Neither Derby nor Cinco de Mayo be, because it’s Karl Marx’s 200th birthday.

Karl-Marx-Hof, Vienna.

The same heads explode every time.

Marx’s America, by Andrew Hartman (Jacobin)

… Capital unfolded the workings of capitalism in such a profound fashion that people across the planet have been reading it since the Gilded Age, when Marx’s theory that capitalism was a system that pitted capital against labor seemed to have revealed itself as the truth. Marx’s fate, in this way, has been tied to the fate of capitalism.

To read Marx is to wrestle with the modern world that capitalism has made. This includes modern America — especially modern America. Because the US is the nation in world history most committed to capitalism, and because Marx is the world’s most enduring theorist of capitalism, Marx is a veritable American alter ego …

Who’s ready for some history to go along with their mint juleps and lime-laced Corona?

Karl Marx at 200: Aaron Bastani picks five books to understand Marxism, by Aaron Bastani (The Guardian)

The post-crash era, political polarisation and tech revolution have revived big ideas. Marxism is pivotal to leftwing thought, so here are some books to help understand it.

 … In a world increasingly defined by political chaos, economic volatility and which is short on answers – Marx’s work always implores us to challenge our own assumptions while thinking, and acting, big. He may have been born 200 years ago, but his key insights – a materialist view of history and a grasp of capitalism as an inherently limited system – remain invaluable. And dangerous.

• Aaron Bastani’s Fully Automated Luxury Communism: A Manifesto will be published by Verso.