The prestigious MIT Press has published a book aimed at children titled Communism for Kids that portrays communism in a positive way that brings happiness to everyone.
The publishing house, MIT Press — which is affiliated with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology — normally publishes books in the fields of scientific thought, arts and architecture, philosophy, computer science and other “hard science”, The Washington Times reported. Communism for Kids, however, has become one of its first attempts at children’s publishing.
The book description on Amazon reads, “once upon a time, people yearned to be free of the misery of capitalism. How could their dreams come true? This little book proposes a different kind of communism, one that is true to its ideals and free from authoritarianism.”
“Each attempt [at creating communist utopia] fails, since true communism is not so easy after all. But it’s also not that hard,” the description continued. “At last, the people take everything into their own hands and decide for themselves how to continue. Happy ending? Only the future will tell.”
The description also notes that the book written by Bini Adamscak, a “Berlin-based social theorist” who writes about political theory and queer politics, will offer “relief for many who have been numbed by Marxist exegeses and given headaches by the earnest pompousness of socialist politics, it presents political theory in the simple terms of a children’s story, accompanied by illustrations of lovable little revolutionaries experiencing their political awakening.”
Despite the fact that Communism for Kids is targeted at youngsters, it’s filled with swanky academic jargon and obscure references to socialist and communist movements. In the final chapter titled “epilogue: communist desire”, for instance, the author wrote:
The end of history has ended. When political scientist Francis Fukuyama announced ‘the end of history’ in 1992, he simply meant that there was no alternative to liberal capitalism – forever. It did not take forever for this narrative to be challenged as bourgeois ideology – in 1994 by the Zapatistas in Chiapas, in 1999 by the anti-globalization movement in Seattle, and in 2001 in Genoa.
Naturally, most people weren’t impressed – the overwhelming majority of the reviews are negative. Chris Moller, a verified buyer of the book who gave it just one star out of five wrote, “We need to stop the presses as things are getting extraordinarily silly,” adding “I’m reminded of Mary McCarthy’s criticism of Lillian Hellman: ‘Every word she writes is false including ‘and’ and ‘but”.”
Another reviewer, named Drumbum19, said that although the book “reads well” it remains unclear at what age group the book is targeted as “I assume young children would not understand it.”
“Not to mention the only children that would be receiving copies of MIT press books probably live in stable two parent households that benefit greatly from non-communism. So why would these kids be interested in an ideology that proposes dismantling that society?” the reviewer added.
Surprisingly, there were a couple of positive reviews of the book, though none of them verifier buyers. “I loved this book so much!” wrote Sophia Nachalo. “It’s not really a kid’s book, but rather a book for everyone written in a fun and easy way that uses stories, fables, and funny characters to explain everyday life. It makes marxism cool again!”
Fredrick Jameson, a Duke University Professor, endorsed the book, claiming “this delightful little book may be helpful in showing youngsters there are other forms of life and living than the one we currently ‘enjoy,’ and even some adults might learn from it as well.”