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Lukács, in his central text of History and Class Consciousness, and its central essay “Reification and the Consciousness of the Proletariat,” in particular, points . This book reads Georg Lukács’s History and Class Consciousness through the drafts of his unfinished philosophy of art (the so-called “Heidelberg Aesthetics”). Keywords: Lukács; Heidegger; Authenticity; Reification; Ontology. 1. Lukács on reification and Marxian alienation. Engels invented classical Marxism in Ludwig.

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This dualism between subject and object—and in ethics, between norms and facts—haunts modern philosophy. This reformulation of the philosophical premises of Marxism, however, entailed a rejection of the then contemporary forms of simplistic materialism and naive scientism endorsed by many Lujacs party intellectuals.

Against a fixation on economics, he wants to see law and politics considered as following their own logics and thus as spheres to be treated lukscs.

In a modern state, law must not only correspond to the general economic condition and be its expression, but must also be an internally coherent expression which does not, owing to inner contradictions, reduce itself to nought.

Lukacs’ theory of reification and contemporary social movements – Andrew Feenberg

Humanities Press,pp. Oppression and an reificatoin that knows no bounds and scorns every human dignity were known even to pre-capitalist ages. Rather, the eeification ways in which life could give itself a form have become problematic and are experienced as abstractions.

Both individual and social life is in principle capable of forming an integrated totality. This problem becomes virulent in modernity where the form of life is no longer something unproblematically present. Frankfurt School lukscs Axel Honneth reformulates this key “Western Marxist ” concept in lukacz of intersubjective relations of recognition and power in his recent work Reification Oxford, Therefore, in modern society meaning can only be found within the inner life of the individual and cannot become recognized in the world Inhe married the Russian political activist and convicted terrorist Jelena Grabenko.

That was an ambitious attempt to respond to a revolutionary situation in theoretical terms. These traditional explanatory schemes depend on an individual contemplative subject. Since History and Class Consciousnesshowever, the Hungarian philosopher was convinced that the loss of autonomy of humans is not an individual-moral phenomenon, but a structural characteristic of capitalist commodity production.


The overcoming reiffication alienation thus always demands—along with social changes—subjective transformation, i. Considerations on Western Marxism.

Table of Contents Lukacs Archive. If it cannot or will not rise above this level, then its activity transforms into a manipulation of facts which are of practical interest to humanity.

Georg Lukács’ Theory of Reification and the Idea of Socialism

The structural similarity is so great that no truly perceptive historian of modern capitalism could fail to notice it. They saw in these ideas an alternative to the official Marxist dogma of the party as surrogate subject of the revolution. They not only dismiss the agency of the individual, they argue that subjectivity reificatlon no longer be identified with a version of the Cartesian cogito or transcendental ego.

This finally points towards the ethical dimension of the Ontology. The DownfallOxford: Marx often describes this potentiation of reification in incisive fashion. The revolutionary bourgeois class refused to admit that a legal relationship had a valid foundation merely luoacs it existed in fact.

Here, too, there is a breach with the empirical and irrational methods of administration and dispensing justice based on traditions tailored, subjectively, to the requirements of men in action, and, objectively, to those of the concrete matter in hand.

This ontology is intended, at least outwardly, to be a faithful interpretation of the ontological implications of Marxism. Only then does it become a category of society influencing decisively the objective form of things and people in luiacs society thus emerging, their relation to nature and the possible relations of men to each other.

In contrast, modern society is constitutively alienated: It is even more in evidence when we consider the great spheres of activity created by the division of labour. It is at the same time the product of the capitalist division of labour.

As soon as the new division of labour which creates professional lawyers becomes necessary, another new and independent sphere is opened up which, for all its essential dependence on production and trade, still has also a special capacity for reacting upon these spheres.

And once those conditions have been identified, the hypothetical construction of their revolutionary transformation rebounds back on the philosophical concepts and shows how their contradictions can be resolved.

Four reasons may serve towards an explanation: The essence of commodity-structure has often been pointed out.

Reification and the Consciousness of the Proletariat by Georg Lukacs

There is no need to spell out the fact that for us these are both merely aspects of the same dialectical unity. Views Read Edit View history. This development leads into a contradictory situation both on the practical and the theoretical level: The works of this period reflect both his allegiance to orthodox Soviet Marxism and his uneasiness with the Stalinist post-war situation.


It is evident that the philosophy of bourgeois society is incapable of this. It is also indisputable that many of our contemporaries will reject, with some outrage, the thought that they are living in an age of reification, or respectively that they are subject to patterns of self-reification.

In both cases, art turns against life. Objectively, in so far as the commodity form facilitates the equal exchange of qualitatively different objects, it can only exist if that formal equality is in fact recognised – at any rate in. This finally answers the question regarding the a priori conditions of art: Here we need only establish that labour, abstract, equal.

On the other hand, this universality becomes historically possible because this process of abstraction has been completed. Revolution in an advanced society is at least possible in principle on the basis of a generalization of this new way of experiencing the world.

Luchterhand cited as GW. Nevertheless, his writings from Eros and Civilization on excited unprecedented interest in philosophy of praxis. I will show that reirication are only partially successful in this task, but also that the task itself was well chosen and indeed is still relevant to critical theory and practice. Socialism portal Communism portal Karl Marx portal Philosophy portal. Continued exchange and more regular reproduction for exchange reduces this arbitrariness more and more. In the nature of things it is excluded, in the first place, where production for the use-value, for immediate personal requirements, predominates; and secondly, where slavery or serfdom form the broad foundation of social production, as in antiquity and during the Middle Ages.

As late ashe rejected the Bolshevik revolution from a Kantian perspective—on the grounds of moral considerations.