Hieronymus Bosch was one of the most remarkable and original painters of all time. His works were painted five hundred years ago, yet they seem astonishingly modern, anticipating surrealism. This is the art of a world in a state of turbulence, torn by contradictory tendencies – a world in which the light of reason has been extinguished and where animal passions have gained the upper hand. A world of terror, violence and plague: a living nightmare. In short – a world very like our own, particularly given the current pandemic. Alan Woods examines Hieronymus Bosch from the standpoint of historical materialism. Originally published 23 December 2010.

Ludwig van Beethoven died today in 1827. If any composer deserves to be called a revolutionary, it is Beethoven. He carried through what was probably the greatest single revolution in modern music and changed the way music was composed and listened to. This is music that does not calm, but shocks and disturbs. Writing in 2006, Alan Woods describes how the world into which Beethoven was born was a world in turmoil, a world in transition, a world of wars, revolution and counter-revolution: a world like our own world.

Join us!

Help build the forces of Marxism worldwide!

Join the IMT!