PART TWO: From the end of utopia to the beginning of anti-utopia
Section three. Revolt in the depths of despair
Chapter one. The revolt Aagainst the principium individuationis
1. Art as a means of expelling the personality from itself
2. Neo-Marxist nihilism and literary leftism
[Chapter two.]
3. The Frankfurt criticism of the conception of committed literature
4. The end of written literature?

PART TWO From the End of Utopia to the Beginning of Anti-Utopia



1. Art as a Means of Expelling the Personality from Itself

Quite early, in his 'Eros and Civilisation', Marcuse wrote that the surrealists understood the revolutionary consequences which could be deduced from Freud's discoveries; ever since then, art had been the ally of revolution (taken, of course, in its surrealist and Marcusian–that is, ``left''-extremist sense). The surrealists impressed Marcuse, first, with the radical rearrangement of accents which they produced within the framework of Freudian doctrine, emphasising fantasy (imagination) and subjecting reason to devastating criticism because of its tendency to come to terms with a reality which they considered as bourgeois as it was counter-revolutionary, "We subject the ideas of logic, order, truth, reason," they declared in the magazine 'Surrealism in the Service of the Revolution', "to nonbeing, to death. You do not know to what we can be led by our hatred of logic."1

Secondly, they made a strong impression on Marcuse with the thoroughgoing way in which they developed the technique of liberating the instincts and urges shackled by bourgeois reason, middle-class morality and all oppressive culture. The main prospects for developing this technique were indicated by the chief theorist of left surrealism, Andre Breton, in his first 'Manifesto of Surrealism:' "Pure psychic automatism intended to express, verbally, or in writing, or by any other means, the real functioning of thought. The dictation of thought, in the absence of all control exercised by the reason, and outside all aesthetic or moral preoccupations.''2 In the surrealist works which record, with the aid of such techniques, the unconscious urges of their authors–that is, which achieve the ``desubliniation'' of the repressive culture, Marcuse was bound to be aware of a tendency that corresponded to his own theories.

But clearly, Marcuse's stipulations were above all met (and still are) by the desire of the surrealists to affirm the products of fantasy controlled by no one, the images of dreams, the results of spontaneous and unmotivated psychic activity as manifestations of true reality; the reality that does not yet exist but will inevitably come tomorrow.

Since, by the time Marcuse had plunged into `` synthesising'' Marx and Freud (and, correspondingly, the political revolution and the sexual), the surrealist mode of thought was already elaborated in sufficient detail, it was natural that Marcuse's thinking, sensitive to fashionable trends, should have flowed along the channel dug by Breton and other theorists of the ideological and artistic movement under discussion.

The influence of surrealism, however, was expressed more deeply in the Marcusian conception of art. This influence proved so far-reaching that in many respects the Marcusian interpretation of art is identical with that of Breton. Sometimes it is as if Marcuse had simply taken several points of surrealist theory and incorporated them in his own. Marcuse's general tendency, however, was in a more consistent endeavour completely to dissolve art in a reality transformed by the radical upheaval in the structure of human instincts. Only this distinguishes what came from him and what clearly did not.

Incidentally, a similar difficulty also arises in studying the Marcusian conception of art in another connection. Marcuse assimilated not only Breton's ideas, but those of Adorno, although the latter differ substantially from Breton's, since the model from which the author of the 'Philosophie der neuen Musik' worked out his ideas of true art was not so much surrealism as expressionism and constructivism combined.
Marcuse fully shares the "surrealist thesis that the poet is the total nonconformist who finds, in the language of poetry, the semantic element of revolution".3 This idea corresponds to his conviction that as revolution is an absolute break with the "continuum of domination", so the revolutionary poet (the true poet is always the ``total'' revolutionary) must also determinedly break with the `` vocables'' of this "continuum of domination", having created an entirely new language. In this way, the poet, according to Marcuse, widens the "liberatory possibilities of revolution" which at first are seen (before being included in the real, material social movement) as ``surreal'' possibilities and, as such, are accessible only to the poetic fantasy, "as it is expressed and formulated in the language of poetry". This language is not ``instrumental'', it cannot be used in ordinary life for the expression of ordinary ' Realien', and in general it "cannot be other than an instrument of revolution''.

Discussing protest songs and verse, Marcuse notes that they "always come too late or too early", as reminiscence or as dream. "Their time is not the present"; they prove their truth with their hope, with their rejection of the actual state of affairs. Hence, according to Marcuse, the eternal gulf between poetic fantasy and real politics that "has a fatal effect on poetry". "There is no means," he writes, "by which we could imagine historical change in the relations between the cultural and the revolutionary movement which would overcome the schism between the dayto-day language and the poetic and would abolish the domination of the first. The language of poetry evidently draws all its strength and truth from its otherworldliness, its transcendence"–that is, from leaving the real and entering the surreal.

However, the departure itself is a revolutionary act; it signifies a "revolution of perception" which is presupposed by and accompanies political revolution. The revolution is always a "revolt against repressive reason" as well, and this revolt draws it destructive energy from the aesthetic sphere, the sphere of changed perception, "the new sensibility". Here, by the way, reciprocal action occurs: as the revolt against repressive reason relies on the revolutionised perception of the world, on the new sensibility, so at the same time it gives strength to this latter. In its turn, this revolutionary process exerts its influence on art as a whole: on its affirmative (that is, affirming the repressive reality) character as a result of which art has a tendency towards reconciliation with the 'status quo', and also the extent to which it brings about the sublimation of urges, since this sublimation obstructs the realisation of the truth contained in art, of its cognitive factor.

The protest against these two aspects of art, which is associated with its striving for the surreal, according to Marcuse, had already spread all over the artistic sphere on the eve of World War I and has continued to deepen with growing intensity up to the present time. The protest conveys to art a negative, destructive force, having given voice and 'bildlichen Ausdruck' ("imagic expression") to a broader process, that of "desublimating culture", in other words, depriving it of the illusory ( = ideal) dimension. Non-figurative, abstract painting and sculpture, the stream of consciousness and formalistic literature, twelve-tone music (Schonberg), blues and jazz–all these, according to Marcuse, are certainly not a reorientation and intensification of the old means of appreciation. They are the demolition of the old structures of appreciation in order to "make room''.

``What for?" asks Marcuse. And he is forced to admit that it is impossible to find a clear and definite answer to this question. For "the new subject of art has not yet been `given' '(gegeben)";' after all, it is not ``reality''–this reality itself is still to be discovered and outlined. It still has to arise from people's revolutionary and revolutionising activity inspired by the striving for the realisation of their secret aims and unconscious desires. In other words, this subject is, for the time being, not reality but surreality. However, it is enough that this fundamentally new subject–the reality of the future–has been ``given'' for the customary, or traditional, in art to "become impossible, false". From illusion, imitation and harmony, art, according to Marcuse, has leapt ahead towards true reality–the reality which has not yet been given and therefore cannot be a subject of realistic art, but demands a new form of art appropriate to itself. This must be an art that itself takes part in the creation of the ``projtct'' (Sartre's term which, as we see, fits neatly into the surrealist conception of art) of the new reality, still only subject to discovery.

The objective of such art is, above all, to destroy the "automatism of direct, but socially oriented experience, which opposes the liberation of sensibility" connected with the vital urges of people, their striving for the fulfilment of "prehistoric desires". This experience is imposed on man by the repressive society, its science, technology, culture and morality–but art, breaking the automatism of that experience, must give the people back a real sense of real life that is in a far closer relationship with the world of instinctive impulses and urges than with the external world of "empirical experience" created by bourgeois civilisation.

This is achieved in art, writes Marcuse, by means of form: "...Form is that by which art transcends the given reality; it works in the established reality against established reality. This transcendental element dwells within art, within the creative dimension. Art changes experience, since it reconstructs its objects in word, sound and image. Why? Evidently, the idiom of art communicates an objectivity inaccesible to ordinary idiom and ordinary experience." What is this mysterious ``objectivity''? It is objectivity not of the real, but of the surreal, which does not yet exist, but which is already there, for it is imminent.

Here, art is clearly being endowed with functions beyond the bounds of its specifically aesthetic possibilities. At the beginning of the century, the Russian Symbolists called these functions theurgic. It is natural that art, shouldering such an excessive burden, should be in danger of being crushed by it or, in any case, being transformed into something totally different. Marcuse obviously feels this himself when he writes that the radical character, the ``violence'' of this reconstruction of reality in contemporary art evidently means that it is revolting not against this or that style, but against ``style'' as such, against the ' KunstForm', against the traditional meaning of art. Incidentally, even here he has said nothing really new; he has only repeated what was being said about art by the Dadaists and other proponents of the total liquidation of art, of its conversion into ``non-art''.

This tendency, clearly discernible in avant-garde art (although, of course, by no means all the avant-gardists consciously supported it), is explained by Marcuse in the following terms. The revolutions that followed World War I and put up their ``project'' of a new reality (``surreality'' of the Future), showed up the true nature of bourgeois reality, which made art an illusion and branded both the reality itself and its corresponding art. The new art, however, evoked by a presentiment of these revolutions and the anticipation of the future reality (``surreality''), did not want anything to do with the old, illusory art and began to see itself as 'anti-ait'. In contrast to illusory art, which took the objects and phenomena of the bourgeois world naively, that is to say, as they seemed at first sight, in no way questioning their reality as things, the new art must break with this reifying, that is, with the presentation, in the form of immutable things, all that has been created with the aid of repressive production and repressive technology, science and culture.

``Since then," writes Marcuse, "the breakthrough of antiart into art" has revealed itself in the most varied forms: in the destruction of syntax, the destruction of words and sentences, "blowing up the use of daily language", etc. etc. However, all attempts at destroying form resulted in the emergence of new forms. This outcome was in no way haphazard, since the real "metamorphosis of art", according to Marcuse, is "its self-extermination", the necessity for which is contained in the very structure of art, but which must be accomplished in conformity with it, and not in spite of it–as the proponents of anti-art tried to do.

What is the peculiarity of this structure that impeded art's actual self-extermination along the lines proposed by the theorists and practitioners of anti-art ? It consists in the feature of its aesthetic form that excludes the work of art from empirical reality and makes it an appurtenance of the "second reality", that is, surreality. "By virtue of its form," writes Marcuse, "art contradicts the endeavour to get rid of art's interest in the 'second reality', to translate the truth of productive fantasy into the first reality," into the common and practical language of this latter. Aesthetic form, according to Marcuse, is domination over chaos, violence and suffering; the rejection of these–even when form itself introduces chaos, violence and suffering. "This triumph of art is achieved by subduing content–by aesthetic order, whose demands are autonomous.''

This peculiarity of aesthetic form makes art inwardly ambiguous; it blames what exists and promptly removes this accusation in aesthetic form. This "resolving, conciliatory power of art was typical", writes Marcuse, "even of the most radical phenomena of illusory art and antiart". Even here, the aesthetic necessity of art "drives out the appalling necessity of reality; it sublimates its grief and joy", so that "blind, innocent suffering" and the "fury of nature"–meaning that of man himself and that of "the outside world"–acquire purpose and meaning, or poetic justice. "The blame is removed and its outrageousness, offensiveness and mockery–extreme artistic negations at the disposal of art–are conquered by this [aesthetic] order." This restoration of order, according to Marcuse, also leads to catharsis of the "terror of reality" by means of aesthetic form imposing general order. This result, however, affirms Marcuse, is "illusory, false and fictitious: it remains in the dimension of art; in reality, however, horror and refusal continue to dominate. . ." This, according to Marcuse, perhaps contains the most decisive expression of the contradiction in art: "victories over material, transformations of material that satisfy existence '(Dasein)' remain unreal, since the revolutionisation of the material remains unreal. And this substitute nature of art repeatedly raises the question of its justification: was the Parthenon worth the sufferings of a single slave? Is it possible after Auschwitz to continue writing poetry?''

True, reasons Marcuse, it would be possible to object to this question as follows: If the horrors of capitalist civilisation have a tendency to become total and if it blocks all political action directed against it, then where save in radical fantasy can the memory of the "lost age" of the primitive (or child-like) state of happiness be preserved, which means where else is it possible also to preserve and deepen the revolutionary potential, the energy of the radical rejection of what exists? It would be possible to adduce an even simpler objection, which for some reason has never occurred to Marcuse or any other members of the New Left: Will the sufferings of the above-mentioned slave be atoned for if we destroy the remains of the Parthenon? Will the horrors of Auschwitz be obliterated from history if the poets refuse to write verse? Finally, we shall add an objection to Sartre: Will black children stop dying of starvation if the European ``left''-extremist intelligentsia finish with culture altogether, doing so "on the model of Mao"? Marcuse, however, takes another line. He asks the following counter-question of the defendants of art who see it as the sole reservat of revolutionising fantasy: ". . .Are the images today [of fantasy that stimulates the desire for pleasure] still the domain of `illusory' art" (and, I might add, of the anti-art which also proves in the end to be ``illusory'' because of its above-mentioned inability to prevail over the principle of aesthetic form) ? Marcuse thinks that they are not. The fantasy images created by art could demonstrate that "behind the illusion stands knowledge", a higher knowledge, moreover, than that of the "repressive reason", only until aesthetic knowledge was in fact impossible and the aesthetic utopia truly unattainable. Now, however, the situation is different, and so art cultivating these images and ensuring the illusory and sublimated satisfaction of the vital urges concealed behind them, ceases to fulfil a revolutionising function and is converted into its own opposite. Thus (true, with Marcuse's hand that did not tremble as it did so) art signed its own deathwarrant.


What is the change in the state of affairs that has developed so sadly for the future of art? And what, to take a more optimistic, or Marcusian, formulation of this question, is the real liquidation of art, which the theorists of anti-art have nevertheless failed to achieve? For the answer, let us return briefly to what was written about fantasy and imagination by Marcuse in 1937.

``Freedom of imagination," he wrote, "disappears as true freedom becomes a practical possibility. The frontiers of fantasy are, in the strict sense of the word, technical frontiers: they are determined by the level of technical development.''4 It is now clear why art proves to be irrelevant under the conditions of the late-capitalist civilisation. After all, this latter, as Marcuse wrote many times, has developed such productive forces and has created such production possibilities that primitive urges and infantile dreams can be fulfilled directly and immediately–without repressions, expulsions or sublimations. And arts that offer us the sublimated satisfaction of vital urges at a time when we can do this, simply distract us from this real prospect, that is, they divert us from the "truly revolutionary" road.

According to Marcuse, art as a specific area of social consciousness (an area of the ideal in general) preserves its meaning only until the fantasy images cherished by it– life in conformity with the pleasure-principle under the benevolent patronage of Eros–cannot be accomplished in reality itself. As soon as the development of productive forces, however, achieves such a level that the aesthetic Utopias of art come true–and this, according to Marcuse, had happened by the beginning of the century–art loses all its meaning. Henceforth only one ``aesthetic'' task arises: to embody in life itself everything that has so far been regarded as fantasies, as utopian dreams of art.

However, continues Marcuse, the situation that arose at the beginning of our century was such that the dominant political forces prevented the productive forces developing in the direction which would have corresponded to the demands of Eros as formulated by literature and art. As a result, on the one hand, those very productive forces became more and more destructive and, on the other hand, art found itself in a paradoxical situation: it had to go on existing after its real task had already been fulfilled, namely, to preserve and cultivate in the sphere of artistic fantasy the "feasibly political" programme of Eros (the pleasure-principle) until possibilities arose for its embodiment in life. To continue living and acting in this situation as if nothing had happened, if we can believe Marcuse, would mean that writers, poets, artists and musicians would have to adopt a course of deception (serving the "false consciousness" being distributed by the powers-that-be).

Faced with this situation, according to Marcuse, art had nothing left, since it did not want to be turned quickly into pure ideology, but to reject itself, its own artistic form, its own existence as aesthetic reality. And so, if we are to believe the Frankfurt thinker, avant-garde tendencies in art are emerging in the 20th century and increasing every 150 year. Avant-gardism, which appears as anti-art, or art with the prefix ``non'', consciously set itself from the very beginning a purely negative aim: the desublimation of art and, in it and through it, of all Western culture–that is, the despiritualisation of art and culture. Whether we take abstract painting and sculpture, formalism and the stream of consciousness in literature, twelve-tone music, blues and jazz–everywhere, from Marcuse's point of view, we have to do with a process purely negative towards traditional art, to the "form of art" as such. It means the destruction of the old sublimated, idealised structures of perception.

If we compare these Marcusian arguments with what was said above about the dramatic collision between the bourgeois Protestant Work Ethics on the one hand, and the bourgeois-consumer pleasure-principle on the other, it is striking to what a degree these arguments conform to the general tendencies of this second principle, which is steadily forging ahead in the 20th-century West European consciousness. We must also agree that Marcuse was not so far from the truth (although he interpreted it in his own left-extremist way) when he evaluated the tendencies of avant-garde art precisely as a struggle for power between Eros (the pleasure-principle) and the Protestant Work Ethics (the principle of "reality and production"). Indeed, art's "wild revolt" against itself, incited by avantgardism, was a revolt against culture as such by bohemianism, eternally hostile to all the rigours of hard work, serious personal responsibility, etc. This time, the revolt of the artistic lumpen-intelligentsia has been given anything but a local significance, since in sociological terms it has reflected the general growth of hedonistic-consumer tendencies in Western culture. This circumstance has been a real force, supporting the anti-cultural aspirations of avant-garde literature and art throughout the 20th century.

The revolt against culture as such reflected the strengthening of hedonistic, consumer and simply parasitic aspirations in the state-monopoly society. The crux of the matter, however, is that these aspirations in no way signified the radical rejection of that society; they reflected tendencies arisen within it as a result of changing ``liberal'' capitalism into ``corporative'' and ``consumer''.

Indeed, as Marcuse unhappily points out, " `anti-art' remairied art"; it "was exhibited, bought and seen as art". 'As' for innumerable Western literature and art historians, they hastened to find new ("striking!") artistic revelations where the creators themselves had seen only "spits in the face" of art, literature, culture and so on. The "wild revolt of art", testifies Marcuse, "was not a shock for long"; it was soon "absorbed by the market".5 These spits in the face of mankind were briskly bought up, then exhibited in the art galleries, in the reception rooms and offices of the successful industry and in the flats of millionaires and multi-millionaires. Marcuse found his own explanation why this circumstance, which shows, in our view, that anti-art did not put up such a determined resistance to "bourgeois civilisation" as its ideologists supposed and, moreover, that it reflected a certain substantially important tendency, namely the consumer society's hedonism.

He affirmed in his 'Versuch über die Befreiung' that anti-art was, in a paradoxical way, accepted as art for one sole reason: the attempt to reject the bourgeois-exploiter reality-principle was not sustained all the way, that is, to the actual replacement of capitalist reality based on that principle by an entirely new reality founded on the pleasure-principle. The true accomplishment of art's self-annihilation, according to Marcuse, is only possible on one condition: that the erotic content sublimated in it is accomplished in interpersonal relations, in the transformation of man's objectvie environment and in the corresponding reorientation of technological progress.

No sublimation, then, which means down with sublimated, i.e. illusory, i.e. counter-revolutionary art! Fantasy has at last found a cause far more serious than the artistic sublimation of primitive urges, than the illusory " remembrance of things past": ". . .Fantasy, released from servitude to exploitation and relying on the successes of science, can convert its productivity to the radical reconstruction of experience and the world of experience.''6 That is why the contemporary revolutionary movement ( Marcuse means, of course, primarily the New Left and perhaps the "cultural revolution" in China as well), inspired by the ideal of the real and not the illusory transformation of the living world into artistic fact, revolts (mainly, we might add) "against the established culture . . . against the beautiful in that culture, against its excessively sublimated, ordered and harmonised forms, which are remote from reality''.

The fundamental purpose of this revolt is the rejection of the traditional culture, its "methodical desublimation"; today's mutineers are fulfilling the behest of Mann's Doctor Faustus: they are "taking back" the Ninth Symphony of Beethoven, "cancelling it" so that it might never have existed at all. But they are doing even more than Adrian Leverkühn, who sold his soul to the devil; they are investing their art (which has finally acknowledged its transitory and, above all, purely negative significance under conditions when all the primitive urges–in principle–can be satisfied by factual and not illusory means) with " desublimated, sensual forms of a frightening immediacy that set bodies in motion and likewise the souls materialised in them''.

However, in order to "arrive at its own essence", that is, at the consistent awareness and accomplishment of its mission, revolutionary art must renounce its "direct call", its "primitive immediacy of portrayal". ``Wasn't there once a time," asks Marcuse (and at this point in his arguments variations can be heard on Adorno's aesthetic-sociological theory), "when the fundamental aim of radical art was just such a break with this immediacy?" The abolition of the alienation effect, of ``estrangement'' from the existing society, which Marcuse sees in the immediacy of the art of protest and which brings it closer to illusory (and ``illusionistic'') art, ``counteracts'', according to Marcuse, "the radicalisation of today's art". Thus, in his opinion, Living Theatre fails to the extent "to which it lives", encouraging the spectators to identify directly with the actors, experiencing their sympathies and antipathies. The same applies, says Marcuse, to the ``happening'' ("always organised", in spite of its illusory spontaneity and haphazardness) and Pop Art, which have both created a "false togetherness" within the repressive society.

Incidentally, Marcuse dwells only briefly on Adorno's viewpoint, according to which art is an alienated and surmounted immediacy, for, as Adorno said, "there is nothing innocent in our age"; according to which art 153 synthesises purely immediate expression with purely mediated construction; according to which art "balances on the borderline" between a work of art and its annihilation, between culture and the rejection of culture–in a word, Marcuse does not dwell on art taken at the critical moment of its fall (or, incidentally, at the moment of the ``fall'' of its carrier, the individual). On the one hand, this viewpoint was too pessimistic for Marcuse, who believed in the beautiful effect of the ``Breakthrough''. On the other, he never showed any particular inclination for the subtleties of dialectic balancing on the knife-edge between ``yes'' and ``no''; and, moreover, protesting youth, of whose interest in his reflections he was clearly aware (especially during work on "An Essay on Liberation"), demanded a clear and categorical answer: ``yes'' or ``no''.

The endless balancing between ``yes'' and ``no'' forced Adorno to express himself more and more vaguely, resulting in a deterioration of his relations with youth in revolt (incidentally, this also had its purely political causes). Marcuse, who witnessed this dramatic story of the incipient conflict between ``fathers'' and ``children'' in the camp of the New Left, decided to answer more categorically. No, he replied, the existence of art in the form of an anti-art alienating and overcoming ``immediacy'' is only transitional, and a last phase after which much follow the ``removal'' of art by means of realising its fantasies and dreams in interpersonal relations regulated solely by Eros and the aesthetic ethos corresponding to the pleasure-principle.

In view of the mood of the protesting youth, to whom this answer was given, Marcuse cannot be accused of lacking wit. After all, on the one hand, he had quite clearly and categorically said ``no'': there are no prospects for the further existence of art, even in anti-art, its most revolutionary form. On the other hand, however, this altogether pessimistic reply seemed to Marcuse to be in a major key and full of joyously optimistic cadences: the productive imagination, having blown up the sublimated framework of art, must erect a splendid monument to it.

And so the phenomena of anti-art, which throughout our century have been reproduced, according to Marcuse, within the framework of the most revolutionary avant-garde art, prove totally contradictory and ambiguous, living only by self-annihilation as a result of the irreconcilable antinomies that are tearing them apart. On the one hand, the phenomena of anti-art are distinguishable from traditional works of art if only by not satisfying the demand which, one way or another, was met by all the art of the past; they do not give people that wisdom which would stand behind their fantastic images and on the basis of which it would be possible, as Marcuse supposes, to build a model of truly human relations regulated by Eros.

On the other hand, however–and precisely because of the first circumstance–this anti-art cannot also be the carrier of those fantasies, those figments of the imagination and the like, proceeding from which anti-art, overstepping the bounds of art and becoming real imagination–social, political and technological–could convert them into reality, having transformed that reality according to the yardstick of human urges as they manifested themselves in illusory art. In short, as Marcuse describes it, it is a ``surrevolutionary'' art–neither fish, fowl, flesh nor good red herring.

Here, too, incidentally, Marcuse ably dealt with moods which possessed the art students who, in May 1968, passed thunderous ``Robespierrean'' resolutions in Paris against art. True, to recall what Engels said about the German students, it might be supposed that some of the above-mentioned children were driven into adopting resolutions (and the committing of the corresponding practical actions) by fear of the exams. It would be interesting to know what exams frightened their ideologist father. . .


As we see, Marcuse went much further than the other Freudo-Marxist oriented members of the Frankfurt school in drawing a conclusion about the inevitable annihilation of art in the society of the Future where, they claimed, it must become a form of reality itself, having dissolved in social, scientific and technological creativeness, and also in the material environment of emancipated humanity. However Marcuse may have substantiated his own conclusion, it was in fact a logically necessary deduction from the thesis about the historical exhaustibility of the ' principium individuationis', which the other Frankfurt theorists, more circumspect but also less consistent notwithstanding, could not bring themselves to make. After all, art is the carrier of the subjective means of harmonising (or, on the contrary, deharmonising) the mutual relations of man, who is always there as a particular ("this one here") individual, and also the mutual relations of society–or, to put it more generally, of the universal and necessary aspect of human existence in general. And if one half of this individual-universal bipolar system is removed, then with it goes the main objective of art–to find and express the harmonious interrelationship between these two factors and, from the viewpoint of the harmony so found, to evaluate the true condition of man in society. With the removal of this–truly human!–task, art itself loses its meaning; where there is no opposition (or simply difference) of factors subject to harmonisation, there is no need or possibility of accomplishing harmony: it is replaced by a dead, lifeless identity. More skilled in the subtleties of negative dialectic, Horkheimer and Adorno sensed this danger. Which is why, however much they may have talked about the end of individuality, they always stressed that it was a process bound to take a whole epoch, during which man, and consequently art, would lead a paradoxical existence on the brink of annihilation. Secondly, neither Horkheimer nor Adorno ever made it clear when this epoch was going to end and what would come to replace the 'principium individuationis' as applicable to man (what will become of the man who has prevailed over this antagonistic principle in himself), and also to art (upon whom it is no longer incumbent to embody in himself the model harmonisation of the individually personal and anonymously universal principles). Having rashly broken both these taboos (for which he was to blame in being too dependent on his young disciples, who firmly insisted on his making ``either–or'' decisions), Marcuse promptly found himself at an impasse. Three years later, in his book, 'Counterrevolution and Revolt' (1972), he called this impasse "the materialistic version of absolute idealism"7; that is, to translate this phrase into simpler language, he found himself advocating the vulgarly materialistic identification of the ideal with the real, of consciousness with being. The real content of this identification was still the same hedonism that reflected the consumer aspirations of the state-monopoly West after World War II.

Indeed, according to Marcusian logic, anti-art would certainly perform its mission of annihilating art only if the pleasure-principle was not simply consolidated alongside the reality-principle (and that of production), by going towards a compromise with it but if it fully cancelled out (or determinedly repressed) this second principle. In effect, this would mean the onset of the world anticipated in Aldous Huxley's anti-Utopias: a world in which self-aware, responsible and free individuals with initiative would not exist, since their place would be taken by humanoids under the power of erotic cravings and completely uncontrolled as individuals (because the individual principle had been destroyed), but fully subject to centralised manipulation (remember Huxley's ``Feelies''). In this world there would certainly be no need for sublimated art or for culture in general, for here it would be a question of the direct impact on the neuro-physiological structure or human bodies (mainly on the sexual urges, if we take the Marcusian Freudo-Marxist model of man), bypassing consciousness and self-awareness, which have always obstructed any such influence, sublimating it and putting it under the conscious control of the individual.

As Huxley had shown, the coming of this Brave New World would mean the monstrous enslavement of mankind, completely trapped in the circle of artificially stimulated and deliberately manipulated hedonistic sensations–no matter whether the sensations were experienced alone or jointly with other equally impersonal, equally anonymous creatures with human exterior. After all, it has been known ever since Plato and Aristotle that the slavery of man to his own lusts (prettified by Marcuse as Eros) does not cease to be slavery because man experiences positive emotions each time he satisfies them. Such emotions are also experienced by addicts taking the latest fix of heroin, the masochist torturing his own body and the sadist torturing someone else's. In all these cases, the pleasure-principle obtains identical satisfaction.

So it transpires that the pleasure-principle, as soon as it is given absolute power and once it has crushed the realityprinciple, has perhaps an even greater ability to become a cruel despot, enslaving not only the soul but the body of the human being who has handed it the reins of power. There is, however, something even more important here: to come 157 under the power of the pleasure-principle means to be the slave of the person or persons possessing the object which gives pleasure–whether it be the drug-pusher, the pop idol, etc. Moreover, the power of this person, since his condition is the "switching off" of the individual consciousness, the prevailing over the 'principium individuationis' in general, promises to become (and, indeed is–remember the Manson Band) far more absolute than the power of any despot who has never claimed to get rid of the bourgeoisindividualistic reality-principle.

In general, the less control the individual has over himself and his urges (and it is to this that Marcuse appeals, associating the omnipotence of the pleasure-principle with the rejection of the 'principium individuationis)' the more he is at the mercy of someone else, the one on whom the satisfaction of his urges depends. However paradoxical this may be at first glance, in the society of the liberated Eros, if it were possible to create such a thing, the priority (inevitably changing into this or that form of power over others) would go to those less inclined to totally unlimited pleasure; they would be less subject to their urges and lusts and less dependent on everything with which their gratification was associated and by which it was conditioned. In this hypothetical society, there would sooner or later arise a Brave New World situation in which the slaves of their own lusts would also be slaves in the social sense, since those capable of mastering their own erotic inclinations would form a group of masters without thereby violating a single one of the demands of the ``Freudo-Marxist'' Eros.

2. Neo-Marxist Nihilism and Literary Leftism

It would, however, be a serious oversimplification to think that New Left extremism was heading for the abolition of art and literature (as of the repressive culture in general) by one means only–the absolutisation of the pleasure-principle. As is shown by the history of the New Left movement in the 60s, there was also another prospect for the liquidation of the Arts. This would be effected by replacing specifically artist content with the purely political; in brief, by the dissolution of literature in politics. Moreover, while the advocates of the first blueprint for the abolition of literature and art most frequently of all referred to the Frankfurt (chiefly the Marcusian) interpretation of ``neo-Marxism'', the supporters of the second preferred the ``neo-Marxist'' version advanced by Jean-Paul Sartre, author of the books 'What Is Literature8' and 'A Critique of Dialectic Reason'.9 That the fanatic art-destroyers and liquidators of literature in France and other countries of the Western world should have appealed to the authority of Sartre might initially cause some bewilderment. After all, this left existentialist and neo-Marxist spoke out so often for freedom of creation and for certain writers or artists, that he would seem the last person to be suspected of hostility to literature and art; in fact he gave the impression of over- rather than underestimating the role of art and literature in the contemporary world. Nevertheless, the New Left enthusiasts for the dissolution of the artistic consciousness in politics –of art in revolution and literature in politics referred most often to Sartre. Above all these references were not in the least glib or unsubstantiated; a careful reading of his works convincingly shows there is much in them to justify any conclusion about the necessity for dissolving art and literature in politics, depriving them of even the right to a relatively independent existence. In an interview given in the 60s, he sanctioned his earlier conclusions about the destruction of art and literature with statements of a now entirely nihilistic character–in particular this concerns Sartre's strivings to domesticate the idea of a "cultural revolution" in the Maoist spirit.

In connection with this the Sartrean conception of literature, in the light of the nihilistic conclusions drawn from it by Sartre himself and by his New Left supporters, is of particular interest to us, especially since an analysis of Sartre's relevant views, seen against the background of his general philosophical and political evolution, enables us to trace how the tendencies leading to the negation of personality (through the politicisation of art and literature which appeal to it) penetrate Sartre's theory, proceeding from the diametrically opposite standpoint: from the absolutisation of the personality, the hypertrophy of the personal principle and the boosting of individual freedom. As we shall see later, in this case the tendency beats itself a path through the ``overstraining'' of Nietzsche's Apollonian principles of individualisation, isolation, etc. which, being detached from the Dionysian principle, inevitably had to assume, according to Sartre, all the characteristics of this last, with its insoluble antinomies. The Sartrean " absolutely free" individuality was inevitably bound to come to self-negation when face to face with a purely Promethean contradiction: the 'necessity' of "being God" and the ' impossibility' of becoming God–a contradiction which also destroyed Sartre's conception of literature. Confronted with the extremist alternatives–all or nothing–(to be ``all'' or to be ``nothing''), Sartre's conceptions of man and literature both suffered a defeat in the end. An acknowledgement of this defeat was the volte-face of the individualist Sartre in favour of Maoist "barrack-room Communism''.

For an understanding of Sartre's conception of literature, it is essential to bear in mind that in the eyes of Sartre as existentialist, the writer (and the artist in general) invariably was, independently of the extent to which this was realised by the philosopher himself, a true and real embodiment of existential freedom, of ``being-for-oneself'' '(pour-soi]' as opposed to ``being-in-oneself'' '(en-soi)', that embodiment of all that is natural, material, "having become" '(Gewordene)'. Sartre advocated the principle of a freedom always individual and always unique, which does not acknowledge any tradition or any obligations to the past (i.e. "what has become"), acknowledging only quite arbitrarily the developing consistency of unrepeatable situations. This principle has also its appropriate carrier, accomplisher and spokesman, and it was against him that Sartre measured his conception of freedom, taking him for "man in general", whereas he was in fact a writer, moreover, the one best known to the philosopher–the writer Jean-Paul Sartre or, to be more precise, the image of himself which was forming in his own mind. That is why Sartre could always easily transfer from purely philosophical reflections on freedom ("for oneself") to arguments about the psychology of artistic creation, about the future of literature, etc. and–on the contrary–while reflecting on literature, examining it at the same time as a model of the human being and of human freedom as such.

After World War II (the period which interests us most), when Sartre began reinterpreting his existentialism in a ``neo-Marxist'' spirit, he was particularly anxious to arrive at a sociological deduction of the initial concepts of his philosophy, which had already become political during the war when he was a member of the French Resistance. The paramount problem was the sociological interpretation of what he regarded as important correlated (and even overlapping) concepts such as freedom ("for oneself") and literature (the writer, the intellectual, "man in general", etc.). If Sartre's reasoning had been previously focused on the concept of freedom, which enabled him subsequently to decipher and understand the concept of literature, it was now the other way round; Sartre started out from this concept in order to concretise the first. This move in his thinking was not an accident; while engaged on his basic metaphysical work, he was more inclined to proceed from highly, abstract concepts, but when he was faced with their sociological interpretation the altogether abstract concept of freedom proved far less suitable for him than that of literature, the more so that it was a kind of metaphor or symbol of freedom.

In his post-war articles on literature (collected and published in the book, 'What Is Literature?' which reflected the first stage in his ``neo-Marxist'' evolution), Sartre started out from the idea of the writer's task as the result of a definite existential choice, the choice to write, which had simultaneously an ethical and social political content and, moreover, had no other content than that. According to Sartre, writing is already a definite political position (also ethical and social, for all of them are one): the position of the politically concretised freedom of the individual, from which he then deduces the whole content of artistic creation. In this way, the content of literature is political, not in one of its aspects and not in the final analysis (depending on the concrete function being fulfilled by this or that work in the actual class struggle) although this is how it is seen by the Marxists, whom Sartre accused of dogmatism. Literature is, so to speak, political initially, "by definition". This is the thesis from which Sartre inflicted such a pogrom on French literature back in 1947 (true, a purely theoretical pogrom) which can only be compared with the pogrom unleashed on literature in Maoist China during the "cultural revolution''.

How does Sartre explain his thesis about the initial ``politically'' of all literature (especially 'belles lettres)', since it is the result of the moral-political and social-political choice to write? This explanation has the character of a sociological (or, to be more precise, social-political) deduction of the very concept of literature, writing, the writer's task, etc. Sartre begins his deduction with the epoch of the rise of the bourgeois society, regarding literature as the offspring of capitalism, just as, for Adorno, a similar offspring was "autonomous music"–the sonata and the symphony. Moreover, this deduction is specific from the very beginning; it is directed by Sartre's contradictory endeavours sociologically to determine literature, tying up its evolution with certain classes and the historical process of their replacement, and to liberate it from all definitions, presenting it as an expression of the absolutely free project of the absolutely free person (i.e. independent of class definitions), the Writer or, what is the same thing, Man with a capital M. In other words, by means of the sociological deduction of literature, Sartre tried to solve the completely paradoxical problem which confronted him when, with his ``left'' existentialism, he had moved towards ``neo-Marxism'': sociologically to determine ... absolute freedom (now appearing in the guise of the left Intellectual, the non-conformist Writer, committed Literature).

Sartre understood that for this it was not enough from the very outset to cram political leftishness, moral nonconformism and social commitment into the initial act of a man who had chosen the writer's profession, that is, who had made the existential choice to write, having simply postulated the indissoluble ties between the first, the second and the third. He was able to act in this way earlier when, on the one hand, he himself considered it sufficient to postulate the connection between the generally philosophical, political and literary concept that appealed to him, and when, on the other hand, they in fact were so interconnected in the eyes of like-minded readers, that this connection, as it seemed, did not need any proof at all. Now, however, the situation was different: the reading public, that had been united by hatred of the common foe, the German occupiers, broke up, and much that had seemed self-evident before, now demanded serious proof. At the same time, Sartre himself was not satisfied with his former "purely philosophical" method of demonstrating the connection between his favourite concepts. There now seemed to be greater force of conviction (at any rate, to that part of the public on which Sartre had, as before, called) in the `` neo-Marxist'' method of proof, appealing to the classes and to class vision–and it was to this that he now turned. He endeavoured, by class-historical analysis, to work out a concept of literature that would include ``left'' radicalism, moral non-conformism and social commitment–so that the choice to write would include all this not only with moral, but with social-historical necessity.

The historico-sociological deduction of literature in Sartre is accomplished by singling out the social figure of the writer, the man to whom literature owes its very existence. From the very beginning, he is a kind of 'declasse' element, bourgeois in origin, but writing more for the aristocracy, which has enough time to read and enough money to pay for the writer's work. The writer is thus an entirely contradictory sociological phenomenon: a member of one class, he lives off another which is opposed to him and is his class enemy. He writes about what he knows best, that is, about the life of his own class, but at the same time he appeals to readers of the opposing class. He testifies in favour of his own class but in front of the hostile aristocracy, from whom, incidentally, he obtains the money for his depositions. In a word, he is a kind of "double spy", serving two warring powers. If we are to believe Sartre, however, it was this position, as dual as it was ambiguous, that ensured total freedom for the writer, as also for his creation, literature, whereby, moreover, that freedom is ensured.

Sartre reasons that the marked duality (ambiguity) of the writer's situation virtually freed him from specific social obligations both to his own class, from which he comes, and the one to which he was indebted for his sustenance: obligations to his own class were neutralised by those to the other, and vice versa. The writer was free from the ideology of the bourgeois and from that of the aristocracy, his enforced classlessness elevated him above both, making him an arbiter in the class conflict. The position of the writer is above class; the writer argues with all society, not with one of the social classes; but this very circumstance communicates to the writer's ideology the universality which, according to Sartre, is generally typical of the ideology of the bourgeoisie in the ascendant. In other words, it is the very classlessness of the writer's 'declasse' ideology, releasing him from class bias (including the bias of his own class) that makes-it the most consistent expression of the essential feature of the bourgeoisie in the ascendant, that is, the bourgeois ideology in the highest and not in the empirical sense. The writer's freedom, and that of literature as a whole, from all class-limited social definitions, arises as consequence of his dual and ambiguous position in society–it changes him of necessity into a "man in general" and–simultaneously!–into the most true, competent representative of his own class to express its objective universal aspirations.

In this way, according to Sartre's theory, the writer who quarrelled with society (including his own class) in the name of the ``natural'' man free from all social definitions, used to achieve his own personal freedom thereby, justifying both the act of his initial choice (the choice to write) and writing itself as ordained by this act. Literature appealing to "universal man", keeping itself above the class conflict of bourgeoisie and aristocracy, calling for an awareness dwelling outside history, outside time and space–this literature, according to Sartre, truly accomplished the mission of liberation. The writer's freedom thus coincided with that of the human being, and reading facilitated the selfliberation of the individual to the same degree as writing. Moreover–and this, perhaps, is the most important point in Sartre's reasoning–the liberation proclaimed to the world by the Writer and by Literature was political, and political in a deeper and more exact sense than that for which the Third Estate struggled (in empirical reality). For the initial act of choice (the choice to write) in which the writer emerged and therefore literature was born, was, according to Sartre, not simply a moral, but a moral-political act, and political rather than moral.

At the very first stage of Sartre's sociological deduction, the attention is caught by a circumstance decisive for Sartre's conception of literature in general. The freedom of the writer (and, consequently, of Literature), called upon to give an ideal model of Freedom as such, is seen here from the very outset only in its one negative or negativistic aspect, as "freedom from"–in this case, from all social or class limitations and, correspondingly, from more 164 or less precisely fixed moral definitions. In this connection, it is impossible not to agree with the critics of Sartre's "leftism in aesthetics", who consider that the social-historical deduction offered by Sartre does not clarify the essence of literature, but only serves as a sociologised form of justifying his existentialist thesis which identifies freedom and negativeness, and this time, what is more, literary creation becomes the true realisation of this freedom.10 The grounds for the identification of freedom, social being and literature turn out to be politics as seen from a Sartrean ``left''-radical and even extremist viewpoint.

In this way, the fate of literature (both in the aspect of its content and the aspect of its social being) is entirely made dependent on politics, and since politics, from the Marxist point of view, is the relation of the classes, then literature, Sartre maintains, is totally reduced to these relations; it has nothing left above this. Sartre wishes to let it be understood that the political essence of literature is political, so to speak, in the highest sense, which should not coincide with what is borne by the direct ``empirical'' political actions of various people or groups. Sartre endeavours to prove that literature coincided with politics, but without being an instrument of political rivalry and consequently did not make it necessary for the writer to associate himself with this or that political party; on the contrary, it excluded his allegiance to one particular party–a position wholly identical with the one proposed by the Frankfurt neo-Marxists back in the 30s. In other words, literature should provide a model of true politics for the politicians, who learn from it what politics really are; and since literature was seen by Sartre as the only true politics, politics was being converted with logical necessity into genuine literature (and perhaps into the irresponsible improvisation only too common in our age?). Literature, as represented by Sartre, was ready to reject its specific content, to be nothing (in the strictly artistic sense), but only in order to become everything (Big Politics, the Making of History)–it would not agree to anything less.

In this way Sartre solved for himself the problem of his own predicament as 'declasse' trapped between the warring classes. With the aid of the social-historical interpretation of literature, he affirmed his inadequacy as the highest virtue: his position as 'declasse', lumpenism, bohemianism of a writer proved, according to Sartre, to be a condition of his penetration into the truth of historical development, a condition of ``being'' in that truth, so that he became a model of true Man. And, incidentally, another problem was solved which troubled Sartre a great deal: how to be occupied with politics while remaining a writer, and a writer of quite unmistakably bohemian and lumpen tendencies; how to "make politics", while remaining free from political responsibility; how to "make history" without experiencing the unpleasantness of the process, and, above all, the consequence of the irresponsible "making of history". Incidentally, in order to convince the reader of the truth of his proffered solution to the problem, Sartre, skilled in the refinements of his craft, is not entirely straightforward: he chooses the roundabout way and, before taking his reader to the conclusion affirmed at the very beginning of his social-historical substantiation, conducts him round the circles of Dante's Inferno, dramatising the Writer's predicament in order, after the reader has felt all the desperation of the predicament that has occurred, to offer him the same affirmation as a formula for breakthrough, the only possible way out of the Dead End. And what reader will hold out against taking for an undeniable truth the thesis that has left him in a state of catharsis?

The state of being 'declasse', reasons Sartre, giving a new and tragic turn to his thought, was beneficial to the writer only while the bourgeoisie, the class that produced him, remained in the ascendant as a progressive social class. But after 1848, when it was discovered that it had ceased to be such and that the mainspring of social progress was now the working class struggling against it, the 'declasse' position of the writer as a refugee from the bourgeois environment became a misery for him and consequently for literature as a whole. If writing was an act of absolute freedom, then the writer could remain the ideologist of the bourgeoisie only by ceasing to be a writer. Free writing and the bourgeois ideology had gone in opposite directions, since the bourgeoisie had ceased to be the objective carrier of the liberation trend. Henceforth, service to the bourgeoisie would mean literature's subjection to bourgeois utilitarianism, the institutionalisation of the writer's work and the conversion of reading into a social ritual, a socially permissible form of entertainment. This meant that literature, listening to its own inner voice, the call of Freedom, could exist only in opposition to the bourgeoisie and bourgeois values, irrespective of whether it was guided by the conception of art for art's sake, or by symbolist or realist principles. ``Refusal'' (the same old Sartrean negative freedom) becomes the only form of existence for literature, a position which, according to Sartre, cannot be described as other than the expression of the "unhappy consciousness", or the "consciousness of unhappiness". The true (social) source of this unhappiness is the widening gap between the writer and his own class, based on the consciousness of its conservatism, on the one hand, and, on the other hand, the writer's inability to merge with the proletariat, whom he realised to have both the strength and the future. If previously being 'declasse' put the writer ``above'' the classes (while not depriving his work of truly class content), it now puts him ``under'' them, turning him into a bohemian.

Now, according to Sartre, the writer is achieving his freedom, the freedom to reject society, social and moral definitions (that is, limitations, for every definition limits) only at his own risk. Nothing guarantees the connection between the revolt and the real historical rejection any more; history no longer confirms the verities of a literature which has risen from free choice and, as before, affirms it in its every act. Hence the mark of degradation, which Sartre certainly wants to find in the literary and artistic tendencies of the West dating back to the time when the bourgeoisie had already ceased to be revolutionary and the writer, a refugee from that environment, had not found his way to the new revolutionary forces, or to be more precise, had not found the way to join them without losing his freedom and dignity. Hence the gradual loss by literature of its real content, accompanied by the loss of a public–a tendency leading in the end to literature being deprived of one altogether: it had a reader, but did not have a public, if by this we understand a certain moral-political, and again political rather than moral, unity of readers and writer (who himself is nothing other than the ideal reader of his own works), etc. The writer's former commitment to politics, being accomplished through literature (through the very choice to write) now is questionable: committed in his free writing, the writer no longer has any guarantee that he is thereby involved in a definite policy, in a definite means of making history, and so his commitment as a writer differs little from actual non-commitment.

All these considerations lead Sartre to the conclusion that the writer's commitment should be created anew, proceeding from his factual non-commitment, that is departing from his purely negative freedom. And this means to establish a conscious (politically considered) relationship between literature and the real historical process, involving the former in the making of history at a new turn of the historical spiral–when the leading force of history is no longer that class from which the writer emerged, but an entirely different one, opposed to it and actually digging its grave. This connection, according to Sartre, can arise only if literature consciously and purposefully changes itself into a true, i.e. critical, mirror of politics.

And now, too, in this apparently new historical situation, the writer emerges as a focus of the main class and political contradiction of the era, and literature, his brain child, as the voice of truth about the writer's existence and consequently (since all the truth of politics is concentrated in this existence) the political truth. And again there arises a prospect of changing the ``inadequacy'' of being 'declasse' (and consequently, morally disoriented) into a higher–- political!–virtue: the writer is again offered the chance of being the arbiter in the social conflict, and not because he is so good, but because he is particularly bad, because his soul is filled with all kinds of contradictions that prevent him from adopting any kind of definite stance or of assuming clearly defined obligations. Sartre's writer wants to be the voice of conscience (more precisely, the voice of political ethics) on behalf of all society as the representative of literary bohemia–and of that alone. The moral helplessness and spiritual emptiness of such a writer render him incapable of higher creative work and compel him to substitute semi-journalistic rationalisations of the political scandals about which the daily papers keep the public informed. All this supposedly ensures the political trustworthiness of his position and his output.

However, we would oversimplify the state of affairs if we saw Sartre's conception as solely expressing the mood of a certain social stratum–in this case, the bohemian-lumpen-minded elements of the bourgeois artistic intelligentsia. Sartre's tendency to politicise literature, which led him to the identification of literature with politics, had other and deeper causes arising from the substantial changes under way in 20th-century Western culture. This was the "drying out", already mentioned above, of that religious-mythological soil on which, over many centuries, the mutual understanding of the artist and the public was brought about. As we have already mentioned, one form of the reaction to this was the resorting of writers and artists to the ``artificial'' myths–those created by philosophers and acquiring the forms of this or that conception of man, this or that mythologem which supplied a paradigm of man, his place in the universe and his historical destiny. From the example of his own personal literary creativeness, the alpha and omega of which was the existentialist myth of man and his nature, Sartre had occasion to be convinced that with this kind of writing he could count on a very narrow circle of readers–on the same elite which, to judge by his later formulation, although they brought him readers, did not amount to a public proper. The affirmation that a writer refugee from a bourgeois background "does not have a public'',11 also became relevant to all the creative writing of Sartre the existentialist and especially his novel 'La Nausee'. Faced with this "crisis of the public", generally typical of post-war artistic life in the West, Sartre turned for help to politics and political ideology–a move for which he was prepared by participating in the Resistance.

Of its own, this move by one of France's most distinguished writers testified that the literature of artificially (i.e. philosophically) constructed myths, catering for narrow, elitist reading circles, together with a loss of the general relevance of its content, was also losing its public; that in its desire to hold that public or win it back if it had already been lost, Western literature had discovered an unambigious tendency to rely on the general relevance of politics and political ideology. Politics should now play, in relation to literature, the same role that had been played between the two world wars by philosophy, the philosophically constructed myth, the mythologem of man, his nature and the meaning of his existence. At the same time, however– and this was put by Sartre as directly as he could–writers of Sartre's kind wanted to retain for themselves the right of free intercourse with politics–that same "playful ironically-reflexive" attitude which, since the times of the Romantics, had consolidated itself in the mutual relations between the artist and his ``material''. Moreover, it was precisely this play approach to the game of political 'Realien' in literature that was seen by Sartre as politics in the highest sense, the true model for real politics, for the adoption of concrete political decisions. In this way, Sartre the writer, it seemed, had killed two birds with one stone: he had finally found generally applicable grounds for serious dialogue with his reader without undertaking any serious political obligations. In order to attract the public at large, Sartre the writer decided to become political but, when it was necessary to settle the political accounts, he would make it clear that he was a writer. Incidentally, in the second case he seriously contradicted himself: after all, this writing, a game of political 'Realien', was also acknowledged to be the highest form of political activity...

Sartre was trying to solve the contradictions of his theory (let it be said here and now, without any particular success) by means of a specific concept: "the literature of 'praxis"'. According to Sartre, it is a positive alternative to the "literature of consumption", or "consumer literature", which corresponds to the epoch of bourgeois resignation, that is, the period when the bourgeoisie is already ceasing to play a revolutionary historical role. This literature of 'praxis' is born just when literature finally acknowledges that it has no public, that is, as Sartre puts it, lives "in the epoch of a public that cannot be found". The birth of the literature of 'praxis' testifies to literature's active search for its own public, which may only be found if literature again joins the process of real historical creation–and precisely insofar as it succeeds in becoming an active force in that process. As distinct from the literature of consumption, says Sartre, the literature of 'praxis' links not Being and Possession, but Being and Doing; it is not oriented on utilisation but on the transformation of the world, on commitment in history, in politics, and in the struggle of the classes and parties.

However, the peculiarity of commitment by literature in history is, according to Sartre, that it not only does not presume that the writer has a direct bond with this or that class-political force struggling on the social arena, but in principle excludes it on the grounds that literature itself is the expression of true politics, and, therefore, any deviation from literature's political position–and this inevitably occurs if the writer joins any party–is also a deviation from the political truth. It follows from this that true literature–the literature of 'praxis'–must perceive itself as something in the nature of a party, but a party–yet again!–not in the empirical, but in the highest sense: a party standing above all other parties and judging them on the basis of its higher principle–that of freedom (let us not forget that the last only means "freedom from", that is, purely negative freedom). "The party of literature" thus proves to be a paradoxical ``non-party'' party which, on the one hand, does not want to associate itself with any of the actually existing class-party forces but, on the other hand, precisely for that reason, regards itself as the most genuine party, the embodiment of the party spirit as such.

The detachment (both organisational and moral) from actually existing classes and parties, allowing the writer in one case (situation) to support one class (party), in the other case, on the side of another class, or party, to criticise the second from the viewpoint of the first and to criticise the first from the viewpoint of the second, etc. This expression of the position of the so-called "non-party journalist" is indeed seen by Sartre as an embodiment of the true party spirit. The non-party journalist, however, interested only in the inter-party struggle, writing about nothing else and completely locked up in the closed circle of political ideology (for he does not know any other reality than the political)–this is the one whose viewpoint has received its embodiment in Sartre's interpretation of the literature of 'praxis'. Not having his own clear, personal and definite or, to use the language of philosophy, substantial position, this character is only capable of switching from the position of one party to another, entering into the spirit of each of them (like and actor who always knows that this is only one of his roles and it can be exchanged for another tomorrow), using the arguments of each of them against all the others, and so playing a political game characterised simultaneously by commitment in politics and complete freedom from them. In general, despite all Sartre's contemptuous remarks about consumer literature, in the objectives of the non-party journalist, whose self-appointed ideologist Sartre became, it is impossible not to sense an entirely consumer–i.e. hedonistic–attitude to politics that have been turned into a kind of game: the enjoyment of "committed non-commitment". 'As' we see, the hedonistic trend, which subsequently gave a specific colouring to New Left politics, also had Sartre's literary ``leftism'' as one of its sources, a literary game of political leftism which made it impossible for Sartre to take up a definite political position.

If, however, in one of its aspects, Sartre's conception of the literature of 'praxis' was the literary disintegration of politics, their dissipation in literariness, in irresponsible journalism, in a theatricalised politics, then in its other aspect this conception was political disintegration of literature, dissipation in political games, in switching to and fro between various political positions, in rushing from one political extreme to the other, which–and this is the most important and vital point–led with logical inevitability to the loss by literature of its basic subject–man, now reduced to one dimension only, the political, changed into a mere point of intersection of various political forces and trends, and concerned, supposedly, with only one thing: endless reflections on the theme of political choice which is never actually made, since it is subject to reservations all the time. And if, passing off his literary ``leftism'' as true politics, Sartre was a long, long way from the truth, since it was no more than the project of a game of politics (the game which the New Left extremists, welcomed by him, subsequently tried to realise in practice), then, in putting forward the thesis that politics was the essence of literature, he was saying something indeed very much to the point, but only in the sense that his writing had in actual fact lost its universally human content and there was nothing left for it but to resort to politics for that content. As a result of this move, he not only prepared the New Left politicising of literature, but also became one of the precursors of literature's political liquidation in New Left extremism.

'[chapter two]'
3. The Frankfurt Criticism of the Conception of Committed Literature

Interestingly enough, Sartre's conception of literature and art evoked some very sharp criticism from leading theorists of the Frankfurt school, above all from Adorno. His attack on Sartre is of interest in a number of respects. First, because two essentially different conceptions of literature and art are revealed in the same neo-Marxist trend. Secondly, because the difference in these two conceptions at once disclosed a difference in the two models of man. Thirdly, because the difference of these two models, in its turn, testified to the existence in neo-Marxism of essentially different myths of man, his nature, his destiny, etc. Fourth, because in the course of the controversy we have been studying it has already become clear which of the competing mythologems had a future, in the sense of being likely to expand its influence on the literature and art of the 60s. That is why it is worth dwellin in somewhat greater detail on Adorno's work, "Towards a Dialectics of Commitment" (1962)12 an which the Frankfurt version of neo-Marxism challenges Sartre (who was on the way to creating his own version of neo-Marxism), and challenges him, moreover, precisely about literature, its essence and its social function.

Adorno accuses Sartre of being unable to distinguish between two things when discussing literature: what the artist himself wants from his own work (the subjective aspect) and what is actually expressed in the work (the objective aspect). Sartre is consequently doomed to endless vacillation between these two. According to Adorno, the crux of the matter is in this differentiation and in the closely associated definition of the artist's position. If Sartre's conception is considered from this viewpoint, it becomes obvious that he has in mind the subjective aspect and clearly underestimates the objective. For him, a work of art is the conscious expression of its author's intention, above all, his political intention. Adorno sees this position as subjectivist: moreover, as immediately becomes clear, not because Sartre overestimates the role of the subject (in this case, the author and his conscious intention), but because in general he acknowledges its traditional function in art, whereas in actual fact it has not only been reduced to an infinitely small magnitude, but has essentially changed in content.

As we have already seen, Adorno, in opposition to Sartre, proceeds from the concept that, under the conditions of the late-capitalist society, the subject and subjectivity have in general already lost their historical relevance; they are forms without content, whereas the real content finds actual and not illusory expression in impersonal, dark forces. As applied to the arts, this also means the defeat of the creative subject (artist), likewise of the percipient subject (the public as a totality of free and self-a ware individuals). So, according to Adorno's logic, the creative artist's own conscious intentions and their conscious apprehension by the percipient individual lose their former true meaning; they must be relegated to false consciousness, that is, to ``ideology''.

Henceforth, neither the creative artist nor the percipient public, much less the critics reflecting on art, should believe any more in the role or the free and conscious initiative of the creative artist (all the less so since this role was always substantially limited to the sphere of the unconscious, which performs a decisive function in artistic creation). What was always essential for art, although it did not play so significant a role as in our age, now becomes particularly important: impact in the sphere of the unconscious, since to appeal to the conscious intention of the creative individual in art is subjectivism. That is why, according to Adorno, the creativity of the radically inclined artist inevitably proves conservative in its objective ( including aesthetic) content, if he continues to proceed from the principle of the aesthetic (and any other) significance of the self-aware individual who freely makes his choice and his decisions–moral, political and so on.

Even Sartre's faith in the artistic significance of poetry's conceptual content and conceptual meaning of poetry in general is relegated by Adorno to political conservatism (and also to survivals of religiosity). Adorno not only expresses his profound doubts concerning the effectiveness of art's impact on the intellectual, and especially conceptual, sphere of individual consciousness of the percipients, but his doubts about the use of appealing to their consciousness and self-awareness altogether. Truly irreligious art, according to Adorno, excludes any faith in the conceptual meaning of poetry–both for the poet himself and for his public. Consequently, the poet should not strive to embody in his writings a certain conceptually expressed content, nor should the public look for it in them. Adorno's ``radical'' (in opposition to Sartre's ``conservative'') approach postulates that, first, the work expresses the 'extra-' and iw-personal aims of the artist, his 'extra-' and zw-conscious urge, and all this should have an effect on the corresponding– 'ante-personal' and pre-conscious–structures of the percipient individuals. Wherever it is not consciousness and consciousness that associate, but two unconscious and, consequently, anonymous structures, only then is true and not ideological contact achieved between the work of art and those who perceive it. Secondly, only in this sense is it possible to say that in art a certain objective tendency receives expression–a tendency whose essence consists in the ``fall'' of personality and individuality, which ceases to be an active and conscious carrier of social content, but is entirely unconscious (and formlessly anonymous) material for the embodiment of that content.

Hence the incomprehensibility of the latest works of art on which Adorno aligns himself. After all, they do not even presume any understanding by the recipient. Arising in the unconscious sphere of the artist, flowing from it, like the overspill from a boiling cauldron, they are only intended to convey their creator's predicament: his being hounded and crushed by the alienated world of late-capitalism. It is a state in which he already ceases to believe in himself and loses his individuality and awareness. All he can do is cry out to affect the people around him. The works of the contemporary artist, according to Adorno, are these howls, the half-strangled voice of the tortured flesh which has already lost the characteristics that once made it an individual and a personality. In other words, the latest art does not hope for understanding on the part of the recipients, but on influencing their subconscious; an influence that evokes horror, reminding them that the nightmare feeling aroused in them by the latest works of literature and art is a picture of their own nightmare condition–to be more precise, not even a picture, but a documentary record of it. The very existence of the absolutely incomprehensible, self-contained work of art is enough to shock the recipient. The total incomprehensibility of art (which was always the domain of the beautiful), and the shock administered by it, can only mean one thing: beauty has covered its face before the horrors of this world; and this cannot but evoke an answering sense of horror, although this is not always realised and the nightmare meaninglessness of the work is thought to be the sole source of that horror.

It is obvious that we have here two different conceptions of art aligned on two essentially different models of man. True, Adorno lets it be understood from the beginning that this only concerns the two different approaches to the present-day condition of Western man. However, it gradually becomes absolutely clear that the difference goes much deeper–into the incompatible principles of the approach to man. Criticising Sartre's concept of man, Adorno insists that it does not correspond to the real situation that has formed in the state-monopoly society. This situation does not leave the individual any room for the choice of various alternatives, much less for any absolutely free existential decision. For contemporary man, if Adorno is to be believed, that very situation which Kierkegaard ridiculed in his time is true (and Sartre fully believed him on this point) when he summed up Hegel's fatalism in the following words: If you raise your hat, I'll hit you; if you don't, I'll hit you anyway!

This situation is illustrated, according to Adorno, by many of Sartre's plays, which is why they do not fulfil their role as models of Sartrean existentialism (or of the Sartrean neo-Marxist conception of literature). They create, affirms Adorno, seeing this as very much in their favour, the atmosphere of a wholly controlled world that excludes even elementary, to say nothing of existential, choice. In this sense, Sartre's "theatre of ideas" fulfils an entirely different function, and one not assigned to it by Sartre the existentialist (and the author of the neo-Marxist conception of literature). This theatre refutes Sartre's fundamental categories. Incidentally, something even more telling is brought to light: Sartre's ideas, with which his writings are imbued, link him to a far greater extent with existing reality than would have been wanted by the radically ins clined Sartre. His political position, like the objective conr tent of his own works, proves to be profoundly at variance with his idea of man and the conception of literature that emerges from it. If, in the first case, we are dealing with a radical non-acceptance of reality, in the second we find ourselves confronted by a tie-up with this same reality on the basis of what Adorno calls "cultural conservatism" and the subjectivist concept of man, which preserves purely religious motives so much at odds with Sartre's openly avowed atheism. This second aspect of the matte'r, which also affected Sartre's dramatic works, made possible, according to Adorno, the assimilation of Sartre's plays by capitalism's culture industry and ensured their success.

Sartre's subjectivist intention, prompting him to praise the individual where it is hardly likely that anything of him remains, prevents Sartre from "knowing hell", against which he revolts. All the time, according to Adorno, he is subject to various illusions about the real situation of contemporary man. He imagines, for example, that people still mean something, if not in the dregs of society, then at least on the social "command heights" where decisions are at least made by individuals and not by an anonymous machinery. This striving of Sartre's to find ``life'' (subjectivity) where it is totally lacking and where it cannot in principle exist (at any event, according to Adorno) is countered-by the Frankfurt thinker with Beckett's "lost ones", the strange beings who have completely lost all semblance of humanity and who, according to the dramatist's intention, symbolise the ultimate degradation of man in the contemporary world'. Moreover, Adorno makes it clear that Sartre's subjectivist idealisation of man is not also without its dangers.-in..the political context, since it discloses the closeness of Sartre's position to that of the fascist philosopher Giovanni Gentile, who proclaimed the absolute dynamism of the same philosophical quality. In a word, the weakness of Sartre's con^ ception of commitment defeats the very cause to which. ;he became committed–his political radicalism, with a risk.of it becoming its own opposite.

Feeling, however, that his conclusion about the. .``end'' of man in the contemporary era casts some doubt on the possibility of any kind of art existing (avant-garde included), Adorno develops, in opposition to Sartre, the concepfeion of art balancing on the brink of its own negation. Modifying a personal statement of his own, reflecting the mood of his early post-war years–that to write poetry after Auschwitz is barbarity (where, in fact, he had already drawn a conclusion about the end of art)–Adorno argues as follows. This statement, he says, expressed in negative form the same impulse that inspires Sartre's literary work: after World War II and Hitler's death camps, the arts cannot live any more as if nothing had happened. Moreover, by the very fact of their "simple being" they affirm or justify the nightmare inhumanity of a civilisation that can asphyxiate millions of people in gas chambers. But poet and journalist Hans Magnus Enzensberger is right when, objecting to this statement, he draws the conclusion that poetry must nevertheless be preserved even in the face of all these nightmares, having changed, however, the form of its existence so that henceforth its "simple being" could not be evaluated as agreement with them.

Developing this idea further, Adorno draws a conclusion about the paradox of the existence of art which, on the one hand, cannot and does not have the moral right to exist, and, on the other hand, cannot help but exist, since it also has no right not to exist. The solution of this paradox, according to Adorno, must be the paradoxical existence of art in the form of its own negation: self-denunciation, selfdestruction, etc., for only in this way can it model the real state of contemporary man and humanity.

However, this paradox of the impossible existence or accomplished impossibility of art makes itself constantly known, in each work, in each gesture by the creative artist. Art concerned with reminding us of the horror of human existence in our age acquires a frightening force: the force of nightmare fact, the overflow of extreme suffering, the cry, the howl of horror–for it cannot and does not want to be anything else. However: art can show all this only in its own–aesthetic!–sphere: outside that, it would cease to remain art, would become something different. This one circumstance gives rise to the constant risk that the nightmare fact will become the image of itself, the overflow of extreme suffering will become a picture of that suffering, and the howl of horror will become the depiction of that howl. In other words, in spite of all the reluctance of the latest (avant-garde) art to create works of art and to remain a pure document of what is horrifying in human life, it cannot prevent these documents from being taken as works of art and so being consumed by the public. What has occurred as a gesture of non-acceptance of this world, irrespective of the will and desire of the artist, adopts the form of a work of art, and in this form it becomes ``fodder'' for the very world which has destroyed art, changing it into a sheer howl, a scream of horror (remember the expressionist Munch's "The Scream"). Suffering, which the artist wishes to fling in the face of the culpable world, reveals a paradoxical likelihood of acquiring, in the perception of the public, diametrically opposite features by giving aesthetic pleasure.

Hence the necessity for constant vigilance by the avantgarde artist: he must repeatedly destroy the form of work of art so that the horror of human existence that he describes should not acquire aesthetic value by giving pleasure when contemplated. The avant-garde artist must keep breaking the "aesthetic distance" repeatedly appearing between art and life, but do so in such a way that art is nevertheless preserved, although taken at the moment of fall, of annihilation–together with humanity whose end it is announcing. Failing this, the inexpressible horror which the avant-garde artist is trying to manifest is converted into "cultural wealth", that is, into a product of the Culture Industry, so that it can be sold wholesale and retail. This means that art has not held its uncompromising position, has joined the culture game and is playing it by the rules.

That is why, according to Adorno, only a work of art that upholds the principle of "uncompromising autonomy", or ``self-containedness'', and complete rupture of all ties with the public–only that art can avoid adaptation to the culture market; and as such, even against the artist's will, it becomes an attack on culture, on the type of civilisation it defends. It is in this way that the very rupture with the world becomes, for the autonomous work of art, a form of connection with it, and the shock of the incomprehensible inflicted by it on the public becomes a means whereby that public can apprehend it.

In this way, a paradoxical situation is brought about. Works insisting on their full autonomy and refusing to have anything in common with existing reality, find themselves in a definite relationship or association with it: according to Adorno, in the only possible connection of negation or rejection of that reality. Since this connection enters into the structure of the work itself, splitting it up from inside and yet turning it into something bigger than art and lesser than art, then any such (``inconceivable'') work turns out to be connected with reality inwardly as well: by its own form, by its own structuring which reproduces the relationship of the work, and consequently of the artist, of man, to the world of the late-capitalist civilisation. The avant-garde artist's imagination does not, therefore, create out of nothing. According to Adorno, autonomous works opposing reality on an empirical level prove more obedient to reality's inner law than, say, those of Sartre. That is why, if one agrees with Adorno's conclusion, the works of Sartre, who professed to be so politically concerned about the connection with contemporary reality, prove, in fact, far more remote from it than the autonomous works that do not want anything to do with reality at all.

What is decisive, as we see (and this is repeatedly stressed by Adorno himself) is his postulate that the subject no longer plays a historical or any other independent role. All that is left of it is an empty shell; philosophers like Sartre still take it seriously and become enmeshed in the toils of the official ideology, which exploits humanist memories and reminiscences. Beckett's 'Ecce Homo' is, according to Adorno, the sole satisfactory representation of what man has become today. Moreover, this truth, which is demonstrated by the works of Kafka, Beckett and others, has a far greater impact on reality than the political slogans in the committed writings of Sartre (in this particular context, Adorno also mentions Brecht). In opposition to them, committed works are sometimes taken as a nursery game, as something hopelessly infantile. Kafka and Beckett awake in people that same existential horror, a horror that penetrates the whole human being, about which authors like Sartre can only talk and theorise.

There is one very noticeable feature of Adorno's controversy with Sartre. In form, it looks as if the Sartrean existential-ontological construction, implied by his conception of committed literature, is being countered by Adorno with a description of the actual state of affairs–man's real predicament under state-monopoly capitalism. This, however, is only a first impression; an examination of Adorno's train of thought (against the background of all his writings in the 50s and 60s) leads us to the conclusion that this description is based on a definite conception of man which arouses the suspicion that we are dealing not so much with a description as with a biased interpretation of a group of phenomena. As for the conception, as we have shown in the course of this discussion, it is of a clearly marked ``Freudo-Marxist'' character, that is, it has leanings towards the Freudian myth of man, his essence and his place in the universe–interpreted, however, with the aid of somewhat arbitrarily chosen Marxist concepts.

The essence of Adorno's (and Horkheimer's) conception of man consist in its naturalism–but socially enciphered. This naturalism encourages Adorno to take as truly human not social or cultural qualities, but primordial natural dimensions of human existence, that is, in the final analysis, biological dimensions, the dimensions of man taken as a natural body. The priority of what is vital and natural, bodily, in the human essence, as affirmed by the Frankfurt theorist, offers an exceptionally favourable opportunity for the translation of the corresponding conception of man into Freudian language. True, a certain obstacle here is the ``liberalism'' of Freud, who tried to explain human nature as a compromise of biological and socio-cultural principles–a compromise unthinkable to so radically ( antisocially and anti-culturally) aligned a thinker as Adorno. And it is here that Adorno is rescued by his sociologised language, worked out by the illegitimate absolutisation of the Marxist concept of alienation. Having corrected Freud's terminology by means of this language, Adorno (together with Horkheimer) has presented the case as if everything socio-cultural in human nature has been bred by its alienation–as a result of bourgeois exploitation!

Consequently, everything connected with man's individual and personal aspect, to which he is indebted for his existence in the social-cultural dimension, has fallen into the sphere of the alienated (and consequently untrue). This means that everything personal and individual from the very beginning, by definition, as it were, is doomed in Adorno and Horkheimer's conception, and doomed irrespective of state-monopoly capitalism, World War II and Hitler's death camps. The act of isolating man from nature, 181 of individuation, which plunged him into the sphere of social-cultural development–already stood for something ambiguous and suspicious, according to Horkheimer and Adorno, From the very start, personality and individuality have represented something deeply doubtful to them, and the collapse of these human definitions was bound to seem unavoidable and self-evident–a presupposition that makes Adorno liable to be suspected of insincerity when he begins to,bewail the subject perishing in the state-monopoly society. For that reason, the legitimate suspicion also occurs: is not Adorno exaggerating the magnitude of the collapse of the subject (and of all individually and personally aligned culture)? Has not Adorno seen the full extermination of personality, individuality, the subjective principle, in a process which has indeed gone quite far enough, but still has equally far to go before it reaches its end? Has not Adorno laid down his arms prematurely by surrendering to the cunning logic of his erroneous assumptions and a myth of man which he has not evaluated critically enough?

Indeed, if we examine the very individuation of man, his conversion into subject and personality, as a disease of nature in man (and it is this Nietzschean supposition, translated into ``Freudo-Marxian'' language, on which Adorno's conception of man is based), then there is no alternative but observe the progress of this disease until its end–until the death agonies of the individual-personal principle. Given such an expectation, it is very easy to see the end in any of the sombre, nightmare events which have come upon mankind throughout its tragic and agonising history. The eschatological approach is at the very foundations of the Adorno-Horkheimer conception of man; and as it originated in the moods of Adorno and Horkheimer that formed under the impression of the nazi crimes, the theoretically camouflaged eschatology of the Frankfurt conception has been to blame because these social thinkers were indeed in a great hurry to finish with the individual-personal principle of human existence. The circle is closed; the definite moods have flowed into the mould of the corresponding conception, and it, in its turn, has been doing everything to keep these moods alive, interpreting in the appropriate manner all the facts that it finds convenient and completely ignoring the inconvenient ones.

We would be distorting the perspective of the controversy over the question of whether the Arts are to survive or not if we did not consider one more line discernible in it. A line all the more typical, since its most distinguished representative, the poet and journalist Hans Magnus Enzensberger, offered it as a combination of two authorities, equally fashionable in New Left circles. On the one hand, he drew on Walter Benjamin, a left radical aesthetician and art sociologist in the 30s, from whom, incidentally, Adorno took this tradition. On the other, Enzensberger called on the authority of the popular Canadian "media philosopher", Marshall McLuhan. All this was done to substantiate a conclusion which deeply impressed the extremist Rebels against... that same spiritual culture.

4. The End of Written Literature?

.. .About ten years ago, a lecturer in literature at a British university told me a story from his own personal experience. A girl student had come to him before the exams and, evidently, to avoid any misunderstanding, announced there and then that in the last year she had not read a single book and was not intending to do so in the forthcoming one either.

``Why?" he asked, somewhat staggered by this statement from a would-be literature graduate.

``Why," replied the student with rhetorical passion, "reading is individual and it means an individual form of activity. And every individual activity is bourgeois. And so it helps the integration of the individual into the framework of the capitalist society. Not wishing to 'play the game' with this thoroughly rotten society," she continued, using well-rehearsed stock phrases and ideas, "I and certain of my fellow students have decided categorically to reject the bourgeois individualist means of acquiring knowledge, such as reading books and newspapers. We only recognise the immediately collective means of learning–debates, meetings, demonstrations and so on.''

The teacher's story was full of amusing details. The incident was mentioned as an example of the exaggeration and fantasies to which students are so prone. I recalled the 20s with their "brigade method" of instruction In Soviet schools and I told my acquaintance about it. But this historical analogy was lost on him, although it has something instructive in it. He was much more interested in the connection between the above anecdote and the general growth of activity among the student youth, and their spontaneous quest for new forms of self-expression and self-fulfilment which would be of a directly collective character.

Since then, I have often remembered the English teacher's story. I have been persistently reminded of it by the increasingly ominous tirades against culture which, after May 1968, quickly migrated from the Latin Quarter to the pages of the newspapers, magazines and New Left anthologies. A little while afterwards, I was again reminded of the story by Hans Magnus Enzensberger's article in the 20th issue of 'Kursbuch', which he publishes.13 Its main thesis was that same assertion about the bourgeois nature of written literature as such, appealing to which the above-mentioned student of the literary faculty had ``sabotaged'' her own exam. . Put side by side, these two seemingly different incidents –the student's refusal to read literature, although it was her subject, and the theoretical rejection of written literature by a poet and a publicist–prompted three obvious conclusions:

1. It is hard to find in the youth protest movement any product of the wildest imagination that could not obtain "theoretical substantiation" in due course.

2. In the course of such substantiation, a definite ideological tradition is invariably found in which the phenomenon being substantiated becomes the manifestation of a 'certain mentality'.

3. Against the background of this type of mentality, which has not only historical but spiritual roots, this phenomenon (for instance, the declaration at the literature exam) cannot be seen as haphazard or prompted by the mood of the moment.

We shall discuss this further.

Enzensberger's criticism of written literature can be summed up as follows. A book, like any other ``old'', i.e. `` obsolete'', means of communication, for example, easel-painting, is of exclusively class character. The class character of the writer's work is not subject to doubt even in the age of universal compulsory education. Written literature in general took shape as a weapon of the progressive bourgeoisie, which, naturally, must become less progressive in the late-capitalist era, when the ruling class is becoming reactionary.

In its structural aspect, the bourgeois character of bookpublishing is primarily due to the fact that it is a ``monologue'' means of communication. The book as its instrument isolates the producer and the consumer from one another, preventing dialogue between them in the communication process. Moreover, the writer's work presupposes a high level of specialisation, and this widens the gap between the producers of books and their consumers, disposing the first to "caste thinking" and evoking in them an illusion of selectness, of superiority over the second. From the viewpoint of content, this caste thinking is simply a result of the writer's adaptation to bourgeois society with its norms and its taboos.

This adaptation results from many years of sophisticated spiritual and physiological training. The very process of learning elementary writing (orthography) and literature is the difficult acquisition of an "extremely formalised technique"–a sort of circus training, accomplished by bourgeois society through the school. After all, the aesthetics of written literature expresses a clear contempt for life: pauses, slips of the tongue, hesitation, and repetitions are regarded as violations of the rules. In accordance with these, children from their earliest years learn to shield unsolved problems "with a wall of accuracy in presentation". For many years they are taught to regulate linguistic forms without concern for content, to blot out, with the aid of formalised calligraphy, the real contradictions of life, and to apply "bourgeois rationalisation" to what cannot be rationalised by purely linguistic means. Finally, the circus training of written literature does not withstand criticism from the purely physiological point of view. The very act of writing calls for an unnatural posture. This becomes particularly evident when writing is compared with speaking–it is no accident that "all people speak better than they write''.

Enzensberger does not restrict himself to criticism of written literature from ``class'', anthropological and physiological standpoints; he tries to relativise the object of his criticism by surveying literature from the bird's-eyeview of world history. "Examined historically," he states, "written literature played a dominant role only in the course of a few centuries. Today, the predominance of books is already a kind of episode. It was preceded by a much longer period when literature was oral; it is now being liberated by the age of electronic media, which are giving it back its tendency to speak with each and every one.''14 Written literature, which was only an episode ( conditioned historically–both by class and technological factors) in the development of literature in general, must again give way to oral literature.

Incidentally, the latter also is seen as a mere moment in the system of electronic means of communication–such as radio, the cinema and television which, according to Enzensberger, does not really need either the written text or literary formulation.

As a moment of electronic means of communication ( according to Enzensberger) there was to figure–only in the Future, thank goodness–not even oral literature, but ordinary colloquial speech, when the speaker has not yet learned its norms and laws. This, incidentally, is the moment when, as a rule, a man speaks less with his tongue than his tongue speaks through the talker, promoting him to say something entirely different from what he intended. True, a man wandering helplessly about the thickets of language and incapable of expressing his ideas briefly and accurately is a far more entertaining spectacle than one who has a good command of language. Since Enzensberger has taken up the ``visual'' aspect of television as a more contemporary means of communication, he must inevitably prefer the first man to the second.

According to Enzensberger, the microphone and the television camera are "abolishing the class character of the means of production" in the media. This is pushing into the background all the norms prescribed by books as a form of communication: "the live interview, the debate and the demonstration do not demand and do not allow either orthography or calligraphy". In theory, any chance

comer can now be a producer in the system of communications, and the less refined by book culture, the better: the more interesting he will be to watch on television.

And so whatever aspect of written (and, as we have seen, not only written) literature is taken, the conclusion, according to Enzensberger, will be the same. It is doomed, it must be pushed out by more contemporary, i.e. electronic means of mass communication. "Incidentally," says Enzensberger, "it is extremely unlikely that writing will vanish in the foreseeable future as a special technique. This also applies to books, the practical advantages of which for many purposes are obvious, as before. Although it is less convenient and compact than other systems of accumulation, a book still offers simpler possibilities for use than, say, microfilm or recording tape. It may be integrated, as an extreme case, into the new system of communications and so lose the remnants of its cult and ritual glamour.''

This proviso does not substantially change the position. The process of pushing out the book system of communication (to the point of the "extreme case") is essential, and being necessary, it is true; being true, it is beneficial, morally justified, etc., etc. For all these definitions coincide, according to Enzensberger's general idea, as aspects of historical Necessity. He is inclined to elevate into the ranks of the latter any fact of present-day life, just so long as it satisfies the demands of novelty and contemporaneity which, in conformity with his avant-garde logic, became ``topicality'' and ``up-to-dateness''. Such is Enzensberger's general methodological position, although he himself is far from always being aware of its philosophical sources and possible explications.

Enzensberger contrasts his own methodological position with that of the "New Left of the 60s" which, in his opinion, upheld a retrograde (not to say reactionary) viewpoint. They criticised the latest, i.e. electronic, means of mass communication from the standpoint of obsolete, ``book-written'' means when they should have criticised the latter from the standpoint of the former. If, as a result of reversing their viewpoint, he actually succeeded in overcoming the pessimistic notes coming from the New Left of the 60s when they talked about the negative aspects of the electronic mass media, he did so by 187 taking an extremely pessimistic view of literature and all that could be described as the personal aspect of communications. However, the gods clearly rejected this hecatomb of Enzensberger's. In boosting the latest means of mass communication by demoting the ``obsolete'' ones, he did far more than was needed to counteract the pessimism of the New Left of the 60s and flew to the other extreme of "uncritical positivism", to use the young Marx's term.

The association with Marx's critique of Hegel's uncritical positivism is not accidental here. Marx criticised the great German idealist because his philosophy arrives with logical inevitability at the sanctificaton of the most wretched "empirical reality". The same happens to Enzensberger, who dismisses literature and boosts electronic means of communication because they are of later origin and because they have power behind them. (Although–at present, in any case–it is a purely 'quantitative' power which has a long way to go before it reaches the 'qualitative' level of the ``obsolete'' means of communication.) And all the positive factors, which he discerns in the latest means of communication are, in effect, deduced from this circumstance and are a crude apology for it, which is polemically opposed to the hypercritical attitude held by the New Left of the 60s.

Enzensberger considers ``egalitarianism'' to be the most important feature of the electronic mass media which he firmly sets in opposition to the ``old'' ones, "such as the reproduction of books or paintings": anyone can take part in them, anyone can be a ``producer'' irrespective of educational and cultural standards. And since, according to Enzensberger, culture and education have an exclusively class character, it may be said that "the tendency is for the new means of communication to abolish all the privileges of education and thereby the cultural monopoly of the intelligentsia". Enzensberger sees this tendency in the new means of communication as a cause of the resentment, the vengeful feelings experienced by the New Left of the 60s for the "industry of consciousness". According to him, they criticised it for its tendency towards depersonalisation and the mass approach, defending only their own narrow, selfish interests. And "the more quickly they use up the spirit which they attempt to defend against ' depersonalisation' and the 'mass approach', the better". For Enzensberger is unable to imagine the spirit, personally oriented and resisting the mass approach, otherwise than with the epithet ``bourgeois''.

The second positive feature of the new means of communication, thinks Enzensberger, is that they are " actively, and not specula lively" aligned. (The "book-writing means of communications" are correspondingly caught out in the sins of passivity and speculation.) Unfortunately, he does not explain what he means by this, although it is the assertion that probably raises the greatest number of questions and doubts. After all, a whole body of literature convincingly testifies that the electronic media demand far less activity from the recipient than, say, the appreciation of creative writing (or even of any written text). Some kind of effort at least is needed to peruse a given text. Such exertions are not really required to watch a television broadcast; all you have to do is simply not close your eyes–the rest will be done for you by the moving image. It even gains mastery over your eyeballs and will manipulate them independently of you. These facts cannot be avoided, especially since they were borne in mind by those whom Enzensberger lumps together under the general heading of the New Left of the 60s. He should have given his own interpretation of these facts, especially since they prompted him to draw a conclusion about the ``active'' orientation of electronic media. Or–and this is possible too– he should have found a new interpretation for the concept of ``activity'' and the "active orientation" of perception and consciousness in general.

The third important advantage of the latest means of communication, says Enzensberger, is that they are aligned not on the past but on the present, not on tradition, but on actuality, on topicality, on the passing moment. Here he sees a structural feature in the product of the electronic mass media which ensures its radical opposition to such products of bourgeois culture as books, paintings and so on. These phenomena of bourgeois culture (like bourgeois culture as a whole) are poisoned by the privateownership aspirations of the capitalist society, by the striving for possession. For these reasons, Enzensberger assumes, even in bourgeois culture there has always been a tendency towards the creation of a lasting product which could survive the moment of its birth and go further than the urgency and topicality that engendered it. In general, according to Enzensberger's reasoning, the desire to arrest the moment, to make it ``linger'' by immortalising it in the work of art is a 'purely bourgeois' aspiration, inseverably tied up with the craving for property, accumulation, etc. This craving, that has always (and not only in bourgeois society) been a source of inspiration to the creative artist, is contrasted by Enzensberger with orientation on "the actual moment", on political topicality, presupposing the ruthless liquidation of what no longer corresponds to this orientation at the next moment, under the conditions of topicality of tomorrow. "The media," he writes,, " produce no object which would allow it to preserve or elevate itself. They simply wipe out 'spiritual property' and liquidate `heritage', that is, the specifically class transfer of immaterial capital." In this sense, the set-up typical of the mass media age is the complete opposite of bourgeois culture, which "wants property and, consequently, durability, and, best of all, eternity''.

Enzensberger fails to notice that if this idea is taken to its logical conclusion, he will have to offer as the ideal man a creature without a memory and living solely in the present, a being like something out of Orwell's nightmare visions. And, as if desiring to confirm this suspicion in the reader, Enzensberger writes with satisfaction that electronic media make it possible to bring the past up to date, putting historical material at the disposal of contemporary purposes, that is, to use the language of the 20s, converting the science of history into politics looking back to the past.

Although he adds that such an approach to history leads to its ``demystification'', to the discovery that "the writing of history is always manipulation" (and must remain so in the era of electronic communications), this proviso does not save the situation, merely deepening its ambiguity. The prospects for converting the writing of history into the deliberate manipulation of social consciousness by means of specially processed historical material are somehow not conducive to enthusiasm.

The peculiarity of Enzensberger's standpoint, however, is that he is sure of the inevitability and, consequently, justifiability of the manipulatory approach to the human consciousness, given contemporary systems of communications. He is therefore convinced that it is only possible to choose between hypocritical manipulation and cynical manipulation, based on stripping bare the method which is being used, and will continue to be used, by the manipulator.

``Every use of the media," writes Enzensberger, " presupposes manipulation. The elementary experience of production in the media, beginning with the choice of the means, through filming (recording), cutting, synchronisation and mixing–right to distribution, is all a form of interference in the available material. There is no such thing as writing, filming or preparing a radio transmission without manipulation. It is therefore not a question of whether the media are being manipulated or not, but of who is manipulating them. A revolutionary project should not lead to the disappearance of manipulation: on the contrary, it should make everyone a manipulator.''

Enzensberger is dissatisfied with books and paintings because, on the one hand, the manipulation is usually concealed and, on the other, is one-sided. As soon as a book is written and offered to the reader in the form of a complete work, the author can use it to manipulate the reader's mind (he has incorporated a scheme of manipulation in the work), whereas the reader cannot influence the author.

In a word, like any other self-contained work in the times of ``pre-electronic'' media, a book excludes the possibility of mutual manipulation. Only one-way manipulation is possible here–from above downwards, from communicator to recipient. As for the electronic media, they allow and even presuppose mutual manipulation.

Enzensberger does not pretend to be the sole author of this impressive theory of the universal manipulation which is to take place in the Future (on the ruins of the written book and other reproductive forms of communication and culture). He regards his theory as the logical development of views expressed by the ``left''-Marxist sociologist of the 30s, Walter Benjamin, in his, 'The Work of Art in the Age of the Technical Reproduction.15

True, Benjamin was not inclined to universalise his viewpoint as does his successor. He limited himself to the evolution of the 'picture' in West European painting owing to the development of reproduction techniques. As a result of his research, he came to the conclusion that the evolution of art consisted in the detachment of the picture from the totality of religious cult and ritual. Then, as graphics and other forms of reproduction developed, the picture showed a tendency to detach itself from the materials in which it was executed. Finally, this process led to the full liberation of the picture from all those dependencies by which it had been bound in the unique painting. If, at first, the picture had been seen as unique, permanently bound up with the situation within which it had arisen (being painted on the wall of a building, canvas or a sheet of paper), it could now be transferred to any situation; it could be put on any other object, whether a matchbox, a chocolate-wrapper or film.

Furthermore, according to Benjamin, the picture (and painting in general) finally lost what had distinguished it ever since its emergence in religious cult or ritual; it lost its aura, a kind of mystic radiation, like the golden halo round the heads of the saints on the icons. In this way, the picture (like art in general) was ultimately demystified. Moreover, the most powerful instrument of this was the cinema, which changed every picture into something purely instrumental (a tool of manipulation, as Enzensberger might say), into a pure function of the context in which it was offered to the viewer or, to be more precise, of the objective which the film director had in mind.

But it was this final phase in the evolution of the picture, fully demystified and liberated from any connection with religion, that revealed, as Benjamin thought, contradiction in the art of painting and, indeed, of all art. It transpired that art does not have a real foundation, is something in the highest degree subjective and is open to any application. This was demonstrated with particular eloquence by the cinema, showing that a picture is totally "without substance" and subject to any interpretation according to the conditions of perception, the director's motives, the spectator's attitudes, etc.

The picture turned out to be unstable and ghost-like; it exists and yet does not exist, for which reason one can do as one likes with it, turning it into an instrument for any kind of manipulation. Lacking its own foundation, the picture (like art in general) could not rely on aesthetics, that is, the cognition of its own laws, the laws of balancing between being and non-being. Even the aesthetic function of art, as it turned out, was not decisive: it characterised art in the transitional stage when it had freed itself from the power of religion but had not yet found for itself a new master.

Who, then, must become the new lord of art (or perhaps already has)? Where will it again find an adequate foundation?

Benjamin, and Enzensberger after him, believed that this new lord and master was going to be politics. The aesthetic function of art, stressed Enzensberger, proved haphazard: it characterised art in the bourgeois-individualistic epoch, when it was trying to appeal to individual personalities and was achieving definite successes along these lines. Now, however, in the age of the masses and mass movements, art cannot find support in this function and draw the energy from it for further existence. The 19th century, which regarded this function of art as basic and universal, proved wrong in the end. The 20th century showed that only politics could be a basis of art equivalent to that which it had had in religious cult and ritual; correspondingly, art's decisive function should not be aesthetic, but the one which it fulfils as a component of political action.

Since, continues Enzensberger, politics in our age are truly work with the masses, art can retain its real role only in so far as it can merge with the most powerful electronic media. This means, however, that one might say about the destiny of art in the age of mass movements and electronic communications what was already said about the destiny of written literature: art is subject to abolition in the system of electronic media, and will be preserved only as an extreme case.

``The tendencies," writes Enzensberger, "which Benjamin in his time identified in the cinema and fathomed theoretically in all their importance, are becoming manifest today along with the spectacular growth of the consciousness industry. What has so far been called art has been abolished by the media and in them. Any controversy about the end of art is futile, since that end is not treated as dialectical. The artistic is revealed as an extreme borderline case of far more general productiveness and it is socially significant only in so far as it rejects all claims to autonomy and understands itself as a borderline case .. . For aesthetic theory, this means the necessity of a decisive change in perspective. Instead of examining the new means of communication from the viewpoint of the older modes of production, theory must on the contrary analyse, from the viewpoint of contemporary production conditions, what is being produced by the traditional `artistic' means.''

In the framework of such a "decisive change in perspective", the specifically aesthetic problems of art and literature are abolished, and not in the Hegelian sense any more. In fact, instead of the examination of these problems, we come up against the same trick every time: Enzensberger demonstrates before us something in the nature of a trial with art and literature in the dock and the electronic media as the prosecutors. At best, the solution of specific problems of the cinema or television is passed off as a "general aesthetic" solution of the problem–on the grounds that literature and art are represented in them in ``abolished'' form (and if not represented–so much the worse for them). This is the picture we are given of the solution of the two most pressing aesthetic problems of the present times–the documentary approach and the work of art.

The critics' dismay at the documentary approach, writes Enzensberger, indicates how badly the thinking of the reviewers has lagged behind the state of the productive forces. Meanwhile, it is the latter that has deprived of its meaning one of the most fundamental categories of the old aesthetics–the "category of fiction". The opposition " fiction vs. non-fiction", says Enzensberger, has been struck off the agenda exactly like the more famous opposition "art vs. life". The development and refinement of reproduction techniques, with the result that it is becoming increasingly difficult to distinguish between the copy and the original, is gradually changing the problem of `` authenticity'' into an imaginary, or pseudo-problem. With the identity of what is being copied and the copy, "the aspect of reality free from the apparatus becomes a highly artificial aspect of it". It is hardest of all to reproduce, but as soon as it has been reproduced, the copy is indistinguishable from the original, which loses its ``substantial'' meaning. "The process of reproduction discards what is being reproduced and fundamentally alters it." If the copy is as good as the original, then the original is reduced, in its turn, to the level of a copy; it is converted into something wholly artificial. In other words, "categorical inauthenticity also spreads to the concept of what is documentary", to the concept of the original, etc. The original ends up as much an object of manipulation as the copy. If this is so, reasons Enzensberger, then the problem of the documentary approach ceases to exist.

As for art as a whole, the process under examination, according to Enzensberger, leads to the destruction of all the traditional frontiers and subsections–for example, "the distinctions between the documentary and the feature film are undermined". Henceforth there is no difference between reportage and comedy. Fact, whether shown with the television camera or ``constructed'' so that it cannot be distinguished from reality, is of exactly same value. And this is naturally not an artistic value any more, nor is it a value of art or literature, for such value presupposes a difference between the ``artificial'' and the ``non-artificial'', between the picture and what is being depicted. In this case, it is a value determined 'functionally'–by the role which the above-mentioned fact plays in the system of influencing the masses and the effectiveness of that role. According to Enzensberger, any material used in electronic communications, whether documentary or artificial and fictitious, is only half-processed. And the more substantially the origin of this material is investigated, the more blurred is the distinction between documentary and fiction. Reality, as demonstrated by the television camera, is always on show, a constructed, assembled reality with which the viewer's mind is manipulated.

Arguing along these lines after Benjamin, Enzensberger repeats his teacher's mistakes. Like him, he sees as the sole form of authenticity only that which is empirically sensed or, to be more precise, visually perceived. As soon as contemporary media, having drawn this authenticity into their orbit, disclose to Enzensberger–in exact correspondence with Hegel's 'Phenomenology of the Spirit–'the dialectically contradictory, transitory and conditional nature of that truth, Enzensberger, like Benjamin, begins to imagine that the authenticity principle is collapsing altogether. Hence their extreme subjectivism and relativism, to escape from which they are ready to clutch at the first straw. The straw that comes into their field of view is Politics; it emerges in their arguments as the only reality and 'Homo politicus' as the only real person. Moreover, politics is taken by them in strictly 'subjectivist' fashion as a reality basing itself on itself alone. The result is that their subjectivism (and relativism) remain unsurmounted.

Enzensberger arrives at the same results in trying to solve the problem of the 'work of art'. Here he too departs from the model suggested by his own reflections on the future for electronic media (mainly television), taken, moreover, in the political aspect alone, that of political impact on the masses. His point of departure in solving the above-mentioned problem is a conviction that communication, as accomplished by electronic means, should be based on uninterrupted feedback, should be two-sided (and many-sided) at each moment of its use.

For example, a television programme should be planned so that each recipient may interrupt during transmission, introduce his corrections, say his ``yes'' or ``no'', his "I believe" or "I don't believe", and express more or less developed ideas about the programme. It follows from this that television, like radio programmes (and films too, apparently) should expect in advance the possibility of viewer (audience) participation during transmission, presupposing a form of co-production, constructive or otherwise, with the recipients.

In other words, the programme should be ``open'' to include the possibility of being continued (in the most unforeseen directions); that is, it should be "a series", and each series should be the continuation of a dialogue between the communicators and the recipients, both sides constantly changing places. In this way, concludes Enzensberger, programmes "should be received not as a consumer commodity but as a means of their own production''.

Enzensberger realises that all this concerns not the ``is'' but the "ought to be"; it is not happening in reality. Even so, from this desire of his he draws aesthetic conclusions applicable to the "work of art" problem which has long worried the theorists. He naturally sides with those who criticise the idea of the integral work of art as a hopelessly obsolete heritage of 19th-century idealist philosophy and aesthetics. Just like the New Left of the 60s from whom he would like to dissociate himself, Enzensberger believes that, in place of the former work of art, there is a certain set of 'Realien' balancing between art and non-art. But his means of explaining what was earlier understood as a work of art is different. In his opinion, the disintegration of the self-contained work of art has as its cause the development of the media in which the former ``discreteness'' of the object is disintegrating in general and, consequently, a work of art cannot be thought of any more as a discrete object. It is now thought of as an "open form"–in the sense of openness that is associated with the idea of expanding the programme into a series. Incidentally, Enzensberger's thesis about the processing of the open form is also connected with this idea.

The open form is seen as a kind of ``pulse'' sent to the recipient with the aim of evoking an active response. This reaction must, first, ensure the processing of open form, that is, its further development allowing for the public's corrections and, secondly, it must fill this form with content which changes from one response pulse to the other. Since the form is open to any reaction, the reciprocal action between communicator and recipient is bound to be fairly chaotic. The result will be something in the nature of a happening, that "changing and mixed show". It is from this that Enzensberger takes his bearings when he tries to imagine what will result from the unexpected intersection of unforeseen reactions and pulses within the open form. Today's happening, like yesterday's Dadaism, ``reveals'', according to Enzensberger, "the awareness that monologue means of communication today correspond only to the remnants of the consumer value''.

Enzensberger is drawn to the happening as to absolute spontaneity of completely unrestricted will of the individual, combined with political tendentiousness summoned to express the united will of the masses. The happening, he believes, could merge the fire of mass ecstasy with the cold sobriety of politics. No mediating link is proposed between these contradictory poles, and one is not needed anyway. For here only political passions are involved, only the political dimension of reality. All Enzensberger's notions about the ideal means of social intercourse through electronic media derive from the image of the political meeting: impassioned speeches, barracking, noise, whistling, stamping of feet, etc.

To sum up the implications of Enzensberger's arguments, he is attracted to one particular element, that of political ecstasy, or the element of the political ``Orgasm'', to put it in the language of consumer consciousness, which seeks "the maximalisation of pleasure" everywhere. For this is the only evaluation given to politics by the representatives of bohemian-lumpen consumer-hedonistic ``revolutionism'', of whom Enzensberger is one. Moreover, it is impossible here not to sense a purely anarchistic notion of freedom–that ``whirlwind'': "from thought to trigger"– Mayakovsky's poetic image of petty bourgeois violence. We have here the routine "paradox of freedom", a freedom that sees no inner barriers to its spontaneity but erects them externally. In this case, ecstasy wants to acquire form by presenting itself as political ecstasy.

This is a line of thought and a mood very close indeed to the one with which ``left'' (Sartrean) existentialism, trying to solve the irreconcilable contradictions in its conception of the individual's absolute freedom, moved step by step towards accepting the Maoist conception of the "cultural revolution". For Sartre himself, this developed into a conclusion about the need to liquidate art, literature included.

  • 1. Andre Breton, 'Les manifestes da snrrealisme', Paris, 1946, p. 22.
  • 2. Ibid, p. 45.
  • 3. Marcuse, 'Versuch fiber die Befreiung', S. 56-71. Further quotations are from the same work.
  • 4. H. Marcuse, 'Kultur und Gesellschaft I', Frankfurt, 1965, S. 123.
  • 5. Marcuse, 'Versuch uber die Bejreiung', S. 67.
  • 6. Ibid, S. 72.
  • 7. H. Marcuse, 'Counterrevolution and Revolt', Boston, 1972, p. 108.
  • 8. See J.-P. Sartre, ``Qu'est-ce que litterature?", In: 'Situations II', Paris, 1948.
  • 9. J.-P. Sartre, 'Critique de la raison dialectique', t. 1, Paris, 1960.
  • 10. See Chr. Glucksmann, "J.-P. Sartre et le gauchisme esthetique". 'La nouvelle critique', 173-174, Mars 1966, p. 175.
  • 11. Sartre, 'Situations II', p. 288.
  • 12. "Zur Dialektik des Engagements". In: 'Die neue Rundschau, 73', Jg. 1962, Heft 1.
  • 13. See 'Kursbuch', 20, 1970, Frankfurt, 1970.
  • 14. H. M. Enzensberger, "Baukasten zu einer Theorie der Median". 'Knrsbuch', 20, S, 180. Further quotations: S. 163-185.
  • 15. See W. Benjamin, 'Das Künstwerk im Zeitalter seiner technischen Reproduzierbarkeit', Frankfurt, 1963.