20th Century Philosophy

Herbert Marcuse

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Art, Alienation, and the Humanities : A Critical Engagement With Herbert Marcuse
Herbert Marcuse Collected WritingsTechnology, War and Fascism (Collected Papers of Herbert Marcuse, Vol 1) by Herbert Marcuse, Douglas Kellner, Peter Marcuse 

Acclaimed as one of the most influential thinkers of the 20th century, Herbert Marcuse's perception of modern technology as a mode of social control indicates his enduring significance. In honor of the 100th anniversary of his birth, this is a collection of his unpublished or uncollected writings from 1942 -1951. First of a six-volume series.

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Herbert Marcuse 

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Herbert Marcuse

Excerpt:

One-Dimensional Man was written in 1964 and can be seen as an analysis of highly developed societies. In it, Marcuse criticizes both communist and capitalist countries for their lack of true democratic processes. Neither type of society creates equal circumstances for its citizens. Marcuse discusses the factors which inhibit criticism and analysis of society. He draws on Marx primarily because his analysis focuses on how the economy limits potential of people.

Marcuse believes that people are not free because they function within systems such as the economy. If people were really free, they would be free from these systems. For example, people would only have to work as little as possible to provide for their needs, not an established amount of time. He states that only when people are free from these systems can they determine what they really need or want. Because we are not yet free, we have "false needs"...

 

Quotes from One-Dimensional Man

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Economic freedom would mean freedom from the economy - from being controlled by economic forces and relationships; freedom from the daily struggle for existence, from earning a living. Political freedom would mean liberation of the individuals from politics over which they have no control. Similarly, intellectual freedom would mean the restoration of individual thought now absorbed by mass communication and indoctrination, abolition of "public opinion" together with its makers...

 

Quotes from An Essay On Liberation 

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This 'voluntary' servitude (voluntary inasmuch as it is introjected into the individuals), which justifies the benevolent masters, can be broken only through a political practice which reaches the roots of containment and contentment in the infrastructure of man, a political practice of methodological disengagement from and refusal of the Establishment, aiming at a radical transvaluation of values...

 

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