By George Novack

ISBN-10: 087348018X

ISBN-13: 9780873480185

Marxism is dialectical, Novack explains. It considers all phenomena of their improvement, of their transition from one country to a different. And it really is materialist, explaining the realm as topic in movement that exists ahead of and independently of human realization.


Also on hand in: Spanish

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Sample text

From the Labour perspective, such things as poverty and unemployment are clearly the responsibility of society, so the Labour Party offered improvements in the welfare state, more state control, state-directed investments in depressed areas, and so forth. Thatcherism, on the other hand, inverted this perspective and took as its motto ‘There is no such thing as society’; there are only individuals and their families, fully responsible for their fate, which is why state intervention is not the remedy but the cause of the illness.

This is the main point of his ‘polyphonic’ theory of meaning. The clearest case of this distinction between speaker and enunciator is irony: in the ironic speech, the speaker mockingly presents or imitates the position or the point of view of some other enunciator with whom she clearly does not identify. For example, if, after a disastrous party, I say to the host ‘Thank you for a marvellous evening’, it is clear that I mockingly assume the perspective of a delighted guest. It is also clear that Ducrot’s distinction between speaker and enunciator, corresponds to the Lacanian distinction between sujet de l’énonciation (subject of the enunciation) and the sujet de l’énonce (subject of the utterance).

Ceaucescu’s prohibition of abortion turned on his efforts to increase the population and thereby to strengthen the Romanian state. In socialism, therefore, prohibiting and legalizing abortion were both part of the communist tendency to exert control over people. Abortion was allowed primarily to control ‘public hygiene’ by preventing illegal abortions, while abortion was prohibited in attempts to control the population. In this regard, women received special attention from the state, but only because of their capability to bear children.

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An Introduction to the Logic of Marxism by George Novack

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