Lenin & Hegel, again

V600A8E6 at ubvms.cc.buffalo.edu V600A8E6 at ubvms.cc.buffalo.edu
Wed Nov 29 21:31:14 MST 1995

This is about as bad as a pint of parrot urine.  Lenin is not one bit the 
way you characterize him.  Nor are the idealist speculations about him 
correct.  In a boring and predictable manner you keep rehashing issues 
that were clarified decades ago.  Stop reading the anti-Communist views 
of Lenin and read the scientific, not the textual, material concerning Lenin.

Avoid anti-Communists such as Negt, Adorno, Pannekoek, Kautsky, Labriola, 
Sartre, Lukacs, Kalivoda, Marcuse, Schmidt, Garaudy and thousands of 
others.  They are all ESSENTIALLY revisionists.  Many of them simply want 
to place Marxism-Leninism on a psychological, not socio-economic, basis.  
They all ignore class struggle and historical forces and when they can't 
ignore it, they give it a backseat.

Shawgi Tell
University at Buffalo
Graduate School of Education

On Wed, 29 Nov 1995, Alex Trotter wrote:

> It still seems to me that Lenin was upholding a theory of merely 
> contemplative materialism in MAEC of the sort that Marx criticized 
> Feuerbach and Buechner for in his Paris days. The reason that Korsch 
> accused Lenin of returning to Kant pure and simple seems to involve the 
> idea that Lenin was resurrecting an almost kantian subject-object 
> dualism, with absolute separation of mind (consciouness) and matter (being), 
> the former being only a reflection of the latter. The truly dialectical 
> (and revolutionary) view upholds, according to Lukacs, *identity* of 
> subject and object (totality). Consciousness then becomes an active 
> agent, a co-creator of social reality, and not just a passive reflection 
> of purely *objective* processes. The view that Lenin adopted seems to 
> have had political consequences, linked with the ideology of 
> 'consciousness-from-outside': the proletariat in Leninist theory is no 
> longer a true subject, but once again an object under the tutelage of the 
> Party (i.e., intellectuals, "professional revolutionaries"). Pannekoek, 
> who cleaved to a "state-capitalist" theory about the USSR, had this to 
> say in *Lenin as Philosopher*:
> "...a combination of middle-class materialism and the marxian doctrine of 
> social development, adorned with some dialectic terminology--was, under 
> the name 'Leninism,' proclaimed the official State-philosophy. It was the 
> right doctrine for the Russian intellectuals who, now that natural 
> science and technics formed the basis of a rapidly developing 
> system under their direction, saw the future open up before them as the 
> ruling class of an immense empire."
> What did Marx say about this? He seems to have been of two minds about 
> it, at different times: "Natural science will in time subsume the science 
> of man just as the science of man will subsume natural science: there 
> will be one science" (1844 MAnuscripts). This sounds as if it would be 
> consonant with diamat. But he also said, in a more hegelian mode, that 
> the sciences "would be superfluous if the form in which they appear 
> coincided directly with their reality" (subject-object identity, and even 
> the sublation [*Aufhebung*] of science!).
> I wonder then how Ralph can say that he sees no conflict between the 
> different phases of Lenin's thinking represented by MAEC on the one hand, 
> and the *Hegel Notebooks* on the other. If not, then why would Lenin have 
> remarked in the latter work that none of the Marxists for the last 
> half-century (preceding 1915) truly understood Marx and dialectics 
> (presumably including himself)?
> One more thought concerning Ralph's defense of diamat: If Ralph is willing 
> to say that Althusser can be judged just by the kind of people who admire 
> him, what can he say about the kind of people who admire diamat?--after 
> all, 99% of them (with the exception of certain iconoclasts such as 
> C.L.R. James and Mr. Dumain himself) have been stalinoids of various stripes.
> Is it because Ralph feels that, in order to combat the influence of the 
> porkchop preachers, the masses first have to be won over to a simple 
> materialism, and only later can they understand dialectics?
> --AT
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