Daily Archives: December 3, 2015

Notes on Power, the State, and Proletarian Dictatorship




by Jan Makandal

November 29, 2015


Marxism reduced to a dogma is no longer materialist. It becomes a deformation, a deviation and is no longer capable of being a revolutionary guide for the future. In fact Marxism reduced to a dogma, such as being presented as a compilation of verses and quotes, is not Marxism.


Marxism is a materialist approach of interpreting the objective from the interest of the proletariat for the realization of proletarian dictatorship. Most proletarian revolutionaries will argue that studying Marxism in a study group and understanding class struggle are not the criteria to be a Marxist. Even if some intellectuals do contribute to Proletarian Theory [Marxism], their contributions remain very limited in the absence of their immersion in proletarian struggle and in the active participation of organizing productive workers and their fundamental allies: fundamental laborers. Marxist/proletarian revolutionary is not a title indicated by a red star pin on a lapel; that would be simply a fable. Marxism is the immersion of one’s self in the struggle for PROLETARIAN DICTATORSHIP.


We can find in Marxist theory many variations of the definition of the state apparatus. But in our time, to think the state apparatus is only a tool for the oppression of one class by another is a quite limited conception and vision that can only lead to a reformist political line. This definition of the state apparatus by Marx, Lenin and others was correct in their time, but even than it was a very limited definition in need of deepening. Now it is correct to stay the state apparatus is not only an instrument of oppression. The oppressive nature of the state apparatus is one effect of the antagonism between classes, but really the state apparatus is the organization of a class, or a bloc of classes, as a dominant class.


The proletarian state apparatus is the organization of the proletariat as a dominant class to achieve its own political objective: the abolition of classes. Without the state apparatus no class will be able to exercise its dominance [dictatorship] over other classes, especially the currently dominated classes that are in an antagonist relation with the bourgeoisie. Historically most state apparatuses [slavery, feudalist and capitalist] have been for the reproduction of dominancy of classes. The proletarian state apparatus is for the proletariat, using its domination, to gradually strip all capital and concentrations of capital away from the bourgeoisie, to centralize all labor instruments in the hands of the state apparatus (meaning in the hands of the proletariat), for production to be organized by the popular masses under the leadership of the proletariat by counting on our own strength, and most importantly in that process to transform the social relations of production for the objective of a classless society.