The ideology that is most conveniently identified as “Wokeness” is much more accurately described by the phrase “Identity Marxism”. That is, Wokeness is a Marxian approach to identity politics for similar aims to those Marxism has always touted.
Wokeness is the quality or state of being “woke.” The Oxford English Dictionary defines woke as, originally: “well-informed, up-to-date.” And as updated in 2017, chiefly: “alert to racial or social discrimination and injustice.” It is not a new term but it took on particular prominence during the beginnings of the Black Lives Matter movement.
“Marxism has to be understood as a modernist religion. Marxism is actually a terrible but modern religion. And it has a theology at its heart” – James Lindsay
Dr. James A. Lindsay is an American-born author, mathematician and founder of New Discourses. He is a leading expert on Critical Race Theory, the dominant ideology behind the Black Lives Matter social movement.
Most people think of Marxism as an economic theory or, perhaps, a social theory, Lindsay says, this isn’t sufficient. Marxism, strange as it may sound, is a theology, the basis for a religion. This isn’t to say that Marxism or Communism is like a religion. It is to say that it literally is a religion.
The basis of the Marxian theology is work or, as they tend to have it, the work. You must do the work. The work is the basis of the Marxian theology in the same way that submission is the basis of Islam and atonement by grace through the sacrifice of Jesus as Christ is the basis of Christianity.
In Episode 64 of the New Discourses Podcast, ‘The Theology of Marxism’, Lindsay dives into the Marxian literature, including the writings of Karl Marx himself, to show that Marxism should be thought of as a theology by clarifying how this theology works. Understanding the theological nature of Marxism will, in turn, shed considerable light on the theological nature of Wokeness.
It is a particularly long episode, over three hours long, so we are breaking it into shorter, more manageable sections. It is audio only and if you choose you can listen to the full episode HERE.