I wrote this paper 10 years ago based on my MA thesis. Many things have changed since that time. The left groups mentioned in the article do not exist anymore. Some of their activists are still active politically but many are not part of radical left politics any more. In addition, now I am more skeptical of the postmodern theories of ideology I tried to use in the paper. If I were writing a similar analysis now, I would try to develop a more materialist and a more complex approach to ideologies and their effects on practical politics. However, the paper seems to be pointing to a much wider question than merely the problems of two small Kiev-based radical left groups. The radical left movement in Ukraine is slightly larger now, involving hundreds, not dozens, of activists, but it still lacks any strong organization and remains completely marginal politically. But it is not just a matter of the Ukrainian left. The recent waves of popular struggles in Europe and in Arab countries persuasively showed how anarchist suspicion of disciplined organizations and strategy politically disarms the movements. If lacking strong political organizations even massive mobilizations are at best able only to overthrow the old elite, while allowing the seizing of power by traditional "opposition" parties, which in reality block any prospects for fundamental political and social change. SYRIZA in Greece and Podemos in Spain may push progressive movements into an understanding of the need for political representation. Of course, these new left parties will need not just electoral but also political successes in implementing their programs in order to fix a shift in the contemporary radical left toward organized political strategy and away from an obsession with horizontal prefiguration.
"Prefigurative Politics vs. Party-Building in the Post-Soviet Context: Ideology and Resource Mobilization in Left-Radical Groups in Ukraine,"
Catalyst: A Social Justice Forum:
1, Article 8.
Available at: http://trace.tennessee.edu/catalyst/vol6/iss1/8