‘The Philosophy of Praxis’ by Andrew Feenberg

Published by Verso in 2014.

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The early Marx called for the “realization of philosophy” through revolution. Revolution thus became a critical concept for Marxism, a view elaborated in the later praxis perspectives of Lukács and the Frankfurt School. These thinkers argue that fundamental philosophical problems are, in reality, social problems abstractly conceived.

Philosophy of Praxis examines the work of four Marxist thinkers, the early Marx and Lukács, and the Frankfurt School philosophers Adorno and Marcuse. The book holds that fundamental philosophical problems are in reality social problems, abstractly conceived. This argument has two implications: on the one hand, philosophical problems are significant insofar as they reflect real social contradictions; on the other hand, philosophy cannot resolve the problems it identifies because only social revolution can eliminate their social causes.

Originally published as Lukács, Marx and the Sources of Critical Theory, The Philosophy of Praxis traces the evolution of this argument in the writings of Marx, Lukács, Adorno and Marcuse. This reinterpretation of the philosophy of praxis shows its continuing relevance to contemporary discussions in Marxist political theory, continental philosophy and science and technology studies.

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