Download Reading Marx Writing: Melodrama, the Market, and the by Thomas M. Kemple PDF

By Thomas M. Kemple

Studying Marx Writing makes use of the 8 notebooks (the Grundrisse) Marx labored on in 1857-58 to check his literary, political and medical mind's eye. through exploring the Grundrisse, the venture or plan that Marx didn't hold via, the writer speculates at the limits and probabilities of Marx's interpretive method for addressing present concerns in philosophy and hermeneutics, severe sociology, political financial system, aesthetics and literary feedback.

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Sample text

Lifshits’s work marked a turning point in Soviet thinking about art and culture. He was far from alone and even drew sustenance from Stalin’s ‘Thermidor’. Yet his position was unique, and without him the aesthetic thought of the period would have been impoverished. Without him, and his colleagues, there would have been no Marxism that could counter the stereotyped naturalism that went under the name of Socialist Realism. That such a Marxism found its expression in aesthetics was a response to Stalin’s suppression of revolutionary politics.

And yet those thinkers, artists and writers to whom he feels closest share a similar resignation, resembling Hegel’s owl of Minerva, which takes flight only at dusk. ’11 In using aesthetics as a platform for Marxism, Lifshits was also emulating a time-honoured tradition in Russia dating back to the eighteenth century, when literature and literary criticism were the only voices of opposition. To occupy a post in an institute, which Lifshits periodically did, inevitably involved compromise. He was a Communist.

He shocked the public with his 1965 essay ‘Why Hemingway 01 intro 41 25/5/06 12:17:06 42 MARXISM AND THE HISTORY OF ART I Am Not a Modernist’ (the title taken from Bertrand Russell’s ‘Why I Am Not a Christian’). If modernism was now popular in the Soviet Union, at least in urban centres and among the well-educated graduates of Stalin’s universities, it was not popular in Lifshits’s meaning of the word, ignoring the real needs of the people and lacking universality. It was fashionable rather than popular.

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