The People’s School

The 2019 People’s School took place on five consecutive Saturdays in July and August. To be informed of upcoming courses or reading groups, please add yourself to the mailing list, or reach out directly to onedivides at

The Fundamentals of MLM course introduces the basic concepts of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism. The 2019 course consisted of five weekly four-hour lectures and accompanying weekly discussion sections, in which participants examined a text relevant to that week’s study.


Week 1: History of the ICM, 1848-1976, Part I

This week will focus on (1) the birth of Marxism and the awakening of the International Communist Movement (ICM); (2) the revolutionary storm of 1848 in Europe and the development of Marxism; (3) the struggle of Marx and Engels against opportunism in the epoch of the First International; (4) the Paris Commune: the first attempt at the dictatorship of the proletariat; (5) the struggle of Marx and Engels against the opportunist line on the creation of parties in Europe; (6) Engels’ struggle to maintain and defend Marx’s revolutionary line.

Supplementary text: Marx and Engels, Manifesto of the Communist Party (1848).

Week 2: History of the ICM, 1848-1976, Part II

This week will take up (1) the birth of Leninism; (2) the construction of the Marxist Party of a new type; (3) the struggle against opportunism between 1905 and 1912; (3) the national and colonial questions; (4) the imperialist war and the revisionists of the 2nd international; (5) the October revolution.

Supplementary text: Lenin, Where to Begin? (1901).

Week 3: History of the ICM, 1848-1976, Part III

This week will conclude the study of the History of the ICM with a focus on the Chinese Revolution and the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution (GPCR), including (1) the Chinese revolution from the founding of the Communist Party of China to liberation in 1949; (2) the Great Leap Forward; (3) the GPCR and its principal lessons; (3) Soviet revisionism and the new bureaucrat monopoly bourgeoisie.

Supplementary text: Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, Decision in 16 Points (August 8, 1966).

Week 4: Dialectical and Historical Materialism

This lecture will be split into two: (1) Dialectical materialism, including: the materiality of the universe, matter and consciousness, the law of the unity of opposites, quantitative change and qualitative change, the law of spiraling development and the question of the negation of the negation, knowledge and practice, truth; (2) Historical materialism, including: historical idealism versus historical materialism, productive forces and relations of production, economic base and superstructure, classes and state, social consciousness (morality, legal ideology, religion), the role of the individual in history, social revolution.

Supplementary text: Mao Tse-tung, On Practice (1937).

Week 5: Basics of Marxist Political Economy

This lecture will be split into two: (1) The transformation from commodity to money to capital: use-value, exchange value, concrete labor and the social division of labor, abstract labor and commodity-values, value-magnitude and its measure, productivity, differentiation of the money-commodity in the exchange process, pupation of money into capital, contradictions in the general formula, labor-power; (2) The capitalist production of surplus-value: constant capital and variable capital, surplus-value, absolute surplus-value and relative surplus-value.

 Supplementary text: Marx, Capital, Chapter 1 (1867).