• StreetlightX
    3.4k
    The lectures are alot less tightly constructed than his monographs, in that you can really see that they're geared towards students in his class studying them as if for the first time. He really tries to get across the excitement and innovation that each philosopher brings to the table, and although they broach similar themes to the books, they're alot more forgiving in their approach. It'd say it's similar ground covered in a very different way.
  • Wallows
    7.1k
    You can start, I have other things to do.fdrake

    I don't know where to begin! I'll wait patiently on when others have had time to address the paper.
  • Moliere
    1.6k
    I think I'd like to participate in this. I could use a little structure to my reading schedule -- giving me that extra "umph" that seems difficult to come up with in the midst of work and work and work.

    A bit off from other suggestions, and definitely not the sort of thing you read alongside -- it's too big -- but I've always been meaning to finish my copy of Being and Nothingness. Thus far I've pretty much just done selections.

    Regardless I'd just be happy to participate with whatever you set out.
  • John Doe
    242
    Haha, Wallows, I think you're on a bit of a reading group kick! Maybe you're in one of those halcyon philosophical zones where for three months you're suddenly working at a higher level and just want to read everything!?

    Great to have you on board, Moliere! Honestly, a lot of reading groups seem to have popped up recently for big books so I'm trying to figure out how best we should navigate what I had in mind for this group. I think maybe the best will be to take a poll and set a 'syllabus' of sorts. I'm definitely deeply interested in Merleau-Ponty and Sartre who have both been brought up in this thread, though I worry interest may wain in the group if we do just another big canonical book since there are like half a dozen threads doing the same thing. So I'm thinking maybe some essays, lectures, and very short books? E.g. Sartre, Merleau-Ponty, Sellars, Deleuze, Riemann, Kant, Marx, Ranciere? (Do you have any interest in Sartre's Critique of Dialectical Reason?)
  • Moliere
    1.6k
    I worry interest may wain in the group if we do just another big canonical book since there are like half a dozen threads doing the same thing. So I'm thinking maybe some essays, lectures, and very short books? E.g. Sartre, Merleau-Ponty, Sellars, Deleuze, Riemann, Kant, Marx, Ranciere? (Do you have any interest in Sartre's Critique of Dialectical Reason?)John Doe

    That's a really good point. You convinced me! :D

    I'm down for Critique of Dialectical Reason as it's another one of those I haven't gotten to but have wanted to.

    Honestly the schedule you have looks great to me. Kind of a survey in interesting writers that we can explore together. I'll have to think a sec for your weeks 11 and 12 though.
  • fdrake
    1.9k


    I'd be down for Riemann and Kant and would lead the discussion on Riemann if you'd have this ignorant schoolmaster's musings. I hope @StreetlightX finds the time to lead the discussion on Kant. That would be a cool thread.
  • Moliere
    1.6k
    What about Husserl? He's one of those thinkers on my "meant to get to" list.
  • John Doe
    242
    I'd be down for Riemann and Kant and would lead the discussion on Riemann if you'd have this ignorant schoolmaster's musings. I hope StreetlightX finds the time to lead the discussion on Kant. That would be a cool thread.fdrake

    That's the best way to do it in my humble opinion! Anyway, let's go for it. We can start whenever you feel ready. I think my position is that it's great if someone wants to use this thread as a place to read an essay so I'm happy to either lead or cede any discussion. :up:

    What about Husserl? He's one of those thinkers on my "meant to get to" list.Moliere

    Well, if I had to offer advice I'd suggest either "Philosophy as Rigorous Science" or "Crisis of the European Sciences" as a great starting point.
  • fdrake
    1.9k


    I still have a few bits left before I conclude my Marx thread for now. Think it's 6 paragraphs. I should be able to finish that by next weekend at the latest.
  • Moliere
    1.6k
    Well, if I had to offer advice I'd suggest either "Philosophy as Rigorous Science" or "Crisis of the European Sciences" as a great starting point.John Doe

    Cool!

    I tried to find some free versions online and so far have failed. I think I have copies of those, but I'll come back with a different suggestion once I find something that everyone can have access to without having to spend money. Also it'd be cool if everyone was excited to read it, I think, so I'll try to find something that "fits" with what's up there so far.
  • John Doe
    242
    My first reaction was Ugh Rorty, then open it up and Ugh Derrida. But reading quickly I'm more impressed with the paper than I thought I would be! So I think that I could go either way on this. What makes you interested in it?
  • Moliere
    1.6k
    Rorty is one of those philosophers I have never really touched, so for me it would just be novel and interesting to see what comes out. The particular paper I picked mostly as a requirement of what I could find that was free -- plus I don't have the "ugh" reaction to Derrida :D.

    I also sort of think of Rorty as an "in-between" philosopher, from what little familiarity I have with him, between analytic and continental approaches -- and I noticed how there was a kind of mixture between these traditions in what's already been picked.

    EDIT: Also, don't feel bad if it just doesn't catch you -- just say so and I'll keep digging around. I'm just sort of throwing ideas out there, and I'm fine with finding other stuff. It's more important to me that people actually would like to read what we choose.
  • John Doe
    242
    It's all good. I'm pretty easy going. I just want to talk about texts anonymously with some folks and learn a thing or two. :lol:
  • Moliere
    1.6k
    Yeah, sounds good. :D it's pretty much all I was thinking. I guess I just feel self-conscious about suggesting stuff.

    I thought that https://www.marxists.org/archive/lukacs/works/1949/existentialism.htm might make a good companion piece -- since they are both sort of "outsider" criticisms (so it appears from the first couple of paragraphs at least) of certain ways of doing philosophy, but one from (what I take to be) a pragmatist view, and this one from a Marxist perspective. Plus it's short, and Lukacs is another writer I haven't really spent time with.
  • John Doe
    242
    I'm a big fan of Lukács and depending on your time and level of interest, I suspect we could discuss this paper while waiting on Riemann since it's so short and straightforward.

    So my initial goal - to take on some theme or topic and explore it over the course of several months through weekly postings -- hasn't changed. But I also think if there is enough interest for people to use a thread like this to catapult discussions of essays they have been wanting to read, then I have no problem starting a second thread along the lines of what fdrake has done with Marx's Capital.

    Though if interest wanes in this thread (as it seems to have) then I may just stick whatever I want to do in here.
  • Moliere
    1.6k
    Sure, I'm good to start reading. Realistically I think I could post something this Saturday.
  • Moliere
    1.6k
    Alright I just finished the Lukács paper.

    So I might say that Lukacs criticism of existentialism comes from a couple of different levels. One is that existentialism does not reflect reality, and another is that existentialism does not present any new method but rather has roots in Kantian enlightenment era thinking -- and since epoch-making philosophies are characterized by a novelty in method, existentialism is not epoch-making but rather a fad which has become popular because of the social conditions of the time in which it was written. Existentialism appeals to the feelings and needs of certain intellectuals and so escapes criticism, according to Lukács.

    On a secondary level, I think, Lukács also notes how this philosophy helps bourgeois and reactionary political actors by isolating the individual from their. social relationships. But I really think the core of his argument has more to do with the above -- he isn't just saying that existentialism does not agree with Marxism, and helps the enemy, but rather that it fails on its own from proper philosophical considerations: it fails as a third-way, but is just a rehashing of transcendental idealism for the times it was written in.

    There was one point in the essay that made me think I'd like to hear more from Lukács where he said ,"A very specialized philosophical dissertation would be required to show the chains of thought, sometimes quite false, sometimes obviously sophistical, by which Sartre seeks to justify his theory of negative judgment." -- but, hey, then this wouldn't be so brief either :D.

    It seems that he focuses mostly on Sartre at the end because he was the philosopher at the time most associated with popularity, one, and I suspect he focuses on Sartre too because he was a communist -- so that one couldn't say "well, even one of your own is an existentialist, so surely this is not a reactionary philosophy"


    One take-away that I really liked from the essay was Lukács' observation that absolute responsibility is only a shade away from a total lack of responsibility -- and similarly so for freedom -- so that one could feel that one both is responsible yet act cynically. I thought there was some truth to that.



    I'm not sure I totally agree with Lukács criticism, though. While I do think of phenomenology, at least, as a kind of "third way" between idealism and materialism, I don't think it's a way between as much as it passes over such questions as not worth asking -- at least, not with respect to phenomenology. I suppose it would depend on just how serious you took phenomenology when considering questions of ontology, but it seems to me that one could easily be a phenomenologist and a materalist without tension.
  • John Doe
    242
    I have read the paper and took fairly extensive notes which I had planned to write up into a summary, so I am really sorry that I dragged my feet on posting about the paper. Was definitely unfair of me since I suggesting we go ahead and read the paper straightaway.

    Addressing some of your points....

    So I might say that Lukacs criticism of existentialism comes from a couple of different levels. One is that existentialism does not reflect reality, and another is that existentialism does not present any new method but rather has roots in Kantian enlightenment era thinkingMoliere

    I find the methodological points quite interesting. Nowadays, there's a tendency to use the term "existentialism" to refer to 19th century philosophers who take a specific stand on "life" from the perspective of their individual experience (Schopenhauer, Kierkegaard, Dostoyevsky, Nietzsche) and 20th century non-technical philosophers who do the same (Camus, Jaspers), which we tend to distinguish from phenomenology as a movement starting with Husserl, through Levinas, etc. Then we have the term "existential phenomenology" getting thrown around for some of these thinkers who, following Heidegger, are influenced by the 'non-technical' individual-taking-a-stand-on-existence side of existentialism and the 'technical' side of phenomenology as logical analysis of the nature of experience.

    Lukács lumps existentialism and phenomenology together, claiming that they are expressions of a particular sort of methodology. This methodology gains traction, philosophically, in the attempt to overcome the debate between materialism (being) and idealism (consciousness) through the development of new philosophical techniques.

    This is in my opinion the most disappointing aspect of the paper. He posits that (a) one needs to take a stand on materialism versus idealism, because this is the inescapable debate at the heart of philosophy; (b) the "third way" attempts one finds in 'existential' or 'phenomenological' thinkers is generated by a breathtakingly bourgeois motive -- to overcome taking a stand on real issues by looking for comfortable solutions which will incorporate obdurate antagonisms into the bourgeois order. Let's call this the bourgeois having your philosophical cake and eating it too.

    (This leads him to make some eye-raising claims like Nietzsche is essentially a bourgeois working in service of the status-quo and the increasing focus on the role of embodiment is motivated by bourgeois self-absorption.)

    since epoch-making philosophies are characterized by a novelty in method, existentialism is not epoch-making but rather a fad which has become popular because of the social conditions of the time in which it was written. Existentialism appeals to the feelings and needs of certain intellectuals and so escapes criticism, according to Lukács.Moliere

    Interesting! So I take him to be saying that the jury is still out on the extent to which "existentialism" (which we must keep in mind is essentially used as a stand-in for "Neo-Kantianism" and "Phenomenology" since all three are expressions of the same underlying way of going about things) will define the twentieth century. I think you're right that he thinks existentialism isn't epoch-making in the philosophical sense -- it doesn't open up the possibility of a new world the way that Kantian and Marxist philosophy did -- but I think he does genuinely worry that it might define the epoch insofar as it could aid decades of bourgeois grandstanding and avoidance of taking a stand on the era's meaningful philosophical and social conflicts.

    I thought it was really interesting in our own context to be reading this with the historical knowledge that existentialism, phenomenology and marxism will all become marginalized very quickly by both postmodern thought and an increasingly trenchant capitalist system.

    On a secondary level, I think, Lukács also notes how this philosophy helps bourgeois and reactionary political actors by isolating the individual from their. social relationships. But I really think the core of his argument has more to do with the above -- he isn't just saying that existentialism does not agree with Marxism, and helps the enemy, but rather that it fails on its own from proper philosophical considerations: it fails as a third-way, but is just a rehashing of transcendental idealism for the times it was written in.Moliere

    Mostly, I agree. I'm not sure the details matter because this is certainly the weakest aspect of his argument. He essentially hunts for the weakest thinkers then reads their neo-Kantianism into much stronger thinkers like Heidegger.

    There was one point in the essay that made me think I'd like to hear more from Lukács where he said ,"A very specialized philosophical dissertation would be required to show the chains of thought, sometimes quite false, sometimes obviously sophistical, by which Sartre seeks to justify his theory of negative judgment." -- but, hey, then this wouldn't be so brief either :D.Moliere

    This is funny! I had the opposite reaction. That is the sort of thing I insert into an essay when I want to attack some big author or theme. I just sort of took that as short hand for "I think Sartre is b.s. but I have to acknowledge that I'm treating his arguments pretty flippantly." It would be interesting to know if he was sincere in thinking Sartre is worthy of a dissertation or not.

    One thing I was hoping he might jump onto is the relationship between Nietzsche's interest in "positive judgments" (what we would now probably call "value monism") and Sartre's focus on "negative judgments".

    It seems that he focuses mostly on Sartre at the end because he was the philosopher at the time most associated with popularity, one, and I suspect he focuses on Sartre too because he was a communist -- so that one couldn't say "well, even one of your own is an existentialist, so surely this is not a reactionary philosophy"Moliere

    I am pretty sure that he is writing before Sartre's turn to Marxism and essentially encouraging that turn.

    One take-away that I really liked from the essay was Lukács' observation that absolute responsibility is only a shade away from a total lack of responsibility -- and similarly so for freedom -- so that one could feel that one both is responsible yet act cynically. I thought there was some truth to that.Moliere

    Yeah, I think this comes from the larger focus on neo-Kantianism. If you start with isolated individual experience and expand outwards you will inevitably distort the matter in question. The world is for your consciousness. The world is your responsibility. Your freedom determines the world.

    Again, a lot of this is not all that complicated or difficult to understand. But the fact that he locates all of these problems in fetishism is extremely interesting and I definitely want to re-read that section and post about that idea specifically.

    I'm not sure I totally agree with Lukács criticism, though. While I do think of phenomenology, at least, as a kind of "third way" between idealism and materialism, I don't think it's a way between as much as it passes over such questions as not worth asking -- at least, not with respect to phenomenology.Moliere

    I agree. In my view, I think there is a "third way" between materialism and idealism, which is best exemplified by Wittgenstein's work. To an extent I sympathize with Lukács's criticisms because I think he's right about the bad Kantianism that pops up time and again in a variety of thinkers in the early/mid twentieth century. (Hubert Dreyfus's attacks on Sartre mostly mimic Lukács here and went a long way to killing off interest in Sartre in the anglophone world.)

    I suppose it would depend on just how serious you took phenomenology when considering questions of ontology, but it seems to me that one could easily be a phenomenologist and a materalist without tension.Moliere

    Yeah. Or, you know, perhaps we could actually just overcome the stupid materialism/idealism debate by drawing on phenomenology! Lukács merely posits the notion that this debate is necessary without offering much in the way of defense. And he attacks the 'third way' attempts to overcome this debate by dissecting and attacking inferior thinkers who, to my mind, exemplify the most feeble-minded aspects of the phenomenological tradition.
  • Moliere
    1.6k
    I have read the paper and took fairly extensive notes which I had planned to write up into a summary, so I am really sorry that I dragged my feet on posting about the paper. Was definitely unfair of me since I suggesting we go ahead and read the paper straightaway.John Doe

    No worries. :) We all have lives outside of books, and it's totally understandable -- I was late too.

    (This leads him to make some eye-raising claims like Nietzsche is essentially a bourgeois working in service of the status-quo and the increasing focus on the role of embodiment is motivated by bourgeois self-absorption.)John Doe

    This is a bit astray, but something I thought about when reading his comments about Nietzsche was how Kaufmann's interpretation of Nietzsche had yet to appear when he made these comments, and even though Nietzsche as a thinker was not a fascist the German fascists did try to appropriate Nietzsche as a sort of philosophical foundation to their political program (mostly thanks to the efforts of his sister after his death).

    That was a thought that occurred to me, at least, in thinking about his comments on Neitzsche -- but it's hypothetical at this point because I'm not really sure the extent to which Lukács would be influenced by Anglophone philosophy's reception of Nietzsche, which is largely what I'm basing this off of.

    But I hear you about the categories -- I probably wouldn't lump everything together that Lukács is lumping together.

    I think he does genuinely worry that it might define the epoch insofar as it could aid decades of bourgeois grandstanding and avoidance of taking a stand on the era's meaningful philosophical and social conflicts.John Doe

    That's true! I agree with your reading. Otherwise why would he be writing on it if he didn't think that existentialism presented a kind of wrong turn in thinking?

    I thought it was really interesting in our own context to be reading this with the historical knowledge that existentialism, phenomenology and marxism will all become marginalized very quickly by both postmodern thought and an increasingly trenchant capitalist system.John Doe

    That is something that had not occurred to me, but now that you mention it that is interesting. We could take Lukács criticism of existentialism (as he conceives that term) as evidence of just how widespread the philosophy seemed at the time, even outside of strictly academic circles.

    Mostly, I agree. I'm not sure the details matter because this is certainly the weakest aspect of his argument. He essentially hunts for the weakest thinkers then reads their neo-Kantianism into much stronger thinkers like Heidegger.John Doe

    Do you group Sartre in with the weakest thinkers?

    I'm just curious. The other authors, to be honest, I have never read or even heard of prior to reading this paper so I have no opinion. But I never really thought of Sartre as a weak thinker, though I also didn't think he was really talking about what Heidegger was (not that we have to get caught up on this point!)

    This is funny! I had the opposite reaction. That is the sort of thing I insert into an essay when I want to attack some big author or theme. I just sort of took that as short hand for "I think Sartre is b.s. but I have to acknowledge that I'm treating his arguments pretty flippantly." It would be interesting to know if he was sincere in thinking Sartre is worthy of a dissertation or not.John Doe

    This made me laugh :D. I hadn't thought of that, though you're probably right -- it makes sense of why he wouldn't want to spend the time with Sartre to detail where he fails.

    One thing I was hoping he might jump onto is the relationship between Nietzsche's interest in "positive judgments" (what we would now probably call "value monism") and Sartre's focus on "negative judgments"

    That'd be cool to read, I agree.

    I am pretty sure that he is writing before Sartre's turn to Marxism and essentially encouraging that turn.John Doe

    Hrm! I wasn't aware of that aspect of Sartre interpretation, or my anachronistic thinking there. Thanks for the heads up

    Again, a lot of this is not all that complicated or difficult to understand. But the fact that he locates all of these problems in fetishism is extremely interesting and I definitely want to re-read that section and post about that idea specifically.John Doe

    Looking forward to hear more.

    I agree. In my view, I think there is a "third way" between materialism and idealism, which is best exemplified by Wittgenstein's work. To an extent I sympathize with Lukács's criticisms because I think he's right about the bad Kantianism that pops up time and again in a variety of thinkers in the early/mid twentieth century. (Hubert Dreyfus's attacks on Sartre mostly mimic Lukács here and went a long way to killing off interest in Sartre in the anglophone world.)

    ....

    Yeah. Or, you know, perhaps we could actually just overcome the stupid materialism/idealism debate by drawing on phenomenology! Lukács merely posits the notion that this debate is necessary without offering much in the way of defense. And he attacks the 'third way' attempts to overcome this debate by dissecting and attacking inferior thinkers who, to my mind, exemplify the most feeble-minded aspects of the phenomenological tradition.
    John Doe

    That definitely is the appeal I see in phenomenology -- since I don't think that a debate between materalism/idealism is really all that interesting. I think that a commitment to materialism might just be seen as important for a commitment to Marxism, which may be why it seems so important.

    Really, my meta-philosophical outlook is pluralistic, too -- so I think there are fourth and fifth and so on ways. :D Materialism/Idealism is just one debate peculiar to early modern philosophy that seems to still be hanging around sometimes.
  • SapereAude
    19
    I would also be interested. Please keep me in on the loop.
  • fdrake
    1.9k
    I finished what I wanted to do in my thread. I'm available for leading Riemann in a week or so, as I've other more important/work related commitments on my brainpower. @StreetlightX, we should coordinate so that a (tentative) timeframe can be put down.
  • StreetlightX
    3.4k
    Yeah, it may have to be in the New Year if possible as I'm run off my feet a little with holiday commitments (the best kind).
  • fdrake
    1.9k


    That's my plan too.
  • John Doe
    242


    What do you guys make of starting on Riemann in about a couple weeks; say, around 13 January?
  • John Doe
    242
    But I hear you about the categories -- I probably wouldn't lump everything together that Lukács is lumping together.Moliere

    This does seem to be a problem of sorts for Lukács. It's the same thing he does with Sartre ("One would need a dissertation..."). It's clear that he has a strong perspective on a variety of topics and thinkers, and he doesn't really want to get bogged down in the sort of meta work required to justify his distaste for certain thinkers and trends. So he tries to pin the tail on the philosophical donkey by finding Kantian tendencies or forms of thought in a few phenomenologists and labeling the whole movement a type of dressed up neo-Kantianism. (To answer your questions, this is why I called Scheler and Sartre "weak" thinkers for him to pick on, because neither represents the existential or phenomenological method in its uniqueness or full strength.)

    Unfortunately the consequence is that he tends to take a God's eye view throughout most of the essay and it seems to me that he's not particularly responsive to most of the interesting differences or distinctions among the targets of his critique. It is the philosophical equivalent of labeling anyone to the right of Marxism "right wing" and saying that their differences aren't particularly important because they all support something common (say, capitalist oppression).

    So I think we have to just follow his logic here. In many ways the enemy in the background of the whole essay is Kant and the idealism he inspires, which is at bottom (for Lukács) an expression of bourgeois morality. That's why he is at such pains to argue that their is no 'third way' between materialism and idealism, and to argue that existentialism, phenomenology, etc. are consequently idealist philosophies. Their lack of methodological innovation is due to the fact that they are neo-Kantian (philosophically) and bourgeois (politically). Returning to the 'Marx' analogy: anything to the right of materialism is (I think on Lukács's view) in an important sense backwards and retrogressive and consequently cut from the same cloth with respect to the God's eye view he wants to take in this essay.

    I don't know, do you buy this reading? If so, what do you make of his attack on 19th and 20th century non-materialist philosophies as merely 'neo-Kantian'?
  • fdrake
    1.9k


    Fine with me!
  • Moliere
    1.6k
    I don't know, do you buy this reading? If so, what do you make of his attack on 19th and 20th century non-materialist philosophies as merely 'neo-Kantian'?John Doe

    I do! It's his broad treatment of thinkers that sort of allows his logic to go through, too. Though I might say that the criticism isn't bourgeois morality as much as it is that neo-Kantian thought inhibits the working class and helps the bourgeois political order to justify itself. A bit of a slight difference, but I think I'd at least try to frame things in terms of political power and not morality (though there is an interesting tension in Marx showing here between his avowed nihilism and the fairly apparent moral impulse that generates the project in the first place -- not un-resolvable, but a tension)

    I don't exactly buy the argument that idealism and the bourgeois order are linked. I think even materialism can be framed to justify the bourgeois order. As you note this point is not demonstrated at all -- it's sort of an assumption of Lukács that neo-Kantian methodology justifies idealism justifies the bourgeois order, because the working class's beliefs are turning increasingly materialistic.

    I mean, I can get the gist of why someone who is a materialist might be inclined to take their role in the (public, political) world more seriously, and why someone who is an idealist might be inclined to remain focused on the (private, personal) world. So I don't think it's entirely out of left field. For myself it's just a matter of reflection: if I could think of some way to link idealism to an anti-bourgeois, public, and political life then the assumption -- on the philosophical level, at least, though perhaps it might in a general way for how it motivates people -- doesn't hold.

    Bit of a mouth full there, but Hegel seems like a good example of a philosophical way of linking idealism to just that. Not that Hegel was by any means a political radical, but the whole taking one's place in history towards a stateless society thing is a direct reflection of Hegel in Marx. And the step from Hegel to Marx doesn't require materialism for that to take placed, so it does seem to me that there is an example that disproves the assumption.
  • John Doe
    242
    Though I might say that the criticism isn't bourgeois morality as much as it is that neo-Kantian thought inhibits the working class and helps the bourgeois political order to justify itself. A bit of a slight difference, but I think I'd at least try to frame things in terms of political power and not morality (though there is an interesting tension in Marx showing here between his avowed nihilism and the fairly apparent moral impulse that generates the project in the first place -- not un-resolvable, but a tension)Moliere

    Interesting! My reason for thinking that Lukács is dealing at bottom with what he takes to be a moral concern is that Kant explicitly states (if I read him correctly?) that his metaphysics is ultimately justified on moral grounds (in the First Critique). I guess it's probably impossible to come to any definite conclusion about this underdetermined aspect of Lukács's paper but I would love to pursue the point a bit.

    Basically, my reasoning for thinking that Lukács finds an inherent connection between idealism and bourgeois morality (which perpetuates a politically retrogressive ideology) was that he's playing off of this connection that Kant draws between his morality and his metaphysics.

    For example, from the closing sections of the first Critique: "Hence theology and morality were the two incentives, or better, the points of reference for all the abstract inquiries of reason to which we have always been de­voted" (A853/B881).

    So I think you're right that since I'm not a Marxist I may be missing the fact that thinking of metaphysics and morality as in this sense more fundamental than politics and ideology is a distinctly bad way of reading a Marxist thinker.

    I like your way of looking at this but wonder if you might expand a tad? Definitely curious about how to work within the Marxist framework here to think through the difference between morality and the political order, as well as whatever personal views you might have about tensions in Marx's nihilism. (Isn't Lukács usually read through the lens of the discovery of Marx's early writings and the debate between 'early' and 'later' Marx?)
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