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At present, Althusser’s philosophy as a whole is undergoing a contradiction, uneven development, and overdetermination is that of the. In Althusser the need for a concept of overdetermination appears in Marxism at the point where the ideology of simple and general contradictions is undermined . Abstract, This article has no associated abstract. (fix it). Keywords, No keywords specified (fix it). Categories. Louis Althusser in Continental Philosophy.

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Althusser and his InfluenceLondon: This is a definition of empiricism meant to include philosophers as diverse as Locke, Kant, and Hegel and traditions as varied as British Empiricism, German Idealism, Positivism, and Pragmatism. For Marx, on the other hand, the material life of men explains their history; their consciousness, their ideologies are then merely the phenomena of their material life. That the philosophy of the encounter lacks an object does not mean that it lacks positive propositions.

This is because, by examining a political order not from the perspective of its necessity but with an awareness of its contingency, this philosopher may be able think the possibility of its transformation. In his writings from the s, for instance, his method and conclusions resemble those of the Marxist Humanists of whom he would later be so critical, while texts from the s deploy without irony the Stalinist shibboleths he would later subject to such castigation.

It was possible in Russia for a reason that went beyond Russia: The logical destination of this temptation is the exact mirror image of the Hegelian dialectic the only difference being that it is no longer a question of deriving the successive moments from the Idea, but from the Economy, by virtue of the same internal contradiction.

In constituting this unity, they reconstitute and complete their basic animating unity, but at the same time they also bring out its nature: The Rise and Fall of Structural Marxism: We do not need to be reminded that after the Revolution and from then till now they have been the source of constant difficulties, battles and commentaries.

But it could scarcely be maintained without pedantry that among the many small states of North Germany, Brandenberg was specifically determined by economic necessity to become the great power embodying the economic, linguistic and, after the Reformation, also the religious difference between North and South, and not by other elements as well above all by the entanglement with Poland, owing to the possession of Prussia, and hence with international political relations which were indeed also decisive in the formation of the Austrian dynastic power “.


Any similarity here to Kuhnian ideas about revolutionary and normal science is not surprising. The simultaneous enthusiasm that Althusser showed in Lyon for Royalist politics did not last the war.

The term “overdetermination” German: Or does it refer as much to other structurespolitical. This article has no associated abstract.

Soon thereafter, he was captured in Vannes along with the rest of his artillery regiment. Its past is never anything more than itself and only recalls to it that law of interiority which is the destiny of the whole Future of A,thusser.

One phantom is more especially crucial than any other today: At first glance, this charge might seem ridiculous.

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Presses Universitaires de France, 75— Though this transformation takes place entirely in thought, Althusser does not maintain that scientific knowledge makes no use of facts. Begun to treat recurrent cintradiction of depression, this last affiliation continued for the rest of his life and included frequent hospitalization as well as the most aggressive treatments post-war French psychiatry had to offer such as electroconvulsive therapy, narco-analysis, and psychoanalysis.

Classic Work — With the perspective afforded by the mass of posthumous writings published since the s, it has become clear that Althusser was perennially concerned with important issues in metaphysics, epistemology, philosophy of science, historiography, hermeneutics, and political philosophy.

Philosophy and the Spontaneous Philosophy of the Scientists London: In that it does so, it is twice anti-Christian.

Who has really attempted to follow up the explorations of Marx and Engels? Whereas Althusser had known only home, school, and P. The simplicity of the Athusser contradiction is made possible only by the simplicity of the internal qlthusser that constitutes the essence of any historical period.

Though both states and individuals are important overdeterminztion of the socio-economic whole, nothing philosophical is learned by examining the essence of the individual or the way in which justice is embodied by the state. We have seen that one could nevertheless attempt to maintain a Hegelian relation contradictiin relation Hegel imposed between civil society and the State between these two groups of categories: Five-Year Plan of Philosophy: As it must be if we are to make sense of scientific practice as one aspect of the total mode of production, much more than the activity of economic production must be included in this totality of productive practices.


In his description of what these concepts and methodology are, Althusser pretty much follows the Party line, insisting that Marx reversed the Hegelian dialectic, that historical materialism is a science, that the sciences verify dialectical materialism, and that the proletariat needs to be taught Marxist science overdetermnation above.

Moulier Boutang, Yann, They draw from them the basic notion that the Capital-Labour contradiction is never simple, but always specified by the historically concrete forms and circumstances in which it is exercised. But we must all be able to see that this pedagogical effort presupposes another purely theoretical effort.

The New Critic I. Both also anticipate future concerns in their speculations about the ideological character of current scientific alhtusser and in their incorporation of ideas from Mao about the relationship between theory and practice. Presses Universitaires de France, 87— It also means that these structural differences can be demonstrated, described, determined and thought. The Marxist philosopher Louis Althusser imported the concept into Marxist political theory in an influential essay, “Contradiction and overdetermination.

During the s, Althusser lived two lives that were only somewhat inter-related: This version of Marxist philosophy had dominated European leftist thought and action since the dawn of the Cold War in and, in France, was widely disseminated via Communist Party schools and literature.

Louis Althusser (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

However, in his teaching and advising, he mostly avoided bringing in Marxist philosophy and Communist politics. Third, new worlds and new orders themselves arise out of chance encounters between pre-existing material elements. Perhaps because it functions in opposition to the adn tendency in philosophy, aleatory materialism is marked almost as much by its rejections as althusxer is by the positive claims it contains about the world and about contradictiln.

His interest in Party politics and involvement with Party members grew during his time as a student at the ENS. As they seemed to offer a renewal of Marxist thought as well as to render Marxism philosophically respectable, the claims he advanced in the s about Marxist philosophy were discussed and debated worldwide.

The concentration of industrial monopolies, their subordination to financial monopolies, had increased the exploitation of the workers and of the colonies.