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LukacvsGramsci - Andrew I think of reification as an...

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Andrew: I think of reification as an extension and generalization of commodity fetishism...so the idea is that parts of social reality...be they economic laws, the worker's activity, commodities, etc. are MIS- perceived as having essential properties. A more correct, more encompassing view would see these "things" as "effects" of society functioning as a systemic totality, as dynamic social relations. : You can also think of reification in terms of Weberian rationalization. rational calculation on Weberian terms involves taking a particular context in which that calculation is valid as given. To penetrate the veil of reification, you'd need to see the processes that brought about that context. no problem. so to make a concrete example, take your computer. Andrew: we typically perceive it as having a collection of properties that are a "physical" or direct part of it. it can run programs...it has a certain value if exchanged on the market...but this is only a partial picture. the computer fulfills a socially determined need for us. it is only in a certain societal context that these programs do something useful for us. furthermore, it's sale as a discrete commodity obscure its origins in social relationships of production. we don't think of the hyper- exploitative labor in various countries...processes of resources extraction in far off locales, etc...that are just as much a part of the computer as the more "immediate" properties. I think that this is on the right track. more precisely, we mis perceive the complex of social relationships that determine an objects uses and the conditions of its existence as isolated properties of the object "in itself". so it's really a qualitative distinction, rather than a question of the quantity of value of the object. hey...sorry to do this, but I'm going to be off to bed soon. me: Ok thank you soo much! Andrew: best of luck on the test. and as you think of reification, try to relate it to class-consciousness. Midterm on Tuesday, bring a blue book o Focused on a single question: Write an essay on that question and it’s going to have to do with comparing Lukacs and Gromsci How to compare Gromsci and Lukacs and wrapping up Western Marxism Western Marxism is reflecting on the double paradox
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o First is being why has capitalism proven to be so durable if it is crisis ridden and etc. Why has it been so successful? + The problem of WM is a combination of theoretical commitments and a set of empirical realities # WM appears in the 1920s, a successful revolution in Eastern Europe and a failed revolution in Western Europe # WM is a reflection on a failure + The central economic analysis of Marxism: # A. Abandon Marxism as a theory. The prediction of increasing class polarization and the claim that capitalism leads to crises and it would seem that the theory itself is wrong.
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