Sunday, January 25, 2009

Lei's questions

Marx and Engels, "The class making a revolution comes forward from the very start, if only because it is opposed to a class, not as a class but as the representative of the whole of society, as the whole mass of society confronting the one ruling class. " (P10)
Marx and Engels discussed ideology in the context of classe struggles. According to their argument, it seems that there is a competition among those non-ruling classes. Each attempts to make people believe it could best represent the interest of the society.
1. But how can they win the competition? Is that winner the one knows best about the trick of "forms of self-determination of the concept"? Is that they overvalue the importance of ideology-making?

2. After all, is ideology more a pre-manipulated trick or the result of public opinion?
b. Gramsci, "One must therefore distinguish between historically organic ideologies, those, that is, which are necessary to a given structure, and ideologies that are arbitrary, rationalistic, or "willed". (P15)

3. But even for those "arbitrary, rationalistic, or willed" ideologies, they would be presented in the form of "common sense". Then how can we figure out the difference of the two? Or, is there really two different ideologies?

"Indeed, it is Althusser who shifted the discussion of "ideology" to focus on everyday practices and rituals orgnized via social institutions he designated as "ideological State Apparatues". (P6)
4. Althusser took several examples of daily pracitices, such as shaking hands. But what's the difference of ideology and culture in this regard?

5. In Althusser's work, ideological state apparatues produce ideology. And individuals are always ready-subjects to be interpellated by ideology. Are individual always passive in his eyes? Do they have the subjectivity to establish their own ideology system?

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