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Capitalism Archives - Institute of the Black World 21st Century

A sign posted on a construction site says, "Danger Due to Capitalism."

Beware the Soft Hand of Capital

By | Editors' Choice

Capitalism co-opts our best visions — through its soft hand, capital reforms its way out of crisis, putting forward more tolerable forms of exploitation. By Clara Mejia-Gamboa & Daniel Sullivan, Roar Magazine — These days, it seems customary to begin any political commentary with the laundry list of indicators of global decline: exploding wealth inequality, looming environmental collapse, and the resurgence of overt racial terror in far-right governments. We are…

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Buy Black and Bank Black: Movement in the US Gains International Attention

By | Video/Audio | No Comments

Atlanta, GA — The “Buy Black” movement draws the attention of a French news outlet. In this video you’ll hear from Killer Mike (Rapper, Activist), Dr. Boyce Watkins (Author, Economist), and Sharif Abdul Malik (Founder, WeBuyBlack) who withdraws money from Bank of America to deposit into a Black owned bank. This video was originally posted on France24.com, September 27, 2016 Also See:  Newark As Model City National Town Hall…

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Faith leaders from communities throughout New York City lead a demonstration and prayer vigil on the steps of City Hall in protest to the Staten Island, New York grand jury's recent decision not to indict a police officer involved in the chokehold death of Eric Garner in July on December 12, 2014 in New York City.

The Capitalism/Racism Partnership- The Basics

By | Editors' Choice

Revulsion is building towards the smokescreens of hypocrisy, racism, and nationalism barely masking capitalism’s ongoing failure to provide the jobs and incomes people need. By Richard Wolff, Common Dreams — In the wake of W.E.B. DuBois ’s 150th birthday, his works offer a lens through which to assess US capitalism’s relationship to racism today. He famously wrote: “Capitalism cannot reform itself; it is doomed to self-destruction,” while adding…

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Picture courtesy of the Norman B. Leventhal Map Center

£9.2 trillion drained from India during British rule, economist finds

By | Commentaries/Opinions

“The modern capitalist world would not exist without colonialism and the drain,” says Indian economist Utsa Patnaik By Sean Bell, Common Space — BRITAIN impoverished India over the course of its colonial rule by a staggering £9.2 trillion, laying the groundwork for modern international capitalism and holding back present-day India’s ability to escape poverty, a leading Indian economist has claimed. Utsa Patnaik, Professor Emeritus at Jawaharlal Nehru University’s Centre for Economic…

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Engraving of the women pirates Ann Bonny and Mary Read by Benjamin Cole, circa 1724

Motley mutinies, popular pirates and slave revolts at sea

By | Reparations

Historian Marcus Rediker spoke to Ken Olende about the struggles that took place aboard the ships of early capitalism. By The Socialist Worker — The first strike wasn’t in a factory or an office. It wasn’t even on land. US historian Marcus Rediker explains how sailors in England fought against a wage cut in 1768. “They went from ship to ship and took down the sails. That’s called striking the sails….

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A map of the transatlantic slave trade

Capitalism — A System Born of Slavery

By | Reparations

By Antony Hamilton — People across the political spectrum acknowledge that racism exists, but its origins are shrouded in mystery—deliberately so. Racism is presented as if it has always existed, and individuals make a personal choice to be racist. In reality racism was developed as a means of justifying the transatlantic slave trade, which was crucial for the birth of industrial capitalism. According to one account of the “middle passage”—the journey…

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How Slavery Inspired Modern Business Management

How Slavery Inspired Modern Business Management

By | Editors' Choice

By “dangling the carrot” to improve worker productivity, businesses are taking a page from slavery’s playbook. By Caitlin C. Rosenthal, Boston Review — In 1911 a congressional special committee convened to investigate the impact of new business practices on the lives of workers. Of particular interest to the committee was something called scientific management, a technique that sought to measure and improve worker productivity. The system’s most vocal proponent, a…

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Debtor s’ Prison

How Prisons Serve Capitalism

By | Commentaries/Opinions

By Dan Berger, Public Books — I once asked a class at a prison in Washington State how they would describe the relationship between capitalism and incarceration. “They get you coming and going,” someone quickly offered. Perhaps he had in mind the legal financial obligations that are levied against many people upon their conviction.1 He also could have been referring to the exorbitant costs of commissary supplies. In January, Florida prisoners announced…

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William Lloyd’s Coffee House in London specialized in being the first in getting marine news, such as arrivals and shipwrecks. Merchants and traders profited from the transatlantic slave trade before abolition, not only in the buying and selling of slaves, but also in the whole marine business of ship insurance and mortgages to sea captains.

The Surprisingly Long History of Racial Oppression in Coffeehouses

By | Editors' Choice, Reparations

Centuries before two Black men were arrested at a Philadelphia Starbucks, capitalists met at coffee shops to profit from the transatlantic slave trade. By Tasha Williams, Yes Magazine — An 18th-century ad tells us that a dozen or so men, women, and children of African heritage were scheduled for buyer’s inspection one Saturday, just outside the entrance of the London Coffee House in Philadelphia. The Stamp Act protests and other famous anti-British…

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Louisiana State Penitentiary

Angola Prison in Louisiana: Proving Ground for Racialized Capitalism

By | Commentaries/Opinions

By W. T. Whitney Jr., ML Today — The Civil War ended and Edward A. Pollard “of Virginia” immediately wrote a history of Confederate military operations. (1) There he insists that slavery is immune from moral blame. That’s because it “bestowed upon the world’s commerce in a half century a single product whose annual value was two hundred millions of dollars. It founded a system of industry by which labor…

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