FIRST ON THE DAILY SIGNAL—What has happened to America? How did it become a land where teachers tell students they may have been born in the wrong body and where keeping your job could depend on affirming the lie that our society is systemically racist?

These are just two examples of many in which a new Marxist ideology is gripping our nation’s institutions.

But this isn’t the Soviet Marxism of the 1960s. This is “NextGen Marxism,” and it’s infiltrating every part of American life.

Mike Gonzalez, a senior fellow at The Heritage Foundation’s Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy, and Katharine Gorka, a terrorism expert and former presidential appointee at the Department of Homeland Security, are the authors of the new book “NextGen Marxism: What It Is and How to Combat It.” (The Daily Signal is the news outlet of The Heritage Foundation.)

In this deeply researched, yet immensely readable book, the authors show the roots of Marxism and how the philosophy and the movement have evolved over time, the imminent threat that NextGen Marxism poses to America today, and how we can save our institutions from the growing number of cultural Marxists all around us.

The following is an exclusive excerpt from the book:

NextGen Marxism is the new frontier in a 170-year-old war that has wreaked havoc in all corners of the world. It is the cultural Marxism of [early 20th-century Italian Antonio] Gramsci—the idea that to obtain civilizational transformation you must first undermine the existing culture; the manipulation of a raft of causes to ignite grievances; the use of grassroots organizing to create foot soldiers for focused campaigns, demonstrations, or even riots; and, crucially, the creation of revolutionary networks to strategize and coordinate. 

The use of race, sex, sexual orientation, climate, social justice, gender, animal rights; the denigration of beauty and the sublime; the consequent elevation of ugliness, chaos, and disorder; the decimation of the family; the abandonment of God—these and many other diverse struggles are fronts in a larger war.

Eric Mann calls this “a little division of labor” that communists create as they carry out their goal of overthrowing the United States. Mann recalled that he once had asked a gay rights leader, “‘How did you come up with the idea of the Gay Liberation Fund?’ He says, ‘Why do you think we called it that? Because we believed in the National Liberation Fund of Vietnam. We weren’t just wanting gay marriage, we wanted to overthrow the government as part of being queer.’”

Mann added, “I come out of the tradition where wherever you started, we’re all trying to make the same revolution. We had maybe a little division of labor.”

Mann is hardly alone. In fact, communists and their socialist brethren tell us again and again that they indiscriminately use race, sex, climate, or other issues to advance revolutionary goals. The recanted Marxist David Horowitz is fond of quoting a member of Students for a Democratic Society, the radical 1960s group, who said, “The issue is never the issue. The issue is always the revolution.”

As Horowitz explained, “In other words, the cause—whether inner-city blacks or women—is never the real cause, but only an occasion to advance the real cause, which is the accumulation of power to make the revolution.”

This is an important point to understand. Go to any gathering where Marxists strategize, any online platform that promotes such planning, and you will find the espousal of causes that outwardly range from race, sex, gender, sexual orientation, and transgenderism, to indigenism, environmentalism, animalism, or ableism. Behind it all, the accretion of raw power is the goal. This power is to be used for civilizational transformation. They are all “trying to make the same revolution,” to use Mann’s words.

Cornel West, the Harvard professor who wrote the foreword for the main text of critical race theory in 1995, also picked up in a 1991 article for The New York Times on how the progressive movement would operate on several fronts. West called it “the inchoate, scattered yet gathering progressive movement that is emerging across the American landscape. This gathering now lacks both the vital moral vocabulary and the focused leadership that can constitute and sustain it. Yet it will be rooted ultimately in current activities by people of color, by labor and ecological groups, by women, by homosexuals.”

NextGen Marxists who know what they are doing organize people under all these disparate causes, all sharing the ultimate goal of seeking to dismantle capitalism and the political order. The organizations devoted to furthering the separate causes retain distinct sets of experts and activists, but they are united in their shared aim of reordering society.