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Why You Should Read Total Propaganda: A Review of Helen Razer's Basic Marxist Brainwashing for the Angry and the Young



Total Propaganda: Basic Marxist Brainwashing for the Angry and the Young




If you are looking for a book that will challenge your worldview, provoke your emotions, and inspire your actions, you might want to check out Total Propaganda: Basic Marxist Brainwashing for the Angry and the Young by Helen Razer. This book is a witty, irreverent, and passionate introduction to Marxism for the modern reader. It aims to explain how Marxism can help us understand and transform the world we live in, while exposing the lies and manipulations of propaganda and brainwashing. In this article, we will give you an overview of the book's main themes, arguments, and insights.




Total Propaganda: Basic Marxist Brainwashing for the Angry and the Young mobi download book



What is Marxism and why is it relevant today?




Marxism is a social, political, and economic theory that was developed by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels in the 19th century. It is based on the idea that human history is shaped by the struggle between different classes, especially between the bourgeoisie (the owners of capital) and the proletariat (the workers). Marxism argues that capitalism is an exploitative system that creates inequality, alienation, oppression, and crisis. It also proposes that socialism is a more humane and rational alternative that can overcome these problems through collective ownership, democracy, and solidarity.


Marxism is relevant today because it offers a powerful critique of the status quo and a vision for a better future. It helps us understand how capitalism affects every aspect of our lives, from our work to our culture to our environment. It also helps us identify the root causes of the social issues we face today, such as poverty, racism, sexism, war, climate change, etc. Moreover, Marxism inspires us to challenge the dominant ideologies and institutions that serve the interests of the ruling class, while empowering us to join forces with other oppressed groups to fight for our rights and dignity.


How does Marxism explain the current state of the world?




Marxism explains the current state of the world by analyzing how capitalism operates on different levels. Here are some of the key concepts and processes that Marxism uses to describe the reality we live in:



  • Commodity fetishism: This is the phenomenon of attributing magical qualities and value to commodities (goods and services) that are produced by human labor. It obscures the social relations and exploitation behind the production and consumption of commodities, and makes us believe that they are natural, inevitable, and desirable.



  • Surplus value: This is the difference between the value that workers create through their labor and the wages that they receive from their employers. It is the source of profit for the capitalists, who appropriate the surplus value from the workers. It also creates a contradiction between the interests of the capitalists (who want to maximize profit) and the workers (who want to improve their living conditions).



  • Alienation: This is the condition of being estranged from oneself, from others, and from nature. It results from the division of labor, the commodification of human activity, and the domination of market forces. It makes us feel isolated, dissatisfied, and powerless.



  • Class struggle: This is the conflict between different classes over the distribution of wealth and power in society. It is driven by the antagonism between the capitalists (who own and control the means of production) and the workers (who sell their labor power to survive). It also involves other classes and groups that are affected by capitalism, such as peasants, artisans, intellectuals, women, minorities, etc.



  • Crisis: This is the inevitable outcome of the contradictions and instability inherent in capitalism. It manifests as economic recession, social unrest, political turmoil, environmental degradation, etc. It exposes the flaws and failures of capitalism, and creates opportunities for change and resistance.



What are the benefits and drawbacks of Marxism?




Marxism has both benefits and drawbacks as a theory and a practice. Here are some of them:



Benefits


Drawbacks


- It provides a comprehensive and coherent framework for understanding and transforming society.


- It can be dogmatic and rigid in its assumptions and methods.


- It reveals the hidden mechanisms and dynamics of capitalism and its effects on various domains.


- It can be too deterministic and reductionist in its explanations and predictions.


- It empowers us to challenge the dominant ideologies and institutions that oppress us.


- It can be too utopian and unrealistic in its goals and expectations.


- It connects us with other oppressed groups and movements that share our struggles.


- It can be too divisive and sectarian in its politics and alliances.


- It inspires us to imagine and create a more just and sustainable world.


- It can be too violent and authoritarian in its tactics and strategies.


What is propaganda and how does it work?




Propaganda is a form of communication that aims to influence or manipulate people's opinions, emotions, attitudes, or behavior. It uses various techniques, such as repetition, exaggeration, distortion, omission, appeal to authority, appeal to fear, appeal to pity, etc. Propaganda can be found in different media, such as newspapers, magazines, books, radio, television, film, internet, etc. Propaganda can have different purposes, such as promoting a political agenda, a religious doctrine, a commercial product, a social cause, etc.


How does propaganda influence our perception and behavior?




Propaganda influences our perception and behavior by affecting our cognitive and affective processes. Here are some of the ways propaganda can impact us:



  • It shapes our knowledge and beliefs: Propaganda can provide us with information or misinformation about various topics or issues. It can also reinforce or challenge our existing beliefs or assumptions. Propaganda can make us accept or reject certain facts or opinions as true or false.



  • It affects our emotions and values: Propaganda can elicit or manipulate our feelings or emotions about various topics or issues. It can also appeal to or undermine our values or principles. Propaganda can make us like or dislike certain people or groups as friends or enemies.



What are some examples of propaganda in history and today?




Propaganda has been used throughout history and across cultures for various purposes and effects. Here are some examples of propaganda in different contexts and domains:



  • Political propaganda: This is propaganda that aims to influence or manipulate people's political views or actions. It can be used by governments, parties, candidates, movements, etc. Some examples of political propaganda are: Nazi propaganda in Germany, Soviet propaganda in Russia, American propaganda during the Cold War, Chinese propaganda during the Cultural Revolution, etc.



  • Religious propaganda: This is propaganda that aims to influence or manipulate people's religious beliefs or practices. It can be used by religions, sects, cults, etc. Some examples of religious propaganda are: Crusader propaganda in Europe, Islamic propaganda in the Middle East, Mormon propaganda in America, Scientology propaganda in Hollywood, etc.



  • Commercial propaganda: This is propaganda that aims to influence or manipulate people's consumer preferences or choices. It can be used by corporations, brands, advertisers, etc. Some examples of commercial propaganda are: Coca-Cola propaganda in the world, Apple propaganda in the tech industry, Nike propaganda in the sports industry, McDonald's propaganda in the food industry, etc.



  • Social propaganda: This is propaganda that aims to influence or manipulate people's social values or norms. It can be used by groups, organizations, activists, etc. Some examples of social propaganda are: Feminist propaganda in the women's movement, Environmentalist propaganda in the green movement, Vegan propaganda in the animal rights movement, LGBTQ+ propaganda in the queer movement, etc.



What is brainwashing and how does it differ from propaganda?




Brainwashing is a form of psychological manipulation that aims to alter or erase people's identity and agency. It uses various methods, such as isolation, deprivation, indoctrination, coercion, etc. Brainwashing can be found in different settings, such as prisons, camps, cults, schools, etc. Brainwashing can have different goals, such as converting people to a new ideology or religion, extracting information or confessions from people, controlling people's thoughts or actions, etc.


How does brainwashing manipulate our identity and agency?




Brainwashing manipulates our identity and agency by affecting our cognitive and affective processes. Here are some of the ways brainwashing can impact us:



  • It destroys our sense of self: Brainwashing can make us lose our sense of who we are and what we value. It can make us doubt or reject our own beliefs or opinions as false or wrong. It can make us adopt or accept a new identity or role as true or right.



  • It erodes our sense of others: Brainwashing can make us lose our sense of connection and empathy with others. It can make us distrust or hate others who do not share our new identity or role as enemies or threats. It can make us depend or love others who do share our new identity or role as friends or leaders.



  • It undermines our sense of reality: Brainwashing can make us lose our sense of what is real and what is not. It can make us ignore or deny the evidence or facts that contradict our new identity or role as lies or illusions. It can make us believe or follow the claims or commands that support our new identity or role as truths or duties.



  • It reduces our sense of agency: Brainwashing can make us lose our sense of control and choice over our own thoughts and actions. It can make us comply or obey the rules or expectations of our new identity or role as necessary or inevitable. It can make us resist or rebel against the alternatives or options to our new identity or role as impossible or undesirable.



What are some methods and signs of brainwashing?




Brainwashing uses various methods and signs to manipulate people's identity and agency. Here are some of them:



Methods


Signs


- Isolation: This is the method of cutting off people from their normal social contacts and sources of information. It creates a sense of loneliness and dependence on the brainwasher.


- Withdrawal: This is the sign of losing interest and involvement in the outside world and activities. It indicates a lack of motivation and curiosity.


- Deprivation: This is the method of depriving people of their basic needs and comforts, such as food, sleep, hygiene, etc. It creates a sense of weakness and vulnerability to the brainwasher.


- Fatigue: This is the sign of feeling tired and exhausted physically and mentally. It indicates a lack of energy and alertness.


- Indoctrination: This is the method of exposing people to constant and repetitive messages and teachings that support the brainwasher's ideology or agenda. It creates a sense of conviction and commitment to the brainwasher.


- Confusion: This is the sign of feeling confused and uncertain about one's own beliefs and opinions. It indicates a lack of clarity and confidence.


- Coercion: This is the method of using threats or rewards to force people to comply or obey the brainwasher's demands or orders. It creates a sense of fear or gratitude to the brainwasher.


- Compliance: This is the sign of following or agreeing with the brainwasher's rules or expectations. It indicates a lack of autonomy and dissent.


- Reinforcement: This is the method of using praise or punishment to reinforce people's adherence or deviation from the brainwasher's standards or goals. It creates a sense of approval or disapproval from the brainwasher.


- Conformity: This is the sign of adopting or accepting the brainwasher's identity or role. It indicates a lack of individuality and diversity.


How can we resist propaganda and brainwashing?




Propaganda and brainwashing are powerful and pervasive forms of manipulation that can affect our perception and behavior. However, we can resist them by using some strategies and tips that can help us counter their influence. Here are some of them:


How can we develop critical thinking and media literacy skills?




Critical thinking and media literacy are skills that enable us to analyze and evaluate information sources and messages. They help us to distinguish between facts and opinions, between evidence and claims, between logic and fallacies, etc. They also help us to recognize the purpose, audience, context, tone, bias, etc. of information sources and messages. Here are some steps we can take to develop these skills:



  • Ask questions: We should always ask questions about the information sources and messages we encounter, such as: Who created this? Why did they create this? How did they create this? What do they want me to think or do? How do they know this? What are their sources? What are their assumptions? What are their arguments? What are their motives? What are their values? etc.



  • Check facts: We should always check the accuracy and reliability of the information sources and messages we encounter, such as: Is this true? Is this verified? Is this consistent? Is this relevant? Is this complete? Is this current? Is this credible? Is this authoritative? Is this reputable? etc.



  • Compare perspectives: We should always compare different perspectives on the information sources and messages we encounter, such as: What are the alternative views? What are the opposing views? What are the supporting views? What are the strengths and weaknesses of each view? What are the similarities and differences between each view? etc.



  • Form opinions: We should always form our own opinions based on our own analysis and evaluation of the information sources and messages we encounter, such as: What do I think about this? Why do I think this way? How do I feel about this? How does this affect me? How does this relate to my values? How does this fit with my worldview? etc.



  • Act responsibly: We should always act responsibly based on our own opinions and values, such as: What can I do about this? How can I share this with others? How can I support or challenge this with others? How can I learn more about this? How can I improve my skills on this? etc.



How can we foster a culture of dialogue and diversity?




A culture of dialogue and diversity is a culture that encourages and respects the exchange of ideas and perspectives among different people and groups. It helps us to learn from each other, to understand each other, to appreciate each other, etc. It also helps us to prevent or resolve conflicts, to cooperate or collaborate with each other, to innovate or create with each other, etc. Here are some ways we can foster such a culture:



  • Listen actively: We should always listen to others with attention and interest, without interrupting or judging them. We should try to understand their point of view, their feelings, their values, etc. We should also give them feedback and ask them questions to clarify or confirm our understanding.



  • Speak respectfully: We should always speak to others with respect and courtesy, without insulting or attacking them. We should use polite and appropriate language and tone, without swearing or shouting. We should also express our thoughts and feelings clearly and honestly, without lying or exaggerating.



  • Seek common ground: We should always seek common ground with others, without ignoring or dismissing our differences. We should try to find areas of agreement or similarity, such as shared goals, interests, values, experiences, etc. We should also acknowledge and appreciate our differences, such as diverse backgrounds, perspectives, opinions, etc.



  • Embrace diversity: We should always embrace diversity with others, without fearing or rejecting it. We should try to learn from and about others, their cultures, histories, traditions, etc. We should also celebrate and support others, their identities, expressions, contributions, etc.



  • Collaborate creatively: We should always collaborate creatively with others, without competing or dominating them. We should try to work together and cooperate on common projects or problems, using our skills and resources. We should also create together and innovate on new ideas or solutions, using our imagination and inspiration.



Conclusion




In conclusion, Total Propaganda: Basic Marxist Brainwashing for the Angry and the Young is a book that introduces Marxism to the modern reader in a humorous and engaging way. It explains how Marxism can help us understand and change the world we live in, while exposing the lies and manipulations of propaganda and brainwashing. It also challenges us to resist propaganda and brainwashing by developing critical thinking and media literacy skills, and by fostering a culture of dialogue and diversity. If you are interested in reading this book, you can download it in mobi format from this link: https://www.amazon.com/Total-Propaganda-Marxist-Brainwashing-Angry-ebook/dp/B07B4Z9JQF


FAQs




Here are some frequently asked questions and answers about the topic:



Who is Helen Razer?


  • Helen Razer is an Australian writer, broadcaster, and comedian. She is known for her sharp and witty commentary on various topics, such as politics, culture, feminism, etc. She is also a self-proclaimed Marxist who advocates for radical social change.



What is mobi format?


  • Mobi format is a file format that is used for e-books. It is compatible with Kindle devices and apps. It allows for text resizing, bookmarking, highlighting, etc. It is one of the most popular e-book formats in the world.



What is the difference between socialism and communism?


  • Socialism and communism are both political and economic systems that are based on the idea of collective ownership and control of the means of production. However, they differ in their degree and method of implementation. Socialism is a more moderate and gradual approach that allows for some private ownership and market activity. Communism is a more radical and immediate approach that abolishes all private ownership and market activity.



What are some other books that introduce Marxism to the modern reader?


Some other books that introduce Marxism to the modern reader are: Why Marx Was Right by Terry Eagleton, The


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