[Marxism] Just a metaphor, maybe, but also a glimpse of how socialism might be attained within our present system?

Ralph Johansen mdriscollrj at charter.net
Mon Dec 29 14:56:47 MST 2014


Meszaros refers to this in discussing transition, a metaphor for how 
socialism might come about in the structure which we meanwhile continue 
to occupy. I found the reference in Goethe's autobiography.

http://www.gutenberg.org/cache/epub/5733/pg5733.html

AUTOBIOGRAPHY TRUTH AND FICTION RELATING TO MY LIFE

JOHANN WOLFGANG VON GOETHE

PART THE FIRST


          FIRST BOOK.

(...)

As long as my grandmother lived, my father had refrained from changing 
or renovating the house, even in the slightest particular; though it was 
known that he had pretty large plans of building, which were now 
immediately begun. In Frankfort, as in many other old towns, when 
anybody put up a wooden structure, he ventured, for the sake of space, 
to make, not only the first, but each successive, story project over the 
lower one, by which means narrow streets especially were rendered 
somewhat dark and confined. At last a law was passed, that every one 
putting up a new house from the ground, should confine his projections 
to the first upper story, and carry the others up perpendicularly. My 
father, that he might not lose the projecting space in the second story, 
caring little for outward architectural appearance, and anxious only for 
the good and convenient arrangement of the interior, resorted to the 
expedient which others had employed before him, of propping the upper 
part of the house, until one part after another had been removed from 
the bottom upwards, and a new house, as it were, inserted in its place. 
Thus, while comparatively none of the old structure remained, the new 
one merely passed for a repair. Now, as the tearing down and building up 
was done gradually, my father determined not to quit the house, that he 
might better direct and give his orders; as he possessed a good 
knowledge of the technicalities of building. At the same time, he would 
not suffer his family to leave him. This new epoch was very surprising 
and strange for the children. To see the rooms in which they had so 
often been confined and pestered with wearisome tasks and studies, the 
passages they had played in, the walls which had always been kept so 
carefully clean, all falling before the mason's hatchet and the 
carpenter's axe,—and that from the bottom upwards; to float as it were 
in the air, propped up by beams, being, at the same time, constantly 
confined to a certain lesson or definite task,—all this produced a 
commotion in our young heads that was not easily settled. But the young 
people felt the inconvenience less, because they had somewhat more space 
for play than before, and had many opportunities of swinging on beams, 
and playing at see-saw with the boards.

At first my father obstinately persisted in carrying out his plan; but 
when at last even the roof was partly removed, and the rain reached our 
beds, in spite of the carpets that had been taken up, converted into 
tarpaulin, and stretched over as a defense, he determined, though 
reluctantly, that the children should be intrusted for a time to some 
kind friends, who had already offered their services, and sent to a 
public school.

This transition was rather unpleasant; for, when the children, who had 
all along been kept at home in a secluded, pure, refined, yet strict 
manner, were thrown among a rude mass of young creatures, they were 
compelled unexpectedly to suffer every thing from the vulgar, bad, and 
even base, since they lacked both weapons and skill to protect themselves.

(...)


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