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FAQ: Marxism, Bolshevism, and Mutual Aid

FAQ: Marxism, Bolshevism, and Mutual Aid

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In the summer of 2020, just months after the emergence of COVID-19 and the political and economic chaos that ensued, the momentous George Floyd uprising erupted in over 2,000 cities and towns. 54% of Americans polled at that time believed the burning of the Minneapolis 3rd Precinct was justified, and millions began to look to each other instead of the state for a way forward. Interest in what is known as “mutual aid” surged and over 1,000 mutual aid networks emerged across the country. A handful of armed working-class neighborhood defense patrols also sprang up, along with networks to distribute essential supplies, and social media campaigns to raise money to bail out arrested protesters. Additionally, new activists were drawn into the socialist movement, many of whom looked towards mutual aid as a political strategy to continue the fight started by the 2020 uprising.

Socialist Revolution has received many inquiries asking about our position on mutual aid, what role we think it can play in transforming society, and what political tasks should be prioritized by revolutionaries today. The rising interest in this topic was both a response to the pandemic and part of a new wave of debate around revolutionary politics and socialist strategy. It is an exciting sign of the times that so many people are looking to get active in the movement. We wish to take up some of these questions now in order to clarify our views on this important topic.

21 pages

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