By Zak Brown

“At the risk of seeming ridiculous, let me say that the true revolutionary is guided by great feelings of love.” – Ernesto ‘Che’ Guevara

Contemporary Marxism can be seen as diverging into two distinct camps: those who have disavowed the formal consideration of ethics, and those who have held ethics to the standard theology.

Ethics – the study of right and wrong courses of action – has thus been left out to dry by the modern left.

The confused and eclectic assembly of leftist radicals is only further complicated by the diverse range of “ethical considerations” they make. Some claim to represent a sort of “utilitarianism for the negative”, others hold fast to categorical imperatives (the duty of liberation), others of course simply deny the importance of ethics as a whole: the sheer disillusionment with the modern project of leftism has in its course rejected the importance of ethics as a formal inquiry into “what should we do?”

So, what should we do?

What I hope to do in the essay below is reintroduce a secular ethics as a procedure for communists working towards communism, and present a notion of love which not only cements this (ethical) procedure but provides a sense of working realism to the whole project. My thesis develops along a simple set of premises and conclusions which provide reasoning for a host of claims including commentary on the “justification of violence”.

Some important things to note:

  1. The essay is long winded, more descriptive at some points than others; however, the latent structure forces each statement to justify the others so as to help the reader read my reasoning.
  2. Some of my examples especially those related to love indulge in the cishet monogamous conceptions of an intimate relationship. This is done for purposes of cultural reference, specifically to that cinematic theme of the classic romance; however, this should not be interpreted as any normative claim or qualification for love, obviously.
  3. The way in which I reintroduce the concept of communism is critical to the entire essay; pay attention to what I mean regarding “intensity” and the conclusions drawn thereafter will make greater sense.

Because of its length, the essay cannot be posted in text.

Instead, the essay can be read as a PDF: Love, the ethics of communism (Dropbox mirror)

And for those who celebrate, Happy Valentine’s Day!

Join the conversation! 1 Comment

  1. Communism is most certainly predicated upon love-love of human emancipation in all its forms.Similarly communism is hate(or righteous anger if you prefer)-of oppression,injustice,exploitation etc.Love directed in the wrong direction is every great a wrong as is hate directed in the wrong direction.They are obverse sides of the same coin.


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