Monthly Archives: February 2011

The Production of Space

After having just finished Capital (Vol. I), Henri Lefebvre’s The Production of Space makes so much more sense than the first time a read it. (Though hugely insightful, it’s still a total slog to read.) The reasons behind my understanding … Continue reading

Posted in Dialectics, Hegemony, Henri Lefebvre, Karl Marx, Marxism, Political Economy, Power, Spatiality, The State | 5 Comments

Hegemony and the Philosophy of Praxis

After reading Antonio Santucci’s short political biography on Gramsci and after re-reading some of the Prison Notebooks (edited and translated by J. Buttigieg), I want to offer a reading of the relation and significance of “hegemony” within what Gramsci conceives … Continue reading

Posted in Antonio Gramsci, Dialectics, Hegemony, Historical Materialism, Marxism, The State | 2 Comments

Space, Place, and Gender

Massey, Doreen. 1994. Space, Place, and Gender. Minneapolis: Minnesota University Press. Massey is trying to formulate concepts of space and place (time, too) in terms of social relations, and further to connect these in proper dialectical fashion. “Space must be … Continue reading

Posted in Gender, Place, Power, Spatiality | 2 Comments

Jacobins of the Black Atlantic

In the preface to Hegel, Haiti, and Universal History, Susan Buck-Morss credits the positive reception of her original article to the “unconventional topologies of time and space that it mapped out” (ix). The analogy with topology—a field in mathematics—is particularly … Continue reading

Posted in Dialectics, Historical Materialism, Historical-Geographies, Post-Colonial, Spatiality, Violence | 2 Comments

Hegel’s Dialectic and Haiti

Hegel’s dialectic allows us to think and ask questions about the world in ways that encompasses a key set of fluid relations. As I understand it, these are the relations between the ideal and the material, which is implicitly also … Continue reading

Posted in Dialectics, GWF Hegel, Historical-Geographies, Violence | 1 Comment

Violence of Abstraction

Sayer, Derek. 1987. The Violence of Abstraction. Oxford: Blackwell. Sayer is clearly having a big argument with Althusserians and others who side with conceptual approaches that speak of levels and/or superstructures and base. His first goal is to convince us … Continue reading

Posted in Marxism, Political Economy, The State | 2 Comments

The German Ideology

Some thoughts on the German Ideology and Marx’s “Method.” What most struck me about The German Ideology and the comments regarding On the Jewish Question is how much Marx’s interest in political economy was at least partly provoked by questions … Continue reading

Posted in Karl Marx, Political Economy, The State | 4 Comments

Machiavelli’s The Prince

How to summarize The Prince? It begins by parsing all the different kinds of possible principalities: hereditary, won by force, one by popular elections, etc. His main concern is how Princes can attain and maintain new principalities, the making, unmaking, … Continue reading

Posted in Antonio Gramsci, Niccolo Machiavelli, Power, The State, Violence | Comments Off on Machiavelli’s The Prince

Notes on “The German Ideology”

Marx is moving away from questions of rights and philosophy to the study of political economy and capitalism. The book has both a political and a philosophical dimension. First, Marx and Engels are railing against German Idealism’s view that consciousness … Continue reading

Posted in Historical Materialism, Karl Marx, Marxism, Political Economy, The State | 1 Comment

Imagined Communities

Anderson, Benedict. 2006 [1983]. Imagined Communities. London: Verso. Anderson is first and foremost trying to account for nationalism from a Marxist perspective, citing for instance the conundrum of internecine strife in the Marxist region of Indochina in the late 1970s. … Continue reading

Posted in Historical Materialism, Marxism, Nation/Nationalism, The State | 2 Comments