One of the most important thinkers following Marx and who extended our understanding of capitalism and how it shapes our lives was the Italian Marxist Antonio Gramsci. Although his life was shortened by a long prison term imposed by Mussolini, his Prison Notebooks continue to be studied by revolutionary thinkers. The Old Mole’s Frann Michel tells us who he was and why he is important. She notes his development of the term hegemony and focuses on his claim that we are all philosophers: the only question is whether we simply imbibe the philosophy of the existing social order or, instead, try to think social issues out for ourselves. Gramsci's advice to those who would change the world: "Pessimism of the intellect, optimism of the spirit."
This piece ends with the great Italian resistance song "Bella Ciao" performed by Chumbawumba.