3 September 2010

Weapon of Theory – The Full Course

African Revolutionary Writers, Part 1

Weapon of Theory – Full Course

We will meet at 17h00 on 9 September 2010. The venue will be confirmed by e-mail on Tuesday.

Comrades of the Communist University,

In the previous post you were asked for assistance in compiling a list of African revolutionary writers, from which to construct a CU course.

I received suggestions from as far away as Argentina; New Jersey, USA; and East London, South Africa. Please, continue to send suggestions, and if possible, texts, be they articles, speeches, links to pages on the Internet, or text files.

We have to begin this course next week Thursday. Therefore to have something to discuss, please accept today Cabral’s “Weapon of Theory” (download linked at the bottom), which has to be part of this course even though we have circulated it only a few weeks ago, as part of the “Philosophy and Religion” course.

It has to be, because Cabral is the most profound and most sublime of African revolutionary writers. He is one African (but not the only one) who contributed indispensable new lessons to the universal revolutionary legacy.

When there is more time, and at a later stage in this course, we will return to Amilcar Cabral and to the great single-volume compendium of his work called “Unity and Struggle”, recently republished in South Africa (look for it!).

Here is the revised “African Revolutionary Writers” list with some links, dates and titles of possible works that we might use. (Below it is the previously-circulated intro to Cabral’s “Weapon of Theory”.) More suggestions, please!

Main Candidate Text
1745 - 1797
Interesting Life of Olaudah Equiano
1743 - 1803
Haiti Constitution
1818 - 1895
My Bondage and My Freedom
1876 - 1932
Native Life in South Africa
1903 - 1959
What Must Be Done?
1905 - 1978
Cradock Letter
1901 - 1989
Notes on Dialectics
1918 - 1970
Memoirs of 1st Palestine War
1898 - 1976
Here I Stand
1868 - 1963
Africa in Battle Against Colonialism
1898 - 1967
Peace Prize acceptance
1923 - 2007
God’s Bits of Wood
1925 - 1961
Speech in front of Baudouin
1925 - 1961
The Wretched of the Earth
1910 - 2001
The Peasants Revolt
1909 - 1972
Neo-Colonialism, Last Stage of Imperialism
1911 - 1994
Not Yet Uhuru
1929 - 1968
Beyond Vietnam
1939 -
The Beautyful Ones Are Not Yet Born
1920 - 1969
The Struggle for Mozambique
1917 - 1993
Speeches ex ANC web site
1925 - 1965
By Any Means Necessary
1925 - 1985
In the Fog of the Season’s End
1938 -
1911 - 1986
Strategy for a Black Agenda
1942 - 1980
How Europe Undeveloped Africa
1922 - 1979
Sacred Hope
1922 - 1999
Freedom and Development
1933 - 1986
Sowing the Seeds of Revolution
1922 - 1984
Strategy and tactics of the revolution
1946 - 1977
I Write What I Like
1924 - 1973
Unity and Struggle
1923 - 1986
Civilisation or Barbarism
1944 -
Women, Race and Class
1925 - 1982
Mozambican Miner: Proletarian and Peasant
1955 - 1991
Cooking the rice inside the pot
1949 - 1987
Thomas Sankara Speaks
1920 -
Coloniser and colonised
1947 -
Citizen and Subject
1918 -
Cubans aid Algerian revolution
1946 -
The Struggle for Democracy
1931 -
The American Ideology
1942 -
The One-State Solution

The Tricontinental Conference of the Peoples of Asia, Africa and Latin America was held in Havana in January, 1966, 46 years after the Baku Conference of the Peoples of the East and seven years after the Cuban Revolution.

Forty-three more years have now passed since the Tricontinental. A lot has been achieved in that time, including our South African democratic breakthrough, sixteen years ago, and the unbanning of the ANC, twenty years ago.

The full defeat of Imperialism has not yet occurred. What we can say is that from early in the 20th-Century the historical agenda was set by the liberation movements, and that Imperialism represents the degeneration and the decline of bourgeois class power, and not its heyday.

The great political change in the world in the last century was the taking of sovereign independence by the formerly oppressed people of the former colonies, affecting the great majority of the population of the planet and opening the road of democracy for them.

This gigantic movement and huge change was achieved with the weapon of theory.

43 years ago Amilcar Cabral [see image, above] in the speech to the Tricontinental that has always been known by the title “Weapon of Theory” (please find the link to the download, below) also said the following:

“It is often said that national liberation is based on the right of every people to freely control its own destiny and that the objective of this liberation is national independence. Although we do not disagree with this vague and subjective way of expressing a complex reality, we prefer to be objective, since for us the basis of national liberation, whatever the formulas adopted on the level of international law, is the inalienable right of every people to have its own history, and the objective of national liberation is to regain this right usurped by imperialism, that is to say, to free the process of development of the national productive forces.

“For this reason, in our opinion, any national liberation movement which does not take into consideration this basis and this objective may certainly struggle against imperialism, but will surely not be struggling for national liberation.

“This means that, bearing in mind the essential characteristics of the present world economy, as well as experiences already gained in the field of anti-imperialist struggle, the principal aspect of national liberation struggle is the struggle against neo-colonialism.”

Amilcar Cabral was a true vanguardist. He was both a great leader, and a great intellectual.

Please download the document via the link given here.

Please download and read:


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