Bhaskar and dialectics

Ralph Dumain rdumain at igc2.igc.apc.org
Sun Feb 26 00:21:52 MST 1995


>From Philip Goldstein:

>My view is that dialectics is teleological: it cancels
>differences and preserves the good.

Teleological -- this is what Callinicos stated in ALTHUSSER'S
MARXISM.  Supposing this is true of Hegelianism as a whole, why
would it nonetheless be impossible to extricate something of
Hegel's logic out of his overall system and use it otherwise?

>Communism reinstates the collectivity lost with the emergence of
>private property and brought back by trade union organizations.

What difference is canceled here?  What good is conserved? --
probably the gains made under the social organization of class
society.  What has this got to do with the problem of Hegel's
teleology?  And why are we equating dialectics with history here?
Because there is a logic of historical development, does that mean
logic is a synonym of historical development?

>For this reason, dialectical thought has always sought to limit
>science, to keep it in the sphere of nature, and to deny that it
>is a model for social science.

This could be true of much of "Western Marxism", but it is not
true of Marxism as a whole.  It is certainly not true of Marx or
Engels.  They both believed that social science is still science,
but they reject a positivist conception of ANY science, and here
they are far superior to the entire Frankfurt School, who neither
understood nor respected the natural sciences.


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