CONTRADICTION AND OVERDETERMINATION ALTHUSSER PDF

Humans, by nature, desire to know. It must be turned right side up again, if you would discover the rational kernel within the mystical shell. How should we really understand its use in this quotation? The shell, the mystical wrapping speculative philosophy , should be tossed aside and the precious kernel, the dialectic, retained. But in the same sentence Marx claims that this shelling of the kernel and the inversion of the dialectic are one and the same thing, How can an extraction be an inversion? Let us look a little closer.

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Humans, by nature, desire to know. It must be turned right side up again, if you would discover the rational kernel within the mystical shell. How should we really understand its use in this quotation?

The shell, the mystical wrapping speculative philosophy , should be tossed aside and the precious kernel, the dialectic, retained. But in the same sentence Marx claims that this shelling of the kernel and the inversion of the dialectic are one and the same thing, How can an extraction be an inversion?

Let us look a little closer. We could therefore take over the dialectic from him and apply it to life rather than to the Idea. But such an inversion in sense would in fact leave the dialectic untouched. The second problem on the other hand, raises a real question to which it is hardly likely that Marx and his disciples should not have given a concrete answer in theory and practice, in theory or in practice.

Lenin gave this metaphor above all a practical meaning. A chain is as strong as its weakest link. In general, anyone who wants to control a given situation will look out for a weak point, in case it should render the whole system vulnerable. On the other hand, anyone who wants to attack it, even if the odds are apparently against him, need only discover this one weakness to make all its power precarious.

So far there is no revelation here for readers of Machiavelli and Vauban, who were as expert in the arts of the defense as of the destruction of a position, and judged all armor by its faults.

But here we should pay careful attention: if it is obvious that the theory of the weakest link guided Lenin in his theory of the revolutionary party it was to be faultlessly united in consciousness and organization to avoid adverse exposure and to destroy the enemy , it was also the inspiration for his reflections on the revolution itself.

The concentration of industrial monopolies, their subordination to financial monopolies, had increased the exploitation of the workers and of the colonies. But this same war, which dragged vast masses, even colonial peoples from whom troops were drawn, into limitless suffering, drove its cannon-fodder not only into massacres, but also into history. Why this paradoxical exception? The Great War had, of course, precipitated and aggravated this weakness, but it had not by itself created it.

Already, even in defeat, the Revolution had demonstrated and measured the weakness of Tsarist Russia. Contradictions of large-scale capitalist and imperialist exploitation in the major cities and their suburbs, in the mining regions, oil-fields, etc. Contradictions of colonial exploitation and wars imposed on whole peoples.

A gigantic contradiction between the stage of development of capitalist methods of production particularly in respect to proletarian concentration: the largest factory in the world at the time was the Putilov works at Petrograd, with 40, workers and auxiliaries and the medieval state of the countryside. Lenin said this time and time again, and Stalin summarised it in particularly clear terms in his April speeches.

In other words Russia was overdue with its bourgeois revolution on the eve of its proletarian revolution; pregnant with two revolutions, it could not withhold the second even by delaying the first. For example, the German Social-Democrats at the end of the nineteenth century imagined that they would shortly be promoted to socialist triumph by virtue of belonging to the most powerful capitalist State, then undergoing rapid economic growth, just as they were experiencing rapid electoral growth such coincidences do occur.

What is the essence of this practical experience and the reflections it inspired in Lenin? Before there was , before the great historical deceptions of England and Germany, before that the Commune, even earlier the German failure of How else should we summarize these practical experiences and their theoretical commentaries other than by saying that the whole Marxist revolutionary experience shows that.

And how else could the ruling classes aristocrats, big bourgeois, industrial bourgeois, finance bourgeois, etc. Strictly speaking, only the first contradiction — between sensuous consciousness and its knowledge can be called simple.

The further we progress in the dialectic of its production, the richer consciousness becomes, the more complex is its contradiction. Hegel, therefore, argues that every. But this is not the case. Must we be even plainer? It is why there is never for him any basic rupture, no actual end to any real history — nor any radical beginning.

Let us return to Lenin and thence to Marx. The failure of the Revolution in Germany was an exception, the failure in Paris in was an exception, the German Social-Democratic failure at the beginning of the twentieth century pending the chauvinist betrayal of was an exception.

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CONTRADICTION AND OVERDETERMINATION ALTHUSSER PDF

How should we really understand its use in this quotation? From The German Ideology onwards we know that such an undertaking would be meaningless. We are now concerned with the dialectic, and the dialectic alone. The shell, the mystical wrapping speculative philosophy , should be tossed aside and the precious kernel, the dialectic, retained. But in the same sentence Marx claims that this shelling of the kernel and the inversion of the dialectic are one and the same thing, How can an extraction be an inversion? Let us look a little closer. We could therefore take over the dialectic from him and apply it to life rather than to the Idea.

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Louis Althusser: Contradiction and Overdetermination

Edit Freud wrote in The Interpretation of Dreams that many features of dreams were usually "overdetermined," in that they were caused by multiple factors in the life of the dreamer, from the "residue of the day" superficial memories of recent life to deeply repressed traumas and unconscious wishes, these being "potent thoughts". The concept was later borrowed for a variety of other realms of thought. Richards used the idea of overdetermination in order to explain the importance of ambiguity : in rhetoric , the philosophy of language , and literary criticism. An instance of a popular riot calling for revolution could exemplify this. The event has to it, in capitalist culture, an over-application determination of agitation.

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Overdetermination

How should we really understand its use in this quotation? From The German Ideology onwards we know that such an undertaking would be meaningless. We are now concerned with the dialectic, and the dialectic alone. The shell, the mystical wrapping speculative philosophy , should be tossed aside and the precious kernel, the dialectic, retained. But in the same sentence Marx claims that this shelling of the kernel and the inversion of the dialectic are one and the same thing, How can an extraction be an inversion?

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