By Sean Sayers

What does Marx suggest via 'alienation'? What function does the idea that play in his critique of capitalism and his imaginative and prescient of a destiny society?

Marx and Alienation offers extensive with one of the most vital philosophical assumptions of Marx's paintings. It units Marx's account of alienation and its overcoming within the context of the Hegelian philosophy from which it derives, and discusses it when it comes to modern debates and controversies. It demanding situations different contemporary bills of Marx's concept, and indicates that wisdom of Hegel's philosophy is key for an figuring out of critical subject matters in Marx's philosophy.

Marx and Alienation explains and discusses Marx's rules in an unique and available type and makes an immense contribution to Marxist philosophy.


'This very good booklet manages to exhibit, with compelling readability, the most profound and nuanced philosophical issues; it is helping repair the dialecticity of Marxist suggestion by means of elaborating its Hegelian origins. it's the most sensible booklet i've got stumble upon at the Marxist proposal of 'alienation'.' - Tony McKenna, Marx & Philosophy assessment of Books

'Sean Sayers' publication is a magnificent try to supply a defence of the Hegelian measurement of Marx's idea, and during it to shield Marx's conception of alienation.' - Dan Swain, overseas Socialism magazine

'Sayers offers a robust argument for the deep-lying Hegelianism of Marx's suggestion, sheds new mild on a few well-trodden components, and writes in an available type that a lot Marx scholarship nonetheless lacks. What he proves, primarily else, is that when greatly has been written on Hegel-Marx courting, this fashion of imminent Marx's philosophical rules is still the main fertile box of inquiry for Marx scholarship today.' - Jan Kandiyali, Radical Philosophy

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Additional info for Marx and Alienation: Essays on Hegelian Themes

Example text

There are two distinct phases to this process. The first involves what Marx (1976, 1019–23, 1025–34) terms the ‘formal subsumption’ of labour under capital. The traditional methods of work are not altered, but the social organisation of work, the division of labour, is transformed. With the introduction of machinery, the labour process itself is altered. This is what Marx (1976, 1023–5, 1034–8) calls the ‘real subsumption’ of labour under capital. In craft production, the worker controls the tool.

People thus detach themselves from their desires and achieve a relative freedom with respect to them. At the same time they allow a degree of freedom to the object. However, in deferring his desires, the producer achieves only a limited autonomy with respect to them, he does not transcend them altogether. The product likewise is granted only a limited freedom, it is destined 22 Marx and Alienation ultimately to be consumed. Economic work continues to be dominated by material desires; it is still in what Marx calls ‘the realm of necessity’ (Marx, 1971b, 820).

15 By the time of writing Capital (1867) Marx no longer regards work as such as distinctively human. He acknowledges that animals also produce. However, he distinguishes between purely natural and specifically human forms work. He argues that the labour of animals is driven by immediate need and is purely ‘instinctive’. He distinguishes this from ‘labour in a form that stamps it as exclusively human’ as follows. A spider conducts operations that resemble those of a weaver, and a bee puts to shame many an architect in the construction of her cells.

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Marx and Alienation: Essays on Hegelian Themes by Sean Sayers
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