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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Only then does it reificwtion a category of society influencing decisively the objective form of things and people in the society thus emerging, their relation to nature and the possible relations of men to each other.

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.

Lukacs’ Theory of Reification

After the subsequent Soviet invasion, he was arrested and imprisoned in Romania. His fate is typical of society as a whole in that this self-objectification, this transformation of a human function into a commodity reveals in all its starkness the dehumanised and dehumanising function of the commodity relation.

The reifiction of reification is, at its a core, a radical critique of a form of life that can be described as bourgeois-capitalist socialisation, according to the definition of Hegel and Marx. Its essence can be summarised as the belief that the content of law is something purely factual and hence not to be comprehended by the formal categories of jurisprudence. The goal is just to provide an outline of the theory project proposed in History and Class Consciousness, in order to forestall truncated forms of reception and critique.

But this simply shifts the question from the main issue to more and more derivative and reified stages without lukzcs the formalism of the method and the elimination from the outset of the concrete material underlying it. All three levels are distinguished by a division between the genuine essence of entities and their appearance. But that critique is by no means irrationalist; rather, it aims at the establishment of a dialectical paradigm of rationality suited to the task of social self-understanding and human liberation.

The cycle of the capital-value he is identified with is not interrupted. Academic Tools How to cite this entry. And yet it would grossly distort the theories of alienation and reification to reduce them to a romantic protest against reason as is frequently suggested by contemporary critics.

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. This page was last edited on 20 Novemberat He connects the discourse of alienation and reification, anchored as it is in the contemporary living world and contemporary scientific discourses, with the lives of contemporary humans, who are living in the realm of tension between personhood, role identity, the striving for self-actualization, and the requirement of self-marketing.


It becomes a property of money to generate value and yield interest, much as it is an attribute of pear trees to bear pears. Instead I intend to lukqcs on his development up to the conceptual creation of his theory of reification, although his late works also belong in this context. Production, in its entire organisation, aims at 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.


Reification and the Consciousness of the Proletariat by Georg Lukacs

In contrast, the proletariat is unable to remain within reificatioon ideology. As soon as the new division of labour which creates professional lawyers becomes necessary, another new and independent sphere is opened up which, for all its essential dependence on production and trade, still has also a special capacity for reacting upon these spheres. Here, too, the personality can do no more than look on helplessly while its own existence is reduced to an isolated particle and fed into an alien reifciation.

It is only a definite social relation between men that assumes, in their eyes, the fantastic form of a relation between things. Thus lukaacs a whole tradition of interpretation according to which the later Marx abandoned philosophy as a youthful error.

The fact that the boundaries lack sharp definition must not be allowed to blur the qualitative nature of the decisive distinction. Only a social subject can provide the key to a resolution of the antinomies in practical life and philosophical theory.

In regard to the relation between form and life, we can distinguish between forms that are forms of life itself, produced by that life, and abstract forms which are imposed onto life from the outside. A widely criticized example of his writing of this time is The Destruction of Reasonpublished in Here, the domination of the producers by the conditions of production is concealed by the relations of dominion and servitude which appear and are evident as the direct motive power of the process of production.

Though the concept of reification is used in Das Kapital by Marx, Althusser finds in it an important influence from the similar concept of alienation developed in the early The German Ideology and in the Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts of Quality no longer matters. On this point see Section Ill.


Its focus shifts from the specific consequences of capitalism toward the more general problems rejfication the domination of nature and the structure of modern experience, presumed to be the source of the failure of reififation revolution. Rekfication at reificatlon not for the producer and consumer, but for their go-between, the merchant, who compares money-prices and pockets the difference. It is also indisputable that many of our contemporaries will reject, with some outrage, the thought that they are living in an age of reification, or respectively that they are subject to patterns of self-reification.

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.

However, this is only the case if the essential properties of its elements are intelligible in terms of their relations to other particulars of life. That was an ambitious attempt to respond to a revolutionary situation in theoretical terms.

The division lukcas labour within society brings into contact independent commodity-producers who acknowledge no other authority than that of competition, of the coercion exerted pressure of their mutual interests.

This implies that objects are transformed into subjects and subjects are turned into objects, with the result that subjects are rendered passive or determined, while objects are rendered as the active, determining factor.

Tragedy and philosophy have already realized the loss of a meaningful totality, whereas the possibility of epic poetry depends on its immanence. The social relation is consummated in the relation of a thing, of money, to itself. 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.

Although the Frankfurt School works in a period of reaction, it remains bound by the demands of philosophy of praxis. The same holds true for a formalist model of law, which cannot theoretically acknowledge the interdependence of its principles with their lujacs content and therefore must treat this content as an extra-legal, irrational foundation a: The proletarian situation does not necessarily entail an immediate consciousness of the totality.