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Kosambi Reading and Analysis Circle

Who are we?


We are a reading, writing, research, analysis, and discussion circle for multi-tendency socialist theory, based in India primarily but with members from all around the world joining in remotely as well. We had our first meeting on 28th Jan 2020. Our current membership is 1000+.


We started in Bombay but currently in a process of creating a federation of city and campus based chapters. Within this circle there are smaller focus groups which read and meet on specific aspects of society they analyse with socialist theory.


What do we engage with?


Theory from Marxist and other socialist tendencies. We also read other things not socialist but relevant to socialist understanding.


How to join us?


If you are interested in socialist theory, do join us! We try to be as accessible as possible. Contact our convenor Anupam_Guha


How do we meet?


Currently due to the pandemic, all meetings whether of the circle itself (which happen twice or thrice a month) or its caucuses happen remotely.


Why Kosambi?


We wanted a theorist for a mascot who represents our values, and Dr. D. D. Kosambi's work is extremely important. His writing is interesting and useful, he has important contributions to as diverse fields as historiography, Marxist analysis of caste, physics, mathematics, to things as odd as stamp collecting. At the core of this group is the desire to understand material reality and Kosambi's contributions to both the natural and social sciences reflect that.


Thematic plan by month for 2020

  1. January: Introduction and fascism

    1. Readings: 1 to 2 in the “Readings covered” list below

    2. Notes: 28-01-2020, 31-01-2020

  2. February: Introduction and the manifesto

    1. Readings: 3 in the “Readings covered” list below

  3. March: Electoralism, reform, revolution, political theory

    1. Readings: 4 to 5 in the “Readings covered” list below

  4. April: Marxist analysis of nationhood/borders/indegenity etc

    1. Readings: 6 to 11 in the “Readings covered” list below

  5. May: Marxism and technology, Wage labour and capital, Grundrisse

    1. Readings: 12 to 21 in the “Readings covered” list below

  6. June: Political economy

    1. Readings: 22 to 27 in the “Readings covered” list below

    2. Notes: 13-06-2020, 20-06-2020, 27-06-2020

  7. July: Political economy

    1. Readings: 28 to 31 in the “Readings covered” list below

    2. Notes: 19-07-2020, 25-07-2020

  8. August: Gender, feminism, and Marxism

    1. Readings: 32 to 40 in the “Readings covered” list below

  9. September: Marxism and caste, representation, identity

    1. Readings: 41 to 51 in the “Readings covered” list below

    2. Notes: 13-09-2020, 27-09-2020

  10. October: Marxist analysis of mental health

    1. Readings: 52 to 68 in the “Readings covered” list below

    2. Notes: 11-10-2020, 25-10-2020

  11. November: History of Indian communism, land redistribution, peasantry in India

    1. Readings: 69 to 88 in the “Readings covered” list below

    2. Notes: 15-11-2020, 29-11-2020

  12. December: Friendship, relationships, in class society and socialism

    1. Readings: 89 to 95 in the “Readings covered” list below

    2. Notes: 13-12-2020, 20-12-2020


Thematic plan by month for 2021

  1. January: Propaganda and Gramsci

    1. Readings: 96 to 99 in the “Readings covered” list below

    2. Notes: 17-01-2021

  2. February: Art and Culture

    1. Readings: 100 to 104 in the “Readings covered” list below

    2. Notes: 21-02-2021, 28-02-2021

  3. March: Imperialism (continued from 2020 Political Economy)

    1. Readings: 105 to 107 in the “Readings covered” list below

  4. April: Platform Labour

    1. Readings: 108 to 114 in the “Readings covered” list below

  5. May: Energy, materials, rare earths, extractivism

    1. Readings: 115 to 122 in the “Readings covered” list below

  6. June: Ecology, Climate Change

    1. Readings: 123 to 133 in the “Readings covered” list below

  7. July: Faith and Politics feat. Nationalism

    1. Readings: 134 to 148 in the “Readings covered” list below

  8. August: Hindutva feat. Nationalism

    1. Readings: 149 to 154 in the “Readings covered” list below

  9. September: Law, Justice, and Socialism

    1. Readings: 155 to 161 in the “Readings covered” list below

  10. October: Violence

    1. Readings: 162 to 176 in the “Readings covered” list below

  11. November: Strategies, Programmes, and Histories of Communisms

  12. December: Philosophy, Epistemology, and Theory of Mind


Caucuses


Caucuses are ways for circle members to organise discussions on specific areas on which they might want to turn a socialist lens on, thus to have parallel discussions with the central monthly themes which are pan circle. Caucuses thus act as reading circles within the reading circle


Currently some of the caucuses are

  1. Kosambi Caste Caucus

  2. Kosambi Gender Caucus

  3. Kosambi Art and Culture Caucus

  4. Kosambi Law Caucus

  5. Kosambi Food Caucus

  6. Kosambi Political Economy Caucus

  7. Kosambi Writing Caucus

  8. Kosambi Sports Caucus

  9. Kosambi Health Caucus

  10. Kosambi Philosophy Caucus

  11. Kosambi Pedagogy Caucus

  12. Kosambi Ecosocialist Caucus

  13. Kosambi Capital Reading Caucus

  14. Kosambi Anarchism Caucus


Timeline and notes

  1. 28-01-2020

  2. 31-01-2020

  3. 13-06-2020

  4. 20-06-2020

  5. 27-06-2020

  6. 19-07-2020

  7. 25-07-2020

  8. 13-09-2020

  9. 27-09-2020

  10. 11-10-2020

  11. 25-10-2020

  12. 15-11-2020

  13. 29-11-2020

  14. 13-12-2020

  15. 20-12-2020

  16. 17-01-2021

  17. 21-02-2021

  18. 28-02-2021

  19. 14-03-2021

  20. 28-03-2021

  21. 11-04-2021

  22. 25-04-2021

  23. 16-05-2021

  24. 30-05-2021

  25. 13-06-2021

  26. 27-06-2021

  27. 18-07-2021

  28. 25-07-2021

  29. 08-08-2021

  30. 15-08-2021

  31. 29-08-2021

  32. 12-09-2021

  33. 26-09-2021

  34. 17-10-2021

  35. 31-10-2021

  36. 14-11-2021

  37. 28-11-2021

  38. 19-12-2021

  39. 26-12-2021

  40. 16-01-2022

  41. 30-01-2022

  42. 13-02-2022

  43. 27-02-2022

  44. 13-03-2022

  45. 27-03-2022

  46. 10-04-2022

  47. 24-04-2022

  48. 15-05-2022

  49. 29-05-2022

  50. 12-06-2022

  51. 26-06-2022

  52. 17-07-2022

  53. 31-07-2022

  54. 14-08-2022

  55. 28-08-2022

  56. 18-09-2022

  57. 02-10-2022

  58. 16-10-2022

  59. 30-10-2022

  60. 13-11-2022

  61. 27-11-2022

  62. 11-12-2022

  63. 25-12-2022

  64. 22-01-2023 (class 1)

  65. 12-02-2023 (class 2)

  66. 25-02-2023

  67. 19-03-2023 (class 3)

  68. 01-04-2023

  69. 16-04-2023 (class 4)

  70. 29-04-2023

  71. 14-05-2023 (class 5)

  72. 28-05-2023

  73. 18-06-2023 (capital 1)

  74. 16-07-2023 (capital 2)

  75. 30-07-2023 (capital 3)

  76. 13-08-2023 (capital 4)

  77. 27-08-2023

  78. 17-09-2023 (capital 5)

  79. 08-10-2023 (capital 6)

  80. 22-10-2023

  81. 19-11-2023 (capital 7)

  82. 26-11-2023 (capital 8)

  83. 17-12-2023

  84. 14-01-2024

  85. 28-01-2024


Readings covered till now


(Note: Please don't read uncritically and without context. The point is not to agree with everything anyone writes. The meeting notes above will help)


January '20


February '20

3. The Manifesto of the Communist Party *Read this with the 1872 preface


March '20


April '20

11. Selected articles on Assam and NRC (from Suraj Gogoi's reading list)


May '20


June '20


July '20

31. Marxist Theories of Imperialism The chapters: Introduction, Luxemburg, Lenin, Dependency Theory


June/July recommended readings

Chapter 4 – Commerce or Capitalism in The Origin of Capitalism by Ellen Meiksins Wood


August '20


September '20


Recommended readings September


October '20


Also listen to these


Recommended extra readings for October


November '20

70. MPT Acharya: Reminiscences of a Revolutionary also, a clean transcription of this by Kosambi Circle people also, as the material is not the full story (we could not find the book) here is what happened to MPT after Morocco

79. Cellular Jail: Stories of Clemency and Betrayal by Zubair Ahmed (approximately covering 1930 to 1970)


Recommended extra readings for November

The Bomb in Bengal by Peter Heehs

An Early Communist Muzaffar Ahmad in Calcutta, 1913–1929 by Suchetana Chattopadhyay

Amar Bari Tomar Bari NaxalBari by Sumit Kumar

The Left in India's Freedom Movement and in Free India by E. M. S. Namboodiripad Unclaimed Harvest: An Oral History of the Tebhaga Women's Movement by Kavita Punjabi The Story of an Aborted Revolution: Communist Insurgency in Post independence West Bengal, 1948–50 by Sekhar Bandyopadhyay

India’s Simmering Revolution by Sumanta Banerjee

From Popular Movements to Rebellion, Bengal in the 50s and the 60s by Ranabir Samaddar


December '20

95. Chapter 6 of Towards an Anthropological Theory of Value by David Graeber, “Marcel Mauss Revisited”


January '21


February '21 100. The Necessity of Art by Ernst Fischer

102. The Slow Cancellation of the Future by Mark Fisher (this is an essay in Chapter 00 of the book Ghosts of my Life)

March '21

Chapter 8, 9, 10,11 (do the other chapters if you have time and want to learn the historical context) (*we did this last year in July as well, also focus on the chapters on contemporary theories)


April '21

109. Algorithmic Management, Employment, and the Self in Gig Work by Julia Tomassetti. This is Chapter 6 of Beyond the Algorithm

110. Turkopticon by Lilly Irani et al

112. Left Populism and Platform Capitalism by Nick Dyer-Witheford

113. Chapters 8 and 9 of Platform Capitalism in India

114. Platform Capitalism by Nick Srnicek


May '21 115. Extractivism by Jeff Diamanti

119. Inside Out by Francis Tseng

120. Chapter 1 and 2 of Resource Radicals by Thea Riofrancos

121. Chapter 3 of Planetary Mine by Martin Arboleda

122. Resource geography II: What makes resources political? by Matt Huber

June '21

123. IPCC Special Report on Climate Change and Land (read the executive summary of each chapter 1 to 7)

124. IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 ºC (read the executive summary of each chapter 1 to 5)

125. Oceans that Keep Capitalism Afloat by Katy Fox-Hodess

127. Chapter 1 and 2 of Governing the Commons by Elinor Ostrom

128. Marx and Nature by McKenzie Wark

133. Western Ghats A Lifescape by Madhav Gadgil


July '21

134. Karl Marx and Religion by Cyril Smith

136. Theses On Feuerbach by Karl Marx

and c) Hujum

140. Remembering Tilak: 'The Father of India’s Revolution' (this piece is hagiography, do not read uncritically)

145. Navayana Buddhism and the Spread of Buddha Vihara in Maharashtra (this piece is badly edited, read with care)


August '21

149. Part 1 and Part 2 of Hindu Nationalism: a Reader by Christophe Jaffrelot 150. Hindutva by V. D. Savarkar

153. Swami Vivekananda's Construction of Hinduism by Tapan Raychaudhuri, this is the first chapter of Swami Vivekananda and the Modernization of Hinduism


September '21

155. "Exercise of Law" and "The Rule of Law" from Whigs and Hunters by E. P. Thompson (page 245-269)

156. "The Oral Shape of the Law" in The Death of Luigi Trastulli and Other Stories by Alessandro Portelli

157. "Defining Right as Wrong: Reflections on Associational Freedom and Free Speech" in The Wages of Impunity by K.G. Kannabiran

158. Progressive and Conservative Constitutionalism by Robin West (page 642-651)

160. On the Human Rights Question by Paul O'Connell

161. The Right to Medicines in the Age of Neoliberalism (full symposium):


October '21

163. Chapter 1, 2, and 7 of the Technique of Revolution by Curzio Malaparte

165. Chapter 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 of Terrorism and Communism by Leon Trotsky

166. The Russian Revolution by Rosa Luxemburg

167. Trotsky Protests Too much by Emma Goldman

169. War Is A Racket by Major General Smedley Butler

171. Chapter 1, 6, 7, and 8 of The Production of Hindu Muslim Violence in Contemporary India by Paul Brass

172. Chapter 1, 2, and 6 of Rebels from the Mud Houses by George Kunnath

176. Chapter 10 of Direct Action: an Ethnography by David Graeber


November '21


179. First 3 chapters of What is to be Done? by V. I. Lenin

181. The April Theses by V. I. Lenin

184. Kronstatd

a) Workers' Opposition by Alexandra Kollontai

b) 10th Party Congress resolutions

186. Left wing communism an Infantile Disorder by V. I. Lenin (read page 10 to 105)

187. Open Letter to Comrade Lenin by Herman Gorter

189. Workers Control by Mattick

190. Council Communism by Mark Shipway


December '21


Reread readings 135 and 136

Theses On Feuerbach by Karl Marx 194. Think by Simon Blackburn

195. Philosophy of Science by Samir Okasha


Video


From 2022 new readings are numbered while repeats are mentioned


January '22 and February '22


(revision) Wage-Labor and Capital by Marx

(revision) Theses on Feuerbach by Marx

(revision) Reform or Revolution by Luxemburg


(revision) Marxism and Politics by Miliband

201. Luxemburg versus Lenin by Mattick

202. Anatomy of Fascism by Robert Paxton


March '22 and April '22


(revision) Selected articles on Assam and NRC (from Suraj Gogoi's reading list)


204. Part 3 of Hindu Nationalism: a Reader by Christophe Jaffrelot (revision) Hindu Nationalism: a Reader by Christophe Jaffrelot

(revision) Marxist Theories of Imperialism by Anthony Brewer

(revision) Gita Press and the Making of Hindu India by Akshaya Mukul


May '22 and June '22


205. Feminist Perspectives on Sex and Gender - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

(revision) Caste, Class, and Women's Liberation by Gail Omvedt

(revision) Prejudice Against Reservation Policies by Sukhadeo Thorat & others

(revision) Dalit & Naxalite Movements in Andhra Pradesh by Ajay Gudavarthy

208. Chapter 6 of Seeing Like a Feminist by Nivedita Menon

209. Annihilation of Caste by B. R. Ambedkar

210. Chapter 1 and Chapter 6 of Beyond Caste: Identity and Power in South Asia, Past and Present by Sumit Guha

211. Introduction, Chapter 1, and Chapter 2 of Caste, Culture, and Hegemony: Social Domination of Colonial Bengal by Sekhar Bandyopadhyay

Video


212. Caste in Modern India: A Reader by Sumit Sarkar and Tanika Sarkar Read these chapters of this book: Chapters 2, 3, 6, 11, 13 from Volume 1. Chapter 1, 5, 7, 10, 11 from Volume 2

Following authors are covered: Dirks, Bayly, Sumit Guha, Bernard Cohn, Sekhar Bandyopadhyay, S J Patel, Nandini Gooptu, Anupama Rao, Sumit Sarkar, Jaffrelot


213. Castes of Mind by Dirks (revision) Kosambi and the Question of Caste by Kumkum Roy

214. The Social Basis of the Woman Question by Alexandra Kollontai

215. What is Socialist Feminism? by Barbara Ehrenreich (revision) The Unhappy Marriage of Marxism and Feminism by Heidi Hartmann

(revision) Capitalism and the Gay Identity by John D'Emilio

(revision) Transition and Abolition by Jules Joanne Gleeson

(revision) Feminism for the 99% by Cinzia Arruzza, Nancy Fraser, and Tithi Bhattacharya


Recommended extra reading Read completely the books whose chapters are required readings Caste, Society and Politics in India from the Eighteenth Century to the Modern Age by Bayly


July '22 and August '22


(revision) MPT Acharya: Reminiscences of a Revolutionary also, a clean transcription of this by Kosambi Circle people also, as the material is not the full story (we could not find the book) here is what happened to MPT after Morocco

216. Selected articles on pre 1920 events



(revision) On the 1964 split

231. Bathani Tola (Bihar) (8 pages)

232. The Left Front Government by Ashok Rudra (4 pages)

241. Mandal and the parties (2 pages)

Extra readings

The Bomb in Bengal by Peter Heehs

An Early Communist Muzaffar Ahmad in Calcutta, 1913–1929 by Suchetana Chattopadhyay

The Long Haul by Rajani Bakshi Unclaimed Harvest: An Oral History of the Tebhaga Women's Movement by Kavita Punjabi

Amar Bari Tomar Bari NaxalBari by Sumit Kumar

India’s Simmering Revolution by Sumanta Banerjee

From Popular Movements to Rebellion, Bengal in the 50s and the 60s by Ranabir Samaddar


Septmber '22 and October '22


242. Chapters 1,2,3,4 of An Introduction to the Three Volumes of Karl Marx’s Capital by Michael Heinrich

(revision) What Do Bosses Do? by Stephen Marglin

(revision) Don’t Mention the War by Mike Beggs

(revision) The Keynesian Counterrevolution by Mike Beggs

(revision) The Left in A Foxhole by Geoff Mann

(revision) Fantasies of Secession by Jamie Merchant


244. Origin of Capitalism by Ellen Woods


November '22 and December '22

245. Why Socialism? by Albert Einstein

248. Chapters 1 to 5 of Infinite Powers by Steven Strogatz

249. Science in Saffron by Meera Nanda


January 2023 (Class) Principles of Communism by Engels

The Manifesto of the Communist Party by Marx, *Read this with the 1872 preface

February 2023 (Class) Critique of the Gotha Program by Marx

February 2023 (Meeting - Theme 1: History)

251. Chapter 1 of Unclaimed Harvest: An Oral History of the Tebhaga Women's Movement by Kavita Punjabi

Video

Many Straws Make a Nest: Documentary on Workers Struggle in the Industrial Belt around Delhi

March 2023 (Class)


April 2023 (Meeting - Theme 2: State)

253. A Manifesto of Emancipation by Paresh Chattopadhyay

255. Marx and the State by Ralph Miliband

256. State power and class interests by Ralph Miliband

257. Poulatnzas and the capitalist state by Ralph Miliband


April 2023 (Class)

Zasulich Letter by MarxRed Virgin and Vision of Utopia by Mary TalbotRed Rosa by Kate Evans

April 2023 (Meeting - Theme 3: Philosophy)

(revision) Epistemology 

(revision) Philosophy of Science by Samir Okasha

(revision) Theory of Mind


Video


May 2023 (Class)

Chapter 4,5,6 of Russia in revolution : an Empire in crisis by SA Smith

Workers Control by Mattick

Council Communism by Mark Shipway


May 2023 (Meeting - Theme 4: Organisation)

(revision) Worker's Opposition 

(revision) Workers' Opposition by Alexandra Kollontai

(revision) Chapter 9, 15, and 27 of My Disillusionment in Russia by Goldman

(revision) Kronstatd Resolution

(revision) 10th Party Congress resolutions


Extra Reading


June 2023 (Capital 1)


July 2023 (Capital 2)


July 2023 (Capital 3)

Chapter 1 of Capital Vol 1 by Karl Marx

186 pages of How to Read Marx's Capital by Michael Heinrich


August 2023 (Capital 4)

Chapter 2 to 6 of Capital Vol 1 by Karl Marx

187 to 331 pages of How to Read Marx's Capital by Michael Heinrich


August 2023 (Meeting - Theme 5: Gender + Theme 6: Science)

(revision) Chapter 1 and 2 of Science in Saffron by Meera Nanda

(revision) What is Socialist Feminism? by Barbara Ehrenreich

260. Chapter 1 of Social Reproduction Theory by Tithi Bhattacharya

261. Chapter 5 of Transgender Marxism by Nat Raha


September 2023 (Capital 5)

Chapter 7 to 11 of Capital Vol 1 by Karl Marx

332 to 398 pages of How to Read Marx's Capital by Michael Heinrich


October 2023 (Capital 6)

Chapter 12 to 15 of Capital Vol 1 by Karl Marx


October 2023 (Meeting - Theme 7: Caste)

262. Chapters 2, 5, 8, and 9 of Mapping the Elite collection of essays by Jodhka and Naudet 

263. Introduction, Chapters 1 and 2 of Outcaste Bombay by Junaid Shaikh


November 2023 (Capital 7)

Chapter 16 to 25 of Capital Vol 1 by Karl Marx


November 2023 (Capital 8)

Chapter 26 to 33 of Capital Vol 1 by Karl Marx


December 2023 (Meeting - Theme 8: Palestine)

264. Der Judenstaat by Theodor Herzl

265. The Introduction to Palestine: A Four Thousand Year History by Nur Masalha

268. Introduction and Chapter 4 of One Country: A Bold Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse by Ali Abunimah


January 2024 (Meeting - Theme 9: Nation + Theme 10: Faith + Theme 11: Reaction)

270. Part 1 of Modi's India by Christophe Jaffrelot


Programme for 2024


28 January 2024 (Theme: Religion)

(Revision) Gita Press and the Making of Hindu India by Akshaya Mukul


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