1. The Marxism of Rosa Luxemburg. Class Consciousness. Reification and the Consciousness of the Proletariat. I The Phenomenon of Reification. Georg Lukács made a large contribution to Marxist theory, but especially significant are the series of essays he wrote under the title History and. Reification and the Consciousness of the Proletariat () Proletariat · I. The Phenomenon of Reification › Tags. Georg Lukacs · Marxism.

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Thus the universality of the commodity form is responsible both objectively and subjectively for the abstraction of the human labour incorporated in commodities.

Many of the ugliest things in society – racism, sexism, prejudice – emerge somehow fortified by their superficiality and baseness. The prime object of his discussion is the epic: Competition between the different owners of commodities would not be feasible if there were an exact, rational, systematic reifiaction of functioning for the whole reifciation society to correspond to the rationality of isolated phenomena. As in insurance schemes, etc.

The novel is always relating to the development of such individuals.

Thus philosophy stands in the same relation to the special sciences as they do with respect to empirical reality. The party orthodoxy, however, was not quite so enamored.

Georg [György] Lukács

Before tackling the problem itself we must be quite clear in our minds that commodity fetishism is a specific problem of our age, the age of modern capitalism.

Georv individual can use his knowledge of these laws to his own advantage, but he is not able to modify the process by his own activity. Objectively, in so far as the commodity form facilitates the equal exchange of qualitatively different objects, it can only exist if that formal equality is in fact recognised – at any rate in. History and Class Consciousness 3. For vulgar political economy, which seeks to represent capital as an independent source of value, of value creation, this form is naturally a veritable find.

Thhe a psychological level there are many people to whom real change seems incomprehensible and also, therefore, frightening. A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy. It establishes whether or not the worker’s family are able to take a holiday in the summer or the quality of health care the worker’s children receive etc.


By choosing one of the potential results of the employment of their natural and technological capacities as the correct one, individuals can create a distinction between successful and unsuccessful execution of their intended actions in labor.

The unity of a product as a commodity no longer coincides with its unity as a use-value: Tragically, the revolution was physically annihilated. Rationalisation in the sense of being able to predict with ever greater precision all the results to be achieved is cosnciousness to be acquired by the exact breakdown of every complex into its elements and by the study of the special laws governing production.

There is both an objective and a subjective side to this phenomenon. Only in this case, consciousneds can have a meaningful form which is not a mere restriction. After the subsequent Soviet invasion, he was arrested and imprisoned in Romania. Only in this context does the reificiation produced by commodity relations assume decisive importance both for the objective evolution of society and for the stance adopted by men towards it.

However, this is only the case if the essential properties of its elements are intelligible in terms of their relations to other particulars of life.

Lukács: Reification and the Class Consciousness of the Proletariat – Counterfire

An increase or decrease in wage for the worker is a qualitative fact which permeates their inner life. Mirror Sites View this site from another server: He understands that the objective economic evolution of society creates the conditions and the necessity for its revolutionary transformation, but also that without the conscious appreciation of this necessity on the part of the proletariat the situation comes to nothing.

We need only think of marriage, and without troubling to point to the developments of the nineteenth century we can remind ourselves of the way in which Kant, for example, described the situation with the naively cynical frankness peculiar to great thinkers.

For instance, as soon as the yarn is sold the cycle of the capital-value represented by the yarn may begin anew, regardless of what may next become of the sold yarn. In jurisprudence this situation emerges with even greater clarity and simplicity – because there is a more conscious reification at work. The social construction of reality: There arises a rational systematisation of all statutes regulating life, which represents, or at least tends towards a closed system applicable to all possible and imaginable cases.


Later, when war broke out, he served as a political commissar in the Hungarian Red Army in this position, he also ordered the luakcs of several soldiers, see Kadarkay Cosciousness School philosopher Axel Honneth reformulates this key “Western Marxist ” concept in terms of intersubjective relations of recognition and power in his recent work Reification Oxford, Meanwhile, the hte basis beorg the development of law, a change in the power relations between the classes, becomes hazy and vanishes into the sciences that study it, sciences which – in conformity with the modes of thought current in bourgeois society – generate the same problems of transcending their material substratum as we have seen in jurisprudence and economics.

On this antagonism cf. He was also active as a politician in Hungary in both the revolution of and during the events of Philosophy can attempt to assemble the whole of knowledge encyclopaedically see Wundt.

The formal act of exchange which constitutes the basic fact for the theory of marginal utility likewise suppresses use-value as use-value and establishes a relation of concrete equality between concretely unequal and indeed incomparable objects. The distinction between a society where this form is dominant, permeating every expression reificatiob life, and a society where consciousness only makes an episodic appearance is essentially one of quality.

The movement of commodities on the market, the birth of their value, in a word, the real framework of every rational calculation is not merely subject to strict laws but also presupposes the strict ordering of all that happens. The capitalist process of rationalisation based on private economic calculation requires that every manifestation of life shall exhibit this very interaction between details which are subject to laws and a totality ruled by chance.

What is it like to be a woman in philosophy? To achieve that it would be necessary – as we emphasised fhe – for the commodity structure to penetrate society in all its aspects and to remould it in its own image.