Category Archives: Capitalism

Indomitable (310/415/455/485)

This is a useful discussion of the Communist Manifesto from a book review by Terry Eagleton at https://www.lrb.co.uk/v33/n05/terry-eagleton/indomitable

“Indomitable” (excerpts) by Terry Eagleton

In 1976, a good many people in the West thought that Marxism had a reasonable case to argue. By 1986, most of them no longer felt that way. What had happened in the meanwhile? Were these people now buried under a pile of toddlers? Had Marxism been unmasked as bogus by some world-shaking new research? Had someone stumbled on a lost manuscript by Marx confessing that it was all a joke?

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Alienation reigns (415)

From an essay by Elizabeth Breunig, published in today’s WashingtonPost, which is directly relevant to the things we’ve been discussing in class.

In fact, both Sullivan’s and Mounk’s complaints — that Americans appear to be isolated, viciously competitive, suspicious of one another and spiritually shallow; and that we are anxiously looking for some kind of attachment to something real and profound in an age of decreasing trust and regard — seem to be emblematic of capitalism, which encourages and requires fierce individualism, self-interested disregard for the other, and resentment of arrangements into which one deposits more than he or she withdraws…. Capitalism is an ideology that is far more encompassing than it admits, and one that turns every relationship into a calculable exchange. Bodies, time, energy, creativity, love — all become commodities to be priced and sold. Alienation reigns. There is no room for sustained contemplation and little interest in public morality; everything collapses down to the level of the atomized individual.