Olga Zeveleva
October 2017.

Is gender identity or class identity more important in the world today?

1 answer

I am pretty much a pessimist here. For example, all these politically correct movements - of course I support their goals, but they are nonetheless perfectly integrated into existing global capitalism. Maybe in some countries it’s different. But in the United States and Western Europe, I think that the ultimate ideological function even of feminism, gay movements, is to deflect attention from class struggle and to give you these other goals which can be again perfectly integrated into the system.

I was attacked in the United States for noting this single fact that all the big capital, literally all this - whatever you want - Apple, Microsoft, Amazon - they are all extremely for this Ersatz-liberation movements. On the other hand, I am also a little bit skeptical with the tendency to build liberated territories, where you say “capitalism is out here, we have our freedoms here”. If you allow these types of islands outside your control, they can bring a lot to the stability of the overall system. The model is Mexico’s Zapatista. At the beginning, they were felt as a threat, now everybody - I mean everybody in the establishment - says "oh, they are our moral consciousness, we should support them", and so on.

So again, the problem is not that people are stupid, the problem is us, the leftists. What can we really offer them? In the United States they knew very well how these small intellectually radical groups were the perfect way to neutralise an actual social movement. Which is why, much more than all these small communist groups, but the importance of Bernie Sanders (though I am not taking him too seriously) was that for the first time  something a little bit more radical emerged. He even rehabilitated the word “socialism”, and words are important - the word literally grabbed, mobilised millions of the people. You know, we shouldn’t be theoretical purists here. The question is, how can you mobilise the people?