Beyond Objectivism and Relativism

Beyond Objectivism and Relativism Ingvar Johansson One very important line of division in todayt s philosophy is between those who want to go beyond the dualism between objectivism and relativism and those who still think this dualism is a live option. On this issue t I side with Richard Rortyts view in Philosophy and the […]

Place and Time in Socialist Theory

Place and Time in Socialist Theory Michael Rustin Sources of Contemporary Pluralism Pluralism has become fashionable on the left. This new-found enthusiasm for diversity and choice is in part a defensive response by socialists to the decline of the mass support hitherto provided by the working class, to the ‘Forward March of Labour Halted’ 1, […]

Letters on Strawbridge and Althusser

Letters Dear Radical Philosophy, Sheelagh Strawbridge’s article ‘From “Over determination” to “Structural Causality”: Some Unresolved Problems in Althusser’s Treatment of Causality’ (RP 38) was informative and served to help me get to grips with this widely quoted contemporary thinker. However, I’m still not entirely clear about various matters pertaining to the concept of contradiction and […]

From ‘Overdetermination’ to ‘Structural Causality’: Some Unresolved Problems in Althusser's Treatment of Causality

From ‘Overdetermination’ to ‘Structural Causality’: Some Unresolved Problems in Althursser’s Treatment of Causality Sheelagh Strawbridge Introduction .Much of Althusser’s work, in collaboration with Balibar, is concerned, by means of a ‘symptomatic’ reading of Marx’s mature work, to draw out the latent, silent, untheorised concepts present in that work and provide and adequately describe these missing […]

On Materialism

On Materialism· Wal Suchting TEACHER SI FU TEACHER SI FU TEACHER SI FU Si Fu, name the basic questions of philosophy. Are things external to us, selfsufficient, independent of us, or are things in us, dependent on us, non-existent without us? What opinion is the correct one? There has been no decision about it …. […]

Preface to Rancière’s ‘Proletarian Nights’

Preface to ‘Proletarian Nights’ The article printed below is a translation of the Introduction (pp.7-l2) of Jacques Ranci~re’s La Nuit des Proletaires, which was published last year [1]. The book deals with some well known events of the l830s and l840s – the utopias of Fourier, Saint-Simon, Cabet and Enfantin; the ‘Free Women’; the socialist […]

Marxist Modes

MARXIST MODIS lonathan Rea 1 Here is a tempting book* – a kind of teach-yourself the new semiotics, a simple primer about Barthes, Lacan and post-Althusserian Marxis m. I came across it by accident, when I saw it peeping out of a friend’s luggage. ‘It’s very good, ‘ I was told: ‘inspiring and clear ‘. […]

Philosophical Materialism or the Materialist Conception of History

PHILOSOPHICAL MATERIALISM OR THE MATERIALIST CONCEPTION or HISTORY Alison Assiter Introduction ‘Marxism is a materialism’. This idea has become co.mmonplace. Usually, it amounts to placing Marx and Marxism inside a philosophical tradition; one whose roots lie in the atomistic philosophies of De.mocritus and Epicurus. Much r~cent ‘Marxist’ materialism imitates or reproduces many of the ideas […]

Althusser’s epistemology: The limits of the theory of theoretical practice

ALTHUSSBR’S BPISTBMOLOGY: Ihe limils of Ihe Iheo..y of Iheo..elical p ..aclice PaulPatton concepts and theses which would permit the demarcation of science from other kinds of theoretical discourse. Dialectical materialism, then, was thought to be the philosophical theory Within which the scientific character of historical materialism could be demonstrated. Althusser’s marxist philosophy, however, was no […]

Post-Marxist Modes of Production

POST-MARXIST M I ‘) .. or PRODUCTION According to whoever wrote the editorial ‘notes’ for Radical Philosophy 17, ‘The present upsurge of fundamental Marxist researches may indicate an exit route from the circle of philosophy’s –deaths and re births , via which the problem of the specificity of “the philosophical” might be both subverted and […]

In Defence of Epistemology

R2~ If I believed in the imminent collapse of capitalism from forces internal to the economy (falling rate of profit etc), then my evaluation of movements would be affected by this. But Hindess and Hirst, while pointing this out, insist that my calculation of consequences; is itself a function of my political position (evafuation). So […]

Lukács and the Marxist Criticism of Sociology

Lukacs aacl tbe MaJlxist Ca-iticislll of Sociology IanCraib This paper is situated in the context of three interrelated arguments. The first and central issue is epistemological, concerning the grounds upon which one theory of ‘point of view’ claims to be superior to others, to represent ‘the truth’, to be ‘scientific’, to produce ‘knowledge’. The last […]

Rancière and Althusser

Hegelian Marxism than to the relations that exist in Althusser’s thought. He attacks the latter as ‘philosophy’s police mentality’ but no more. The difference is that between a clear and rigorous analytic distinction between the concepts that combine into a theory – a distinction that Al thus.ser tries to maintain – and a relationship of […]

The production of moral ideology

The pl’oducl.ion of mOl’al ideology Andrew Collier Vly aim in this paner is to throw some light on the nature of moral i~eology hv examining its origin and function in terms of nsvchoanalytical theory, as well as of ‘1″rxi sm, ‘Iv assumntions at the outset are that anv moral irteologv serves a socially renressive function, […]

Discussion: Rancière and Ideology

DISCUSSION Ranciere~a~d Ideology The article by Jacques Ranciere, ‘On the Theory of Ideologv’ (Radical Philosophy 7) is one of the most powerful critiques of Althusser’s work so far to have been produced from the left. Given the wide reception that Althusser’s work is now receiving in Britain it is vital that the issues which Ranciere […]

Discussion: Leninism versus proletarian self-emancipation; Laing’s social philosophy; The Trivialily of Althusser

Discussion Leninism versus proletarian self-emancipation Norman Geras argues (RP6, pp20-22) convincingly that Marx’s theory of socialist revolution is grounded on the fundamental principle that ‘the emancipation of the working class must be the work of the working class itself’. Marx held to this view throughout his entire forty years of socialist political activity, and it […]

Proletarian Self-Emancipation

Ma:rxlsm and pl’oletal’ian sel’emancipalion Norman Geras I claim no novelty for these ideas. Some of them are discussed in a recent article by Hal Draper. 1 They are treated at greater length, and in greater depth, in Michael Lowy’s book on Marx’s theory of revolution. 2 Going back to Marx himself, in 1864, in the […]

Who Makes History?: Althusser's Anti-Humanism

Whomakas hislory? Allhassel”s anli-hamanis.. John Mepham Introduction I am very much aware that in what follows I solve no philosophical problems. I attempt some conceptual clarifications and I propose some interpretations of theses of Louis Althusser. I hope this will at least make it possible to pose some problems more clearly than they are posed […]

5 Reviews

REVIEWS The new journal Economy and Society declared its stand under the banner of serious scholarship. Its editorial statement noted that ‘The search for new orientations (in social science) has led to a revived interest in ~Iarxism, Structural i sm, and Phenomenology in its various forms, to attempts to create a ‘critical’ theory. Thesd’new interests, […]