Introducing DIGRESSIONS, a virtual reading group organized by The Dig and Haymarket Books:
Between the relentless drive of the news cycle and the endless scroll of social media, it’s hard not to get swept away by the torrent of information constantly rushing over us. At every turn the attention economy encourages us to keep our understanding of any given topic limited to what we can learn from a Wikipedia page or a tweet thread, lest we miss out on the next story beat. In our increasingly atomized society, this breakneck pace of life can’t but leave us feeling helpless and disoriented in the face of the numerous crises buffeting us from all sides.
Since its inception, The Dig has stood against this tide by producing in-depth interviews that delve deep into myriad topics—from the political economy of global capitalism to the importance of antiracist activism—demanding that we slow down and really understand the world in order to change it. Similarly, Haymarket Books has always insisted that ideas—and the books that contain them—are weapons in the struggle for socialism.
Haymarket and The Dig are bringing these efforts together by launching DIGRESSIONS, a new series that encourages readers and podcast listeners to join virtual study groups alongside Daniel Denvir and one of his guests.
Every session of DIGRESSIONS will take place three to four weeks after its guest appears on The Dig, and will be broadcast live. A list of suggested readings—including a for any recommended book(s) whenever possible—will be made available by both Haymarket and The Dig, and participants will also be given a chance to ask their own questions of DIGRESSIONS guests.
The first session will be on The Communist Manifesto and its enduring relevance, featuring The Dig’s Daniel Denvir in conversation with China Miéville, author of A Spectre Haunting: On The Communist Manifesto, and will take place on Thursday, August 3rd, at 1pm ET. You can listen to Miéville on The Dig HERE, or wherever you get your podcasts.
Few written works can so confidently claim to have shaped the course of history as Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels's Manifesto of the Communist Party. Since first rattling the gates of the ruling order in 1848, this incendiary pamphlet has never ceased providing fuel for the fire in the hearts of those who dream of a better world. Nor has it stopped haunting the nightmares of those who sit atop the vastly unequal social system it condemns. In A Spectre, Haunting, award-winning author China Miéville provides readers with a guide to understanding the Manifesto and the many specters it has conjured. Through his unique and unorthodox reading, Miéville offers a critical appraisal and a spirited defense of the modern world’s most influential political document.
Read along by ordering a copy of A Spectre, Haunting from Haymarket Books for 40% off the cover price.
Sessions of DIGRESSIONS will remain freely available to view on Haymarket’s YouTube channel after they’ve aired live. So even if you can’t tune in live, make sure to submit your questions and check back later to watch the conversation!
DIGRESSIONS is sponsored by Haymarket Books and The Dig. While all of our events are freely available, we ask that those who are able make a solidarity donation in support of our important publishing and programming work.