Max on seriousnessness

Doug Henwood dhenwood at
Wed Aug 11 17:27:07 PDT 1999

[This bounced because it was posted from a non-sub'd address.]

From: "Max B. Sawicky" <sawicky at> Date: Wed, 11 Aug 1999 20:27:11 -0700

. . .
>>So they didn't, giving rise to some controversy in the ranks.
>>I took it as a sign of seriousness.
>Or a sign that a woman's right to an abortion just isn't that
>important? Is that what you mean by serious? And people thought
>Judith Butler was delusional when she said:
>"This resurgence of Left orthodoxy calls for a 'unity' that would,
>paradoxically, redivide the Left in precisely the way that orthodoxy

If dividing the left means redefining it so that JB isn't in it, then yessirree Bob.

>purports to lament. Indeed, one way of producing this division
>becomes clear when we ask, which movements, and for what reasons, get
>relegated to the sphere of the merely cultural, and how that very
>division between the material and the cultural becomes tactically
>invoked for the purposes of marginalizing certain forms of political
>activism? And how does the new orthodoxy on the Left work in tandem
>with a social and sexual conservativism that seeks to make questions
>of race and sexuality secondary to the 'real' business of

What JB calls 'relegating' or 'marginalizing' is really prioritizing for the purpose of forging broad consensus. Hers is the cry of someone who will not settle for less than her *entire* loaf, while contentedly accepting the wholesale marginalization of the most basic issues going to material well-being. Since to her everything is backwards, real leftism is conservative, and her own unreal, unreadable speculations are revolutionary.

Something tells me this will not settle the argument.


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