Marx and the two enlightenments essay

Such a practice involves a break with the familiar, the routine ways of seeing, hearing, feeling, understanding things so that the organism may become receptive to the potential forms of a non-aggressive, non-exploitative world.

When these limits are reached, the Establishment may initiate a new order of totalitarian suppression. Just as Cartesian materialism branches into natural science, so the other tendency of French materialism merges directly into socialism and communism. Beyond the limits and beyond the power of repressive reason now appears the prospect for a new relationship between sensibility and reason, namely, the harmony between sensibility and a radical consciousness: rational faculties capable of projecting and defining the objective material conditions of freedom, its real limits and chances.

The qualitative difference between the existing societies and a free society affects all needs and satisfactions beyond the animal level, that is to say, all those which are essential to the human species, man as rational animal.

Karl marx essay topics

Within his physics, matter is the sole substance, the sole basis of being and of knowledge. Emergence of a new Reality Principle: under which a new sensibility and a desublimated scientific intelligence would combine in the creation of an aesthetic ethos. The word the twentieth century coined for that was totalitarianism. The redeeming, reconciling power of art adheres even to the most radical manifestations of non-illusory art and anti-art. One must not therefore complain of the wickedness of man but of the ignorance of the legislators, who have always placed the particular interest in opposition to the general interest. But it does insist on cleaning the earth from the very material garbage produced by the spirit of capitalism, and from this spirit itself. However, the freedom of the imagination is restrained not only by the sensibility, but also, at the other pole of the organic structure, by the rational faculty of man, his reason. This is the case of the ghetto population and the unemployed in the United States; this is also the case of the laboring classes in the more backward capitalist countries. He soon rejected both the Christian and Jewish religions, becoming an atheist and materialist. The latter is mainly a French development and leads directly to socialism. As only material things are perceptible and knowable, nothing can be known about the existence of God. The natural equality of human intelligences, the harmony between the progress of reason and the progress of industry, the natural goodness of mankind, the omnipotence of education are the principal factors in this system.

We have repeatedly referred to such tendencies: first of all the growing technological character of the process of production, with the reduction of the required physical energy and its replacement by mental energy — dematerialization of labor. The real progenitor of English materialism and of all modern experimental science is Bacon.

One name may be applied to several phantoms. In the name of free trade, it had knocked down national boundaries, lowered prices, made the planet interdependent and cosmopolitan. Hobbes, as Bacon's continuator, argues that if the senses furnish men with all knowledge, then concepts and ideas are nothing but phantoms of the material world more or less divested of their sensual forms.

karl marx essay on capitalism

This productive power was also the rise and fall of an economic structure according to how progression is supported and downcast.

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Selected Essays by Karl Marx/French Materialism