The national question

no bordersThe question of nationalities - that is, the oppression of nations and national minorities, which has characterised capitalism from its birth till the present time - has always occupied a central position in Marxist theory. Once again, the historical materialist approach of Marxism dissolves the apparent “natural” role of the nation as a necessary expression of human society. Nations have by no means always existed, nor will they always exist in the future.

The nation as we know it today is a product of the development of capitalism and its need to unify peoples into units of a certain size (depending on the level of the system’s development – e.g. more recently formed nations tend to be much bigger) to consolidate the market. The contradictions and tensions between nations are a result of capitalism’s “combined and uneven” development. The contradictions of the capitalist mode of production itself force each ruling class to expand outwards, developing a global market and imperialism in the process.

The violent tensions that this process breeds in turn give rise to nationalism, racism and wars. There is no way a successful world revolution, abolishing the global capitalist system, can take place without a careful and nuanced understanding of the national question, with all the sensitivities and complexity it brings. Therefore this section is of the utmost importance for revolutionaries.

Title Created Date Author
Solidarity with Catalan independence activists: stop the repression! 17 January 2019 International Marxist Tendency
The Catalan question: new leadership is needed 27 December 2018 Arturo Rodríguez (Revolució)
Why Marxists oppose immigration controls 20 December 2018 Niklas Albin Svensson
Belgium: the strange friends of Carles Puigdemont 15 October 2018 André Gonsalis
Mass demonstrations mark anniversary of Catalan independence referendum 03 October 2018 Jorge Martin
One year after the Catalan “Republican October”: a balance sheet and some conclusions 20 September 2018 Jordi Martorell – REVOLUCIÓ
[Audio] Marxism and the national question 10 July 2018 In Defence of Marxism
[Video] Syria, Turkey, and the Oppression of the Kurds 01 June 2018 Socialist Appeal (UK)
Pakistan: PTM holds huge Karachi meeting despite severe crackdown 14 May 2018 International Marxist Tendency
Catalonia: huge march in Barcelona to demand freedom for political prisoners 16 April 2018 Jorge Martin
Catalonia: who's afraid of the CDRs? 09 April 2018 Jorge Martin
Pakistan: Pashtun movement (PTM) shakes the status quo! 06 April 2018 Adam Pal
Germany rejects Puigdemont extradition for rebellion: a blow to the Spanish regime 06 April 2018 Jorge Martin
For a Republican Anti-Repression Front in Catalonia and the Spanish state! Down with the 1978 regime! 29 March 2018 Lucha de Clases
Mass response as Spanish state steps up Catalonia repression and arrests Puigdemont 26 March 2018 Jorge Martin
Greece and Macedonia: ‘Unite against our common enemy!’ 14 March 2018 Epanastasi, paper of the IMT in Greece
Spanish regime uses all means at its disposal to prevent Catalan president from being sworn in 31 January 2018 Jorge Martin
Catalan government members jailing re-ignites mass movement 03 November 2017 Jorge Martin
Catalan Republic crushed by Spanish state - without a fight 30 October 2017 Jorge Martin
Spain's coup against Catalan democracy 22 October 2017 Jorge Martin
National liberation and class struggle in Catalonia: interview with Vidal Aragonés 18 October 2017 Revolució
Catalonia ready to rise up 17 October 2017 Jorge Martin
Spanish state deadlines and threats met with Catalan government vacillations 16 October 2017 Jorge Martin
Spain: Catalan Republic – denouement delayed 11 October 2017 Jorge Martin
Catalonia: towards an independent republic? 10 October 2017 Jorge Martin
The Polish Revolution of 1918-1920: What happened and why did it fail? 06 October 2017 Maciej Krzymieniecki
Catalonia: The masses enter the scene 02 October 2017 Jorge Martin
The Nigerian State and the National Question: A genuine Marxist approach 27 September 2017 Rashy
[Video] The National Question in the Russian Revolution 15 September 2017 Jorge Martin
The independence referendum and the Catalan national question 28 July 2017 Arturo Rodríguez
“Rise Up Tamils!” Demonstration Puts Tamil National Question Back on the Agenda 20 October 2016 Sinthujha Kumarasamy and Ted Sprague
Reading guide: Marxism and the European Union 26 July 2016 In Defence of Marxism
Marxism and the national question in Scotland 10 April 2015 Alan Woods
Ireland: The national question is a social question 09 September 2013 Red Plough Editorial Board
The National Question in Scotland – Part Two 29 August 2012 Socialist Appeal (Britain) - Editorial Statement
The National Question in Scotland – Part One 28 August 2012 Socialist Appeal (Britain) - Editorial Statement
The collapse of the ethno-nationalist project of the LTTE and the Tamil Question in Sri Lanka 02 July 2009 Rajesh Tyagi in Delhi
[Audio] The War in Georgia and the National Question 25 September 2008 Alan Woods
Serbia and Kosovo: the Balkan powder-keg could flare up again – Part Two 17 December 2007 Goran M
Serbia and Kosovo: the Balkan powder-keg could flare up again – Part One 14 December 2007 Goran M
[Audio] Marxism, the national question and the nation state 19 November 2007 Linda Clarke
Malaysia: 50 years of independence (Part 1) - Colonialism at the root of the national question 31 August 2007 Bruce Boon
[Audio] The National Question and Quebec 27 June 2007 Rob Lyon
ETA’s declaration of permanent ceasefire: For a genuine socialist programme to resolve the national question 29 March 2006 Ezker Marxista
The role of Slobodan Milosevic in the break-up of Yugoslavia 15 March 2006 Goran M. in Belgrade
Lenin on the National Question 16 June 2004 Rob Sewell
Kosovo – workers have no interest in nationalist conflict 23 March 2004 Goran M. in Belgrade
A Curse Over The Balkans?: Nationalism and War in ex-Yugoslavia 20 March 2004 Goran M. from Belgrade
Once more Kosovo 19 March 2004 Fred Weston
Reply to Luis Oviedo - Part Four - War and the National Question 18 February 2004 Alan Woods