & Exploitation
Wednesday, October 3 / 7 to 9 p.m.
As workers, we survive by selling our time and our labor to the capitalist class. This second module is designed to deepen our understanding of this exchange between capital and labor — the exchange upon which capitalistic production, or the wage system, is founded.
3. Class Struggle & Political Struggle
Thursday, October 18 / 7 to 9 p.m.
The first two Classes outlined and analyzed the nature and mechanisms of exploitation under capitalism. Now, we necessarily ask: How do we free ourselves from this exploitation in an era of global capitalist hegemony? How does working class power manifest in a system where liberation requires nothing short of revolution? And how is that power wielded?
4. Capitalism Today - "Late Capitalism
Thursday, November 1 / 7 to 9 p.m.
The primary dynamics of capitalist exploitation, accumulation, and expansion are essentially as they have been for more than a century. However, our era of “Late Capitalism” bears distinct features which should shape socialist strategy today. The final Class takes up critical questions facing the movement, meant to help us develop strategy and organizational methods that respond to the capitalism of our time.