‘Labor, Nature and the Evolution of Humanity’ sparks interest in Cuba and in the U.S.

‘Labor, Nature and the Evolution of Humanity’ sparks interest in Cuba and in the U.S.

Labor, Nature and the Evolution of Humanity: The Long View of History was presented April 24, 2022, at the Havana International Book Fair in Cuba. “Without understanding that we live and labor as part of nature, as biological beings, that we live and labor in history,” said Mary-Alice Waters, “we remain prisoners of the present, unable to see beyond the relations of capitalist exploitation and oppression that warp every aspect of our lives.” Waters is president of Pathfinder Press and editor of the book.

Studying [The Long View of History, now part of the new Pathfinder title] “is essential for understanding the world in which we live…Capitalism will not disappear by itself. It must be disappeared, through the struggles of men and women to transform society.”—Fernando González, president of the Cuban Institute for Friendship with the Peoples (ICAP)

“Books like Labor, Nature, and the Evolution of Humanity are important in the world today….They’re important for us in Cuba.”—Víctor Dreke, long-time revolutionary combatant.

George Novack’s The Long View of History “opened my horizons” to a materialist explanation of history. —Pedro Pablo Rodríguez, lead editor of complete works of José Martí.

“People can go out and fight about everyday problems. But they need to transcend these individual situations as they fight. That’s exactly what this book is about.”—Zuleica Romay, director of Afro- American Studies at Casa de las Américas.

Labor, Nature, and the Evolution of Humanity is a timely and somewhat unusual anthology of writings, by Marx, Engels, the late American communist leader George Novack, and the contemporary Mary-Alice Waters. As an anthropologist and political conservative, this is not the company I would ordinarily keep, but as someone concerned about the rise of pseudo-history and pseudo-science in American society today, I find the frank materialism of the old-fashioned Marxist left refreshing, especially in its recognition of institutional progress through continuous social struggle.

Readers who have been inundated with identity politics and post-modern counterfactual fabrications would do well to refresh themselves on what a truly radical reading of the human past looks like. —Peter W. Wood is the author of 1620: A Critical Response to the 1619 Project and president of the National Association of Scholars

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