May Book of the Month: ‘Why Marx was Right’ by Terry Eagleton

In our Book of the Month for May, one of the foremost Marxist critics of his generation argues forcefully against Marx’s irrelevancy. Why Marx was Right is a combative, controversial book, in which the indomitable philosopher Terry Eagleton takes issue with the prejudice that Marxism is dead.

Taking ten of the most common objections to Marxism – that it leads to political tyranny, that it reduces everything to the economic, that it is a form of historical determinism, and so on – Terry Eagleton demonstrates in each case what a woeful travesty of Marx’s own thought these assumptions are. In a world in which capitalism has been shaken to its roots by some major crises, Why Marx Was Right is as urgent and timely as it is brave and candid. Written with Eagleton’s familiar wit, humour and clarity, it will attract an audience far beyond the confines of academia.

“Eagleton is a compelling writer and raconteur… He’s a witty, insightful thinker with a penchant for glib asides and wry dashes of humor. It’s probably the only book that makes references to Tiger Woods and Mel Gibson along with Charles Fourier and Michel Foucault.” —Michael Patrick Brady, PopMatters


Terry Eagleton is a British literary theorist widely regarded as Britain’s most influential living literary critic.

He currently serves as Distinguished Professor of English Literature at the University of Lancaster, and as a former Visiting Professor at the National University of Ireland, Galway. He has written more than forty books, including Literary Theory: An IntroductionThe Ideology of the Aesthetic, and The Illusions of Postmodernism.

Yale books by Terry Eagleton include Reason, Faith, and Revolution: Reflections on the God Debate (as part of the Terry Lectures series) and On Evil.



Terry Eagleton’s lecture “Is Marxism a Theodicy?” was delivered at a conference on Historical Materialism at York University, on May 14, 2010


Terry Eagleton: The New Atheism and the War on Terror

Terry Eagleton: In Praise of Marx

Terry Eagleton on The Communist Manifesto

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