Marx Returns

Publication date: 23 February 2018

Publisher: Zero Books.




He is not alone. It is November 1849 and London is full of them: a bunch of fanatical dreamers trying to change the world. 

Persecuted by a tyrannical housekeeper and ignored by his sexually liberated wife, Marx immerses himself in his writing, believing that his book on capital is the surest way of ushering in the workers’ revolution and his family out of poverty. But when a mysterious figure begins to take an obsessive interest in his work Marx’s revolutionary journey takes an unexpected turn...

From the writer-director of the 2011 documentary Marx Reloaded, Marx Returns combines historical fiction, psychological mystery, philosophy, differential calculus and extracts from Marx and Engels's collected works to reimagine the life and times of one of history's most exceptional minds.


Set in a putrid pre-revolutionary London marinating in the miasma of oppression and exploitation, Marx Returns is an uncanny alt-fiction that blows the past out of the continuum of history to revivify Marx the man, his life and his thought for our own age. Mixing tragedy with farce, mathematics with alcohol, Marx Returns gives us a great new take on a grand old tale.

∞ Justin Clemens, author of The Mundiad
Curious, funny, perplexing, and irreverent—an inspired divagation that casts unexpected light on Marx’s thought.

∞ Ray Brassier, author of Nihil Unbound: Enlightenment and Extinction
For years we’ve been led to believe that ‘Marx was right’. On the evidence of Jason Barker’s debut novel, however, it seems we may have grossly underestimated him. Joyful, artful and playfully anachronistic, Marx Returns is a book you’re unlikely to want to put down.

∞ Yong Soon Seo, Professor of Philosophy, Sungkyunkwan University
An imaginative, uplifting, and sometimes disturbing alternative history.

∞ Nina Power, Los Angeles Review of Books
An outstanding work of fiction that goes to the very heart of Marx's revolutionary thinking.

∞ Slavoj Zizek, Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities

About The Author

Jason Barker is Associate Professor of English at Kyung Hee University in the School of Global Communication. He is the writer-director and co-producer of the 2011 German documentary Marx Reloaded.

Author Jason Barker


For all media enquiries:

@marxreturns or e-mail: jbarker [at]