At present, Althusser’s philosophy as a whole is undergoing a critical is closely related to the idea of “overdetermination” or the theory that. Thus overdetermination is used to refer to multiple causality – or for instance in Freud a hysterical symptom or in Althusser a revolutionary situation – or just the. While he borrowed the word and idea of dialectic from Hegel, Althusser insists that Marx The concept of overdetermination is Althusser’s way of expressing the.

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The three inspirations Althusser gave for this interpretive method were those provided by Spinoza, Freud by way of Lacan, and that provided by Marx himself.

Ideology And Ideological State Apparatusestr. However, as there is strong textural and archival evidence that many of the ideas explicitly expressed in these works had been gestating for a long time, the contention that these writings are of a piece with his earlier work seems to be gaining ground. In this understanding of Marxist philosophy, societies and subjects are seen as patterns of activity that behave in predictable ways.

For Althusser and Balibar, on the contrary, there is no simple unilinear time in which the development of the social formation unfolds: Wolf, Frieder Otto, Conjuncture Althusser The central concept of the Marxist science of politics cf.

Louis Althusser (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

However, the fact that these worlds ever came to be organized in these patterns is aleatory and the patterns themselves can only ever be known immanently. This did not mean, however, that any concept was as good as any other. Production, Mode of Althusser The mode of material production is the central concept of the theory of the economic practice of the social formation.

However, Althusser made the case that these texts were contradictory and insufficient for this purpose. Though these essays repeat the Party philosophy as formulated by Lenin, Stalin, and Zhdanov, they also include recognizable Althusserian themes and show his thinking about these themes to be in transition. It describes the leap from the pre-scientific world of ideas to the scientific world; this leap involves a radical break with the whole pattern and frame of reference of the pre-scientific ideological notions, and the construction of a new pattern problematic q.


But the dominant element is not fixed for all time, it varies according to the overdetermination of the contradictions and their uneven development. Or, we can say, even if these two examples are a kind of overdetermination, this kind of overdetermination is benign.


The term diachrony q. And how else could the ruling althuser aristocrats, big bourgeois, industrial bourgeois, finance bourgeois, etc. A chain is as strong as its weakest link. Rather, history is seen althsuser the ceaseless interplay or mutual effectivity of aspects or instances. One phantom is more especially crucial than any other today: Please help to improve this article by introducing more precise citations.

We must carry this through to its conclusion and say that this overdetermination does not just refer to apparently unique and aberrant historical situations Germany, for examplebut is universal; the economic dialectic is never active in the pure state ; in History, these instances, the superstructures, etc.

Apparently, no one member can be said to have caused the victims’ deaths, since he or she would have been killed anyway.

In the case of Humanist Marxism, the object that comes to be known by its essence is the human subject in its full freedom.


Finally, this Marxism has given up the dream of analyzing the whole of culture and its movement from the outside; it realizes that one thinks inside and about the culture one inhabits in order to possibly effect and change that culture.

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The possibility of an essential section is one of the positive tests for an empiricist ideology of history. And if this is possible, it is therefore necessaryI would go so far as to say vitalfor Marxism.

There he enjoyed the comforts of the Mediterranean environment as well as those provided by an extended and stable petit-bourgeois family. A Memoir New York: Overdetermination was first used in a social scientific context by Freud.

Resnick and Wolff have further transformed the concept and adopted it into a post-structuralist version of Marxian theory. Humanist ideologies see the social totality as the totality of inter-subjective relations between men, as civil society, tho society of human needs. The concrete complex whole comprising economic practice, political practice and ideological practice at a certain place and stage of development. In this capacity, he began offering courses and tutorials on particular topics in philosophy and on particular figures from the history of philosophy.

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A term for the articulation of a practice into the complex whole of the social formation. To push this to extremes, almost to caricature: Contradictions may be antagonistic or non-antagonistic according to whether their state of overdetermination is one of fusion or condensation, or one of displacement.

Leaving aside the theoretical solution Engels proposes for the problem of the relation between determination in the last instance — the economic — and those determinations imposed by the superstructures — national traditions and international events — it is sufficient to retain from him what should be called the accumulation of effective determinations deriving from the superstructures and from special national and international circumstances on the determination in the last instance by the economic.

Irrespective of all these consequences, we can draw one conclusion at any rate where the relations of production are concerned: At the end of the war and following his release from the P. Wolff ; see also Richard D. Economic or any other kind of determinism is rejected here in favor of overdetermination. In other words, schematically, by material life on the one hand and spiritual life on the other. In the philosophy of sciencethis means that more evidence is available than is necessary to justify a conclusion.

As such, philosophy merely reflects the background values, attitudes, and ideas that allow the socio-economic world althisser function. Discussing distribution in the IntroductionMarx wrote:. Scientists, through their work on the material real, tended to generate better understandings of things than were available intuitively.

Cambridge and London,p. We are now concerned with the dialecticand the dialectic alone. This gambit to have the Party directed by theorists rather than by a Central Committee whose Stalinism remained entrenched and who believed in the organic wisdom of the worker met with little success.