It is now commonplace to lament the enervation of social thought and the passing of an important social figure—the critical, classical humanistic intellectual as a major actor in contemporary society. This elegy for polymath political leaders and for the presumed demise of theoretically gifted political intellectuals is heard in the United States and in the Commonwealth Caribbean. Both the quality of social thought and regard for political intellectuals as agents of transformative change are alleged to be in steep decline in these islands. Brian Meeks's recent collection of essays, Critical Interventions in Caribbean Politics and Theory (2014), addresses some of these anxieties in a critical assessment of social thought, subaltern insurgencies, and the politics of radical intellectuals in the Commonwealth Caribbean. While the collection affirms Meeks's confidence in the reinvigoration of Caribbean thought, his sympathetic account of armed minoritarian insurgencies in island states with substantive democratic freedoms raises unanswered questions about theory and social change in these societies.
Obika Gray; Intellectuals and Social Change: Brian Meeks and Transitions in Caribbean Political Thought. Small Axe 1 July 2016; 20 (2 (50)): 175–186. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/07990537-3626692
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