Hegemonic Maintenance in Daily Living - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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Was reading this review of a book on Lenin by Arto Artinian who I found based on his youtube lectures connecting Aristotlean logic through Hegel, Marx and Ilyenkov.
And it makes an interesting summary of the situation for the mass of people as ideologically restricted.
It is one of Krausz’s strongest virtues, that his book clarifies the overarching focus of Lenin's politics: the need to change the patterns of everyday life, combined with the ability to project political force on all levels of the class struggle, but especially on the level most directly shaping ideological space (what I am calling a general descriptor of the patterns of everyday life shaped by the effects of hegemony).

To think of the patterns of daily life means to think politics in terms of the flows of time and space, and their connection to political force
(power). In terms of the everyday, Henri Lefebvre very incisively wrote that, to not have power means to live "inside a narrow time scale, with no understanding of what time is, not because they (the proletariat) are stupid, but because they are unaware. They do not understand time (because they are immersed in it)” 13

Political oppression extends over social space and time, and thus actualized across class lines, casting profound effects on the temporal dimension of our lives.
This narrowing of time can be experienced in different ways, but the common thread is the general limiting of the temporal horizon of the imaginary: less time and emphasis in abstract concept formation, less formed knowledge on daily events in their political totality (due to lack of ability and practice for/in abstract thought), less thinking about the future, a narrowing of historical sense to that which is now immediately in front of me. The reduction of life, in other words, to its bare, most immediate functions necessary for physical reproduction. The reduction of thinking from the rich complexities inherent in our abilities as humans, to simplistic, mechanical mutterings, internalized from the oppressor and its technologies of subject-formation. To think requires time, as many have written since Aristotle, and this specific use of time is what is most restricted for the proletariat. 14

Here, Krausz excels in his clarification of Lenin’s often-discussed and criticized
emphasis on the practical need to expand the political horizon of the proletariat "from without”. Contrary to worn-out critiques, “from without”
does not mean the importing of revolutionary politics “from outside the proletariat”, as an expression of snobbish political elitism by a self-chosen “few”, but an intervention aiming to disrupt the closed loop of narrow time
as the temporal experience of everyday life on the level of thought. Lenin's
emphasis on “from without” means from outside the narrow time and space
of internalized bourgeois ideology, optimized (i.e. simplified and dumbed down) for the proletariat, and consigning it to living with less knowledge of 15 time is what is most restricted for the proletariat.
the present (to follow Lefebvre again), and less thinking about the future

It seemed interesting also in part as there seemed to be great emphasis on changing cultural artifacts such as street names, creating statues and symbols to be part of everyday life.
So whilst some warn that tearing down statues and renaming buildings from slave owners or proslavery figures is insufficient, it seems to be an interesting point of conflict about the ideological space of society.
In the article it examines post-soviet Ukraine and the tearing down of the statues of Lenin and wonders why this is significant and what its implications are.

He asserts by changing such symbols/representations one can change the transference of meaning through generations and thus narrow or extend the temporal sense of an ideology.

It makes me think to Andy Blunden and Alisdair MacIntyre in their cultural historical thinking: So there are individuals who live a lifetime, social practices which extend through generations and then there are traditions which are across history. Where as there is emphasis on statues I wonder about the actual practices of people rather than necessarily a statue they don’t give much mind to.
But such objects are important to the continuation of meaning as ideas not objectified and sustained as part of common life become irrelevant.

What it makes me think of also is how spaces and practices such as unions and their regular meetings/activities is an example where there is a space for counter hegemonic tendencies to challenge and offer an alternative to dominant and spontaneous ideological presumptions.
Its not enough to argue ones points, one must construct the continuation of ideas and thought otherwise ones ideas die with them. Many a inspired idea of schooling has existed in the US but never lasted more than a generation as they were unable to secure allies or followers of a next generation to continue them.
So activism isn’t merely struggle but about creating the new means of association that sustains itself even in family upbringing.
One might have had formative experiences of being exposed to certain views and values from family that express in them a political orientation even if it wasn’t explicit to you at the time.

I guess the sentiment here is that “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.”

What do you make of this sentiment and the objectification of counter ideology to dominant views? Does it hold any truth or does it seem a bitta bullshit?
The social significance of the thing is based in the social meaning of what it represents and how it is used in relation to people as they live then and there.
Like the idea of whether the American Constitution is a ‘living’ document or not. Here the example of the statue being used to educate the young of their history and the implications that follow from this.

http://www.templerodefshalom.org/wp-con ... ssacre.pdf

At the entrance to the complex stands a six-meter-tall bronze statue of a man carrying his murdered son in his arms. Called “the undefeated man,” it was erected as “a symbol of ... the wrath and suffering of the Belorussian people, as an eternal reminder of its shot and burned, hanged and tortured sons and daughters.”6 The statue depicts the 56-year-old village smith Iosif Kaminskii, the only adult survivor of the massacre. At the center of the memorial stand three birch trees, with an eternal flame instead of a fourth tree completing the pattern—a laconic reminder that one in four inhabitants of Belorussia perished during the war. 7 Located only fifty kilometers from Minsk, Khatyn has fulfilled an important pedagogical function as a pilgrimage site for millions of Young Pioneers, students, and tourists. The memorial reminded the visitors of the horrors of war while at the same time serving to cultivate Soviet patriotism. The complex was intended to invoke feelings of solemn reverence for the victims of the war and respect for the partisans, and in doing so, to serve the political purpose of legitimizing the leadership’s hold on power.8

Recognition of these political goals also helps us to understand the very different treatment of the Babi Yar memorial in Kyiv. Calls for a memorial to Jewish victims there were long ignored by the Soviet authorities, and when one was built in 1976, it de-emphasized the victims’ ethnicity. By contrast, the Khatyn memorial was built both as a universal monument to victims of the war, and as a monument to Belorussian suffering. As a symbol of the cruelty of war, it has come to occupy a central role in the collective memory of Belorussia, a country that had a higher proportion of population losses than any other European country. Sovetskaia Belorussiia wrote on the sixty-fifth anniversary of the Khatyn massacre: “Three generations have grown up with Khatyn as a symbol of and popular memorial to Belorussian heroism, trials, and grief.”9 What at the time seemed a relatively minor event in the course of the war became a symbol of the war itself. As the importance of Khatyn as a central Belorussian and then Soviet narrative has grown, so has interest in what actually transpired in that village on March 22, 1943.

https://www.marxists.org/reference/subj ... njamin.htm

The uniqueness of a work of art is inseparable from its being imbedded in the fabric of tradition. This tradition itself is thoroughly alive and extremely changeable. An ancient statue of Venus, for example, stood in a different traditional context with the Greeks, who made it an object of veneration, than with the clerics of the Middle Ages, who viewed it as an ominous idol. Both of them, however, were equally confronted with its uniqueness, that is, its aura. Originally the contextual integration of art in tradition found its expression in the cult. We know that the earliest art works originated in the service of a ritual – first the magical, then the religious kind. It is significant that the existence of the work of art with reference to its aura is never entirely separated from its ritual function. In other words, the unique value of the “authentic” work of art has its basis in ritual, the location of its original use value. This ritualistic basis, however remote, is still recognizable as secularized ritual even in the most profane forms of the cult of beauty. The secular cult of beauty, developed during the Renaissance and prevailing for three centuries, clearly showed that ritualistic basis in its decline and the first deep crisis which befell it. With the advent of the first truly revolutionary means of reproduction, photography, simultaneously with the rise of socialism, art sensed the approaching crisis which has become evident a century later. At the time, art reacted with the doctrine of l’art pour l’art, that is, with a theology of art. This gave rise to what might be called a negative theology in the form of the idea of “pure” art, which not only denied any social function of art but also any categorizing by subject matter. (In poetry, Mallarme was the first to take this position.)

https://www.marxists.org/archive/ilyenk ... /ideal.htm

It is quite true that the “real talers” are in no way different from the gods of the primitive religions, from the crude fetishes of the savage who worships (precisely as his “god”!) an absolutely real and actual piece of stone, a bronze idol or any other similar “external object”. The savage does not by any means regard the object of his worship as a symbol of “God”; for him this object in all its crude sensuously perceptible corporeality is God, God himself, and no mere “representation” of him.

The very essence of fetishism is that it attributes to the object in its immediately perceptible form properties that in fact do not belong to it and have nothing in common with its sensuously perceptible external appearance.

When such an object (stone or bronze idol, etc.) ceases to be regarded as “God himself” and acquires the meaning of an “external symbol” of this God, when it is perceived not as the immediate subject of the action ascribed to it, but merely as a “symbol” of something else outwardly in no way resembling the symbol, then man’s consciousness takes a step forward on the path to understanding the essence of things.

https://www.marxists.org/archive/fromm/ ... n/ch05.htm

The concept of the active, productive man who grasps and embraces the objective world with his own powers cannot be fully understood without the concept of the negation of productivity: alienation. For Marx the history of mankind is a history of the increasing development of man, and at the same time of increasing alienation. His concept of socialism is the emancipation from alienation, the return of man to himself, his self-realization.

Alienation (or "estrangement") means, for Marx, that man does not experience himself as the acting agent in his grasp of the world, but that the world (nature, others, and he himself) remain alien to him. They stand above and against him as objects, even though they may be objects of his own creation. Alienation is essentially experiencing the world and oneself passively, receptively, as the subject separated from the object.

The whole concept of alienation found its first expression in Western thought in the Old Testament concept of idolatry.[59] The essence of what the prophets call "idolatry" is not that man worships many gods instead of only one. It is that the idols are the work of man's own hands -- they are things, and man bows down and worships things; worships that which he has created himself. In doing so he transforms himself into a thing. He transfers to the things of his creation the attributes of his own life, and instead of experiencing himself as the creating person, he is in touch with himself only by the worship of the idol. He has become estranged from his own life forces, from the wealth of his own potentialties, and is in touch with himself only in the indirect way of submission to life frozen in the idols. [60] The deadness and emptiness of the idol is expressed in the Old Testament: "Eyes they have and they do not see, ears they have and they do not hear," etc. The more man transfers his own powers to the idols, the poorer he himself becomes, and the more dependent on the idols, so that they permit him to redeem a small part of what was originally his. The idols can be a godlike figure, the state, the church, a person, possessions. Idolatry changes its objects; it is by no means to be found only in those forms in which the idol has a socalled religious meaning. Idolatry is always the worship of something into which man has put his own creative powers, and to which he now submits, instead of experiencing himself in his creative act. Among the many forms of alienation, the most frequent one is alienation in language. If I express a feeling with a word, let us say, if I say "I love you," the word is meant to be an indication of the reality which exists within myself, the power of my loving. The word "love" is meant to be a symbol of the fact love, but as soon as it is spoken it tends to assume a life of its own, it becomes a reality. I am under the illusion that the saying of the word is the equivalent of the experience, and soon I say the word and feel nothing, except the thought of love which the word expresses. The alienation of language shows the whole complexity of alienation. Language is one of the most precious human achievements; to avoid alienation by not speaking would be foolish -- yet one must be always aware of the danger of the spoken word, that it threatens to substitute itself for the living experience. The same holds true for all other achievements of man; ideas, art, any kind of man-made objects. They are man's creations; they are valuable aids for life, yet each one of them is also a trap, a temptation to confuse life with things, experience with artifacts, feeling with surrender and submission.

The thinkers of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries criticized their age for its increasing rigidity, emptiness, and deadness. In Goethe's thinking the very same concept of productivity that is central in Spinoza as well as in Hegel and Marx, was a cornerstone. "The divine," he says, "is effective in that which is alive, but not in that which is dead. It is in that which is becoming and evolving, but not in that which is completed and rigid. That is why reason, in its tendency toward the divine, deals only with that which is becoming, and which is alive, while the intellect deals with that which is completed and rigid, in order to use it." [61]

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