The Philosophy Of Art Of Karl Marx

The Philosophy Of Art Of Karl Marx

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Author/Contributor(s): Lifshitz, Mikhail ; Flores, Angel ; Winn, Ralph B
Publisher: Literary Licensing, LLC
Date: 10/15/2011
Binding: Paperback
Condition: NEW

Given the fact that Karl Marx had more urgent tasks on his hands than the formulation of a systematic aesthetic theory, the title of this book might appear to claim too much. That the title isn't in fact unjustied is clear enough once the wide terrain on which it allows Lifshitz to enter is fully recognised. There have been other studies of Marx's writings on art and literature, but few of them have been concerned, as this book is, to analyse Marx's aesthetic judgements as an element within his general theoretical development. Lifshitz refuses to abstract a 'philosophy of art' from the corpus of Marx's writings, as bourgeois literary criticism has commonly done; instead he sets out to trace some crucial aesthetic themes in Marx's work in terms of their integral relations to the developing totality of his thought.

In doing so, Lifshitz implicitly undermines the case that the scattered, often fragmented nature of Marx's comments on art and literature reflects a merely casual, empirical, intermittent interest in the subject on Marx's part, and that this is the sinister consequence of 'putting economics first'. On the contrary , he demonstrates how, from his own early experiments in a variety of literary forms right through to the aesthetic implications of some of the categories used in Capital, Marx had a close and continuous engagement in imaginative production. It was an engagement which, as Lifshitz shows. is active within a whole range of Marx's theoretical positions.