New Book


18th Jan 2018


Book Description:
This easy to read book explores the fundamental ideas of socialism as a prelude to its critical reappraisal of their implementation in the Soviet revolutionary experiment. The book then turns to the seismic economic changes of the neoliberal era which it claims now preclude both national social democratic and Soviet-style paths to socialism. Rather, it is argued, if socialism is to become a force for change in the 21st century, wholly new economic and environmental considerations compel it to adopt a fresh orientation around current designs of democratic ecosocialism. Yet, the herculean challenges this poses tend not to be fully apprehended even among socialist proponents.

Table of Contents:
Chapter 1. Introduction
Chapter 2. From Socialism as Idea to Twentieth Century Experiment
Chapter 3. Socialist Failure and Rethinking
Chapter 4. Socialists Confront a Changed World
Chapter 5. Ecosocialism and New Democratic Designs
Chapter 6. We are All Socialists Now
Chapter 7. Conclusion

Richard Westra has written a powerful study of what we can learn from the history of socialism, ending with clear and persuasive arguments supporting practical visions for a renewal of socialism as 21st century eco-socialism. 
Robert Albritton, Professor Emeritus, York University, Toronto, Canada
As the bankruptcy of familiar centrist policies becomes increasingly evident, and the corrupt and deranged nature of right wing alternatives becomes more manifest each passing day, the need for a book presenting the case for socialism grows.  Richard Westra has written that book.  His critical assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of social democracy, central planning, and market socialism provides an invaluable overview of past socialist projects. More importantly his compelling defense of ecosocialism points towards a future beyond the catastrophic threats to humanity imposed by capitalism.  If you are curious about what socialism is, or want to deepen your knowledge of its history and future possibilities, this is the book you are looking for.  
Tony Smith, Professor, Iowa State University, USA
 Socialism has been gaining ground as a strategy for human emancipation.  But Richard Westra knows this cannot be just the rehabilitation of old traditions.  A modern socialism will carry in its DNA lessons from the failures and successes of 20th Century socialism.  A 21st Century socialism will confront a very different capitalism from that which socialists have confronted in the past.  Most importantly, socialism will inherit responsibility for dealing with capitalism’s transgression of ecological boundaries on climate change and biodiversity.  This is what Socialism in the 21st Century is all about.   
Terrence McDonough, Professor, National University of Ireland, Galway