Marxist IQ: A people’s culture

BY:Communist Party USA| July 28, 2022
Marxist IQ: A people’s culture


Capitalism sees cultural production (literature, theater, painting, films) as both commodities to be produced for profit and expressions of ruling-class ideology. But artists influenced by both Marxism and the struggles of the working class have produced work to advance working-class consciousness. This Marxist IQ is dedicated to those artists and their work.

1. World-famous German playwright and Communist activist Bertolt Brecht in The Resistable Rise of Arturo Ui portrayed Adolf Hitler as which of the following?

a. A nervous Chicago gangster supported by the rich
b. A British aristocrat
c. A Latin American dictator
d. A Southern Segregationist governor


2. Death of Salesman, regarded internationally as the greatest American play, was written by Arthur Miller, who was a target of McCarthyism because he had been a member of the CPUSA. The play is

a. a melodramatic celebration of the “American Dream.”
b. an indictment of adultery.
c. a portrayal of a dysfunctional family.
d. the tragic, self-destructive illusions of petit-bourgeois individualism.


3. In Harriet Arnow’s great proletarian novel The Dollmaker, the transformation of Kentucky farmers during WWII into Detroit factory workers is told from the perspective of

a. Clovis, the father, seeking to get a job in World War II Detroit.
b. the ethnically diverse people living in the Alley.
c. Gertie, the mother, seeking to defend the family.
d. Reuben, the son, who cannot adjust to school.


4. In the African-American novelist Richard Wright’s great proletarian novel, Native Son, (written when he was a member of the CPUSA), the protagonist, Bigger Thomas, is portrayed as which of the following?

a. A young radical intellectual
b. Someone striving to join the small Black middle class
c. Someone whose violence is a response to dehumanizing racism
d. A criminal who turns on his benefactors


5. Chinese Communist writer Lu Xun, perhaps the most famous Chinese writer of fiction of the 20th century, portrays in his best-known work, the True Story of Ah Q, the crisis facing prerevolutionary China through

a. a Buddhist temple caretaker imprisoned by Confucian values that keep him from acting in his own interest.
b. a peasant who joins the revolutionary movement.
c. a heroic Communist cadre.
d. an evil landlord.


6. Although it was suppressed in the U.S. at the time, this film about a strike, with a cast of blacklisted Hollywood film artists and workers from the CPUSA-led Mine, Mill and Smelter Workers Union, won an international audience and is regarded as a classic expression of people’s democratic culture.

a. Of Thee I Sing
b. Salt of the Earth
c. On the Waterfront
Bedtime for Bonzo

Answers here.


    The Communist Party USA is a  revolutionary working-class  political party founded in 1919 in Chicago, IL. The Communist Party stands for the interests of the American working class and the American people. It stands for our interests in both the present and the future. Solidarity with workers of other countries is also part of our work. We work in coalition with the labor movement, the peace movement, the student movement, organizations fighting for equality and social justice, the environmental movement, immigrants rights groups and the health care for all campaign. But to win a better life for working families, we believe that we must go further. We believe that the American people can replace capitalism with a system that puts people before profit — socialism. We are rooted in our country's revolutionary history and its struggles for democracy. We call for "Bill of Rights" socialism, guaranteeing full individual freedoms.

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