commodity fetishism

Taking stock: Reflections on the uncertain likelihood of a European revolution – Miguel Amorós

A 2018 assessment of the prospects for a communist revolution in Europe, where the “logic of the commodity and of unbridled economic development has so profoundly penetrated society that it has successfully prevented the appearance of any collective revolutionary subject”, in a situation in which “thinking constitutes the most radical and daring act, and also the one that arouses the most suspicion and hostility” but also one in which the elements for “a rigorous historical vision” (“ecological critique, anti-development analysis, anthropological studies and value theory”) are present, which could serve as the basis of orientation for “authentic revolutionary thought”.

Marx, individualist communist! (excerpts on the individual) - Karl Marx

A collection of excerpts from Marx's works that addresses individuals, their subordination arising from their mutual isolation and separation by which they submit to an alienated power that unites them by isolating them - the market, the state, enterprise, capital, classes. And on the creation of a society where individuals relate as individuals (i.e. not as private property owners, nor as classes, nor as post holders, or other reified identities, such as nationality, ethnicity, etc.), where labor was abolished by self-expression (or self-activity) through the free association of individuals according to their desires, capacities and needs with the world-historical productive forces …

A dissection of the metaphysics of scarcity - humanaesfera

Philosophical article that criticizes the metaphysics of scarcity, widely used (as "unquestionable presupposition") to justify the status quo, repression, commodity exchange, state, exploitation - a true theodicy (an imaginary justification of the sufferings and evils of the world). It shows how both economics and ecology are variations of this same metaphysics, radicalized by the commodity fetishism that pervades subjectivity in modern, capitalist society. And there's an addendum that addresses the pre-capitalist gift.

Private property, substance of state - humanaesfera

A detailed and concise analysis of what the state is and how it operates

Private property, scarcity and democracy - humanaesfera

This article was originally written as a response to "libertarians" who see scarcity as a natural, objective and eternal consecration of private property and the market. It also describes a perspective concerning the limitations of democracy in relation to the transformation of the material conditions of existence.

O crepúsculo das personificações - Fredy Perlman

Uma detalhada análise de como, no cotidiano, os poderes autônomos dos indivíduos e comunidades são alienados ao capital e ao Estado mediante suas personificações.

Propriedade privada, escassez e democracia - humanaesfera

Artigo originalmente escrito como resposta aos "libertários" que veem a escassez como uma consagração natural, objetiva e eterna da propriedade privada e do mercado. Também é mostrada uma perspectiva a respeito dos limites da democracia em relação à transformação das condições de existência materiais.

O fetichismo das mercadorias - Fredy Perlman

Introdução de Fredy Perlman, escrita em 1968, para o livro de Isaak Illich Rubin "Essays on Marx's Theory of Value" (Black Rose Books, Montreal, 1973). Perlman faz um brilhante resumo dos temas principais do livro, como o da continuidade e transformação da teoria da alienação do jovem Marx na teoria da reificação e do fetichismo das mercadorias.

Grey is the golden tree of life, green is theory - Robert Kurz

In this 2007 essay, Robert Kurz examines the question of theory and practice from the perspective of the “categorical” “critique of value-dissociation”, with extensive discussions of Marx, Engels, Bloch, Adorno, Horkheimer, Gramsci, Althusser, Foucault, Debord, Negri, and Holloway, and concludes, in the face of the prevalent urge for immediate “action” and the equally widespread denigration of theory, that “critical theory must consciously maintain a distance from all existing praxis”.

The culture industry in the 21st century - Robert Kurz

In this revised and expanded version of a 2010 talk, Robert Kurz examines the continuing relevance, and the limitations, of the concept formulated by Adorno and Horkheimer in 1944—the “Culture Industry”—with discussions of “cultural pessimism”, the postmodern “cult of superficiality”, the role of technology in cultural change, the “abstract individual”, advertising, the Internet, “virtualization”, “interactive” media, exhibitionism and narcissistic self-promotion, the pseudo-“gift economy” of the Net, the impact of the current economic crisis on the culture industry, the “depletion of cultural reserves”, “estheticization”, and the impossibility of a separate “cultural revolution”.