Marxism and the postmodern society

This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. July Learn how and when to remove this template message Post-Marxism dates from the late s; several trends and events of that period influenced its development.

Marxism and the postmodern society

Strictly speaking, postmodernism and post-structuralism are not the same thing.

Marxism and the postmodern society

What I mean by these terms is an array of literary and cultural theory rooted in a Nietzschean -- as opposed to a Marxian -- critique of bourgeois modernity. Postmodernists hold that reason -- the leading principle Marxism and the postmodern society European post-Enlightenment modernity -- is not universal, but merely masks relations of power.

Rather than conceiving of power as residing in centralized institutions like states, which can be seized and transformed, they regard power as dispersed and reproduced in every form of social discourse.

Postmodernists reject the notion that the interests and outlook of the working class or any other group constitute the basis for liberation of all of people. They are suspicious of abstract categories like class, and deny the existence of unified subjects -- individuals or classes -- with historical agency.

They do not speak of the origins of things because originary narratives inevitably privilege certain historical actors and forces while obscuring and repressing others.

Postmodernists argue that because it is embedded in culture, language cannot transparently represent real historical objects; thus they concern themselves with the study of discourses and the cultural construction of meaning and difference, rather than with the study of society.

An Introduction Verso, Eagleton contends that postmodernists are wrong in characterizing all post-Enlightenment philosophy as having a naive view of the self as prior to social context.

Reviewing the tradition from Spinoza to Marx and beyond, he argues that individuals and social groups are historically formed and constitute communities based on real interests.

Postmodernists, he believes, fetishize difference, and by positing that difference cannot be overcome, they ultimately reinforce the authority of the liberal state, which presents itself as the institution for representing and negotiating these differences.

This opposes the Marxist concept of political order and ethics which emphasizes community. In Ideology, Eagleton argues that postmodernists who deny that the working class or other subordinate groups have interests derived from their socioeconomic conditions must reduce their political preferences to a moral option, and hence a version of liberalism.

Eagleton, David Harvey and Fredric Jameson have all tried to turn deconstructionism against itself by examining the historical conditions of its emergence.

In The Condition of Postmodernity: An Inquiry into the Origins of Cultural Change Blackwell,Harvey combines a persuasive analysis of the global crisis of capitalist accumulation since with a discussion of cultural trends in urban architecture and other visual arts.

In advanced capitalist countries -- the sites of postmodern culture -- this has resulted in higher structural unemployment, the deskilling and dispersion of labor, stagnation of real wages, the decline of trade unions, and rapid development of new products and forms of financing.

Flexible accumulation practices alter the spatial distribution of investments, jobs and markets, and speed up production and capital turnover time.

Compressions of time and space induce a new cultural sensibility, while capital remains dominant. But they all agree that postmodernism is the cultural form appropriate to the current configuration of transnational capitalism. Classes, Nations, Literatures Verso, He prefers class categories, but his rhetorical strategy is not unlike deconstructionist approaches to collapsing binary oppositions.

And rather than analyze why progressive national movements have all but disappeared in the current conjuncture, Ahmad denounces both postmodernism and the failures of the Anglo-American left. Emigre intellectuals from the former colonies who have achieved some prominence in the West and who Ahmad regards as embracing postmodernism -- Ranajit Guha, Salman Rushdie and Edward W.

Marxism and the postmodern society

Said -- receive equally harsh treatment. While Orientalism is not beyond criticism, Ahmad does not sufficiently appreciate its overwhelming significance as a text that reformed Anglo-American Middle East studies. Ahmad is critical of these acclaimed figures because they admire bourgeois culture, and their intellectual and cultural anti-imperialism valorizes the celebrity of a privileged elite.

Awareness of these privileges should lead us all to conduct criticism in a modest and comradely, rather than a dogmatic and personalistic style.

This suggests that Marxism is here being deployed as a discourse of exclusion. In The Politics of Postmodernism Routledge, Linda Hutcheon asks whether postmodern politics can be useful to the feminist movement. Like Harvey and Jameson, she appreciates postmodern literature and photography.

But her complex resolution is ultimately available only to intellectuals. Norris, like Hutcheon, rejects the excess of those who argue that historical events have no reality outside texts, although both agree that they are given meaning through texts.

This fine difference limits what can be considered a valid representation, preserves the epistemological distinction between truth and falsehood, and makes it possible to argue ethically.

This strategy cannot determine when it is appropriate to suspend the intellectual conversation about meaning and draw a political line, but it preserves the possibility of doing so. It is clear that the Gulf war required such a response. A dialogue is required between advocates of Marxian political economy and postmodern cultural theory because of the apparent inability of the working class to play the role designated for it in Marxist theory; because of cultural and political changes in recent years that call into question the viability of oppositional political practices associated with both Marxism and liberalism; and because of the inadequacy of Marxist theory about the nature of human difference.During the Thatcher-Reagan-Bush era, just as critical intellectuals and left political activists had won a small place for the concepts of political economy and class analysis in academia, postmodernism and post-structuralism replaced Marxism as the favored mode of Anglo-American intellectual radicalism.

This essay begins in the midst of the ongoing dilemma posed by late-capitalist society and postmodern culture, namely, whether these remain the ultimate horizon of the contemporary world and whether efforts to resist, oppose, represent critically, or propose alternatives to the “cultural dominant” of postmodernism are merely atavistic.

This essay begins in the midst of the ongoing dilemma posed by late-capitalist society and postmodern culture, namely, whether these remain the ultimate horizon of the contemporary world and whether efforts to resist, oppose, represent critically, or propose alternatives to the “cultural dominant” of postmodernism are merely atavistic.

Welcome to Reddit, Modernity is defined as a period or condition loosely identified with the Progressive Era, the Industrial Revolutionor the Enlightenment. In philosophy and critical theory postmodernity refers to the state or condition of society which is said to exist after modernitya historical condition that marks the reasons for the end of modernity.
Want to add to the discussion? But it is, increasingly, the predominant form of critical academic thought. A Marxist critique of postmodernism has to challenge its intellectual core and uncover its material roots.

Postmodernism is skeptical towards grand narratives, and Marxism is based around truely the grandest of narratives on history. Postmodernism doesn't easily accept ideas like 'progress' or 'development', which are clear part of Marxism's understanding of the world. The term “Postmodern” however is widely used and an analysis of its meaning and origins provides a framework for understanding the times.

The two contending ideologies within Postmodernism are Marxism and historicism with all their current spin offs social justice, diversity, multiculturalism, sustainability, and global citizenship. As for "evil postmodern, cultural marxism!"; this is just an old slur from the s updated by ultra right wingers.

It's the idea that blacks, gays, and certain forms of civil rights, constitute a "commie" or "Jew plot" against an idealized, white-picket-fence view of society.

Marxism and Postmodernism | Middle East Research and Information Project