The following excerpt is taken from the introduction to Malcolm X, Black Liberation, and the Road to Workers Power by Jack Barnes, national secretary of the Socialist Workers Party. Copyright © 2009 by Pathfinder Press. Reprinted by permission.
This is a book about the dictatorship of capital and the road to the dictatorship of the proletariat.
A book about the last century and a half of class struggle in the United States — from the Civil War and Radical Reconstruction to today — and the unimpeachable evidence it offers that workers who are Black will comprise a disproportionately weighty part of the ranks and leadership of the mass social movement that will make a proletarian revolution.
It is a book about why this revolutionary conquest of state power by a politically class-conscious and organized vanguard of the working class — millions strong — is necessary. About why that new state power provides working people the mightiest weapon possible to wage the ongoing battle to end Black oppression and every form of exploitation and human degradation inherited from millennia of class-divided society. And how participation in that struggle itself changes them to the point they are politically capable of carrying that battle through to the end.
This is a book about the last year of Malcolm X’s life. About how he became the face and the authentic voice of the forces of the coming American revolution. …
Only the conquest, and exercise, of state power by the working class and expropriation of finance capital can lay the foundations for a world based not on exploitation, violence, racial discrimination, class-based pecking orders, and dog-eat-dog competition, but on solidarity among working people that encourages the creativity and recognition of the worth of every individual, regardless of sex, national origin, or skin color.
A socialist world.