Powerpoints, Syllabus, and Course Outlines

DEMOCRACY IN CHAINS. Chapter by chapter PowerPoint for studying the book by Nancy MacLean, connecting resistance to integration, neoliberalism, and the Kochs to roots in John C Calhoun.

Origins of Race, Settlers and Nationalities. 30-minute Lecture by Bill Fletcher, Jr. critical to understanding white supremacy and how to fight it. Great to open a study group.

A 4-PART STUDY OF THE SHAPING OF THE RUST BELT WORKING CLASS. From the settlers to the present, and how its consciousness is conflicted. Prepared by Carl Davidson, with considerable help from the DSA Rust Belt group.

READING BLACK RECONSTRUCTION.  Throughout six ONE-HOUR sessions, the Center for Political Education will lead a study on DuBois’ Black Reconstruction and its relevance for organizing today. This study group will include presentations from guest presenters who will help participants draw lessons from the book. Essential for US Radicals.


5-PART SLIDESHOW for studying ‘The Half Has Never Been Told’

IF EVERY AFRICAN AMERICAN, OR EVEN EVERY WORKER, READ THIS BOOK, CAPITALISM WOULD BE SHAKEN TO THE CORE. This remarkable book on US slavery and the American economy, ‘The Half Has Never Been Told,’ by Edward E. Baptist, tells the story of how we became who we are, and how capitalism here is shaped the way it is. Click HERE for a 60min video lecture by the author. Edward Baptist.

3-PART-SLIDESHOW for studying ‘Slavery by Another Name’   Picks up after the Civil War’ where Baptist’s book leaves off, and continues to 1950. Douglas A, Blackmon’s book exposes how slavery–convict slaves and others–built the coal, rail and steel companies of the ‘New South’ under Jim Crow.

3-Part Slide Show for studying ‘The New Jim Crow’ Picks up after the 1950s, and especially after the Nixon and Reagan ‘Southern Strategies’ and the War on drugs. ‘Mass incarceration’ is the New Jim Crow, according to author Michelle Alexander, who skillfully describes its workings up to the present day.

. Starter paper for Gramsci study groups. This 40-PAGE article presents an excellent summary and overview of the history of Marxist strategy as applied to the advanced capitalist countries since the time of the Second International, including, in addition to the Second International’s strategic conception, that of the Bolsheviks and the Third International, Gramsci’s prison writings, Euro-Communism, and the new strategic orientation which has recently developed on Euro-Communism’s left wing, called by some Neo-Gramscianism. Written in 1981 by Paul Saba.

The Frankfurt School’s Theory of Fascism: A Syllabus for Deep Study
Featuring the works of Polloch, Postone, Neummann, Kirchheimer, Recich, Freud, Fromm, Adorno, and Benjamin.


These are designed for training and education the broad left on how best to defeat Trump and strengthen grassroots democracy in the current electoral arena. Each Module comes with a Facilitator’s Guide, and there is a Supplementary Resource Guide listing additional materials. These can be downloaded here: If you have any questions about these, or want to offer feedback or engage in a dialogue about them, please contact us at electioncurriculum@earthlink.net. For peace with justice, Linda Burnham, Max Elbaum, Harmony Goldberg, Jason Negron-Gonzales, Tarso Ramos, Bob Wing. Additional materials are added by Carl Davidson.

Strategy and the US Electoral System guide

The Right and the Rise of Trump guide

Recommended Books and Articles

Updating Our Strategy: Revisiting the U.S. ‘Six Party System’ Hypothesis: 5.0 Carl Davidson

Video: What the Left Must Know: Electoral and Community Organizing at the Local Base: Carl Davidson

 Trump, the Border and Rightwing Populism: Carl Davidson


Study Materials for preparing for the sessions leading up to the convention and at the Pittsburgh July 18-21 sessions themselves. Video on the Communist Manifesto and Video on Civil Rights Trade Unionism.

Marta Harnecker’s ‘Origins of Capitalist Exploitation

In this Booklet, Marta Harnecker studies the fundamental mechanism that explains why, under capitalism, you have a small group of people who possess a lot of wealth and enjoy an easy life, while a significant portion of workers find themselves in a very difficult situation. In was written in Chine during the Allende period, and now updated.

Booklets from the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation

Related to Die Linke, Germany’s Left Party, with a center in New York City, there are dozens of pamplets here on a wide range of topics about the US, many of which are excellent for starting off discussion groups. They also have many videos, including this one on Rosa Luxemburg by Nancy Fraser.

American Social History Project

A site with a variety of multimedia resources–films, slideshow, photos, text–for teaching American history.

Slide Show: Study Guide ‘After Capitalism’ by David Schweickart

Goes through the new 2nd Edition Chapter by Chapter

(the 2nd Edition of ‘After Capitalism’ can now be downloaded HERE for free!)

DEMAND EVERYTHING: Lessons of the Transformative Organizing Model  A 24-page pamphlet by Steve Williams for study groups on organization building.

Introducing the Communist Manifesto in Multimedia

Combines popular folk songs, videos and great narrative by Zach Robinson

Slide Show: 11 Talking Points on 21st-Century Socialism Designed for study groups on Carl Davidson’s essay on the topic

A Reading Guide on Women and Feminism

LibCom’s comprehensive gathering of articles, videos, books and other course materials.

Study Materials: Revolutionary Strategy by Mike MacNair

A debate has been raging in the UK for some years now over a fascinating book by a leader of the Communist Party Great Britain, which calls for, among other things, a re-examination of Kautsky, the ‘Bolshevik Model’, and the splits creating the Third and Fourth Internationals. Some accuse him of rightism and reformism in accepting some of Kautsky’s ‘strategy of patience’ majoritarian ideas. In contrast, others think him too ‘left’ for opposing notions of coalitions and the popular front. In any case, it’s a useful survey of all these ideas.  The link above is to a 75-minute lecture by MacNair introducing the main ideas in his book. A pdf file of the entire book itself is included HERE.

Slide Show: The Left and Elections

Designed to start discussions on how grassroots groups should approach voting–A PowerPoint by Carl Davidson

Slide Show: The U.S. Constitution, Then and Now

Carl Davidson’s 4-session PowerPoint for a class on the evolution of government and the U.S. Constitution.

Slide Show: Introduction to Mondragon
Carl Davidson’s PowerPoint, in pdf format, gives an in-depth analysis of the MCC Coops and their history in Spain’s Basque Country.

Shiftchange: Trailer for Workplace Democracy Film
Syllabus: American Revolution

Covers the period 1765-1800

Recent Books on African-American History

A good listing compiled by the Teamster Union

Study Guides for Selected Works of Marx and Engels

Treats each work or book separately, with study questions for groups, From the CPUSA’s Political Affairs

Syllabus: Other Courses on American History

Nine courses from the Revolution to the Civil War with a Marxist Critique

Spanish Civil War: Course Outlines

Course outlines, video links and other teaching resources on the topic

Syllabus and Materials: Political Economy of Capital Accumulation

This 11-lecture course explores the accumulation of capital from three interrelated perspectives: conceptual, historical and empirical. PDFs and outline provided. By Jonathan Nitzen, York University, Toronto