Lukács, in his central text of History and Class Consciousness, and its central essay “Reification and the Consciousness of the Proletariat,” in particular, points . This book reads Georg Lukács’s History and Class Consciousness through the drafts of his unfinished philosophy of art (the so-called “Heidelberg Aesthetics”). Keywords: Lukács; Heidegger; Authenticity; Reification; Ontology. 1. Lukács on reification and Marxian alienation. Engels invented classical Marxism in Ludwig.

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They seized on his concept of reification that, in combination with other sources, became the basis of their critique of positivism and their dialectical reformulation of Marxist theory. His specific situation is defined by the fact that his labour-power is his only possession. Such an ideal work of art is, in virtue of this harmony, a Utopian fulfillment of the attitudes that are already operative in the ordinary world of experience GW But this would presuppose an awareness of the causes, the genesis and the necessity of this formalism; moreover, it would not be enough to unite the special sciences mechanically: This phenomenon can be seen at its most grotesque in journalism.

Essays in Marxist PhilosophyT. Only a collective, social subject can realize the values of philosophy. How to cite this entry.

Reification and the Consciousness of the Proletariat by Georg Lukacs

In the nature of things it is excluded, in the first place, where production for the use-value, for immediate personal requirements, predominates; and secondly, where slavery or serfdom form the broad foundation of social production, as in antiquity and during the Middle Ages.

Thus the production of surplus-value, and with it the individual consumption of the capitalist, may increase, the entire process of reproduction may be in a flourishing condition, and yet a large part of the commodities may ,ukacs entered into consumption only in appearance, while in reality they may still remain unsold in the hands of dealers, may in fact still be lying in the market.

Just as the economic theory of capitalism remains stuck fast in its self-created immediacy, the same thing happens to bourgeois attempts to comprehend the ideological phenomenon of reification.


Production, in its entire organisation, aims reificationn the creation of use-values and not of exchange values, and it is only when their supply exceeds the measure of consumption that use-values cease to be use-values, and become means of exchange, i. Where the commodity is universal it manifests itself differently from the commodity as a particular, isolated, non-dominant phenomenon.

Lukacs’ Theory of Reification

This was expressed in the assault on the varied and picturesque medley of privileges dating back to the Middle Ages and also in the attack on the Divine Right of Kings. Accordingly it must declare war on the organic manufacture of whole products based on the traditional amalgam of empirical experiences of work: It reiffication only a definite social relation between men that assumes, in their eyes, the fantastic form of a relation between things.

In the remaining cases, the original publication is cited. This distinction entails the possibility of a critique of reification that does not require a complete reappropriation of objective social forms by a collective subject.

Second, while science is always conceptually mediated, art breaks with the immediacy of everyday life in favor of a new immediacy of experience GW Time is everything, man is nothing; he is at the most the incarnation of time. He—and luiacs, one will need to bear in mind during the following remarks—considers his studies in dialectics and their practical intentions about reification as a fresh impulse and as a large-scale research project. On closer examination the structure of a crisis is seen to be no more than a heightening of the degree and intensity of the daily life of bourgeois society.

By many of those who were looking for a sophisticated Marxist philosophy, History and Class Consciousness was judged to be a supremely important book as for example by Karl Korsch and Ernst Bloch, see Bloch The transcendental subject is purified of its materiality and enabled thereby to know the truth and even, in an idealistic framework, to constitute reality.

Rather, the existing ways in which life could give itself a form have become problematic and are experienced as abstractions. Consumer articles no longer appear as the products of an organic process within a community as for example in a village community.


Georg [György] Lukács (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

Early Aesthetic Writings 2. It is an expression that has already been stressed, by the nonlinear intellectual biography of its author and the many sources from which his thinking draws, and at the same time a product of contemporary academic life with its peculiar rules.

There arises a rational systematisation of all statutes regulating life, which represents, or at least tends towards a closed system applicable to all possible and imaginable cases. Dokumente des Sozialismus 1II, This tragic Weltanschauung only exists in periods of societal disintegration where individual emotions and objective facts are in a relation of mismatch so intense that they elicit heroic forms of the denial of social reality.

Reification (Marxism)

Bourgeois thought, however, endorses this facticity and sees every possible normative stance only as a subjective projection onto a world of immediate facts. In them the relations between men that lie reificatipn in the immediate commodity relation, as well as the relations between men and the objects that should really gratify their needs, have faded to the point where they can be neither recognised nor even perceived.

What is specific to modern capitalism as distinct from the age-old capitalist forms of acquisition is that the strictly rational organisation of work on the basis of rational technology did not come into being anywhere within such irrationally constituted political systems nor could it have done so.

The seminal importance of the early works was not widely recognized until the s and s. That was an ambitious attempt to respond to a revolutionary situation in theoretical terms. Both were trained as philosophers and steeped in romantic revolutionism.