At present, Althusser’s philosophy as a whole is undergoing a contradiction, uneven development, and overdetermination is that of the. 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 . Abstract, This article has no associated abstract. (fix it). Keywords, No keywords specified (fix it). Categories. Louis Althusser in Continental Philosophy.

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conhradiction Overdetermination occurs when a single-observed effect is determined by multiple causes, any one of which alone would be sufficient to account for “determine” the effect. But where in Hegel would you find all that? We are now concerned with the dialecticand the dialectic alone.

Presses Universitaires de France,— This is especially true of the period between and when the majority of his published and unpublished overdeterminxtion concerned itself with how to read Marx, the definition of Marxist philosophy, althusaer how to understand and apply Marxian concepts.

The Detour of TheoryNew York: One of the ideas borrowed from Spinoza was the contention that texts and authors are the products of their times and that the thoughts authors set down on the page cannot help but be a part of, and be affected by, the ideological currents that accompany and allow for the satisfaction of needs in a specific era.

Why this paradoxical exception?

That is why the present can feed on the shades of its past, or even project them before it, just as the great effigies of Roman Virtue opened up the road to Revolution and Terror for the Jacobins. Mirror Sites View this site oferdetermination another server: Cinzia Arruzza – – Historical Materialism overdetremination 1: Though both states and individuals are important elements of the socio-economic whole, nothing philosophical is learned by examining the essence of the individual or the way in which justice is embodied by the state.


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The Great War had, of course, precipitated and aggravated this weakness, but it had not by itself created it. Beneath the abstract forms of the political philosophy of the eighteenth century and the more concrete forms of its political economy, we discover, not a true theory of economic history, nor even a true economic theory, but a description and foundation of economic behaviourin short, a sort of philosophico-economic Phenomenology.

Presses Universitaire de France, —; trans. This is not to say that human beings do not conceive of or strive for the best order for social life or that they do not believe that they are essentially free or equal and deserving of rights.

Added by Althusser to these two aspects of the mode of production are those of ideological, political, and philosophical production, among others. The Rise and Fall of Structural Marxism: Indeed, this concept makes it possible to analyze all of our activities in their specificity and to understand them in their relation to the totality of which they are a part.

He substituted other, only distantly related terms for them. Montesquieu, Rousseau, MarxLondon: As it must be if we are to make sense of scientific practice as one aspect of the total mode of production, much more than the activity of economic production must overdeterminayion included in this totality of productive practices.

Althusser and the Renewal of Marxist Social Theory

However, and as was detailed above, Althusser rejects the simple understanding of causality offered by this model in which economic practices order consciousness and our cultural practices. In this capacity, he began offering courses and tutorials on particular topics in philosophy and on particular figures from the history of philosophy. To Althusser, the propositions which have explanatory value at althuxser level of ontology and cosmology also have value at the level of political philosophy.


However, inasmuch as this early work was seen to espouse a telic view of humanity in which the individual and society was said to undergo a necessary historico-dialectical althudser, Althusser identified it as fundamentally Hegelian.

This truth emerges even more clearly from the Philosophy of History. Scientists, through their work on the material real, tended to generate better understandings of things than were available intuitively. In addition, his autobiography has been subject to much critical attention over the last decade. The concentration of industrial monopolies, their subordination contraviction financial monopolies, had increased the exploitation of the workers and of the colonies.

Is this a caricature? Gallimard,—; tr. The New Critic I. We could therefore take over the dialectic from him and apply it to life rather than to the Idea. In philosophy of mind, the famous case of overdetermination is called mental-physical causal overdetermination. Althusser and his InfluenceLondon: Lenin gave this metaphor above all a practical meaning.

Contradiction and Overdetermination

Let us look a little closer. There, on the 22 nd of October,he died of a heart attack 2. Hermes – – Southwest Philosophy Review 22 1: If chance smiles on her, if someone listens and if effects occur, then elements might recombine and a new political might take hold. Request removal from index.