Socialist Review (US)

Socialist Review (US)

Socialist Review (ISSN 0161-1801, originally titled Socialist Revolution) was a left-wing political and cultural magazine published in the United States since 1970. At the end of 2002 it was renamed Radical Society: Review of Culture and Politics (ISSN 1476-0851).

Socialist Revolution, under its founding editor James Weinstein, began with a revolutionary perspective which was, however, very critical of the existing Marxist left (including the New Communist Movement as well as established organizations) which it saw as undemocratic both in its way of operating and in its political aspirations. In the 1970s and early 1980s SR was strongly associated with the New American Movement, and its politics in this period developed in a similar direction towards a more Social Democratic perspective. In the course of this development the journal was renamed Socialist Review in 1978, meanwhile absorbing the short-lived Marxist Perspectives.

Because the journal had been founded in San Francisco with an editorial collective that included many University of California at Berkeley graduate students, it showed an openness to theory that was not universally shared by journals on the left in the 1970s. As some of the original collective graduated and got teaching jobs in the Boston area, a second editorial collective was founded in nearby Somerville (and later a short-lived New York collective also came into existence for similar reasons). As the members of the Boston collective began to get tenure, the nature of the two main editorial collectives began to diverge, with the Boston Collective attracting junior faculty, while the Bay Area collective continued well into the 1980s to be composed primarily of grad students and community activists. The Boston Collective was notable for the quality of its economic analysis, while the West Coast Collective was active in producing articles out of the various identity movements of the 1980s, always with an eye toward theory. During this period, a careful reader could tell exactly which collective was responsible for which articles in the journal, but to most observers it meant that Socialist Review reflected the diversity of positions available on the left.

Socialist Review came to be strongly associated with postmodern critical theory and evolved into an academic journal with a strong cultural element. Among the notable articles published in SR was Donna Haraway's "A Cyborg Manifesto," the founding document of Cyborg theory. In 1991, Verso published Unfinished Business: 20 Years of Socialist Review, containing 20 of the best-known articles from its pages.

Read more about Socialist Review (US):  Contributors, Bibliography

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