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Is Wokeism really secular heretical Christianity rather than neo-Marxism?

By Graham Young - posted Tuesday, 9 April 2024

Some people blame Marx for Woke.

I'm not denying that wokeness owes something to Marxism, and in particular neo-Marxism, but then Christian beliefs also underpin parts of the ideology.

Let me explain.


Both Marxism and Wokeness are products of the West. They take existing concepts, view them in new lights, and twist or modify them to novel ends.

The West is a creation of Christianity, combined with Roman administration and Greek philosophy and science.

It would be strange if Western-derived ideologies did not have a Christian skeleton, and this would explain why, despite the fact that the majority of Marxists and Wokeists are either atheists or agnostics, these philosophies have a firm hold on many in the churches - take liberation theology, for example, and the current Roman Catholic pope.

A marker of Wokeness is the valorisation of the victim and the celebration of victimhood.

Misusing the idea of the 'victim'

"Intersectionality" is a term that encompasses the Venn diagrams of victimhood. Being poor on its own gives you gravitas - but mix it with colour, gender diversity, a debilitating drug habit, and you start to have real status.

The poor black lesbian sleeping rough in the New York subway, for example, is to be accorded more moral and persuasive weight than a rich, white, male billionaire.


On Good Friday, Christians marked the torture and death by crucifixion of Jesus, and on Sunday his resurrection from the dead. While he is described as a "victor" he is also at the same time described as a "victim," as in the hymn "Thee we praise High Priest and victim."

In his speeches and sermons, Christ often praised the poor and needy.

He said that if any of his followers tended to one of "the least of these my brethren," they in fact, tended to him, potentially putting the disadvantaged on a very high pedestal of equality with God.

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This article was first published by The Epoch Times with a different title.

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About the Author

Graham Young is chief editor and the publisher of On Line Opinion. He is executive director of the Australian Institute for Progress, an Australian think tank based in Brisbane, and the publisher of On Line Opinion.

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