‘The end of ideology?’

‘Words have no meaning if Islamic terror is simply garden-variety violence’

Robert P. Barnidge Jr. is a professor of international relations at Webster University and at the University of Haifa. He is author of “Self-Determination, Statehood, and the Law of Negotiations: The Case of Palestine” (Hart 2016). In an article for the Washington Times he disconcertingly argues that Pope Francis’s explanation of Islamic violence has a Marxist (materialist) basis. Professor Barnidge presents a powerful case with a careful analysis of the Pope’s recent comments, comments that must come across to the ordinary person as perversely biased towards Islam and Muslims. The opening paragraphs that follow are a lucid account of the key elements of Marx’s dialectical materialism leading into the professor’s compelling analysis.

Historical materialism, a theory popularized by Karl Marx and further developed and refined by others, holds that humanity progresses through stages to a class-free society. For Marxists, the course of history is best appreciated through a scientific lens, with class struggle inevitably leading to a communist future. Marx famously captured the predestined nature of history in the 1859 preface to his tome “A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy”: “It is not the consciousness of men that determines their existence, but, on the contrary, their social existence determines their consciousness.” Continue reading “‘The end of ideology?’”