January 25, 2020
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Marxism A La Burdwan School

Marxism A La Burdwan School
They said the Left was finished after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Yet, here in Bengal, the cpi(m) still invents new survival strategies designed to prolong its presence. And the Matar-Benoy Party Educational School—an updated, institutionalised version of the old indoctrination/orientation camps called ‘Lenin schools’—has become a major instrument in this renewed quest for relevance.

So, how does it differ from the party schools of yore? It’s open to new ideas and will teach students and workers to survive in a globalised world dominated by big capital. It won’t also hesitate to confront head-on traditional Left concepts if necessary. For example, the school’s think-tank is critically re-evaluating Bengal’s agri-economy. It hasn’t flinched from taking advice from management consultants Mckinsey. (Habits die hard though—certain LF leaders rubbished the Mckinsey report without even going through it.)

The choice of Burdwan as the school’s location is crucial. This affluent agrarian district has for long remained a "red" bastion. The school, run by a trust, is spread over an area of 8,815 square metres and was built at a cost of Rs 55 lakh.

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