Read this on the plane:

‘”Society is not composed of individuals,'” says Marx. He is right: society is not a ‘combination’, an ‘addition’ of individuals. What constitutes society is the system of social relations in which its individuals live, work and struggle. He is right: society is not made up of individuals in general, in the abstract, just so many copies of ‘man’. Because each society has its own individuals, historically and socially determined. The slave-individual is not the serf-individual nor the each corresponding ruling class. In the same way, we must must say that even a class is not ‘composed’ of individuals in general: each class has its own individuals, fashioned in their individuality by their conditions of life, of work, of exploitation and of struggle. In their mass, real men are what class conditions make of them. These conditions do not depend on bourgeois ‘human nature’: liberty. On the contrary the liberties of men, including their will to struggle depend on these conditions’. Althusser, Essays in Self-Criticism. 52-3

About HR

Deep in the adjunct crackhole.
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3 Responses to

  1. CB says:

    I use to hate Althusser, but I’m starting to appreciate him more and more.
    How bout yourself?

  2. CB says:

    I highly recommend his theory of ideology; the essay in his Lenin book. As I’ve told you before I do believe Marx has a theory of human nature, so much of For Marx is of almost no interest to me, but I am looking forward to reading Reading Capital, albeit I don’t know any Marxists that still utilize that text…Do you?

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