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On the two metamorphoses of human activity in Marx

journal contribution
posted on 2019-01-01, 00:00 authored by Lachlan Ross
Since the 1970s, there has been strong resistance to the drive towards a ‘reconstruction’ of Marx. The main objection is based in the premise that Marx’s core ideas are irreparably flawed, and thus, reconstruction is doomed, in that this work must either ignore or downplay political economy (making the reconstruction irrelevant or greatly distant to Marx, as was Habermas’ early reconstruction), or be true to Marx’s contradictory ideas (in which case it is not a reconstruction, but simply a reading, bound to run aground). Helmut Reichelt objects on these terms and demands that a radical reconstruction take place: rewriting Marx’s critique of political economy with and against his texts. However, the necessity of a radical reconstruction is challenged if one takes that position that Marx’s works, though flawed, are not as contradictory as they seem, and in fact Marx is whole, conflicted but not split, writing something fundamentally simple and coherent: human beings are free until their own relations become objective and overpower them, i.e., class struggle is driven by material contradictions that are human in origin.

History

Journal

Cosmos and History : the Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy

Volume

15

Issue

1

Pagination

117 - 141

Publisher

Cosmos and History Publishing Co-op.

Location

Melbourne, Vic.

ISSN

1832-9101

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

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