By Pat Brewer
The internationally acclaimed Marxist economist Ernest Mandel will be speaking here in July, it was confirmed last week.
Mandel will be a featured speaker at the Socialist Scholars Conference, being held in Melbourne from July 18 to 21.
Mandel is recognised as the world's foremost Marxist economist. His published works include Late Capitalism, Marxist Economic Theory, The Formation of the Economic Thought of Karl Marx, The Decline of the Dollar, From Stalinism to Eurocommunism, An Introduction to Marxist Economic Theory, Trotsky: A Study in the Dynamic of his Thought, and as co-author with George Novack, The Marxist Theory of Alienation.
He is also the author of many articles and smaller publications. At the request of Penguin, he wrote the introduction to the most recent English translation of Marx's Capital.
Mandel has lectured frequently at universities throughout Europe and North America and has been an economic adviser to the Social Democratic governments of Belgium.
He is also a political activist, is a central leader of the Fourth International. During World War II, as a youthful underground revolutionary activist in Belgium, he was arrested three times by the Nazis. He was condemned to hard labour and deported to Germany in 1945.
During the '60s and '70s, Mandel's socialist views caused him to be banned from speaking in many countries — the United States, Germany, France, Switzerland.
In 1970 the Liberal government barred him from entering Australia. Following an extensive defence campaign, he was admitted to the country by the Whitlam government in 1974. He returned to Australia in 1983 to speak at the Karl Marx Centenary Conference. On both visits, he spoke to overflow audiences.