Thomas Riggins - Counseling Director
Thomas Riggins is a retired philosophy teacher (NYU, The New School of Social Research, among others) who received a PhD from the CUNY Graduate Center (1983). He has been active in the civil rights and peace movements since the 1960s when he was chairman of the Young People's Socialist League at Florida State University and also worked for CORE in voter registration in north Florida (Leon County). He has written for many online publications such as People's World and Political Affairs where he was an associate editor. He also served on the board of the Bertrand Russell Society and was president of the Corliss Lamont chapter in New York City of the American Humanist Association. He is the author of Reading the Classical Texts of Marxism and Eurocommunism: A Critical Reading of Santiago Carrillo and Eurocommunist Revisionism.
Carlos L. Garrido - Institute Co-Director
Carlos L. Garrido is a Cuban American PhD student and instructor in philosophy at Southern Illinois University, Carbondale (with an M.A. in philosophy from the same institution). His research focuses include Marxism, Hegel, early 19th century American socialism, and socialism with Chinese characteristics. He is an editor in Midwestern Marx Institute for Marxist Theory and Political Analysis and in the Journal of American Socialist Studies. His popular writings have appeared in dozens of socialist magazines in various languages. As a political analyst with a focus on Latin America (esp. Cuba), he has appeared in dozens of radio and video interviews around the world. He is the author of The Purity Fetish and the Crisis of Western Marxism (2023) and also edited and introduced Marxism and the Dialectical Materialist Worldview: An Anthology of Classical Marxist Texts on Dialectical Materialism (2022).
Edward L. Smith - Institute Co-Director
Edward Liger Smith is an American Political Scientist and specialist in anti-imperialist and socialist projects, especially Venezuela and China. He also has research interests in the role southern slavery played in the development of American and European capitalism. He is a wrestling coach at Loras College.
Noah Khrachvik - Institute Co-Director
Noah Khrachvik is a proud working class member of the Communist Party USA. He is 40 years old, married to the most understanding and patient woman on planet Earth (who puts up with all his deep-theory rants when he wakes up at two in the morning and can't get back to sleep) and has a twelve-year-old son who is far too smart for his own good. When he isn't busy writing, organizing the working class, or fixing rich people's houses all day, he enjoys doing absolutely nothing on the couch, surrounded by his family and books by Gus Hall. He is the author of the forthcoming Reproletarianization: The Rise and Fall of the American Middle Class.
Danny Shaw teaches Latin American and Caribbean Studies and Race, Ethnicity, Class and Gender at the City University of New York. He holds a Masters in International Affairs from the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. He is fluent in Spanish, Haitian Kreyol, Portuguese, Cape Verdean Kreolu and has a fair command of French, and works as an International Affairs Analyst for TeleSUR, RT and other international news networks. He has worked and organized in seventy different countries, opening his spirit to countless testimonies about the inhumanity of the international economic system. He is a Golden Gloves boxer, fighting twice in Madison Square Garden for the NYC heavyweight championship. He teaches boxing, yoga and nutrition and works as a Sober Coach. A Senior Research Fellow at the Council on Hemispheric Affairs, he works to keep young people out of the military and prison industrial complex. He is a mentor to many guiding them through the nutritional, ideological, social and emotional landmines that surround us. He is the father of two young Life Warriors, Ernesto Rafael and Caũa Amaru. He is the author of six books: 365 Days of Resistance, Shedding that which is Not Us: A Working-Class Guide to Life Foods Training and Healing, The Saints of Santo Domingo: Dominican Resistance in the Age of Neocolonialism, My Son Blazes within Me: So Many Contradictions, So Little Time, Paisajes de Amor y Combate and Los Santos de Santo Domingo. He has also authored blogs and articles on Latin American history, boxing and nutrition, among other topics. He can be contacted at DRS33@Columbia.edu.
Mitchell K. Jones
Mitchell K. Jones is a writer, historian and PhD student from Rochester, NY. He has a bachelor’s degree in anthropology and a master’s degree in history from the College at Brockport, State University of New York. He has written on communitarian socialism and communal religious movements in the antebellum United States. His research interests include early America, communal societies, antebellum reform movements, religious sects, working class institutions, labor history, abolitionism and the American Civil War. His current research explores the intersection between modern spiritualism and the American socialist movement from the 1840s through the Civil War.
Calla Winchell is trained as a writer, researcher and a reader having earned a BA in English from Johns Hopkins University and her Masters of Humanities from the University of Chicago. She currently lives in Denver on Arapahoe land. She is a committed Marxist with a deep interest in disability and racial justice, philosophy, literature and art.
Ben Darr teaches politics and international studies at Loras College, in Dubuque, Iowa. He went to college at Northwestern College in Orange City, Iowa, and earned his Ph.D. in political science at the University of Iowa. His interests include global inequality, and U.S. foreign policy. He is currently working on a book on spectator sports as a model of neoliberal politics.
Sebastián León is a philosophy teacher at the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru, where he received his MA in philosophy (2018). His main subject of interest is the history of modernity, understood as a series of cultural, economic, institutional and subjective processes, in which the impetus for emancipation and rational social organization are imbricated with new and sophisticated forms of power and social control. He is a socialist militant, and has collaborated with lectures and workshops for different grassroots organizations.
Paul Cockshott is an economist and computer scientist. His best known books on economics are Towards a New Socialism, and How The World Works. In computing he has worked on cellular automata machines, database machines, video encoding and 3D TV. In economics he works on Marxist value theory and the theory of socialist economy.
Alex Zambito was born and raised in Savannah, GA. He graduated from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2017 with a degree in History and Sociology. He is currently seeking a Masters in History at Brooklyn College. His Interest include the history of Socialist experiments and proletarian struggles across the world.
Sonia Gulzeb Abbasi
I am Sonia Gulzeb Abbasi, originally from a superb village of KPK Province in Pakistan and born in a mountainous city known as Murree -which was a former British Administrated summer resort (1876). From Bioinformatics to International Relations to Anthropological research - I have a curiosity to find puzzled pieces of our colonial past and maybe add a wee bit of contribution from a native’s perspective. I find time in my busy schedule to climb mountains. Lastly, nowadays I am in London, dismantling white privilege at school with grace (literally). Research interests: Revisiting the work of colonial era anthropologists in British India, and post liberal and post-colonial studies. I am currently working on the decolonization of our academic syllabus (Pakistan). I am Inspired by work of anthropologists such as Saba Mehmood and Lila Abu Lughod. Academic and professional credentials: Lecturer: (IR, Pakistan-studies), COMSATS University, Islamabad, Pakistan (Currently on study leave). Visiting Research Associate at SOAS, University of London (2018-2019). MA (Social Anthropology), current student: SOAS, University of London. Mentor at a scientific tech-based startup IDRACK.
“Until the color of your skin is a target, you’ll never understand” - Angela Davis
“Until the color of your skin is a target, you’ll never understand” - Angela Davis
Robert Scheuer is a Social Ecologist from Southeast Michigan. He received a M.A. in Philosophy from Eastern Michigan University, and a B.A. in Philosophy from Michigan State University. His research is concentrated on Social Ecology, Marxism, anarchism, and Phenomenology. He also has substantial research interests in Aesthetics, Existentialism, and Philosophy of Education.
Paul So is a graduate student who studies philosophy in a PhD program at University of California Santa Barbara. While Paul’s research interests mostly lie within the tradition of Analytic Philosophy (e.g. Philosophy of Mind and Meta-Ethics), he recently developed a strong passion in Marxism as his newfound research interest. He is particularly interested in dialectical materialism, historical materialism, and imperialism.
Maddy is a journalist, writer, and thinker based in Colorado where she works as a stringer for a small-town newspaper and has some odd jobs on the side. She is a member of the Democratic Socialist of America and is interested in bringing a lens of intersectionality to journalism and "pushing the envelope" to make people think critically about social issues. She love animals, music, food, creative writing, and the outdoors. She/her.
J. N. Cheney
J.N. Cheney is an aspiring Marxist historian with a BA in history from Utica College. His research primarily focuses on New York State labor history, as well as general US socialist history. He additionally studies facets of the past and present global socialist movement including the Soviet Union, the DPRK, and Cuba.
Yanis Iqbal is an independent researcher and freelance writer based in Aligarh, India and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. His articles have been published in the USA, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, India and several countries of Latin America.
Stephen Joseph Scott
Stephen Joseph Scott is an essayist associated with The University of Edinburgh, School of History; a singer/songwriter, humanist/activist – a self-taught musician, and performer. As a musician, he uses American Roots Music to illustrate the current American social and political landscape.
David Flora is a bartender living in the South with a bachelors in political science and is currently seeking a masters in public policy. Much of his organizational work and praxis involves fellow restaurant industry workers. He believes the restaurant industry in particular is an important part of a revolutionary workers movement.
Christian Marinos is a Social Worker and Socialist from Akron, Ohio. He has a history in working in both manual labor and service industry jobs, as well as working for various social service and grassroot organizations in Northeast Ohio. Areas of interest includes (among others): U.S. imperialism, the plight of Refugees and Immigrants, the impact of social services in the imperial core, and global economics.
Joshua Hanks is a writer, activist and organizer based in Portland, Oregon. Originally from southeast Texas, he attended the Gerald D. Hines College of Architecture at the University of Houston and moved to the Pacific Northwest in 2013. He began writing for Workers World newspaper in 2018 and has reported on anti-racist, anti-imperialist, and anti-capitalist movements and protests in Portland and Seattle, environmental issues around the Pacific Northwest, and current events in east Asia, particularly China and its many scientific and technological developments. Joshua lives with his husband and their dog and believes that through a united, organized, and multinational working class movement we can build a better future for all humanity, a socialist future
Hunter Hilinski is a PhD student at the University of California, Irvine. He received a dual BA in Political Science and Philosophy from Wilkes University and an MA in Political Science from Colorado State University. His current research interests are in the American counterculture of the 1960s and Latin American political movements at about the same time. His work is deeply indebted to the Critical Theory of the Frankfurt School and Psychoanalysis. At UCI he is a labor union steward/organizer and member of the Housing and Anti-Policing committees.
John M. Jenkins
John M. Jenkins is a policy professional and political commentator with degrees in Political Science from the University of Colorado and is a Graduate of Denver University College of Law. Since graduating, John has worked on issues of environmental protection, campaign finance law enforcement, and Medicaid/Medicare expansion. John has a passion for covering international politics on twitter and examines the emerging multi-polar world through a Marxist lens.
Suryashekhar Biswas is an independent journalist and researcher, based in Bangalore, India. His research areas include political economy, media studies and literature. He is a member of AISA - a communist student organisation. He runs a YouTube channel called 'Humour and Sickle' (https://www.youtube.com/c/HumourandSickle)
Wes Vanderburgh is an independent researcher and writer based in Washington, D.C. They strive to investigate the conditions necessary for the reemergence of the Left in the U.S. and beyond. You can find out more and connect at their Substack, Before the Dawn.
Rebecca Elliott is a writer, and public health professional currently residing in the Boston area. A policy analyst by profession, Rebecca has been trained in public health research, policy, and law. She has a deep love of knowledge, and believes that education is and always should be inherently revolutionary. When she is not diving into the politics of education, she enjoys reading, cooking, and finding the best ice cream spots.
Kayla Popuchet is a Peruvian-American CUNY student studying Latin American and Eastern European History, analyzing these region's histories under a scientific socialist lens. She works as a NYC Housing Rights and Tenants Advocate, helping New York's most marginalized evade eviction. Kayla is also a member of the Party of Communists USA and the Progressive Center for a Pan-American Project.
Jacan Stone is a writer from Oxnard, California who writes on American foreign policy, American politics, and International Relations. Any questions about Jacan's writings or other concerns, Jacan can be reached at this email at email@example.com.
Josh Davis is a recovering academic in Indiana. They are presently finishing their PhD in Media Science, and work as an educator for people with learning differences. Josh also runs their blog, internetginger.com, which covers topics ranging from Marxism to music research, with a healthy side of Daoism.
Alexander Stott is a candidate-member of the Party for Socialism and Liberation’s Northeast Ohio branch and active within Irish-American circles. Alexander graduated from University College Dublin in Dublin, Ireland in 2017, worked in customer service and houseless advocacy, and is now staff at Cleveland State University.
Jesse José Hernández Werbow
Jesse José Hernández Werbow is a Jewish-Boricua Marxist currently studying Physics and Math. His interests include imperialism in Latin American, computationally modeling Marxian economic theories, and monkeys. Jesse began socialist activism as a teen in his hometown of Minneapolis, MN. It wasn’t until the murder of George Floyd in his Southside neighborhood that his urgency to fight the oppressive system was fully maximized. Currently, he is a member of the Party for Socialism and Liberation and is active on TikTok @levantine_latino.
Wade T. Paton
Wade T. Paton is a reformed intelligence analyst and US Army veteran. He is the lucky husband to a wonderful wife, proud father of two children and dedicated member of the Communist Party USA. When he isn’t serving his community he can usually be found playing video games with the kids or down at the VFW talking Marxism with his working class brothers and sisters.
Camilo Godoy Pichon
Camilo Godoy Pichon is a Chilean sociologist from the University of Chile and MA candidate in International Studies in University of Santiago, Chile. He has worked on topics such as environmental struggles and conflicts in the Global South, in regards to companies or corporations who promote extractivism and ecocide. He has worked with indigenous people, elders, and children from poor towns and areas from his country, along with developing academic work and research on the environmental justice' topic. He is very interested in analyzing how class influences environmental conflicts and other inequalities in South America and specially in neoliberal countries such as Chile. He has published 2 social/political poetry books both in Chile (2019) and Argentina (2022) and another poetry book on political repression during Pinochet's dictatorship, for the case of poor youngsters killed by the police in Southern Santiago in 1973, which will be published in Spain in early 2023.
Jordan Shepherd is a community organizer and local activist currently in Northwest Arkansas. They have worked with local Socialist Alternative, PSL, and IWW chapters as well as a diverse group of leftists and poverty alleviation groups. Jordan has a Bachelor's Degree in Middle Eastern Studies and a Master's Degree in Political Science with an emphasis on marginalized communities and the American political system. They have worked on local level political campaigns in Arkansas and continues to work with both non electoral groups and progressive political candidates to advance working class policies.
Vince is a Minnesota-based PhD student whose research interests include urban studies, social control, surveillance, and theories of alienation. Outside of academia, he has seven years of experience as a professional translator in various countries.
Valeria Baca is an undergraduate student pursuing a degree in veterinary medicine at the Autonomous University of Ciudad Juarez. She hopes to help bridge the gap between Spanish and English marxist content by translating articles.
Toby is a languages undergraduate based in the United Kingdom. His engagement with revolutionary politics started during a module on the Russian revolution in A-level history. It has been growing ever since with exposure to Marxist, anarchist, feminist and communalist theory, as well as experiencing the world of work under capitalism in all its dull horror.
Andrea Daves studied and played soccer at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Neuroscience and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Spanish and a minor is psychology. Currently she is in Spain pursuing a professional soccer career and looks to further her understanding of current world events through a Marxist lens.
Midwestern Marx Youth League Writers
Cormac Kavanagh is a history student in his final year of University. His main subject of interest is the history of Empire building in relation to Ireland and how it is historically used as a blueprint for later colonies. He is also interested in dissecting the role of the US in the world and how their efforts to thwart unionization and socialism both at home and abroad can be combatted. He is hoping to shine a light on Irish history in relation to Empire and on socialist movements in Europe, both in the past and present.
Jay is a Korean-American, who has lived in South Korea, Vietnam, and the Midwest and East Coast of the United States. While studying in Iowa, he became a student organizer for a statewide organization fighting for Free College for All and co-founded the local Students for Bernie chapter, which is now a chapter of the Young Democratic Socialists of America. Jay is also one of the hosts of Red Star Over Asia, a podcast which interviews organizers, academics, and journalists on politics in the Asian continent from a socialist perspective.
My name is Simon and I am a Marxist-Leninist born on the front range of Colorado. I currently live in Central Missouri and attend Camdenton Highschool. I am unusually young for the position of writer, which isn't an abnormality lost on me. I focus primarily on contemporary international issues with a particular focus on socialist states and their interactions. I hope to begin organizational work as soon as I am able.
Jared Yackley is an undergraduate student of philosophy at the University of California, Berkeley. With his primary focuses in epistemology, history, and political philosophy, Yackley hopes to apply the principles of dialectical materialism to contemporary issues both philosophical and political.
Ella Kotsen is an undergraduate student at Bryn Mawr College. She is majoring in English and double minoring in History and Growth & Structure of Cities. She plays Division III women’s basketball and has received Centennial Conference Academic Honors. Her main subject of interest is in geopolitics and understanding the historical implications of colonization in Latin American countries. She is interested in Marxist literary theory and enjoys the work of Fanon, Eagleton, and Althusser. Ella also writes for her own independent blog where she produces opinion pieces, book reviews, and audio-based interviews.
Tara Thomason is pursuing an bachelor’s in Political Science and Gender Studies. Their main interests are police and prison abolition, decolonization, black liberation, women liberation, and the global proletarian struggle. Much of their work goes towards organizing mutual aid efforts in their community and educating on Marxism.
Harsh Yadav is from India and has just recently graduated from Banaras Hindu University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry. Harsh is a Marxist Leninist who is intrigued by different Marxist Schools of Thought, Political Philosophies, Feminism, Foreign Policy and International Relations, and History. He also maintains a bookstagram account (https://www.instagram.com/epigrammatic_bibliophile/?hl=en) where he posts book reviews, writes about historical impact, socialism, and social and political issues.
Ty Kral is an undergraduate student of History at the University of Northern Iowa, with a primary focus on public history and museum studies. Ty is a socialist obsessed with the study of history and is particularly interested in Marxist thought, Iowa history, and the history of the Soviet Union. He has been a member of the UNI YDSA for over two years. After school, Ty hopes to find work in museums or archives and eventually go to graduate school.
Vaughn Mitchell is a high school senior living outside Chicago. His political interests include the development and origins of labor unions, abolition movements in the 20th century, and the Land Back movement. After his final year of high school, he hopes to study data science and political science on the East Coast.
Aidan Ulrich is a student of political studies at the University of Saskatchewan. Some of his interests in Marxism are historical materialism and Maoist Thought. He is also a supporter of the Communist Party of Canada
Malcolm is an 18 Year old living in New Jersey. He plans to attend College in order to study Political Science and History. Marcus is a Marxist Leninist Maoist, who considers his main goal to be Black Liberation, and is well read in the tradition of Pan Africanism. Marcus has studied the role of Marxism-Leninism in international Black Liberation movements spanning all throughout history. He looks forward to working with Midwestern Marx to achieve these goals of liberation!
N.C. Cai is a Chinese American Marxist Feminist. She is interested in socialist feminism, Western imperialism, history, and domestic policy, specifically in regards to drug laws, reproductive justice, and healthcare.
About the Youth League
The Midwestern Marx Youth League (MMYL) was created to allow comrades in undergraduate or below to publish their work as they continue to develop both writing skills and knowledge of socialist and communist studies. Due to our unexpected popularity on Tik Tok, many young authors have approached us hoping to publish their work. We believe the most productive way to use this platform in a youth inclusive manner would be to form the youth league. This will give our young writers a platform to develop their writing and to discuss theory, history, and campus organizational affairs. The youth league will also be working with the editorial board to ensure theoretical development. If you are interested in joining the youth league please visit the submissions section for more information on how to contact us!