Advancing Utopistics: The Three Component Parts and Errors of Marxism

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Paradigm Publishers, 2007 - Political Science - 321 pages
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Inspired by Immanuel Wallerstein’s Utopistics, this book shows why utopistics cannot advance without sober and self-critical revisitations of its own intellectual heritage. Most sympathetic critiques of Marxism have targeted the shortcomings in its practices and/or theories (including its materialist conception of history), while regarding Marx’s materialist dialectical method as sacred ground. Through a succinct analysis of the inner contradictions of the three practical, theoretical, and methodological tenets of classical Marxism, Tamdgidi argues that the root causes of Marxism’s decline must be sought in Marx’s method itself.

This book concludes with a critical reexamination of the relation of Marxism and utopianism, arguing that Marx and Engels’s debunking of utopianism in contrast to science had more of an ideological function than substantive merits, an ultimate error that set back the cause of advancing alternative strategies for radical social change for decades.

A substantial methodological appendix is devoted to the exposition of a non-reductive, creative dialectical method more conducive to advancing utopistics.

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A. V. Miller abstrac abstraction activity alienated alternative alternative society antisystemic aspects Binghamton University bourgeois bourgeoisie capitalism capitalist causal causal determination civil society class consciousness class struggle classical Marxist collective class communist conception of history concrete consciousness constant capital contradic contradictions creative critical critique dialectical method Dialectics of Nature dichotomization dictatorship distinction division of labor dualism duction economic Engels's epistemological existence Fernand Braudel Feuerbach formal logic forms Frederick Engels G. I. Gurdjieff German Ideology Giovanni Arrighi guiding thread Hegel Hegelian Hegelian dialectic historical historical materialist historicized holism human human agency humanist humanist utopianism ical idealism idealist ideas Ideology Immanuel Wallerstein individual itself Karl Marx knowledge labor power labor process Lenin logic Ludwig Feuerbach Mannheim Marx and Engels Marx's Marxism material material conditions materialist conception materialist dialectical matter and mind mature Marx means of labor means of production mental methodological mode of production Moscow movement nature Nineteen Eighty-Four nomic objective objective laws ontology Paradigm Publishers part-whole pedagogy philosophy Plato political Political Economy political emancipation Poverty of Philosophy practice priori productive forces proletariat Proudhon rate of exploitation rate of profit reality relations relations of production religious revolutionary scientific scientific socialism self social social relations social revolution Sociological Imagination Sociological Practice Sociology Socratic method spacetime structure struggle subconscious superstructure surplus value Tamdgidi tariat Ted Honderich theoretical theory Thesis on Feuerbach thing thought tical tion transformation transition typology UMass Boston University utopian utopian socialism utopian socialist utopistics variable capital Wallerstein whole world-systems Young Hegelian young Marx

About the author (2007)

Mohammad H. Tamdgidi is Associate Professor of Sociology, teaching social theory at the University of Massachusetts Boston. He is the author of Gurdjieff and Hypnosis: A Hermeneutic Study (Palgrave 2009) and Founding Editor of Human Architecture: Journal of the Sociology of Self-Knowledge.

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