Seamus Malone redye at
Mon Jul 24 22:50:03 MDT 1995

On Mon, 24 Jul 1995, jones/bhandari wrote:

> Some time ago Seamus Malone criticized Mas'ud Zaverzadeh for the retention
> of an outdated understanding of the base-superstructure relation.
> According to  Ralph Dumain and many others, Derek Sayer's Violence of
> Abstraction: The Analytical Foundations of Historical Materialism is one of
> the most sophisticated works on this relationship yet.  Is this what we
> should (re-)read in order to analyze the adequacy of MZ's theoretical
> underpinnings?

I was basing this soley on a reading of (the first half- at which point
it started repeating itself) of Seeing Films Politically.
>  However, it should be noted that Zaverzadeh, as well as Teresa Ebert in
> her entry on Red Feminsim, is quite aware that his  understanding of this
> relationship is controversial, and attempts to defend it.
>   For example, MZ persuasively  shows how many post-al theorists have
> idealistically asserted  a logic of binarism as the   driving force of
> history and then he compares such a position to the one worked out by Marx
> and Engels in The German Ideology. And so he writes:
In SFP, he creates a very suspect bianerism between ludic and resistant
postmodernism and then proceeds rather uncritically to lump thinkers
in Foucault, Deleuze-Guattari, Lyotard, and (later) Derrida and Barthes
the "ludic" in apparent ignorance of the extent to which some (not all)
of these thinkers have "[sought] its own geneology ... articulated in the
writings of Marx". It's suprising he leaves out those thinkers who his
critique pertains to, Baudrillard and mostly American readers of the above.

"it places its primary emphasis on the "resistance" of the subject as
"agent" rather than on the "domination" of prevailing socialarrangements.
- An odd thing to accuse Foucault of especially in my view (who can be
accused of a lot of things- including placing too much emphasis on the
structure- as someone said a few days ago to one of my posts- of killing
the subjecxt) In fact, Foucault always maintained that power was both
containstraining and enabling- and really that was the most Marxist
moment in all of his thought, along with his historical methodolgy of
looking for meaning in social relations rather than in theoretical

Seamus Malone
redye at

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