How is/what makes Marxism "scientific?" - Page 3 - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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Discourse exclusively on the basis of historical materialist methodology.
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By The Clockwork Rat
#13485406
The insistence of "rights" by liberalism is also dogmatic, and there is also an insistence to spread it to all cultures, see Iain M. Banks. Claiming that Marxism has a personality cult is only to look at some, rather than the whole. It's daft to pretend that he was perfect, but he was certainly little worse than those of his time. It really just seems like you're looking at Marxism as an outraged reactionary liberal rather than understanding it :hmm:
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By KurtFF8
#13485676
I think Marxism - or the worker's movement that followed it and certainly "Marxism-Leninism" - has a number of religious characteristics, complete with faith, its own sophisticated eschatology (end of world), patron saints, holy texts, schisms ("revisionism") and heretics. Hence why while capitalists generally just fight wars with one another or dislike each other, Marxist-Leninists will divide themselves into ferociously opposed schools including "Titoism", "Maoism", "Trotskyism", etc... It undermines the entire tradition and what good there is in the Marxist school and Marxist thought has be sharply separated from the propaganda of its rival "churches".


You should be careful using this kind of right-wing logic here though. The whole axiom of "Marxism = Religion... look at X Y and Z that appear by some Marxists, then look at X Y and Z that appear by some Christians" is bad logic I think.

The fact that many political Marxist groups have been quite dogmatic doesn't mean that Marxism[i] or even [i]Marxism-Leninism is religious in character. Factionalism and accusations of revisionism don't equate to a set of ideas being religious as you (and other right-wing critics) assert here.
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By Vera Politica
#13485685
The entire foundation of liberalism (from its classical to its modern form) is also dogmatic, in the sense that it lays out principles which it takes to be self-evident or incontrovertible. In fact, I would go as far as to say that Classical Marxism does no such thing. There is no principle laid out by Marxist theory that is presented as self-evident or incontrovertible.

Now, one could claim that Soviet ideology was dogmatic, in that it held Marxist principles to be incontrovertible. However Marxism itself does no such thing in its theory (that I am aware of) whereas Liberalism is rife with such principles, especially in its classical formulation. Locke's entire liberal discourse, for examples, was premised on one incontrovertible fact: we are God's creation (without this supposition the entire discourse fails). Modern liberalism also holds onto the conception of rights as incontrovertible (although I assume liberal philosophers attempt to somehow derive these rights. In Rawls' case, they are derived from another incontrovertible fact: methodological individualism, the idea that the human being is a rational calculus despite the social conditions in which the individual fins himself). It seems then that liberalism is inherently dogmatic - yet I have not come across anything similar in Marxism.
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By Ombrageux
#13485687
The insistence of "rights" by liberalism is also dogmatic, and there is also an insistence to spread it to all cultures, see Iain M. Banks. Claiming that Marxism has a personality cult is only to look at some, rather than the whole. It's daft to pretend that he was perfect, but he was certainly little worse than those of his time. It really just seems like you're looking at Marxism as an outraged reactionary liberal rather than understanding it

I'm not all that liberal and I'm not all that hostile to Marxist thought. In practice, Marxist-Leninist governments and movements, I do think are religious. Communist countries, if their governments were not discredited by needing Soviet rifles to maintain themselves, all had cults of personality and power centralized in one individual: Russia (Lenin, Stalin), China, Yugoslavia, North Korea, Vietnam, Cuba, Albania, Romania... I don't think this is a coincidence. There is also the tendency towards making martyrs and saints of every failed revolutionary, including Che, Trotsky, Jaures and Gramsci (something symptomatic of the Left since the death of Marat). Dead individuals are cannonized or excommunicated depending on their usefulness to the Party's mythology.

I agree that liberalism has a religious element in its universalism, and there can be a crusading zeal. But that is about it. A liberal would never accuse another of "revisionism", would not accuse someone of not being faithful to Adam Smith or Karl Popper (but they might criticize opposition to free trade/speech). Only, I think, the libertarians and Randroids, which are ugly, twisted and self-evidently absurd perversions of liberalism, can be called dogmatic like a Marxist-Leninist would be. (Incidentally, American nationalism - which can be liberal - can also have a religious character with its patron saints, disciples, sacred documents and dogmatic loyalty to principles... but that is hardly intrinsic to liberalism.)

The whole axiom of "Marxism = Religion... look at X Y and Z that appear by some Marxists, then look at X Y and Z that appear by some Christians" is bad logic I think.

The fact that many political Marxist groups have been quite dogmatic doesn't mean that Marxism or even Marxism-Leninism is religious in character. Factionalism and accusations of revisionism don't equate to a set of ideas being religious as you (and other right-wing critics) assert here.

I don't see why the thinking is "bad logic". I think examining the characteristics of two things - and comparing them - is a pretty good way of seeing if they are similar. I would mainly ascribe the characterization to Marxism-Leninism, hardly to Marxism itself let alone all Marxist thinkers (who are often very interesting and insightful).
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By KurtFF8
#13485723
I don't see why the thinking is "bad logic". I think examining the characteristics of two things - and comparing them - is a pretty good way of seeing if they are similar. I would mainly ascribe the characterization to Marxism-Leninism, hardly to Marxism itself let alone all Marxist thinkers (who are often very interesting and insightful).


Perhaps you misread my analogy. I should have put it in bold this way:"Marxism = Religion... look at X Y and Z that appear by some Marxists, then look at X Y and Z that appear by some Christians"

The key difference here being "by some" of each. You fail to demonstrate how Marxism itself contains a similarity to religion, however.

And this applying to Marxism-Leninism especially would only because it was adopted as official ideology, but official ideology is not what M-L was limited to (especially as it continues to exist yet is official in perhaps only 2 nations today, and only one of them simply in name)
By anticlimacus
#13485853
dogmatic, in the sense that it lays out principles which it takes to be self-evident or incontrovertible. In fact, I would go as far as to say that Classical Marxism does no such thing...There is no principle laid out by Marxist theory that is presented as self-evident or incontrovertible.
It seems then that liberalism is inherently dogmatic - yet I have not come across anything similar in Marxism.


Many Marxist have been dogmatic in the sense that a good portion of inner Marxist debate has been about speaking true to Marx himself, to being a "true Marxist" by getting the right interpretation of Marx--even Althusser was claiming to be speaking the true tongue of the master. But specifically early 20th century Marxism was fairly dogmatic among some of its most dominant circles. At any rate, classical Marxism does, at the very least, have its reductionist tendencies that many would see as dogmatic, particularly in the sense of attempting to work within rigidly defined doctrines of "true Marxism".

However, I think your claim about liberalism is perhaps overly strong. Many liberals, like Rawls or Habermas (at least in his liberal tendencies), are very well aware that they are speaking concerning abstract principles. In fact, on the one hand, they argue that it is impossible not to be philosophically (more contra Foucault); on the other hand, they argue for the necessity of a theory of justice for the sake of a stable and "well-ordered" political society (more contra Marx). In both senses, they gleefully admit to being abstract and argue for its necessity. Interesting, it seems that more contemporary liberals have been attempting to do this in a non-reductionist manner. Habermas and Rawls are two interesting examples, at least to the extent that they make attempts.
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By KurtFF8
#13485860
even Althusser was claiming to be speaking the true tongue of the master.


But he lays out exactly why he was engaged in that project from the start: explaining how Marxism was different than other theories of history and why Historical Materialism was a truly scientific project that needed completion (or at least more work) He also critically examined Marx himself quite a bit. Not very dogmatic

And yes, many Marxists are/have been dogmatic. That doesn't mean that Marxism is itself a dogmatic "ideology" (of course it's not really an ideology).

However, I think your claim about liberalism is perhaps overly strong. Many liberals, like Rawls or Habermas (at least in his liberal tendencies), are very well aware that they are speaking concerning abstract principles. In fact, on the one hand, they argue that it is impossible not to be philosophically (more contra Foucault); on the other hand, they argue for the necessity of a theory of justice for the sake of a stable and "well-ordered" political society (more contra Marx). In both senses, they gleefully admit to being abstract and argue for its necessity. Interesting, it seems that more contemporary liberals have been attempting to do this in a non-reductionist manner. Habermas and Rawls are two interesting examples, at least to the extent that they make attempts.


But just admitting that one is being abstract doesn't exempt you from being non-dogmatic. Every theory requires some abstraction, even in the sciences (it's quite necessary actually) I think VPs point is that the basis of liberalism (in all of its forms) is an abstract absolute (or even appeal to "rights") whereas Marxism attempts (I would argue successfully) to be a scientific understanding of society (and how it moves and changes...and how to change it), hence how Marxism has been such an influence on social sciences, and whenever a social scientist has to defend social science as a real science, they are essentially defending Marx (whether they're conscious of it or not!)
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By Kasu
#13486093
Lenin wrote:The correspondence of this theory (Marxism) to practice cannot be altered by any future circumstances, for the same simple reason that makes it an eternal truth that Napoleon died on May 5, 1821. But inasmuch as the criterion of practice, i.e., the course of development of all capitalist countries in the last few decades, proves only the objective truth of Marx's whole social and economic theory in general, and not merely of one or other of its parts, formulations, etc., it is clear that to talk of the "dogmatism" of the Marxists is to make an unpardonable concession to bourgeois economics. The sole conclusion to be drawn from the opinion of the Marxists that Marx's theory is an objective truth is that by following the path of Marxist theory we shall draw closer and closer to objective truth (without ever exhausting it); but by following any other path we shall arrive at nothing but confusion and lies.


And to be clear, Althusser was a reactionary anti-marxist, so to speak of him as if he were a Marxist would be following a path that will lead to nothing but confusion and lies.
By anticlimacus
#13486112
But he lays out exactly why he was engaged in that project from the start: explaining how Marxism was different than other theories of history and why Historical Materialism was a truly scientific project that needed completion (or at least more work) He also critically examined Marx himself quite a bit. Not very dogmatic

And yes, many Marxists are/have been dogmatic. That doesn't mean that Marxism is itself a dogmatic "ideology" (of course it's not really an ideology).


I believe that all Marxists, just like all liberals, explain how their project needs to be completed and is different than other theories, etc. But your point is taken, concerning Althusser. I was not meaning to imply that Althusser was simply a dogmatic writer. All one has to do is read For Marx to understand that this was a novel thinker. The point was that Althusser, like many classical Marxists, was attempting to get to the "right Marx"--For Marx was not a historical treatise, but more of an exegetical text on Marx, like much of classical Marxism. You are also correct in stating that Marxism is not itself dogmatic--there are many Marxists, like Althusser, who are very willing to think outside of the box. However, Marxism has had certain famous reductions, such as the determination of economic factors and some variation of "base-superstructure". Similarly, I would say also, that while I take considerable contestations with liberalism, they are also not all dogmatic thinkers.
But just admitting that one is being abstract doesn't exempt you from being non-dogmatic. Every theory requires some abstraction, even in the sciences (it's quite necessary actually) I think VPs point is that the basis of liberalism (in all of its forms) is an abstract absolute (or even appeal to "rights") whereas Marxism attempts (I would argue successfully) to be a scientific understanding of society (and how it moves and changes...and how to change it), hence how Marxism has been such an influence on social sciences, and whenever a social scientist has to defend social science as a real science, they are essentially defending Marx (whether they're conscious of it or not!)

That's fine, but I don't see how this makes liberalism "dogmatic" then--which is why I think using "dogmatic" is a bad descriptive word. It's just too pajorative to describe a very often nuanced intellectual tradition, like Marxism. It seems to me that it's nothing but a polemical way of describing the opposing position. One may utlize an abstract notion of the individual or a unversal notion of humanity to some capacity, etc. But that does not make them "dogmatic". Dogmatism is typically understood as adhering to the doctrines of a tradition uncritically, and rejecting all opposition outright. Certainly some liberals have done this, as have some Marxists. But not the better half.
Your point about Marx and social sciences needs to be addressed. Marx influenced the social sciences, but so too did liberalism (such as Hobbes and Smith), and defending the social sciences is not implicitly defending Marx (just read Parsons). Saint Simon and Comte or equally founders of the social sciences, which was pushed more by Durkheim and Weber, both who were very critical of Marx. What Marxism often has tended to do is more than simply be a scientific analysis of society. It has, in fact, often tended to claim to be THE scientific analysis of society to the exclusion of others--Lukacs and Althusser are a cases in point. It has also served to mask the fact that Marxism is often also a holistic ideology, encompassing politics, philosophy, and anthropology. The social sciences are too deep to reduce it to Marxism. I think it's better to say that one can take a Marxist approach in the social sceinces. But being a Marxist means much more than that.
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By Kasu
#13486142
Foucault's mentor Louis Althusser was the first significant theorist to begin a systematic attack on the Hegelian dialectic from inside the French Communist Party. In a number of works published in the 1960s ( For Marx, Reading Capital) Althusser maintained that in his mature writings (especially Das Capital) Marx had broken completely with Hegel. Althusser also directly attacked the heart of historical materialism emphasising the role of what he termed “structures” in social and political development as opposed to the classical Marxist emphasis on the leading role of economic forces.

Michael Foucault is the essential bridge from Althusser's radically revised Marxism (structuralism) to the open hostility to Marxism and Enlightenment thought embodied in the post-modernist movement. Foucault drew from the essence of Nietzsche's ideology: his denial of objective truth (“There are no facts, only interpretations”— Will to Power); his denial of a knowable material world in favour of relativism (“That a judgement be false is not, in our opinion, an objection against that judgement.”— Beyond Good and Evil); and finally Nietzsche's opposition to Hegel and an all-embracing world view of historical development.
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By Eauz
#13486689
Ombrageux wrote:Yes, frankly. Fascist/nationalist ideologies don't attempt to be universal and therefore Adolf Hitler if he had a dispute with Mussolini, Petain or Franco wouldn't think of accusing said person of "revisionism" or being "untrue" to the common ideology.
No, they wouldn't have accused either of being revisionist, but the reality is that for these other players, Hitler's Germany was the hub of socio-economic and political activity in Europe. Italy was too weak to attempt to make a move against Hitler, Italy needed Germany and when it saw failure, it decided to switch sides. Germany was the strong hold of the fascist nations. You didn't see Vietnam or Cuba calling China or the Soviet Union revisionists, did you?

As for ideology and the concept that one is a revisionist, these characteristics exist within all socio-economic structures. Just look at the conflict between Austrian economic theory and Keynesian Economics, look at the conflict internally and externally with regard to the concept of human rights. Sure, a group of people decided to come up with some theories, but not all of the concepts of declaration are implemented within the Western world, let along the rest of the world. There is conflict with how one should implement them and which ones should be ignored and which should be included. Just because you don't hear the word revisionist doesn't mean it doesn't happen. This is at the heart of dialectics.

Ombrageux wrote:doesn't have personality cults to begin with.
Henry Ford, Bill Gates and George Washington to name a few. We also place the concept of the corporation at the heart of our success. If the corporation is performing well, our society will perform well. Just look how close connected society is with the ability of corporations to affect our society. Again, we are placing great value upon certain individuals and groups, because they are the ultimate example of liberal ideology. The concept that liberalism is without a cult of personality is ignorant of the above as well as of history. Therefore, we can easily connect liberalism, as an ideology directly to religion, just as you did with regard to Marxism.
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By KurtFF8
#13487024
I believe that all Marxists, just like all liberals, explain how their project needs to be completed and is different than other theories, etc. But your point is taken, concerning Althusser. I was not meaning to imply that Althusser was simply a dogmatic writer. All one has to do is read For Marx to understand that this was a novel thinker. The point was that Althusser, like many classical Marxists, was attempting to get to the "right Marx"--For Marx was not a historical treatise, but more of an exegetical text on Marx, like much of classical Marxism. You are also correct in stating that Marxism is not itself dogmatic--there are many Marxists, like Althusser, who are very willing to think outside of the box. However, Marxism has had certain famous reductions, such as the determination of economic factors and some variation of "base-superstructure". Similarly, I would say also, that while I take considerable contestations with liberalism, they are also not all dogmatic thinkers.


But even in the attempt to "get Marx right" or really: get Marxism right. Althusser was simply taking up the project that Karl Marx attempted to start. This is no more or less "dogmatic" than those who tried to expand on the theory of evolution via Darwin and expand on that project either.

That's fine, but I don't see how this makes liberalism "dogmatic" then--which is why I think using "dogmatic" is a bad descriptive word. It's just too pajorative to describe a very often nuanced intellectual tradition, like Marxism. It seems to me that it's nothing but a polemical way of describing the opposing position. One may utlize an abstract notion of the individual or a unversal notion of humanity to some capacity, etc. But that does not make them "dogmatic". Dogmatism is typically understood as adhering to the doctrines of a tradition uncritically, and rejecting all opposition outright. Certainly some liberals have done this, as have some Marxists. But not the better half.
Your point about Marx and social sciences needs to be addressed. Marx influenced the social sciences, but so too did liberalism (such as Hobbes and Smith), and defending the social sciences is not implicitly defending Marx (just read Parsons). Saint Simon and Comte or equally founders of the social sciences, which was pushed more by Durkheim and Weber, both who were very critical of Marx. What Marxism often has tended to do is more than simply be a scientific analysis of society. It has, in fact, often tended to claim to be THE scientific analysis of society to the exclusion of others--Lukacs and Althusser are a cases in point. It has also served to mask the fact that Marxism is often also a holistic ideology, encompassing politics, philosophy, and anthropology. The social sciences are too deep to reduce it to Marxism. I think it's better to say that one can take a Marxist approach in the social sceinces. But being a Marxist means much more than that.


I agree with you here about the use of the term dogmatic. It tends to not be a valuable term in broader discourse, although it is meant to point out essentially an impasse in an opponents logic (e.g. "well you're wrong because you're just not being Marxist!"). Although I can understand where this comes from in the history of Marxism. Marxist thinkers agreed on quite a few things, like the theory of surplus value and the nature of exploitation. So when someone deviates away from that, they were likely suspecting that those deviations were based on theories to justify exploitation (i.e. bourgeois liberalism). But this of course lead to a road of significant dogmatism indeed (other factors leading to it present too of course).

And you point is taken about Social Science. Although, I was referring specifically to when a social scientist is defending their field as a science, there is little difference from such defenses and the Marxist attempt at scientifically understanding society. Although, you're right, that doesn't make them Marxists.
By anticlimacus
#13487243
But even in the attempt to "get Marx right" or really: get Marxism right. Althusser was simply taking up the project that Karl Marx attempted to start. This is no more or less "dogmatic" than those who tried to expand on the theory of evolution via Darwin and expand on that project either.


I think the key difference here is between empirical study, guided by a theoretical lense and an exercise in hermeneutics. The former is more scientific, the latter I take to be Althusser. There's a difference between attempting to expand a theory, to make necessary alterations to it via evidence etc. and attempting to make a theory consistent with a particular origin, such as Marx or Darwin, or to attempt to explain what a particular author meant or what a particular book or passage means.
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By Wellsy
#14827470
What should we change in terms of Marxism? First, the reduction of societal epochs to a strict base-superstructure model. It's a crass economism that really has little historical justification, and if it does, it is stretched. Second, the labor theory of value that Marx espoused is innacurate and I don't think any economists, except hard line Marxists, have taken it too seriously in the last century. Third, the "scientific" justification for transcending capitalism into communism. Fourth, the assumption that through the method of dialectical materialism one transcends ideology. There are several others, but I think these are pertinant. Perhaps a good question is what is to be salvaged from Marx--and I do think there is alot--and what does a Marxist outlook look like when making these adjustments?


I've seen discussions in regards to the debate as summarized by Stephen Resnick and Richard Wolff that assert that the base-superstructure problem has arisen out of accepting non-Marxist epistemological positions (Rationalism or Empiricism) and that they posit the two as separate where they exist in a unity in Marxism.
https://etd.lib.metu.edu.tr/upload/12613281/index.pdf
It should also be noted from the outset that Marx’s epistemology cannot be handled in traditional epistemological terms. In their article “Marxist Epistemology: The Critique of Economic Determinism”, Stephen A. Resnick and Richard D. Wolff indicate that traditional epistemology operates as if there are two separate realms: “independent subjects seeking knowledge of independent objects” (Resnick and Wolf, 45). In contrast to traditional epistemology, Marx does not see theory and reality as belonging to two distinct spheres. Rather there is a “circular process” in the production of theory where “theory begins and ends with concretes […] the concrete which determines theory is conceptualized as the ‘concrete real’ [the real concrete] and the concrete produced by thought is the ‘thought-concrete’ [concrete for thought]”( Resnick and Wolf, 43).

I don't fully comprehend this, in part because I'm also unfamiliar with Hegel's work which influence's Marx conception in both its similarities and differences from Hegel. But I think the point is that the base-superstructure framing makes a duality that isn't amicable to Marx's thoughts.
Which has emphasized the economic side disproportionately due to debates with figures who rejected it's influence in the day of Marx and Engels, but doesn't close off a more nuanced reading as more likely held in Marx's perspective than that conceived in his readers.

And following this I think might contribute to a concern about the agency of human subjects which would fulfill the side of humans not being subject to a strict detereminism which is of great significance not for a status of being a science but theoretical clarity for class struggle.
https://www.politicsforum.org/forum/viewtopic.php?p=853142#p853142
https://monthlyreview.org/press/interview-lebowitz-ozcan-erdagi/
In the above link, is an interview with Michael Lebowitz which as I understand it, brings up of how Marx's Capital is largely unfinished (as clear with the expectation of doing several volumes) and that to advance Marxism, theorizing about how the wage labourer exists when not merely reduced to a wage laborer for the purposes of capitalist production and I believe considering the agency of workers.
Thus, we see the wage-labourer first as a distinction within capital, as capital’s opposite, and as the mediator for capital in achieving its goal of growth. However, we must also consider the other side, the side about which Capital is silent—the worker as a being for self. Once we consider the side of the wage-labourer in its sphere of circulation (where the sale of labour-power occurs) and in its sphere of production (where use-values are consumed to produce the worker able to re-enter the sphere of circulation), we see that the wage-labourer has her own goals and struggles to achieve them. Class struggle from the side of the worker is present once we consider the worker as a being for self. Nevertheless, as wage-labourer, capital is a necessary mediator for the worker: she is dependent upon capital within this relation to achieve her goals. The dialectical moment here is the recognition of the unity of capital and wage labour in capitalism as a whole, a totality characterised by two-sided class struggle.

Once we now consider the worker as subject, we have moved far beyond the determinism which often passes for Marxism. Now, we necessarily must bring within this theory of capitalism as a whole the way workers transform themselves in their struggle. One-sided Marxists, though, call a halt to the theoretical project and declare that whatever is in Capital is theory and whatever is not in Capital is politics or lesser levels of abstraction. They think they can take Capital by itself. As I argue in my chapter on ‘One-Sided Marxism,’ however, by failing to develop the side of wage-labour, they understand neither capital nor wage-labour; in short, they do not understand capitalism as a whole.


I think the above relates well to work done by Soviet thinkers such as Lev Vygotsky, Evald Ilyenkov and others in trying to consider how our consciousness develops in relation to the world.
http://www.isfp.co.uk/russian_thinkers/evald_ilyenkov.html
Evald Ilienkov worked out an original conception of ideality which was a creative development of Marx's theory of consciousness. It is well known that Marxist tradition has always insisted that knowledge derives from praxis. Following in that tradition, Ilyenkov suggested defining specific components of practical activity which directly form general impressions and abstractions. There are invisible schemes of praxis or operations, stereotypes and instructions of common human activity. Such components carry general information from things to mind. According to Ilyenkov, ideality is a form of human activity that is caused by forms of things which are drawn into the 'anthroposphere'. Thus, he strived to advance the principle of materialism and deduced a property of ideality from certain aspects of material praxis. As a result, ideality is an material-immaterial phenomenon that is born in the external material activity of people and corresponds to the facts, but at the same time ideality or schemes of activity do not contain materiality. Material praxis, by means of inner structures, takes a thing's measurements and carries this general information from the physical world into the world of human spirit. Ilyenkov's conception of ideality partially resembles Bridgman's conception of operational pragmatism.

Ilyenkov does a good job in explaining his sense of the ideal. But I won't ramble more on that, but it would seem to me that theoretical clarity needs to be developed about workers.

In regards to the labor theory of value, it still holds significance though it is ignored in a lot of modern economic schools as they perhaps abstract in narrow ways as to avoid the relations between things. I'm not educated but its my impression that marginal utility theory seems primarily concerned with exchange much to the neglect of production's relation, which is where Marx went to find where he thought value was created as it wasn't in market exchanges.
That the ideology of capitalist class is based on a formalized sense of equality thought based in the formal equality of people coming to the market as equals for exchange whilst ignoring the substnative conditions that underpin how people come to market. Hence libertarians talk of voluntary exhcange of people selling their labour whilst completely ignoring how workers being deprived of property and of communal means of production coerces them to sell their labour power to subsist and thus don't meet as equals and that such equality rests on a substantive inequality.
Basically, it seems that a lot of economics is but apologetics for capitalism and naturally avoids investigating such things as it need not be a science to understand as much as it's required for Marx's project to understand capital.
To which there's an member who made an interesting post where he quotes from a book that explains some points as to why one might want to believe in LTV whilst acknowledging that it doesn't argue for the valdity of the LTV. In fact, the member whilst considering LTV to be attractive, is conservative in their judgement and accepts that LTV isn't conclusively proven but believes that many dismissals and attacks on it have been inadequate.
I'm yet to read it, but I think Andrew Kliman's Reclaiming Marx's Capital might be a fruitful book on this point of rejecting the critiques of Marx's LTV on the basis of the transformation problem.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrew_Kliman
Kliman, much like the point made by Resnick and Wolff, claims that many Marxists even have accepted readings of Marx's work that simply aren't amicable to the sort of philosophy that was implicit to his work and that by reading Marx in a way that is charitable (allows for internal consistency), Marx's claims aren't as absurd as often interpreted and not readily subject to the critiques made.
And the LTV is of prime significance for Marxism I suspect if some of those that write about it are correct that a big impediment to the transition to communism would be the failure to dissolve the Law of Value.
This is a good brief piece to think about the dilemma.

In looking at a dissertation on Marx and Morality, I think it might help clarify the position that Marx adopts which he perhaps inherits from Hegel if this piece is to be correct in it's summary.
As I understand it, Marx has a kind of naturalist ethics where what is good and right is based on the realization of that which best suits the nature of human beings (which I believe helps explain his theory of alienation).
Instead of focusing on the intentions of actors or the consequences of actions, virtue ethicists insist that the key ethical question should be, “What kind of person ought I be?”
...
Just as Aristotle sought to base his ethics on a model of human essence, Hegel insisted that ethics must start from a model of “what human beings are”. It is only when they are so grounded that it is possible to say “that some modes of life are suited to our nature, whereas others are not”.39 He followed Aristotle in assuming that the goal of life is self-realisation, but he broke with him by arguing that it is only by way of freedom that this is possible. Whereas Aristotle insisted that happiness is the end of life, Hegel believed with Kant that the end of life was freedom.40 But unlike Kant, who counterposed freedom to necessity, he insisted that to act freely was to act in accordance with necessity.41 He thus criticised “Kant for seeing dichotomies in the self between freedom and nature…where he ought to have seen freedom as actualising nature”.42 Moreover, he believed that moral laws, far from being universal in some transhistoric sense, are in fact only intelligible “in the context of a particular community”, and can be universalised only to the extent that “communities grow and consolidate into an international community”.43

And I think this is an interesting notion, that after developing a concrete abstraction on the essence of humans, one is able to then see how things are against the well being of people and the flourishing of a healthy development.
I might be grasping at things I don't understand, but it almost sounds kind of Daoist, about things being done according to their nature, which isn't passive but the wisdom in understanding the nature of things and not unnecessarily struggling against reality but working with it.
http://ramblingtaoist.blogspot.com.au/2010/05/happiness-of-fish.html
How, then, does Zhuangzi know the happiness of fishes? The answer, in part, is to be found in how he describes what it is in which that happiness consists: The minnows swim about so freely, following the openings wherever they take them. These fish are simply doing what fish do, and this is their happiness. It’s that simple.

This falls within what Zhuangzi calls the Illumination of the Obvious, the rightness of each individual thing within its own perspective. This is not simply a matter of the rightness to itself of its own opinions, though this too applies, but is something much more organic, namely, that the expression of its nature, being what it is, is its rightness. This is obvious. And it instructs us. This may not be what we, as humans, think of as happiness, but that is because happiness for humans is generally conceived as something altogether different, humans being, in some sense, altogether different.

How are we different? What we do is to choose what to do and our choices seem almost inevitably to result in something other than ‘happiness’. Indeed, it would seem that the ability to choose, something as innate to us as swimming freely is to fish, is the source not of our happiness, but of our unhappiness. And this, of course, refers us back to the heart of Zhuangzi’s project, namely, to return us to the spontaneous, pre-cognitive expression of the up-welling of Life within us. This is true human happiness — surrender into the flow of life, freely following along with wherever it takes us, just like fish. In other words, Zhuangzi would have us return to being like fishes, though, being human and self-aware, that spontaneity would be expressed in an altogether different way.

Through his level of abstraciton, Marx is able to identify the universal thing/process that underpins all of humanity, their labor, which is inherently social from the earliest stages of civilization. From this arises all the historical particularities that we find in humanity's different tendencies and expressions, its through activity/labor that people transform themselves as well as the world. It's likely more nuanced than I comprehend, but I get a sense of some sort of teleology in regards to human labor being part of our nature and a realization. And by having the product of our labor alienated from us, owned by capitalist, we come to lose the sense of ourselves that is found through our productive relations.
Mankind is reduced
http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/10867/1/VWills_ETD_2011.pdf
In this description of the character of labor, Marx turns his attention from the worker's product as accumulated or “dead” labor, to the character of the labor process itself. Labor, Marx thinks, is in reality the essence of free human activity and a process through which human nature can be fully realized. However, under capitalism, labor is so odious that the worker performs labor only because through the sale of his labor-power he can satisfy his private needs. Insofar as the worker's labor-power is not his own, and belongs to a foreign power (the capitalist), labor appears as a denial and a sacrifice of the worker's existence, and as something to be studiously avoided whenever possible.

Because labor takes on such an unattractive character, instead of recognizing the labor process as the essence of human activity, workers feel that they are truly themselves and truly human only when they are at leisure or satisfying those needs which they have in common with animals.

As a result, therefore, man (the worker) only feels himself freely active in his animal functions – eating, drinking, procreating, or at most in his dwelling and in dressing-up, etc.; and in his human functions he no longer feels himself to be anything but an animal. What is animal becomes human and what is human becomes animal.
Certainly eating, drinking, procreating, etc., are also genuinely human functions. But taken abstractly, separated from the sphere of all other human activity and turned into sole and ultimate ends, they are animal functions. (Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844, MECW 3:275)

I recommend Evald Ilyenkov's The Universal to see how Marx thinks of the unviersal as a real existing thing that gives rise to everything else instead of being about identifying the property/attribute shared by all in their form or what ever. It being the difference between focusing on appearances and developing a taxonomy of plants and animals, or an adequate conception of change and developing Darwin's Theory of Evolution.
Supplementary texts to help understand this thinking:
https://kapitalism101.wordpress.com/2014/07/21/abstraction-abstract-labor-and-ilyenkov/
&
http://69.195.124.91/~brucieba/2014/04/16/ilyenkovs-dialectic-of-the-abstract-and-the-concrete-ii/

The sources i provide might do better to explain in detail how realization of our human nature and the inadeacuy of capitalism serves as part of the moralistic foundation to Marxist's critique which isn't morality in the typically abstract sense. As Marx seems to, according to the interpretation in the disseration, arrive at kind of objective morality based on a extensive analysis of the real world conditions and relations.
To which, once again, Evald Ilyenkov has a wonderful piece on examining the tension between means and ends/ is and ought/ Humanism and Science. WHich also explains why morality can't be a set of maxims but requires an analysis of the world and following Marx's thought, one is propelled into a sense of agitation rather than complacency, that one must be transform things rather than accept them they are. That his morality necessarily follows his quite of transforming the world, not merely interpreting it.

And in regards to the dialectical method, my impression of Marx's use of ideology is precisely that which the dialectical method avoids. Which has to do with how Marx abstracts, which goes through many developments as it does with Hegel I believe.
He seems to begin from the 'real concrete' which is the material relations between people and he abstracts from to identify essential relations temporally and from different perspectives of abstraction before its brought back down to the 'concrete for thought' which seems to be abstractions that capture the relations of a thing and are closer to the mediated existence of a thing than one pulled away from the real world.
The earlier links talking about Resnick and that in the quote is a useful text that examiens Hegel's and Marx's Epistemology.
But I think these two quotes might be useful to help frame this point as well.
https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1845/german-ideology/ch03p.htm
One of the most difficult tasks confronting philosophers is to descend from the world of thought to the actual world. Language is the immediate actuality of thought. Just as philosophers have given thought an independent existence, so they were bound to make language into an independent realm. This is the secret of philosophical language, in which thoughts in the form of words have their own content. The problem of descending from the world of thoughts to the actual world is turned into the problem of descending from language to life.

https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1857/grundrisse/ch01.htm#loc3
If I were to begin with the population, this would be a chaotic conception of the whole, and I would then, by means of further determination, move analytically towards ever more simple concepts, from the imagined concrete towards ever thinner abstractions until I had arrived at the simplest determinations. From there the journey would have to be retraced until I had arrived at the population again, but this time not as the chaotic conception of a whole, but as a rich totality of many determinations and relations.

What I suspect is the superiority of Marx's thinking is how he arrives at fuller abstractions than that found in the logic often characterized as atomistic, static, one-sided and often empty/contentless.
Both Hegel and Marx avoid traditional epistomological positions and their limitations as they value both the empirical world and the necessity of abstracting to come to a richer knowledge/understanding.
And I think for any of us to really come to appreciate the depth, complexity and insight in Marxism we really need to give a thorough run through the works that preceed Hegel such as Kant and those who precede him and even ancient thinkers like Aristotle as the height of their thought is based on building upon their works.
https://www.marxists.org/archive/pilling/works/capital/pilling2.htm
Spoiler: show
To examine this matter further, let us consider Kant’s position, a position which appears to be at the root of many misunderstandings about Capital. In an effort to vindicate scientific reason in the light of Hume’s rejection of causation and of knowledge of the external world, Kant argued that the mind is an instrument which, by its very construction, always apprehends isolated, individual facts in rational form. Kant realised that without categories, rational thought was impossible; but for him these categories have their basis in our thoughts, thought which is necessarily sundered from the material world. Sensation and the logical moments of knowledge do not on this view have a common basis – there is and can be no transition between the two. (Or as the Althusserian; would put it, ‘Our constructions and our arguments are in theoretical terms and they can only be evaluated in theoretical terms – in terms, that is to say, of their rigour and theoretical coherence. They cannot be refuted by any empiricist recourse to the supposed “facts” of history’ (Hindess and Hirst, 1975, p. 3).) Concepts, according to Kantianism, do not grow up and develop out of the sensed world but are already given before it, in the a priori categories of reasoning. These categories are supposed to grasp the multifarious material given in sensation, but themselves remain fixed and dead. ‘Sensation’ and ‘reason’ were counterposed to each other in thoroughly mechanical manner, with no connection between them. And the same was true of the content of knowledge and its forms. On this last point Rubin is surely absolutely correct when he states:

One cannot forget that on the question of the relation between content and form, Marx took the standpoint of Hegel and not of Kant. Kant treated form as something external in relation to the content, and as something which adheres to the content from the outside. From the standpoint of Hegel’s philosophy, the content is not in itself something to which form adheres from the outside. Rather, through its development, the content itself gives birth to the form which is already latent in the content. Form necessarily grows from the content itself. (Rubin, 1972, p. 117)

We shall return to this question of economic form specifically in connection with the value-form. But let us note here that it was Hegel, on the basis of his criticism of Kantianism, who attempted to resolve the problem (of the connection between the ‘sensed’ and the ‘logical’, the ‘content’ and the ‘form’) by showing that thought is a dialectical process of movement, from thought of a lower grade to that of a higher grade.

According to Hegel, concepts developed by thought ceased to be dead, a priori products of the individual mind, but forms endowed with life, the life of the movement of thought itself. This is Lenin’s point when he says, ‘ What Hegel demands is a logic the forms of which would be forms with content, inseparably connected with that content’ and Lenin notes Hegel’s attack on logic considered entirely from the subjective standpoint:

Logic is the science not of external forms of thought, but of the laws of development ‘of all material, natural and spiritual things’, i.e. of the development of the entire concrete content of the world and of its cognition i.e. the sum-total, the conclusion of the history of knowledge of the world.

In this respect there can be no doubt whatsoever that Marx adopted Hegel’s position (against Kant). In stressing the historical and objective nature of concepts, Hegel prepared the way for introducing the role of practice into human thought, even though his conception of this practice remained too narrow. Marx followed Hegel’s lead in insisting that the movement from the ‘sensed’ to the ‘logical’ was a process in which social man penetrated ever more deeply through the appearance of phenomena, deeper and deeper into their essence. It was this social practice that lies at the very heart and foundation of the development of man’s conceptual thinking. The form taken by man’s knowledge, summarised in the concepts of science, represents an index, a resume, of his education and in particular the education of his senses.

Speaking of the growth of human thought, Engels says that

the results in which its experiences are summarised are concepts, that the art of working with concepts is not inborn and also is not given with ordinary everyday consciousness but requires real thought and that this thought has a long empirical history, not more or less than empirical natural science. (Anti-Duhring)


From it will see how Marx and even Hegel come to more mediated abstractions and thus aren't ideological in the sense I believe Marx thinks of ideology as the abstract one sidedness. Which I think often universalizes itself in a way that rejects how temporal things are and the nature of change, making real world relations an obscurity. But ther eis the more expansive sense of ideology, the one in which we come to individuate our very sense of self from the external world and can't help but have a kind of symbolic relationship that is part of our sense of self. This kind of ideology will never leave us, unless one achieve Zen and is able to dissolve their sense of self and let reality flow through them rather than have consciousness mediate it or something.

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