[Marxism] Norwegian murderer's ruminations on Marxism

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Mon Jul 25 08:39:12 MDT 2011

The Historical Roots of “Political Correctness” Western Europe is 
today dominated by an alien system of beliefs, attitudes and 
values that we have come to know as “Political Correctness.” 
Political Correctness seeks to impose a uniformity of thought and 
behaviour on all Europeans and is therefore totalitarian in 
nature. Its roots lie in a version of Marxism which seeks a 
radical inversion of the traditional culture in order to create a 
social revolution. Social revolution has a long history, 
conceivably going as far back as Plato’s Republic. But it was the 
French Revolution of 1789 that inspired Karl Marx to develop his 
theories in the nineteenth century. In the twentieth century, the 
success of the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 in Russia set off a 
wave of optimistic expectation among the Marxist forces in Europe 
and America that the new proletarian world of equality was finally 
coming into being. Russia, as the first communist nation in the 
world, would lead the revolutionary forces to victory. The Marxist 
revolutionary forces in Europe leaped at this opportunity. 
Following the end of World War I, there was a Communist 
“Spartacist” uprising in Berlin, Germany led by Rosa Luxemburg; 
the creation of a “Soviet” in Bavaria led by Kurt Eisner; and a 
Hungarian communist republic established by Bela Kun in 1919.

At the time, there was great concern that all of Europe might fall 
under the banner of Bolshevism. This sense of impending doom was 
given vivid life by Trotsky’s Red Army invasion of Poland in 1919. 
However, the Red Army was defeated by Polish forces at the battle 
of the Vistula in 1920. The Spartacist, Bavarian Soviet and Bela 
Kun governments all failed to gain widespread support from the 
workers and after a brief time they were all overthrown. These 
events created a quandary for the Marxist revolutionaries in 
Europe. Under Marxist economic theory, the oppressed workers were 
supposed to be the beneficiaries of a social revolution that would 
place them on top of the power structure. When these revolutionary 
opportunities presented themselves, however, the workers did not 
respond. The Marxist revolutionaries did not blame their theory 
for these failures. They blamed the workers. One group of Marxist 
intellectuals resolved their quandary by an analysis that focused 
on society’s cultural “superstructure” rather than on the economic 
substructures as Marx did.

The Italian Marxist Antonio Gramsci and Hungarian Marxist Georg 
Lukacs contributed the most to this new cultural Marxism. Antonio 
Gramsci worked for the Communist International during 1923-24 in 
Moscow and Vienna. He was later imprisoned in one of Mussolini’s 
jails where he wrote his famous “Prison Notebooks.” Among 
Marxists, Gramsci is noted for his theory of cultural hegemony as 
the means to class dominance. In his view, a new “Communist man” 
had to be created before any political revolution was possible. 
This led to a focus on the efforts of intellectuals in the fields 
of education and culture. Gramsci envisioned a long march through 
the society’s institutions, including the government, the 
judiciary, the military, the schools and the media. He also 
concluded that so long as the workers had a Christian soul, they 
would not respond to revolutionary appeals.

Georg Lukacs was the son a wealthy Hungarian banker. Lukacs began 
his political life as an agent of the Communist International. His 
book History and Class Consciousness gained him recognition as the 
leading Marxist theorist since Karl Marx. Lukacs believed that for 
a new Marxist culture to emerge, the existing culture must be 
destroyed. He said, “I saw the revolutionary destruction of 
society as the one and only solution to the cultural 
contradictions of the epoch,” and, “Such a worldwide overturning 
of values cannot take place without the annihilation of the old 
values and the creation of new ones by the revolutionaries.” When 
he became Deputy Commissar for Culture in the Bolshevik Bela Kun 
regime in Hungary in 1919, Lukacs launched what became known as 
“Cultural Terrorism.” As part of this terrorism he instituted a 
radical sex education program in Hungarian schools. Hungarian 
children were instructed in free love, sexual intercourse, the 
archaic nature of middle-class family codes, the out-datedness of 
monogamy, and the irrelevance of religion, which deprives man of 
all pleasures. Women, too, were called to rebel against the sexual 
mores of the time.

Lukacs’s campaign of “Cultural Terrorism” was a precursor to what 
Political Correctness would later bring to Western European 
schools. In 1923, Lukacs and other Marxist intellectuals 
associated with the Communist Party of Germany founded the 
Institute of Social Research at Frankfurt University in Frankfurt, 
Germany. The Institute, which became known as the Frankfurt 
School, was modelled after the Marx-Engels Institute in Moscow. In 
1933, when Nazis came to power in Germany, the members of the 
Frankfurt School fled. Most came to the United States. The members 
of the Frankfurt School conducted numerous studies on the beliefs, 
attitudes and values they believed lay behind the rise of National 
Socialism in Germany. The Frankfurt School’s studies combined 
Marxist analysis with Freudian psychoanalysis to criticise the 
bases of Western culture, including Christianity, capitalism, 
authority, the family, patriarchy, hierarchy, morality, tradition, 
sexual restraint, loyalty, patriotism, nationalism, heredity, 
ethnocentrism, convention and conservatism.

These criticisms, known collectively as Critical Theory, were 
reflected in such works of the Frankfurt School as Erich Fromm’s 
Escape from Freedom and The Dogma of Christ, Wilhelm’s Reich’s The 
Mass Psychology of Fascism and Theodor Adorno’s The Authoritarian 
Personality. The Authoritarian Personality, published in 1950, 
substantially influenced Western European psychologists and social 
scientists. The book was premised on one basic idea, that the 
presence in a society of Christianity, capitalism, and the 
patriarchal-authoritarian family created a character prone to 
racial and religious prejudice and German fascism. The 
Authoritarian Personality became a handbook for a national 
campaign against any kind of prejudice or discrimination on the 
theory that if these evils were not eradicated, another Holocaust 
might occur on the European continent. This campaign, in turn, 
provided a basis for Political Correctness. Critical Theory 
incorporated sub-theories which were intended to chip away at 
specific elements of the existing culture, including “matriarchal 
theory,” “androgyny theory,” “personality theory,” “authority 
theory,” “family theory,” “sexuality theory,” “racial theory,” 
“legal theory,” and “literary theory.” Put into practice, these 
theories were to be used to overthrow the prevailing social order 
and usher in social revolution. To achieve this, the Critical 
Theorists of the Frankfurt School recognised that traditional 
beliefs and the existing social structure would have to be 
destroyed and then replaced. The patriarchal social structure 
would be replaced with matriarchy; the belief that men and women 
are different and properly have different roles would be replaced 
with androgyny; and the belief that heterosexuality is normal 
would be replaced with the belief that homosexuality is equally 


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