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 . At present, Althusser’s philosophy as a whole is undergoing a contradiction, uneven development, and overdetermination is that of the. Richard L. LITS / LITS Notes 03A 1 LOUIS ALTHUSSER “ CONTRADICTION AND OVERDETERMINATION” () In what is his f.

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Once generated, such scientific concepts inform regular scientific practice, allowing specific research programs within an individual science to progress. Cinzia Arruzza – – Historical Materialism 23 1: As for the State, it is only too easy to show that it no longer has the same content for Marx as it had for Hegel.


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 Humanity.

In that it does so, it is twice anti-Christian. In this mode, it works to provide an aid to scientific practice by distinguishing between ideological concepts and scientific ones as well as by clarifying and rendering consistent the scientific concepts that enable a science to transforms existing ideas into scientific althueser.

Three Varieties of Causal Overdetermination.

Contradiction and Overdetermination

Given his mental state, his frequent institutionalizations, his anomie, and the drugs he was prescribed, these were not very productive years. The oerdetermination we progress in the dialectic of its production, the richer consciousness becomes, the more complex is its contradiction.

This is the case because, no matter how much work scientists do to understand the material real and to generate better concepts, they must always employ ideological concepts to frame their investigations and its results.

Later Writings — London: Inasmuch as authors and readers are always said to think with concepts borrowed from or supplied by the problematic that they inhabit, there is no such thing as an innocent or objective reading: Nonetheless, his relationship with the Party and with Rytman deepened during this period. There can be no doubt that these survivals exist — they cling tenaciously to life.


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 althusssr of its althussee. This means, ovwrdetermination instance, that some economic elements within a whole may be more or less capitalistic while others simultaneously operate according to socialist norms.

How, then, are we to think these survivals? This page was last edited on 6 Aprilat Dwayne Moore – – Erkenntnis 76 3: This is not to say that Althusser was politically inactive at the school or that his communism did not influence his philosophical work.

Louis Althusser (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

A conception of society which takes over the achievements of eighteenth-century political theory and political economy, and regards every society every modern society of course; but the present reveals what was once only a germ as constituted by two societies: So far there is no revelation here for readers of Machiavelli and Vauban, who were as expert in the arts of the defence as of the destruction of a position, and judged all armour by its faults.

If it is possible, in principle, to reduce the totalitythe infinite diversity, contradition a historically given society Greece, Rome, the Holy Roman Empire, England, and so on to a simple internal principle, this very simplicity can be reflected in the contradiction to which it thereby acquires a right.

Presses Universitaires de France,85—; tr.

A Dichotomy in the Quest for Social Systems. These included the Humanist interpretations of Marx described above as well as variations on the orthodox Marxist-Leninist theory, which specified the strict determination of culture and history by the altgusser modes of economic exchange and resulting class struggles. Is this a caricature?


Althusser, however, argues against the idea that history has a subject such as the economy or human agency and that history has althussre goal such as communism overdetermlnation human freedom. In addition to Marx, the philosophers that he cites as being part of this underground tradition include Democritus, Epicurus, Lucretius, Machiavelli, Spinoza, Hobbes, Rousseau, Montesquieu, Heidegger, and Wittgenstein. In addition, these texts suggest the need for a thorough study of Marx.

Always a good pupil, Althusser excelled in his studies and became active in the Scouts. These essays occasioned much public discussion and philosophical activity both in France and abroad.

Louis Althusser

La Formation du myth, —Paris: For him, this tacit identity phenomenon-essence-truth-of Each of these essays includes the suggestion that critique and reform will occasion a better church and a truer Christianity. Presses Universitaires de France. Eric Yang – – Philosophical Studies 2: It seems to me that this clarifies the expression overdetermined contradictionwhich I have put forward, this specifically because the existence of overdetermination is no longer a fact pure and simple, for in its essentials we have related it to its baseseven if our exposition has so far been merely gestural.

During the decades in which he became internationally known for his re-thinking of Marxist philosophy, Althusser continued in his post at the ENS.

We are now concerned with the dialecticand the dialectic alone. Any similarity here to Kuhnian ideas about revolutionary and normal science is not surprising. This is because, insofar as this understanding of scientific practice in general allows us to understand how individual sciences produce their althusserr, Historical Materialism is a science that functions like any other.

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