unconditional endorsement #2, plus bonus material!

Antonio Gramsci.

Below please find the simple statement of a complex (social) ‘fact:’

Politics always lag behind economics, far behind. The state apparatus is far more resistant than is often possible to believe; and it succeeds, at moments of crisis, in organizing greater forces that remain loyal to the regime than the depth of the crisis might lead one to suppose. 

also consider:

In analyzing the different social forces that have operated in hstory, and that operate in the political activity of a state, due place must be given to the military and the bureaucratic elements. It should not be forgotten, however, that by army and bureaucracy we mean not simply the effective military and bureaucratic elements, __but also the social strata from which these elements of the state apparatus are traditionally recruited. __ (Emphasis added, natch!)

If you’re going to evoke ‘class’ without sounding like an asshole, I think you need to start from the point of view outlined above.

Now the airing of two (literally) academic pet peeves:

1) Hey you! You cannot get away with substituting “hegemony” for “consent.” That kind of truncation bites!

2) Acts of deconstruction are productive. Thus nobody should be using ‘deconstruct’ as a synonym of “destruction,” or to mean “disassembling.” The ‘taking apart’ is only the first step in the process, and I’m continually shocked to encounter people who’ve allegedly read more than 2 pages of Derrida but still commit this error.

And now, an embarassing admission to balance things:

I think I’m guilty of having confused Rosa Luxembourg and Emma Goldman for some time.

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3 Responses to “unconditional endorsement #2, plus bonus material!”

  1. km Says:

    I tend to agree about Derrida, mais pouvez-vous expliquer la:

    i’m not sure if i believe, but i don’t think we can deny that Jacques is looking good here…

  2. Wilbro Says:

    who’s the babe?

  3. Will-bro Says:

    I, for one, have to agree – particularly with your second point. I have no idea where people got it into their heads that deconstruction somehow equals destruction. I think this might stem from having professors/instructors who are resistant to the notions of deconstruction, or at least professors/instructors that don’t fully understand it. I find Derrida deeply endearing, in a way – particularly his works “On Mourning” and “The Truth in Painting,” which, if you haven’t read, is by far my favorite of his – though I am biased, as I’m into art history, for what it’s worth. I have come to believe Derrida’s work to be intensely human and that it seeks a deeper understanding of ourselves and our world – but it doesn’t, by any stretch of the imagination, wish to “destroy” our perception of how things are. I’ll admit, his writing can, at times, be inpenetrable and, in turn, confounding, but I don’t think there’s any maliciousness to this, as some would have you believe – only a puzzle, and puzzles are meant to be solved, the puzzle is of no use if you get frustrated with it and just toss it to the side, and the true nature of the puzzle is a sense of better understanding of how it (or, for that matter, things) really are/can be once it is solved.


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