Read e-book online Main Currents of Marxism - Vol 1 - The Founders PDF

By Leszek Kolakowski, P. S. Falla

ISBN-10: 0198245475

ISBN-13: 9780198245476

From thinker Leszek Kolakowski, one of many giants of twentieth-century highbrow background, comes this hugely infuential research of Marxism. Written in exile, this 'prophetic paintings' offers, in keeping with the Library of Congress, 'the such a lot lucid and accomplished background of the origins, constitution, and posthumous improvement of the approach of inspiration that had the best impression at the 20th century'. Kolakowski lines the highbrow foundations of Marxist proposal from Plotonius via Lenin, Lukacs, Sartre and Mao. He unearths Marxism to be 'the maximum myth of our century ...an concept that started in Promethean humanism and culminated within the big tyranny of Stalinism'. In an excellent coda, he examines the cave in of overseas Communism in gentle of the final tumultuous a long time. major Currents of Marxism is still the crucial publication in its box.

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More serious is the way in which these doctrines have been—and are still—regularly mobilized to block or curtail proposals aimed at enhancing the responsibility of the state to the people and their representatives. Thus the claim that the ventilation and redress of grievances is the function of the House of Commons Responsible government revisited 49 in holding ministers to account could be used to obviate the need for other mechanisms (such as the Ombudsman, which in deference to traditional doctrine may still only be accessed through Members of Parliament) and is still used to deflect demands for a proper system of administrative justice.

These, too, were traditionally cited as one of the informal pillars of the constitution; but they also found themselves swept aside as the accretions of a ‘corporatism’ which dared to suggest that governing was a complex and negotiated process in which there were many legitimate interests. Thus ministers decide. They may decide, as they did in a single week, to impose a broadcasting ban and end the right to silence in criminal cases. They may decide to abolish a level of local government, abolish the government of London, and take sweeping powers to curb and control the rest of the local government system.

This was warmly applauded by those who had urged just such a course as the way of saving democracy from itself, and who could therefore scarcely complain about a system of government which made this task easier than it should have been in the light of their own earlier analysis, or which accumulated many new powers for itself along the way. They might acknowledge a certain ‘paradox’ in what had happened, but not the means whereby it had happened. Their greater difficulty came in explaining why their recommended mode of government had not produced either the cultural revolution or the economic transformation which had also been an essential part of the prospectus.

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Main Currents of Marxism - Vol 1 - The Founders by Leszek Kolakowski, P. S. Falla


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