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Thread: @nti-dialectics Made Easy -- Thread Two

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    'Comrade' Artesian:

    Yep, show me Marx's own writings in which he pays homage to the dialectics of the Scots.
    Ok, here's that earlier post (in fact both of them):
    'Comrade' Artesian:

    Poor Rosa, so young and yet suffering so much from short-term memory loss. She doesn't recall using the word "transition"? Here let me help you, like the rope helps a hanged man:
    Thanks for the reminder, but I'm not too sure how it helps you resuscitate the mystical version of Das Kapital

    Do we need more ignorance, dishonesty from Rosa? Of course not, but just because it's available, I thought I'd include this, from her post of Sept 4 2009:

    "Hegel derived his historical materialism from Kant, Ferguson, Miller, Smith...."

    Hegel derived his historical materialism-- a theory of course which Rosa claims she supports, but refuses to discuss or define or demonstrate, even demonstrate its opposition to Hegel's dialectics [right, because Marx already did that for us, except Marx, as Rosa acknowledges never called his work "historical materialism. Just another inconvenient fact for Rosa, purveyor of the big lie].

    Hegel's historical materialism? Can you point us to an example of Hegel's historical materialism so we might compare it to Smith's or Kant's? Can you point us to an example of Kant's historical materialism?
    Try this out for size:

    http://hes-conference2009.com/papers/SUN4A-King.pdf

    Here is the first half of the above paper (I have inserted the author's footnotes in square brackets where they occur in the original):

    Ferguson and Hegel on the Idea of Civil Society

    Martha King

    The notion of civil society was an issue of particular importance within eighteenth and nineteenth century political thought. Multiple accounts of the supposed state of nature and records of colonial expansion demonstrated an interest in how political institutions not only took shape, but survived. The Scottish philosopher Adam Ferguson (1723–1816) was one of the first of his time to reject a state-of-nature-based account of the development of political institutions. Ferguson’s methodology was roughly empirical: to understand how and why governments arose is to simply observe human interactions historically. In his Essay on the History of Civil Society (1767), Ferguson sketched what he saw as the foundations for civic life. He argued that economic activity was primarily a social phenomenon (an idea which Marx would later adopt), and that the cultivation of virtue was necessary for the citizen.

    In particular, Ferguson’s notion of economic activity in civil society as fundamentally social in nature was influential on a number of thinkers, but specifically Hegel and Marx. Ferguson was the first to publish on the idea (although whether he himself got the idea from Smith’s lectures is disputed1) that the division of labor was the key to a nation’s strength and growth. However, Ferguson was also cautious of the consequences that could arise from this process. His warnings about the negative effects of increased production on society were noted by Marx in Capital vol. 1.2 Ferguson’s conception of civil society, and, ultimately, of history, as both

    [1 See, for example, Waszek, pp. 214–219
    2 Capital, vol. 1, p. 394]


    economic and ethical offer much in the way of comparison to Hegel’s political thought. Our purposes, then, shall be to examine the ways in which Hegel not only potentially drew influence from Ferguson, but the ways in which Hegel redefined the Scottish account
    of civil society.

    First, Ferguson’s thoughts on the division of labor will be examined in order to elucidate his concerns about its effects on society. In light of these concerns, Hegel’s thought on the ‘system of needs’ will be examined and contrasted with Ferguson’s thoughts on economic progress. Next, similarities between Ferguson’s and Hegel’s political thought (for example, on the notion of citizenship) will be explored. Finally, the role of virtue will be discussed as the separation point between each thinker’s views on civil society. In these respects, situating Hegel within the Scottish Enlightenment notion of civil society helps to clarify Hegel’s own understanding of civil society, and why he thought it inferior to the state.

    In all cases of similarity, I do not wish in any way to contend that Hegel is unoriginal or merely drawing from Ferguson. Rather, while some issues (as others have argued)3 in Ferguson were likely inspirations for Hegel (such as Ferguson’s discussion of the social effects of the division of labor), other points of comparison serve to highlight each philosopher’s distinct views. Specifically, Ferguson’s focus on the market as primarily a social phenomenon is perhaps best considered in contrast to Hegel, rather than to his British contemporaries. Further, it may be argued that Ferguson’s construction of civil society leaves unfinished the necessary unity of the

    [3 See, for example, Oz-Salzberger, Translating the Enlightenment, and Waszek, The Scottish Enlightenment and Hegel’s Account of ‘Civil Society’.]

    private and public interests made complete in Hegel’s conception of the state. Towards this end, I contend that Hegel’s contributions to political thought provide a sort of completion of Ferguson’s own understanding of the necessity of virtue for civic life.

    Hegel’s knowledge of Scottish Enlightenment philosophers, and in particular his knowledge of the works of Adam Ferguson, has been well documented by Norbet Waszek and Fania Oz-Salzberger.4 However, a few remarks can be made about this relationship. Important for the dissemination of Scottish philosophy in Germany in the nineteenth century was the philosopher Christian Garve (1742–1798) who, according to Waszek, “did more than anyone else to spread the fame of the Scottish Enlightenment in Germany.”5 Garve was the first German translator of Ferguson’s Institutes of Moral Philosophy and of Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations, and was deeply interested himself in the Scottish philosophy of his time, especially the works of Ferguson, Hume, Hutcheson, Reid, and Smith. According to Waszek, there are a number of instances of documented evidence of Hegel’s reading of Garve’s commentary and translations.6 A translation by Christian Friedrich Jünger of Ferguson’s Essay also appeared in German in 1768, just one year after its original English publication, and Hegel’s specific knowledge of Ferguson is attested to by his biographer, Karl Rosenkranz.7 Indeed Fania Oz-Salzburger notes “it was Ferguson’s Essay in its German translation which helped to make the notion of ‘bürgerliche

    [4 Ibid.
    5 Waszek, p. 60
    6 Waszek, p. 103
    7 Rosenkranz, p.14]

    Gesellschaft’ fashionable in German scholarly circles.”8 In addition, Waszek cites Hegel’s broader familiarity with Scottish philosophy as well as Hegel’s familiarity with several journals which popularized Scottish thought in Germany.

    Of all of Ferguson’s ideas, it was his account of civil society which had the most profound effect on German thinkers. Specifically, Ferguson’s discussion of the social effects of the division of labor paved the way for later thinkers such as Marx and Durkheim. Compared with Adam Smith’s more economic consideration of the effects of specialization, Ferguson’s account is much more detailed in terms of both the negative and positive effects on society and the market. While Ferguson indeed recognizes the economic benefits that the division of labor brings, he also acknowledges some of the negative impacts on society as well. Like Smith, Ferguson attributes economic growth and progress to the development of specialization:

    “By the separation of arts and professions, the sources of wealth are laid open; every species of material is wrought up to the greatest perfection, and every commodity is produced in the greatest abundance.”9

    While the economic impact of specialization was of course not noted only by Ferguson, it is his remarks on the social effects of this process which separated him from his contemporaries: “But apart from these considerations, the separation of professions, while it seems to promise improvement of skill, and is actually the cause why the productions of every art become more perfect as commerce advances; yet in its termination, and ultimate effects, serves, in some measure, to break the bands of society, to substitute form in place of ingenuity, and to

    [8 Oz-Salzberger (2006), p. xix
    9 ECS, p. 173]

    withdraw individuals from the common scene of occupation, on which the sentiments of the heart, and the mind, are most happily employed.”10

    Thus, while the advancement of production and commerce bring with them increased economic gain, the mechanization of the individual serves to break his ties to his neighbors.

    In this and similar passages, Ferguson’s discussion of the division of labor seems to include a notion of alienation not unlike that found in Marx. The constant production of goods by the worker never meant to enjoy them dulls and him. In particular, specialization reduces the individual to a mere ‘cog’ in a mechanistic process of production. “Manufactures, accordingly, prosper most, where the mind is least consulted, and where the workshop may . . . be considered as an engine, the parts of which are men.”11 Reason, Ferguson also notes, is unnecessary to the process of manufacture and in many cases may upset the very operation—production requires the individual to act as a component of the well-oiled machine.

    Further, as individuals begin to distinguish themselves by their specific role in the economy, “society is made to consist of parts of which none is animated with the spirit of society itself.”12 Ferguson even attributes this effect to the fall of the Athenian state, where, in Ferguson’s estimation, the “business of the state, as well as of war . . . became the objects of separate professions . . . and men ceased to be citizens . . . in proportion as they came to be distinguished by the profession of these, and other

    [10 ECS, p. 206
    11 ECS, p. 174
    12 ECS, p. 207]

    separate crafts.”13 In such a case, man is alienated even from his species, as Ferguson (drawing of course on Aristotle) sees the social nature of man (especially in his capacity for friendship) at the heart of political society.

    While Ferguson recognizes the problems the division of labor may have on workers, interestingly enough, he reserves much criticism for the effects that the process has on the upper classes. The increasing wealth and, ultimately, stratification, of society makes the nobility lazy, foolish, and ignorant. With increased wealth and comfort, the nobleman renounces his nobility by ignoring the cares of those less privileged. Boredom overcomes the rich “who become the first victims of that wretched insignificance, into which the members of every state, by the tendency of their weaknesses, and their vices, are in haste to plunge themselves.”14

    In Hegel’s philosophy the division of labor is a direct result of the system of needs, the cornerstone of civil society. He, too, recognizes the wealth that can come to a society when manufacturing is divided into specialized parts, and thus the success of the market-based economy is found in its efficiency, not in the generation of profit.

    Because of the interdependence necessitated by specialization, people are drawn together: “[In] their work and the satisfaction of their needs, subjective self-seeking turns into a contribution to the satisfaction of the needs of everyone else. . . . with the result that each man in earning, producing, and enjoying on his own account is eo ipso

    [13 ECS, p. 207
    14 ECS, p. 246]

    producing and earning for the enjoyment of everyone else.”15 This conscious progression towards the universal advances into ethical life.

    However, it is with respect to the deleterious effects of the division of labor that we most see Ferguson and Hegel in agreement. First, both are concerned with the mechanization of the individual and of society as a whole. Hegel, in fact, even thought that because the “abstraction of one man’s production from another’s makes work more and more mechanical,” that man would one day be able to “step aside and install machines in his place.”16 Whereas labor before stood “as the mediator between man’s need and its satisfaction . . . [it] becomes ‘mechanical’ and severely limits man’s capacity for freedom until he ‘steps aside’ from such a process.”17 As in Ferguson, Hegel sees the increased fragmentation of labor paralleled in the fragmentation of society. The individual becomes focused on himself, his work, all the while participating in a system wherein he no longer has any claim on his production.

    “Great wealth . . . produces on the one side in ideal universality, on the other side in real universality, mechanically. . . . The original character of the business class, namely, its being capable of an organic absolute intuition and respect for something divine, even though posited outside it, disappears, and the bestiality of contempt for all higher things enters. . . .The absolute bond of the people, namely the ethical principle, has vanished, and the people is dissolved.”18

    [15 PR 199, p. 67
    16 PR 199, p. 67
    17 Fraser, p. 82
    18 System of Ethical Life, Sec. I, II.B.a]

    For both Ferguson and Hegel this ‘dissolution of bonds’ is not merely interpersonal but rather (and especially) civic. Increased production leads to increased luxury, which in turn generates a greater stratification between the poor and the wealthy. Ferguson speaks of a breakdown in ‘national spirit’ where mechanization takes over19 and Hegel is troubled by the dependence created by increasing needs.20

    The issue of needs itself is at the heart of Hegel’s notion of civil society. Unlike his predecessors (especially the Scottish political theorists), Hegel was unique in separating civil society from the state. He defined civil society as primarily economic and membership in the state as ethical. Civil society is primarily an economic institution since it concerns itself with the production and consumption of goods aimed at meeting the needs of its members. Individuals are primarily self-interested and are directed toward meeting their particular needs. Nonetheless, the multiplication of needs drives man into communion with others. The tension between the self-interested individual who meets his needs via interaction with others is never unified within civil society. As such, civil society is a system of dependence and necessity. The individual remains subject to his own personal needs and those necessitated by nature.

    The productive success of the market, however, creates increasing needs which individuals seek to meet. This in turn leads to increased stratification among the members of civil society, and inequality is inevitable. Specifically, the poor are at risk
    because of their inability to meet their needs and as such they become dependent on other people and circumstances and hence, according to Hegel, unfree.

    [19 See ECS, Part V, Sec. III, “Of Relaxations in the National Spirit incident to Polished Nations.
    20 See PR, 195]

    Nonetheless, civil society plays a vital role in the development of freedom. The productive process itself frees man from the subjugation of nature. Here too man becomes recognized as an individual, specifically through the establishment of private property. Because of the nature of specialized work, individuals are freed from the immediate demands of nature and desire. The fulfillment of individual needs, Hegel argues, seems at first glance arbitrary. Yet still “the universal asserts itself in the bearing which this satisfaction has on the needs of others and their free arbitrary wills.”21 Thus the process is economic and presupposes the ethical nature of the state.

    The fulfillment of needs is a process grounded in deliberate societal interaction.

    “[I]ndividuals can attain their ends only in so far as they themselves determine their
    knowing, willing, and acting in a universal way and make themselves links in this
    chain of social connections.”22

    While the first moment of civil society is found in the system of needs, the second moment, the administration of justice, arises because of the necessity of protecting private property. For Hegel, property is another way in which the individual relates to society, and, ultimately, the universal. As property owners, men become bearers of legal rights and obligations. Further, property allows the individual to see himself as an objective being with a free will. According to Hegel, if “emphasis is placed on my needs, then the possession of property appears as a means to their satisfaction, but the true position is that, from the standpoint of freedom, property is

    [21 PR, 189
    22 PR, 186]

    the first embodiment of freedom and so is in itself a substantive end.”23 As a result, man identifies property as “this” or “mine” and as such his own will is directed towards the wills of others.24 Property thus enables the mutual recognition necessary for ethical life.

    A similar notion is found in Ferguson. Through private property, man sees himself objectively: “He apprehends a relation between his person and his property, which renders what he calls his own in a manner a part of himself, a constituent of his rank, his condition, and his character. . . .”25 Indeed, like Hegel, Ferguson recognizes property as a matter of progress, since “it requires, among other particulars, which are the effects of time, some method of defining possession.”26

    In general, too, Hegel shares the idea of an “interdependent system of selfinterested individuals” with the Scots,27 and both Hegel and Ferguson consider human needs as one of the ways in which man is distinct from the animals. Whereas the needs of animals are bound by their biological constitution, the needs of humans are boundless. As Waszek points out, indeed, Hegel’s notion is constructed strikingly similarly to Ferguson’s formulation in his Institutes of Moral Philosophy. Hegel describes animal needs as “restricted in scope”28 while Ferguson calls them “fixed and determinate choice[s] of external objects and pursuits.”29 Both describe how animals are limited to specific diets, dwellings, and climates while men are unrestricted in this


    [23 PR, 45
    24 See PR, 46A
    25 ECS, p. 17
    26 ECS, p. 81
    27 Waszek, p. 147
    28 PR, 55
    29 Institutes of Moral Philosophy, p. 17]

    manner.30 The multiplicity of both wants and means to satisfy them is one of the defining features of man. Man as situated in civil society is generally unrestricted by his desires and while he overcomes his biological impulses, he submits himself to new demands dictated by the generation of property via the market. These needs, as both Hegel and the Scots acknowledged, are ‘insatiable.’31 Further, as more needs emerge so too do refinements. Fashions, “fancies,”32 and “comforts”33 begin to drive the expansion of wants and means to fulfill them. As a result of this process, satisfaction becomes unachievable because of the limitless possibilities for “needs, means, and [their] enjoyments.”34 Thus “dependence and want increase ad infinitum.”35

    Nonetheless, the necessities of life are not fixed in any kind of natural condition of man. Both Ferguson and Hegel reject ‘state of nature’ explanations (as will be discussed later) and both are in agreement that necessities are relative to time and place.36

    [30 Waszek, p. 149
    31 See, for example, PR, 191A and Theory of Moral Sentiments, p. 264
    32 See, for example, ECS Part VI, Sec. 2 IMS, Part I, Ch. 2, Sec. XII
    33 PR, 191A
    34 PR, 195
    35 PR, 195
    36 Ferguson calls the “necessary of life” a “vague and relative term” and Hegel describes the necessary
    aspect of needs as having “no determined scope.” (Waszek, p. 155)]
    References:

    Avineri, Shlomo. Hegel’s Theory of the Modern State. 1974. Cambridge: Cambridge UP.
    Duquette, David. “Hegel’s Conception of Citizenship in the Ethical Life of the State.” Paper given at the 2007 Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association.
    Ferguson, Adam. An Essay on the History of Civil Society. 2006. Cambridge: Cambridge UP.
    Ferguson, Adam. Institutes of Moral Philosophy. 1786. Varrentrap Junior and Wenner; Mentz and Frankfort.
    Fraser, Ian. Hegel and Marx: The Concept of Need. 1998. Edinburgh: Edinburgh UP.
    Hegel, G.W.F. System of Ethical Life, T.M. Knox, trans. 1979. Albany: SUNY Press.
    Hegel, G.W.F. The German Constitution. In Hegel: Political Writings, Laurence Dickey and H.B. Nisbet, eds. 2007. Cambridge: Cambridge UP.
    Hegel, G.W.F. The Philosophy of History, John Sibree, trans. 2nd. ed. 1902. New York: P.F. Collier.
    Hegel, G.W.F. The Philosophy of Right, T.M. Knox, trans. 1952. “The Great Books,” vol. 46. New York: Encyclopedia of Britannica.
    Hill, Lisa. The Passionate Society: The Social, Political, and Moral Thought of Adam Ferguson. 2006. Dordrecht: Springer.
    Marx, Karl. Capital, vol. 1. In The Marx-Engels Reader, Robert C. Tucker, ed. 1978. New York: Norton.
    Oz-Salzberger, Fania. “Introduction.” In Adam Ferguson, An Essay on the History of Civil Society. 2006. Cambridge: Cambridge UP.
    Oz-Salzberger, Fania. Translating the Enlightenment: Scottish Civic Discourse in Eighteenth-Century Germany. 1995. Oxford: Oxford UP.
    Rosenkranz, Karl. Hegels Leben. 1963 [1844]. Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft.
    Smith, Adam. The Theory of Moral Sentiments. 1853. London: H.G. Bohn.
    Waszek, Norbert. The Scottish Enlightenment and Hegel's Account of 'Civil Society'. 1988. Dordrecht: Kluwer.

    Waszek's book is available here:

    http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=K...enment&f=false

    More to follow....
    In addition to the above references, you can look this up:

    Hegel's Analysis of Colonialism and Its Roots in Scottish Political Economy Gabriel Paquette; CLIO, Vol. 32, 2003

    And here is an abstract of a book on this aspect of Hegel's work:

    Most theorists are unaware that Hegel was an astute student of political economy. Not only did he read Adam Smith and Smith's Scottish Enlightenment contemporaries, he also carefully read the work of James Steuart -- an important figure bridging the French Physiocrats with the Scottish Enlightenment. Indeed, a central concern of Hegel's early work is to sort out the relationship between modern wealth creation and the presence of modern poverty. Hegel postulates that poverty is in fact generated by wealth creation and that the two -- wealth and poverty -- necessarily and systematically go hand in hand. He admits to his own failure in providing a solution to the problem of poverty. As the noted Hegel scholar Shlomo Avineri highlights, it is the only time in the corpus of Hegel's work that he confesses to such a failure. Hegel's confession and his rigorous understanding of the insurmountable problems generated by poverty in market society stand in some tension with his theory of historical progress in which American Indians represent the beginning of history and Europeans the end point. Such a theory of historical progress seems hard to square with Hegel's earlier claim that: (1) poverty is endemic to modern society; and (2) that such systematic poverty was most likely absent among earlier forms of society. Given the pervasiveness of poverty in European market society, how then does Hegel find confidence in a theory of progressive history in which Europeans stand above all other forms of society? The purpose of this paper is to confront this dilemma. We will use Hegel's thought to demonstrate how poverty can be taken with the utmost seriousness while also being utterly disregarded. Hegel's eventual discounting of poverty foreshadows the contemporary stance towards this problem, exemplified by the constant anti-poverty efforts from basic needs to poverty reduction associated with the international apparatuses for promoting development that reinforce the very processes by which poverty is produced.
    Hegel, the Savage, and the Wound of Wealth

    http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p_ml...709_index.html

    Where we also read:

    'Shed No Tears: Wealth, Race, and Death in Hegel’s Necro-Philosophy' Naeem Inayatullah Department of Politics Ithaca College, David L. Blaney Department of Political Science Macalester College. Prepared for the panel, “Hegel and International Relations” International Studies Association Chicago, IL February 28-March 3, 2007Though commentators rarely foreground the category of race in Hegel’s philosophy, we will place Hegel’s racializing move at the center of our reading and, by extension, at the center of the modern project of political economy. Hegel’s Philosophy of Right (1821) is at once a “philosophical reconstruction of modern ethical life” and an historical account, seeking to demonstrate that “modern European culture was a product of a long historical evolution.”2 Hegel’s linkage of modern and European is not incidental. As we shall see, Western Europeans embody modernity’s possibilities, particularly the realization of freedom. As Hegel hints in Philosophy of Right and makes clearer in his Lectures on the Philosophy of World History (1822, 1828, 1830), non-1. This paper is chapter five of Blaney and Inayatullah, Savage Economics. It follows chapters on Adam Smith, John Millar and Adam Ferguson, and James Steuart, and will be followed by a chapter on Karl Marx. Our thanks to Patrick Jackson for his comments on an earlier draft.2Z. A. Pelczynski, “Introduction: The Significance of Hegel’s Separation of the State and Civil Society,” in Z. A. Pelczynski, ed., The State and Civil Society: Studies in Hegel’s Political Philosophy (Cambridge: Cambridge University, 1984), p. 7. 1
    http://www.allacademic.com//meta/p_m.../p178709-1.php

    In addition, here are two earlier posts of mine you seem to want to ignore:

    The first was in reply to Bob the Builder, who, just like you, had not done his homework:

    It is not I who called them this (added: i.e., "historical materialists"), but others, mainly Marx and Engels.

    Ronald Meek, "The Scottish Contribution to Marxist Sociology" [1954; collected in his Economics and Ideology and Other Essays, 1967]. Such luminaries as Adam Ferguson and Adam Smith. This influence was actually acknowledged. In The German Ideology, right after announcing their theme that "men be in a position to live in order to be able to `make history'", they say "The French and the English, even if they have conceived the relation of this fact with so-called history only in an extremely one-sided fashion, particularly as long as they remained in the toils of political ideology, have nevertheless made the first attempts to give the writing of history a materialistic basis by being the first to write histories of civil society, of commerce and industry."]
    http://www.cscs.umich.edu/~crshalizi...terialism.html

    I have to say that the above link is hostile to Marx and Engels, but there is little available on the internet on this.
    Meek actually calls them the "Scottish Historical School" (p.35), but he attributes this to Roy Pascal (Communist Party member, friend of Wittgenstein and translator of the German Ideology), who used it in his article "Property and Society: The Scottish Historical School of the Eighteenth Century" Modern Quarterly March 1938.

    The full passage is:

    Since we are dealing with the Germans, who are devoid of premises, we must begin by stating the first premise of all human existence and, therefore, of all history, the premise, namely, that men must be in a position to live in order to be able to “make history.” But life involves before everything else eating and drinking, a habitation, clothing and many other things. The first historical act is thus the production of the means to satisfy these needs, the production of material life itself. And indeed this is an historical act, a fundamental condition of all history, which today, as thousands of years ago, must daily and hourly be fulfilled merely in order to sustain human life. Even when the sensuous world is reduced to a minimum, to a stick as with Saint Bruno [Bauer], it presupposes the action of producing the stick. Therefore in any interpretation of history one has first of all to observe this fundamental fact in all its significance and all its implications and to accord it its due importance. It is well known that the Germans have never done this, and they have never, therefore, had an earthly basis for history and consequently never an historian. The French and the English, even if they have conceived the relation of this fact with so-called history only in an extremely one-sided fashion, particularly as long as they remained in the toils of political ideology, have nevertheless made the first attempts to give the writing of history a materialistic basis by being the first to write histories of civil society, of commerce and industry
    http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx...logy/ch01a.htm

    In the Poverty of Philosophy, Marx wrote:

    Let us do him this justice: Lemontey wittily exposed the unpleasant consequences of the division of labor as it is constituted today, and M. Proudhon found nothing to add to it. But now that, through the fault of M. Proudhon, we have been drawn into this question of priority, let us say again, in passing, that long before M. Lemontey, and 17 years before Adam Smith, who was a pupil of A. Ferguson, the last-named gave a clear exposition of the subject in a chapter which deals specifically with the division of labor.
    p.181 of MECW volume 6.

    http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx...ophy/ch02b.htm

    Marx refers to Ferguson repeatedly in his 'Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy' (MECW volume 30, pp.264-306), as he does to others of the same 'school' (Adam Smith and Dugald Stewart) throughout this work:

    http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx...nomic/ch32.htm

    He does so too in Volume One of Das Kapital -- MECW volume 35, p.133, 359, 366, 367. [He also refers to others of that 'school', Robertson, p.529, Stewart and Smith (the references to these two are too numerous to list).]

    http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx...me35/index.htm

    Throughout his works, the references to Smith and Stewart are in general too numerous to list.
    And, this was in reply to Leo, who doubted the influence of Aristotle on Marx:

    Leo:

    Which to me shows that Hegel influenced Marx's thinking but that Marx was not a Hegelian in any way.
    Indeed, and Hegel's influence halted at or about the time Marx wrote Das Kapital.

    No, I am saying that once established, he kept using the same methodology.
    But, Marx indicated that he had changed this 'methodology' by the time he wrote Das Kapital.

    I don't think he has to be a Hegelian going on about Hegelian concepts to have traces of Hegel. He has traces of Hegel in his methodology (and not much but nevertheless), doesn't have to repeat them in his terminology though.
    I nowhere said he was a 'Hegelian'; what I said was that we need not speculate since Marx helpfully added a summary of 'his method' from which every trace of Hegel had been removed. So, this new method owes nothing to Hegel.

    Unless you can show otherwise.

    Well yes, but I don't necessarily give the same meaning to this that you do. One could give it a positive meaning as much, even more so than the negative one you are giving it. Again I am not saying Marx was an Hegelian, this term basically proves that while Marx was not a Hegelian, he was paying respects to Hegel for influencing his methodology.
    In that case, your interpretation will have to ignore the summary of 'his method' that he endorsed which contains not one atom of Hegel, or his 'method'.

    Well, he says he reversed the relation Hegel sees in between thought and matter. This is "a trace of Hegel". Had he "dropped" Hegel completely he'd be saying there is no relation between thought and matter. He summarizes his difference quite clearly: To Hegel, the life-process of the human brain, i.e., the process of thinking, which, under the name of 'the Idea,' he even transforms into an independent subject, is the demiurgos of the real world, and the real world is only the external, phenomenal form of 'the Idea.' With me, on the contrary, the ideal is nothing else than the material world reflected by the human mind, and translated into forms of thought."
    Not so, this is a return to Aristotle.

    Hegel had mystified Aristotle and Kant, Marx simply indicated that he rejected this. So he is not using Hegel's method, just signalling his return to Aristotle.

    Aristotle did not have a labour theory of value though. The first fella who came up with it is Ibn Haldun.
    Maybe so, but the seeds of the labour theory of value are in Aristotle:

    http://www.economyprofessor.com/econ...y-of-value.php

    That however in the form of commodity values all labours are expressed as equal human labour and therefore as of equal worth could not be read by Aristotle out of the form of value because Greek society was based on slave labour and therefore had as its natural basis the inequality of people and their labour powers. The secret of the expression of value, the equality and equal worth of all labours because and insofar as they are human labour in general, can only be deciphered once the concept of human equality has the firmness of a popular prejudice. This, however, is only possible in a society in which the commodity form is the general form of the product of labour and therefore also the relation of people to each other as commodity owners is the predominant social relation. Aristotle's genius shines precisely in the fact that he discovers in the expression of value of commodities a relationship of equality. Only the historical limit of the society in which he lived prevented him from finding out in what this relation of equality consisted 'in truth'. (Das Kapital Vol. 1 MEW23:74 translation my own ME)
    Bold added.

    Quoted from here:

    http://192.220.96.165/untpltcl/exchvljs.html

    From Rubin's history:

    We consider the following passage in Capital to be crucial for an understanding of the ideas of Marx which have been presented: "There was, however, an important fact which prevented Aristotle from seeing that, to attribute value to commodities, is merely a mode of expressing all labor as equal human labor, and consequently as labor of equal quality. Greek society was founded upon slavery, and had, therefore, for its natural basis, the inequality of men and of their labor-powers. The secret of the expression of value, namely, that all kinds of labor are equal and equivalent, because, and so far as they are human labor in general, cannot be deciphered, until the notion of human equality has already acquired the fixity of a popular prejudice. This, however, is possible only in a society in which the great mass of the produce of labor takes the form of commodities, in which, consequently, the dominant relation between man and man, is that of owners of commodities" (C., I, pp. 59-60). [6] The equality of the autonomous and independent commodity producers is the foundation for the equality of the exchanged goods. This is the basic characteristic of the commodity economy, of its "cell structure," so to speak. The theory of value examines the process of formation of the productive unity called a social economy from separate, one might say independent, cells. It is not without reason that Marx wrote, in the preface to the first edition of the first volume of Capital, that the "commodity form of the product of labor or the form of value of the commodity is the form of the economic cell of bourgeois society." This cell structure of the commodity society represents, in itself, the totality of equal, formally independent, private economic units.

    In the cited passage on Aristotle, Marx emphasizes that in slave society the concept of value could not be deduced from "the form of value itself," i.e., from the material expression of the equality of exchanged commodities. The mystery of value can only be grasped from the characteristics of the commodity economy. One should not be astonished that critics who missed the sociological character of Marx's theory of value should have interpreted the cited passage without discernment. According to Dietzel, Marx "was guided by the ethical axiom of equality." This "ethical foundation is displayed in the passage where Marx explains the shortcomings of Aristotle's theory of value by pointing out that the natural basis of Greek society was the inequality among people and among their labor-powers." [7]Dietzel does not understand that Marx is not dealing with an ethical postulate of equality, but with the equality of commodity producers as a basic social fact of the commodity economy. We repeat, not equality in the sense of equal distribution of material goods, but in the sense of independence and autonomy among economic agents who organize production.

    If Dietzel transforms the society of equal commodity producers from an actual fact into an ethical postulate, Croce sees in the principle of equality a theoretically conceived type of society thought up by Marx on the basis of theoretical considerations and for the purpose of contrast and comparison with the capitalist society, which is based on inequality. The purpose of this comparison is to explain the specific characteristics of the capitalist society. The equality of commodity producers is not an ethical ideal but a theoretically conceived measure, a standard with which we measure capitalist society. Croce recalls the passage where Marx says that the nature of value can only be explained in a society where the belief in the equality of people has acquired the force of a popular prejudice. [8] Croce thinks that Marx, in order to understand value in a capitalist society, took as a type, as a theoretical standard, a different (concrete) value, namely that which would be possessed by goods which can be multiplied by labor in a society without the imperfections of capitalist society, and in which labor power would not be a commodity. From this, Croce derives the following conclusion on the logical properties of Marx's theory of value. "Marx's labor-value is not only a logical generalization, it is also a fact conceived and postulated as typical, i.e., something more than a mere logical concept."
    More here:

    http://www.marxists.org/archive/rubin/value/ch10.htm

    See also:

    http://cas.umkc.edu/ECON/Oeconomicus...0IX/Avsar1.pdf

    Leo:

    While I don't think Marx was too influenced by ancient philosophy to begin with, he certainly paid more attention to Epicurus than Aristotle, writing a major study about him. Of course it is not unnatural for him to be fond of Aristotle too, the guy was rather similar to Marx himself, a freaking writing machine.
    And yet he quotes Aristotle across eight pages in Das Kapital, and Epicurus not once.

    Here are a few of them:

    The two latter peculiarities of the equivalent form will become more intelligible if we go back to the great thinker who was the first to analyse so many forms, whether of thought, society, or Nature, and amongst them also the form of value. I mean Aristotle.

    In the first place, he clearly enunciates that the money form of commodities is only the further development of the simple form of value – i.e., of the expression of the value of one commodity in some other commodity taken at random; for he says:

    5 beds = 1 house – (clinai pente anti oiciaς)

    is not to be distinguished from

    5 beds = so much money. – (clinai pente anti ... oson ai pente clinai)

    He further sees that the value relation which gives rise to this expression makes it necessary that the house should qualitatively be made the equal of the bed, and that, without such an equalisation, these two clearly different things could not be compared with each other as commensurable quantities. “Exchange,” he says, “cannot take place without equality, and equality not without commensurability". (out isothς mh oushς snmmetriaς). Here, however, he comes to a stop, and gives up the further analysis of the form of value. “It is, however, in reality, impossible (th men oun alhqeia adunaton), that such unlike things can be commensurable” – i.e., qualitatively equal. Such an equalisation can only be something foreign to their real nature, consequently only “a makeshift for practical purposes.”

    Aristotle therefore, himself, tells us what barred the way to his further analysis; it was the absence of any concept of value. What is that equal something, that common substance, which admits of the value of the beds being expressed by a house? Such a thing, in truth, cannot exist, says Aristotle. And why not? Compared with the beds, the house does represent something equal to them, in so far as it represents what is really equal, both in the beds and the house. And that is – human labour.

    There was, however, an important fact which prevented Aristotle from seeing that, to attribute value to commodities, is merely a mode of expressing all labour as equal human labour, and consequently as labour of equal quality. Greek society was founded upon slavery, and had, therefore, for its natural basis, the inequality of men and of their labour powers. The secret of the expression of value, namely, that all kinds of labour are equal and equivalent, because, and so far as they are human labour in general, cannot be deciphered, until the notion of human equality has already acquired the fixity of a popular prejudice. This, however, is possible only in a society in which the great mass of the produce of labour takes the form of commodities, in which, consequently, the dominant relation between man and man, is that of owners of commodities. The brilliancy of Aristotle’s genius is shown by this alone, that he discovered, in the expression of the value of commodities, a relation of equality. The peculiar conditions of the society in which he lived, alone prevented him from discovering what, “in truth,” was at the bottom of this equality....
    MECW, Volume 35, Capital Volume One, pp.69-70. Bold added.

    Notice, no past tense when he calls Aristotle a 'great thinker', and that his work is that of 'genius'. I do not think he ever described Hegel that way. Lenin did, but not Marx. 'Mighty thinker' is the best we get.

    And here:

    If a giant thinker like Aristotle erred in his appreciation of slave labour, why should a dwarf economist like Bastiat be right in his appreciation of wage labour?
    Ibid., p.92.

    “For two-fold is the use of every object.... The one is peculiar to the object as such, the other is not, as a sandal which may be worn, and is also exchangeable. Both are uses of the sandal, for even he who exchanges the sandal for the money or food he is in want of, makes use of the sandal as a sandal. But not in its natural way. For it has not been made for the sake of being exchanged.” (Aristoteles, “De Rep.” l. i. c. 9.)
    Ibid., p.96.

    He quotes him again at length on pages 163, 175, 331 (where he notes that Aristotle called 'man' a political animal), and then on page 411 we find this:

    “If,” dreamed Aristotle, the greatest thinker of antiquity, “if every tool, when summoned, or even of its own accord, could do the work that befits it, just as the creations of Daedalus moved of themselves, or the tripods of Hephaestos went of their own accord to their sacred work, if the weavers’ shuttles were to weave of themselves, then there would be no need either of apprentices for the master workers, or of slaves for the lords.”
    Maybe I'll write something on Kant -- when I have time. I am just putting the finishing touches to a 130,000 word essay, which is already ten days overdue.

    But, call them what you like, Marx learnt from them.
    In general, see the following:

    Meek, R. (1967a), 'The Scottish Contribution To Marxist Sociology', in Meek (1967b), pp.34-50.

    --------, (1967b), Economics And Ideology And Other Essays (Chapman & Hall).

    On Aristotle and Marx:

    McCarthy, G. (1992) (ed.), Marx And Aristotle (Rowman & Littlefield).

    Meikle, S. (1985), Essentialism In The Thought of Karl Marx (Open Court).

    --------, (1995), Aristotle's Economic Thought (Oxford University Press).

    On Hegel and Aristotle:

    Ferrarin, A, (2001), Hegel And Aristotle (Cambridge University Press).

    On Kant, see:

    Wood, A. (1998), 'Kant's Historical Materialism' in Kneller and Axinn, Chapter Five.

    --------, (1999), Kant's Ethical Thought (Cambridge University Press).

    Kneller, J., and Axinn, S, (1998), Autonomy And Community: Readings In Contemporary Kantian Social Philosophy (State University of New York Press).

    So, it looks like you haven't done your homework, whereas I have.
    Hence, I quote both original sources in Marx's work, in addition to secondary sources.

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    'Comrade' Artesian:

    Never forgot that Marx used the term "coquette" Rosa-- I did forget that in his discussion of relative and equivalent forms of value he did say the two forms are mutually exclusive.
    So you say, but your posts tell a different story.

    Big deal. And despite your repeated "references" to your previous answer-- the only time you answered was when you stated Marx's own words were "mystical stuff" because you thought they were my words.
    Eh?

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    WTF? Rosa, you just reproduced a post that was mostly about Aristotle, that did not have any words by Marx about the Scots relation to his, Marx's, claim that Hegel gave dialectic its complete and comprehensive presentation, that does not have a word showing that Marx threw out Hegel, adopting instead the "dialectic" of the Scots-- since there is no indication from Marx that the Scots use, evidence, display dialectic.

    Pathetic. Read Theories of Surplus Value, that will tell you what he thought about Smith and others, good and bad.

    As for your "eh"? I refer the horse's ass that you are to my previous posts.

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    'Comrade' Artesian:

    WTF? Rosa, you just reproduced a post that was mostly about Aristotle, that did not have any words by Marx about the Scots relation to his, Marx's, claim that Hegel gave dialectic its complete and comprehensive presentation, that does not have a word showing that Marx threw out Hegel, adopting instead the "dialectic" of the Scots-- since there is no indication from Marx that the Scots use, evidence, display dialectic.
    Well, when I asked you if you wanted me to repeat that post, you indicated you did. So, now that I have, you still complain!

    And now you re-assert this:

    that does not have a word showing that Marx threw out Hegel,
    Indeed, that is because I have covered that in this thread:

    'Comrade' Artesian:

    Marx never says that he "excised Hegel completely from Capital."
    Show me where he says that and in those words, in or out of Capital.

    1) He never used 'contradiction' in the way you say (he was merely 'coquetting' with this word), but that does not stop you from saying the opposite.

    2) On the other hand, Marx quoted a summary of 'his method', and 'the dialectic method' from which every trace of Hegel had been removed. After that, Marx tells us that the very best he can do with Hegelian jargon is 'coquette' with it. Put these two together, and the conclusion is irresistible: Marx had extirpated Hegel from Das Kapital.

    So, you'd be far better occupied in trying to put yourself out of your misery, and find one published comment that supports the mystical version of Das Kapital you are trying to sell us.

    Ooops, there are none...
    http://www.revleft.com/vb/showpost.p...&postcount=397

    And, the conclusion that Marx adopted the dialectic method of Aristotle, Kant and the Scottish School, is, as I have pointed out to you several times already (you really do need to get new glasses), my inference.

    What you need to do is show why it is a defective inference, if it is.

    Pathetic. Read Theories of Surplus Value, that will tell you what he thought about Smith and others, good and bad.
    Unpublished....

    As for your "eh"? I refer the horse's ass that you are to my previous posts.
    Eh?

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    What don't you understand? Horses? or Ass?

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    'Comrade' Artesian:

    What don't you understand? Horses? or Ass?
    'Dialectical contradiction', and I'm in good company asince no one seems to know what it means.

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    I refer the dishonorable horse's ass to my previous answer.

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    'Comrade' Artesian:

    I refer the dishonorable horse's ass to my previous answer.
    So deep in misery that you are reduced to copying me, I see.

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    Here's a question, Rosa. Have you actually read Hegel? Not Engels' rendering of Hegel or Plekhanov's or Lenin's or X's, but Hegel's own works. I ask this because I went back and reread your "introductory essay," and all quotes, save 1, that you cite for criticism are from sources other than Hegel.

    So have you actually read the Phenomenology, The Science of Logic, The Philosophy of Right ....etc. etc.?

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    'Comrade' Artesian:

    Here's a question, Rosa. Have you actually read Hegel? Not Engels' rendering of Hegel or Plekhanov's or Lenin's or X's, but Hegel's own works. I ask this because I went back and reread your "introductory essay," and all quotes, save 1, that you cite for criticism are from sources other than Hegel.

    So have you actually read the Phenomenology, The Science of Logic, The Philosophy of Right ....etc. etc.?
    In fact, I devote two essays to Hegel: Twelve Parts Four and Five; they will be published in the next two or three years.

    However, if you read, say, Essays Three Part One, Four, Six, Eight Parts One, Two and Three, among others, you will see I quote and criticise Hegel extensively:

    http://************************/page%2003_01.htm

    http://************************/page%2004.htm

    http://************************/page%2006.htm

    http://************************/page%2008_01.htm

    http://************************/page%2008_02.htm

    http://************************/page%2008_03.htm

    And here is a summary of what will be in Essay Twelve Parts Four and Five:

    http://************************/Outline...mmitted_01.htm

    So, not only have I read Hegel, and have been doing so since the mid-1970s, I have studied him closely and have spotted errors other have missed.

    Hence, in an 'Introductory Essay', written at the request of philosophical novices who used to post here at RevLeft back in 2006, close scrutiny of Hegel would be out of place, as I warn the reader:

    Please note that this Essay deals with very basic issues, even at the risk of over-simplification.

    It has only been ventured upon because a handful of comrades (who were not well-versed in Philosophy) wanted a very simple guide to my principle arguments against DM.

    In that case, it is not aimed at experts!

    Anyone who objects to the apparently superficial nature of the material below must take these caveats into account or navigate away from this page. It is not intended for them.

    It is worth underlining this last point since I still encounter comrades on internet discussion boards who, despite the above warning, still think this Essay is a definitive statement of my ideas.

    To repeat: this Essay is aimed solely at novices!

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    So you say. Just read the essay at: http://************************/page%2003_01.htm,
    don't see much actual work based on primary sources-- i.e. extracts from Hegel's major works.

    So if there's an essay where you provide so analysis of those works themselves, that might help dispel my suspicion, Asor, about your actual study of those works.

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    'Comrade' Artesian:

    So you say. Just read the essay at: http://************************/page%2003_01.htm,
    don't see much actual work based on primary sources-- i.e. extracts from Hegel's major works.
    Well, you are a bare-faced liar; I posted my comment above at 13:47 (my local time) and you posted your reply at 14:01 (same local time), and you say you 'read' that essay!! But that essay is close to 59,000 words long! How did you manage to 'read' an essay of that length in 14 minutes!

    But, I specifically said this:

    In fact, I devote two essays to Hegel: Twelve Parts Four and Five; they will be published in the next two or three years.

    However, if you read, say, Essays Three Part One, Four, Six, Eight Parts One, Two and Three, among others, you will see I quote and criticise Hegel extensively:
    If you read all those essays you will see that what I say is correct.

    In Essay Three Part One I quote and criticise this passage of Hegel's (in Note 40):

    "The Judgment is the notion in its particularity, as a connection which is also a distinguishing of its functions, which are put as independent and yet as identical with themselves not with one another.

    "One's first impression about the Judgment is the independence of the two extremes, the subject and the predicate. The former we take to be a thing or term per se, and the predicate a general term outside the said subject and somewhere in our heads. The next point is for us to bring the latter into combination with the former, and in this way frame a Judgment. The copula 'is', however, enunciates the predicate of the subject, and so that external subjective subsumption is again put in abeyance, and the Judgment taken as a determination of the object itself. The etymological meaning of the Judgment (Urtheil) in German goes deeper, as it were declaring the unity of the notion to be primary, and its distinction to be the original partition. And that is what the Judgment really is.

    "In its abstract terms a Judgment is expressible in the proposition: 'The individual is the universal.' These are the terms under which the subject and the predicate first confront each other, when the functions of the notion are taken in their immediate character or first abstraction. (Propositions such as, 'The particular is the universal', and 'The individual is the particular', belong to the further specialisation of the judgment.) It shows a strange want of observation in the logic-books, that in none of them is the fact stated, that in every judgment there is still a statement made, as, the individual is the universal, or still more definitely, The subject is the predicate (e.g. God is absolute spirit). No doubt there is also a distinction between terms like individual and universal, subject and predicate: but it is none the less the universal fact, that every judgment states them to be identical.

    "The copula 'is' springs from the nature of the notion, to be self-identical even in parting with its own. The individual and universal are its constituents, and therefore characters which cannot be isolated. The earlier categories (of reflection) in their correlations also refer to one another: but their interconnection is only 'having' and not 'being', i.e. it is not the identity which is realised as identity or universality. In the judgment, therefore, for the first time there is seen the genuine particularity of the notion: for it is the speciality or distinguishing of the latter, without thereby losing universality....

    "The Judgment is usually taken in a subjective sense as an operation and a form, occurring merely in self-conscious thought. This distinction, however, has no existence on purely logical principles, by which the judgment is taken in the quite universal signification that all things are a judgment. That is to say, they are individuals which are a universality or inner nature in themselves -- a universal which is individualised. Their universality and individuality are distinguished, but the one is at the same time identical with the other.

    "The interpretation of the judgment, according to which it is assumed to be merely subjective, as if we ascribed a predicate to a subject is contradicted by the decidedly objective expression of the judgment. The rose is red; Gold is a metal. It is not by us that something is first ascribed to them. A judgment is however distinguished from a proposition. The latter contains a statement about the subject, which does not stand to it in any universal relationship, but expresses some single action, or some state, or the like. Thus, 'Caesar was born at Rome in such and such a year waged war in Gaul for ten years, crossed the Rubicon, etc.', are propositions, but not judgments. Again it is absurd to say that such statements as 'I slept well last night' or 'Present arms!' may be turned into the form of a judgment. 'A carriage is passing by' should be a judgment, and a subjective one at best, only if it were doubtful, whether the passing object was a carriage, or whether it and not rather the point of observation was in motion: in short, only if it were desired to specify a conception which was still short of appropriate specification....

    "The abstract terms of the judgement, 'The individual is the universal', present the subject (as negatively self-relating) as what is immediately concrete, while the predicate is what is abstract, indeterminate, in short the universal. But the two elements are connected together by an 'is': and thus the predicate (in its universality) must contain the speciality of the subject, must, in short, have particularity: and so is realised the identity between subject and predicate; which being thus unaffected by this difference in form, is the content." [Hegel (1975), pp.230-34, §166-169. A copy is available here. Italic emphasis in the original; bold emphases added.]
    From Essay Thee Part Two:

    "Every philosophy is essentially an idealism or at least has idealism for its principle, and the question then is only how far this principle is carried out." [Hegel (1999), pp.154-55; § 316.]
    In Essay Five, I quote and criticise this passage:

    "If, now, the first determinations of reflection, namely, identity, difference and opposition, have been put in the form of a law, still more should the determination into which they pass as their truth, namely, contradiction, be grasped and enunciated as a law: everything is inherently contradictory, and in the sense that this law in contrast to the others expresses rather the truth and the essential nature of things. The contradiction which makes its appearance in opposition, is only the developed nothing that is contained in identity and that appears in the expression that the law of identity says nothing. This negation further determines itself into difference and opposition, which now is the posited contradiction.

    "But it is one of the fundamental prejudices of logic as hitherto understood and of ordinary thinking that contradiction is not so characteristically essential and immanent a determination as identity; but in fact, if it were a question of grading the two determinations and they had to be kept separate, then contradiction would have to be taken as the profounder determination and more characteristic of essence. For as against contradiction, identity is merely the determination of the simple immediate, of dead being; but contradiction is the root of all movement and vitality; it is only in so far as something has a contradiction within it that it moves, has an urge and activity.

    "In the first place, contradiction is usually kept aloof from things, from the sphere of being and of truth generally; it is asserted that there is nothing that is contradictory. Secondly, it is shifted into subjective reflection by which it is first posited in the process of relating and comparing. But even in this reflection, it does not really exist, for it is said that the contradictory cannot be imagined or thought. Whether it occurs in actual things or in reflective thinking, it ranks in general as a contingency, a kind of abnormality and a passing paroxysm or sickness....

    "External, sensuous movement itself is contradiction's immediate existence. Something moves, not because at one moment it is here and at another there, but because at one and the same moment it is here and not here, because in this 'here', it at once is and is not. The ancient dialecticians must be granted the contradictions that they pointed out in motion; but it does not follow that therefore there is no motion, but on the contrary, that motion is existent contradiction itself.

    "If the contradiction in motion, instinctive urge, and the like, is masked for ordinary thinking, in the simplicity of these determinations, contradiction is, on the other hand, immediately represented in the determinations of relationship. The most trivial examples of above and below, right and left, father and son, and so on ad infinitum, all contain opposition in each term. That is above, which is not below; 'above' is specifically just this, not to be 'below', and only is, in so far as there is a 'below'; and conversely, each determination implies its opposite. Father is the other of son, and the son the other of father, and each only is as this other of the other; and at the same time, the one determination only is, in relation to the other; their being is a single subsistence. The father also has an existence of his own apart from the son-relationship; but then he is not father but simply man; just as above and below, right and left, are each also a reflection-into-self and are something apart from their relationship, but then only places in general. Opposites, therefore, contain contradiction in so far as they are, in the same respect, negatively related to one another or sublate each other and are indifferent to one another. Ordinary thinking when it passes over to the moment of the indifference of the determinations, forgets their negative unity and so retains them merely as 'differents' in general, in which determination right is no longer right, nor left left, etc. But since it has, in fact, right and left before it, these determinations are before it as self-negating, the one being in the other, and each in this unity being not self-negating but indifferently for itself.

    "Opposites, therefore, contain contradiction in so far as they are, in the same respect, negatively related to one another. Ordinary thinking when it passes over to the moment of the indifference of the determinations, forgets their negative unity and so retains them merely as 'differents' in general, in which determination right is no longer right, nor left left, etc. But since it has in fact right and left before it, these determinations are before it as self-negating, the one being in the other, and each in this unity being not self-negating but indifferently for itself." [Hegel (1999), Science Of Logic, pp.439-41; available here, §955-§960. Bold emphasis alone added.]
    From Essay Six:

    "[T]he first of [the universal Laws of Thought], the maxim of Identity, reads: Everything is identical with itself, A = A…." [Hegel (1975), p.167.]

    "In this remark, I will consider in more detail identity as the law of identity which is usually adduced as the first law of thought.

    "This proposition in its positive expression A = A is, in the first instance, nothing more than the expression of an empty tautology." [Hegel (1999), p.413.]
    Which I also criticise.

    From Essay Seven Part One:

    "Each of the three spheres of the logical idea proves to be a systematic whole of thought-terms, and a phase of the Absolute. This is the case with Being, containing the three grades of quality, quantity and measure.

    "Quality is, in the first place, the character identical with being: so identical that a thing ceases to be what it is, if it loses its quality. Quantity, on the contrary, is the character external to being, and does not affect the being at all. Thus, e.g. a house remains what it is, whether it be greater or smaller; and red remains red, whether it be brighter or darker." [Hegel (1975), p.124, §85.]
    And:

    "The system of natural numbers already shows a nodal line of qualitative moments which emerge in a merely external succession. It is on the one hand a merely quantitative progress and regress, a perpetual adding or subtracting, so that each number has the same arithmetical relation to the one before it and after it, as these have to their predecessors and successors, and so on. But the numbers so formed also have a specific relation to other numbers preceding and following them, being either an integral multiple of one of them or else a power or a root. In the musical scale which is built up on quantitative differences, a quantum gives rise to an harmonious relation without its own relation to those on either side of it in the scale differing from the relation between these again and their predecessors and successors. While successive notes seem to be at an ever-increasing distance from the keynote, or numbers in succeeding each other arithmetically seem only to become other numbers, the fact is that there suddenly emerges a return, a surprising accord, of which no hint was given by the quality of what immediately preceded it, but which appears as an actio in distans [action at distance -- RL], as a connection with something far removed. There is a sudden interruption of the succession of merely indifferent relations which do not alter the preceding specific reality or do not even form any such, and although the succession is continued quantitatively in the same manner, a specific relation breaks in per saltum [leaps -- RL].

    "Such qualitative nodes and leaps occur in chemical combinations when the mixture proportions are progressively altered; at certain points in the scale of mixtures, two substances form products exhibiting particular qualities. These products are distinguished from one another not merely by a more or less, and they are not already present, or only perhaps in a weaker degree, in the proportions close to the nodal proportions, but are bound up with these nodes themselves. For example, different oxides of nitrogen and nitric acids having essentially different qualities are formed only when oxygen and nitrogen are combined in certain specific proportions, and no such specific compounds are formed by the intermediate proportions. Metal oxides, e.g. the lead oxides, are formed at certain quantitative points of oxidation and are distinguished by colours and other qualities. They do not pass gradually into one another; the proportions lying in between these nodes do not produce a neutral or a specific substance. Without having passed through the intervening stages, a specific compound appears which is based on a measure relation and possesses characteristic qualities. Again, water when its temperature is altered does not merely get more or less hot but passes through from the liquid into either the solid or gaseous states; these states do not appear gradually; on the contrary, each new state appears as a leap, suddenly interrupting and checking the gradual succession of temperature changes at these points. Every birth and death, far from being a progressive gradualness, is an interruption of it and is the leap from a quantitative into a qualitative alteration.

    "It is said, natura non facit saltum [there are no leaps in nature]; and ordinary thinking when it has to grasp a coming-to-be or a ceasing-to-be, fancies it has done so by representing it as a gradual emergence or disappearance. But we have seen that the alterations of being in general are not only the transition of one magnitude into another, but a transition from quality into quantity and vice versa, a becoming-other which is an interruption of gradualness and the production of something qualitatively different from the reality which preceded it. Water, in cooling, does not gradually harden as if it thickened like porridge, gradually solidifying until it reached the consistency of ice; it suddenly solidifies, all at once. It can remain quite fluid even at freezing point if it is standing undisturbed, and then a slight shock will bring it into the solid state.

    "In thinking about the gradualness of the coming-to-be of something, it is ordinarily assumed that what comes to be is already sensibly or actually in existence; it is not yet perceptible only because of its smallness. Similarly with the gradual disappearance of something, the non-being or other which takes its place is likewise assumed to be really there, only not observable, and there, too, not in the sense of being implicitly or ideally contained in the first something, but really there, only not observable. In this way, the form of the in-itself, the inner being of something before it actually exists, is transformed into a smallness of an outer existence, and the essential difference, that of the Notion, is converted into an external difference of mere magnitude. The attempt to explain coming-to-be or ceasing-to-be on the basis of gradualness of the alteration is tedious like any tautology; what comes to be or ceases to be is assumed as already complete and in existence beforehand and the alteration is turned into a mere change of an external difference, with the result that the explanation is in fact a mere tautology. The intellectual difficulty attendant on such an attempted explanation comes from the qualitative transition from something into its other in general, and then into its opposite; but the identity and the alteration are misrepresented as the indifferent, external determinations of the quantitative sphere.

    "In the moral sphere, in so far as it is considered under the categories of being, there occurs the same transition from quantity into quality and different qualities appear to be based in a difference of magnitude.

    "It is through a more or less that the measure of frivolity or thoughtlessness is exceeded and something quite different comes about, namely crime, and thus right becomes wrong and virtue vice. Thus states, too, acquire through their quantitative difference, other things being assumed equal, a distinct qualitative character. With the expansion of the state and an increased number of citizens, the laws and the constitution acquire a different significance. The state has its own measure of magnitude and when this is exceeded this mere change of size renders it liable to instability and disruption under that same constitution which was its good fortune and its strength before its expansion." [Hegel (1999), pp.368-71, §§774-778. Emphases in the original.]

    "The identity between quantity and quality, which is found in Measure, is at first only implicit, and not yet explicitly realised. In other words, these two categories, which unite in Measure, each claim an independent authority. On the one hand, the quantitative features of existence may be altered, without affecting its quality. On the other hand, this increase and diminution, immaterial though it be, has its limit, by exceeding which the quality suffers change. Thus the temperature of water is, in the first place, a point of no consequence in respect of its liquidity: still with the increase of diminution of the temperature of the liquid water, there comes a point where this state of cohesion suffers a qualitative change, and the water is converted into steam or ice. A quantitative change takes place, apparently without any further significance: but there is something lurking behind, and a seemingly innocent change of quantity acts as a kind of snare, to catch hold of the quality. The antinomy of Measure which this implies was exemplified under more than one garb among the Greeks. It was asked, for example, whether a single grain makes a heap of wheat, or whether it makes a bald-tail to tear out a single hair from the horse’s tail. At first, no doubt, looking at the nature of quantity as an indifferent and external character of being, we are disposed to answer these questions in the negative. And yet, as we must admit, this indifferent increase and diminution has its limit: a point is finally reached, where a single additional grain makes a heap of wheat; and the bald-tail is produced, if we continue plucking out single hairs. These examples find a parallel in the story of the peasant who, as his ass trudged cheerfully along, went on adding ounce after ounce to its load, till at length it sunk under the unendurable burden. It would be a mistake to treat these examples as pedantic futility; they really turn on thoughts, an acquaintance with which is of great importance in practical life, especially in ethics. Thus in the matter of expenditure, there is a certain latitude within which a more or less does not matter; but when the Measure, imposed by the individual circumstances of the special case, is exceeded on the one side or the other, the qualitative nature of Measure (as in the above examples of the different temperature of water) makes itself felt, and a course, which a moment before was held good economy, turns into avarice or prodigality. The same principles may be applied in politics, when the constitution of a state has to be looked at as independent of, no less than as dependent on, the extent of its territory, the number of its inhabitants, and other quantitative points of the same kind. If we look, e.g. at a state with a territory of ten thousand square miles and a population of four millions we should, without hesitation, admit that a few square miles of land or a few thousand inhabitants more or less could exercise no essential influence on the character of its constitution. But on the other hand, we must not forget that by the continual increase or diminishing of a state, we finally get to a point where, apart from all other circumstances, this quantitative alteration alone necessarily draws with it an alteration in the quality of the constitution. The constitution of a little Swiss canton does not suit a great kingdom; and, similarly, the constitution of the Roman republic was unsuitable when transferred to the small imperial towns of Germany." [Hegel (1975), pp.158-59.]
    And:

    "Neither in heaven nor in earth, neither in the world of mind nor nature, is there anywhere an abstract 'either-or' as the understanding maintains. Whatever exists is concrete, with difference and opposition in itself. The finitude of things with then lie in the want of correspondence between their immediate being and what they essentially are. Thus, in inorganic nature, the acid is implicitly at the same time the base: in other words its only being consists in its relation to its other. Hence the acid persists quietly in the contrast: it is always in effort to realize what it potentially is. Contradiction is the very moving principle of the world." [Hegel (1975), p.174.]
    And:

    "If, for instance, the Sophists claimed to be teachers, Socrates by a series of questions forced the Sophist Protagoras to confess that all learning is only recollection. In his more strictly scientific dialogues, Plato employs the dialectical method to show the finitude of all hard and fast terms of understanding. Thus in the Parmenides he deduces the many from the one. In this grand style did Plato treat Dialectic. In modern times it was, more than any other, Kant who resuscitated the name of Dialectic, and restored it to its post of honour. He did it, as we have seen, by working out the Antinomies of the reason. The problem of these Antinomies is no mere subjective piece of work oscillating between one set of grounds and another; it really serves to show that every abstract proposition of understanding, taken precisely as it is given, naturally veers round to its opposite.

    "However reluctant Understanding may be to admit the action of Dialectic, we must not suppose that the recognition of its existence is peculiarly confined to the philosopher. It would be truer to say that Dialectic gives expression to a law which is felt in all other grades of consciousness, and in general experience. Everything that surrounds us may be viewed as an instance of Dialectic. We are aware that everything finite, instead of being stable and ultimate, is rather changeable and transient; and this is exactly what we mean by that Dialectic of the finite, by which the finite, as implicitly other than what it is, is forced beyond its own immediate or natural being to turn suddenly into its opposite." [Hegel (1975), pp.117-18.]
    And one of the above a second time:

    "Everything is opposite. Neither in heaven nor in earth, neither in the world of mind nor nature, is there anywhere an abstract 'either-or' as the understanding maintains. Whatever exists is concrete, with difference and opposition in itself. The finitude of things with then lie in the want of correspondence between their immediate being and what they essentially are. Thus, in inorganic nature, the acid is implicitly at the same time the base: in other words its only being consists in its relation to its other. Hence the acid persists quietly in the contrast: it is always in effort to realize what it potentially is. Contradiction is the very moving principle of the world." [Ibid., p.174.]
    And this:

    "This dialectical activity is universal. There is no escaping from its unremitting and relentless embrace. 'Dialectics gives expression to a law which is felt in all grades of consciousness and in general experience. Everything that surrounds us may be viewed as an instance of dialectic. We are aware that everything finite, instead of being inflexible and ultimate, is rather changeable and transient; and this is exactly what we mean by the dialectic of the finite, by which the finite, as implicitly other than it is, is forced to surrender its own immediate or natural being, and to turn suddenly into its opposite.' (Encyclopedia, p.120)." [Novack (1971), 94-95; quoting Hegel (1975), p.118, although in a different translation from the one used here.]
    And:

    "It is said, natura non facit saltum [there are no leaps in nature]; and ordinary thinking when it has to grasp a coming-to-be or a ceasing-to-be, fancies it has done so by representing it as a gradual emergence or disappearance. But we have seen that the alterations of being in general are not only the transition of one magnitude into another, but a transition from quality into quantity and vice versa, a becoming-other which is an interruption of gradualness and the production of something qualitatively different from the reality which preceded it. Water, in cooling, does not gradually harden as if it thickened like porridge, gradually solidifying until it reached the consistency of ice; it suddenly solidifies, all at once. It can remain quite fluid even at freezing point if it is standing undisturbed, and then a slight shock will bring it into the solid state." [Hegel (1999), p.370, §776.]
    From Essay Eight Part One:

    "[B]ut contradiction is the root of all movement and vitality; it is only in so far as something has a contradiction within it that it moves, has an urge and activity." [Hegel (1999), p.439. Bold emphasis added.]
    This is from Essay Nine Part One:

    "It is much more important that in a language the categories should appear in the form of substantives and verbs and thus be stamped with the form of objectivity. In this respect German has many advantages over other modern languages; some of its words even possess the further peculiarity of having not only different but opposite meanings so that one cannot fail to recognise a speculative spirit of the language in them: it can delight a thinker to come across such words and to find the union of opposites naively shown in the dictionary as one word with opposite meanings, although this result of speculative thinking is nonsensical to the understanding." [Hegel (1999), pp.31-32, Preface to the Second Edition, §14, quoted in Watson (1998), pp.294-95.]
    And:

    "'To sublate' has a twofold meaning in the language: on the one hand it means to preserve, to maintain, and equally it also means to cause to cease, to put an end to. Even 'to preserve' includes a negative elements, namely, that something is removed from its influences, in order to preserve it. Thus what is sublated is at the same time preserved; it has only lost its immediacy but is not on that account annihilated.

    "The two definitions of 'to sublate' which we have given can be quoted as two dictionary meanings of this word. But it is certainly remarkable to find that a language has come to use one and the same word for two opposite meanings. It is a delight to speculative thought to find in the language words which have in themselves a speculative meaning; the German language has a number of such. The double meaning of the Latin tollere (which has become famous through the Ciceronian pun: tollendum est Octavium) does not go so far; its affirmative determination signifies only a lifting-up. Something is sublated only in so far as it has entered into unity with its opposite; in this more particular signification as something reflected, it may fittingly be called a moment." [Hegel (1999), p.107, §185-186.]
    And:

    "...Apropos of this, we should note the double meaning of the German word aufheben (to put by or set aside). We mean by it (1) to clear away, or annul: thus, we say, a law or regulation is set aside; (2) to keep, or preserve: in which sense we use it when we say: something is well put by. This double usage of language, which gives to the same word a positive and negative meaning, is not an accident, and gives no ground for reproaching language as a cause of confusion. We should rather recognise in it the speculative spirit of our language rising above the me ‘either-or’ of understanding." [Hegel (1975), The Doctrine of Being §96, pp.141-42.]
    From Essay Nine Part Two:

    "Every philosophy is essentially an idealism or at least has idealism for its principle, and the question then is only how far this principle is carried out." [Hegel (1999), pp.154-55; §316.]
    Quoted again in Essay Ten Part One:

    "Every philosophy is essentially an idealism or at least has idealism for its principle, and the question then is only how far this principle is carried out." [Hegel (1999), pp.154-55; §316.]
    From Essay Eleven Part One:

    "It shows an excessive tenderness for the world to remove contradiction from it and then to transfer the contradiction to spirit, to reason, where it is allowed to remain unresolved. In point of fact it is spirit which is so strong that it can endure contradiction, but it is spirit, too, that knows how to resolve it. But the so-called world (whether it be called an objective, real world or, according to transcendental idealism, a subjective intuition and a sphere of sense determined by the categories of the understanding) is never and nowhere without contradiction, but it is unable to endure it and is, therefore, subject to coming-to-be and ceasing-to-be." [Hegel (1999), pp.237-38.]
    From Essay Eleven Part Two:

    "The truth is the whole. The whole, however, is merely the essential nature reaching its completeness through the process of its own development. Of the Absolute it must be said that it is essentially a result, that only at the end is it what it is in very truth; and just in that consists its nature, which is to be actual, subject, or self-becoming, self-development. Should it appear contradictory to say that the Absolute has to be conceived essentially as a result, a little consideration will set this appearance of contradiction in its true light. The beginning, the principle, or the Absolute, as at first or immediately expressed, is merely the universal. If we say "all animals", that does not pass for zoology; for the same reason we see at once that the words absolute, divine, eternal, and so on do not express what is implied in them; and only mere words like these, in point of fact, express intuition as the immediate. Whatever is more than a word like that, even the mere transition to a proposition, is a form of mediation, contains a process towards another state from which we must return once more. It is this process of mediation, however, that is rejected with horror, as if absolute knowledge were being surrendered when more is made of mediation than merely the assertion that it is nothing absolute, and does not exist in the Absolute." [Hegel (1977), Phenomenology of Spirit, p.11; section 20.]
    From Essay Twelve Part One:

    "It is in names that we think." [Hegel (1971) Philosophy of Mind, quoted in Houlgate (2006), p.75; this author uses his own translation.]
    "Given the name lion, we need neither the actual vision of the animal, nor its image even: the name alone, if we understand it, is the unimaged simple representation. We think in names." [Hegel (1971), p.220, §462.]
    And:

    "Being is the indeterminate immediate; it is free from determinateness in relation to essence and also from any which it can possess within itself. This reflectionless being is being as it is immediately in its own self alone.

    "Because it is indeterminate being, it lacks all quality; but in itself, the character of indeterminateness attaches to it only in contrast to what is determinate or qualitative. But determinate being stands in contrast to being in general, so that the very indeterminateness of the latter constitutes its quality. It will therefore be shown that the first being is in itself determinate, and therefore, secondly, that it passes over into determinate being -- is determinate being -- but that this latter as finite being sublates itself and passes over into the infinite relation of being to its own self, that is, thirdly, into being-for-self.

    "Being, pure being, without any further determination. In its indeterminate immediacy it is equal only to itself. It is also not unequal relatively to an other; it has no diversity within itself nor any with a reference outwards. It would not be held fast in its purity if it contained any determination or content which could be distinguished in it or by which it could be distinguished from an other. It is pure indeterminateness and emptiness. There is nothing to be intuited in it, if one can speak here of intuiting; or, it is only this pure intuiting itself. Just as little is anything to be thought in it, or it is equally only this empty thinking. Being, the indeterminate immediate, is in fact nothing, and neither more nor less than nothing.

    "Nothing, pure nothing: it is simply equality with itself, complete emptiness, absence of all determination and content -- undifferentiatedness in itself. In so far as intuiting or thinking can be mentioned here, it counts as a distinction whether something or nothing is intuited or thought. To intuit or think nothing has, therefore, a meaning; both are distinguished and thus nothing is (exists) in our intuiting or thinking; or rather it is empty intuition and thought itself, and the same empty intuition or thought as pure being. Nothing is, therefore, the same determination, or rather absence of determination, and thus altogether the same as, pure being.

    "Pure Being and pure nothing are, therefore, the same. What is the truth is neither being nor nothing, but that being -- does not pass over but has passed over -- into nothing, and nothing into being. But it is equally true that they are not undistinguished from each other, that, on the contrary, they are not the same, that they are absolutely distinct, and yet that they are unseparated and inseparable and that each immediately vanishes in its opposite. Their truth is therefore, this movement of the immediate vanishing of the one into the other: becoming, a movement in which both are distinguished, but by a difference which has equally immediately resolved itself." [Hegel (1999), p.82.]
    And:

    "[B]ut contradiction is the root of all movement and vitality; it is only in so far as something has a contradiction within it that it moves, has an urge and activity." [Hegel (1999), p.439.]
    And from Essay Thirteen Part One, this again:

    "Every philosophy is essentially an idealism or at least has idealism for its principle…." [Hegel (1999), pp.154-55.]
    In fact this is quoted twice in that Essay.

    And:

    "When the universal is made a mere form and co-ordinated with the particular, as if it were on the same level, it sinks into the particular itself. Even common sense in everyday matters is above the absurdity of setting a universal beside the particulars. Would anyone, who wished for fruit, reject cherries, pears, and grapes, on the ground that they were cherries, pears or grapes, and not fruit?" [Hegel (1975), p.19, §13, quoted from here.]
    From Essay Thirteen Part Three:

    "[T]he first of [the universal Laws of Thought], the maxim of Identity, reads: Everything is identical with itself, A = A…." [Hegel (1975), p.167.]

    "In this remark, I will consider in more detail identity as the law of identity which is usually adduced as the first law of thought.

    "This proposition in its positive expression A = A is, in the first instance, nothing more than the expression of an empty tautology." [Hegel (1999), p.413.]
    And:

    "Being, pure being, without any further determination. In its indeterminate immediacy it is equal only to itself. It is also not unequal relatively to an other; it has no diversity within itself nor any with a reference outwards. It would not be held fast in its purity if it contained any determination or content which could be distinguished in it or by which it could be distinguished from an other. It is pure indeterminateness and emptiness. There is nothing to be intuited in it, if one can speak here of intuiting; or, it is only this pure intuiting itself. Just as little is anything to be thought in it, or it is equally only this empty thinking. Being, the indeterminate immediate, is in fact nothing, and neither more nor less than nothing.

    "Nothing, pure nothing: it is simply equality with itself, complete emptiness, absence of all determination and content -- undifferentiatedness in itself. In so far as intuiting or thinking can be mentioned here, it counts as a distinction whether something or nothing is intuited or thought. To intuit or think nothing has, therefore, a meaning; both are distinguished and thus nothing is (exists) in our intuiting or thinking; or rather it is empty intuition and thought itself, and the same empty intuition or thought as pure being. Nothing is, therefore, the same determination, or rather absence of determination, and thus altogether the same as, pure being." [Hegel (1999), p.82.]
    Finally, Essay Eight Part Three is almost totally devoted to Hegel, using direct and indirect quotations. In addition, throughout all my essays I quote many dialecticians quoting Hegel, and reference his work constantly.

    Now, my site was set up specifically to criticise Dialectical Materialism (or 'Materialist Dialectics), not Hegel, so I think that the above, plus the unpublished Essays are quite sufficient space devoted to this bumbler.

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    You're hilarious, and pathetic-- I say I read the essay, and you say I didn't, and then prove I didn't by citing something you quoted from Hegel in the essay itself? No, no way, because there is nothing in the essay from Hegel. You find something in footnote 40 where you quote Hegel. You are absolutely correct, I barely glanced at the footnotes.

    I should said "read through" the essay, or skimmed the essay looking for your direct quotations of Hegel. Believe me, it is not my claim to say I have read everything that Asor has produced. I was looking, and looking only for your direct quotations from Hegel's works in that essay. I immediately disregarded all your quotes and comments on secondary sources-- Lenin, Plekhanov etc. That really reduces the word count, Asor-- would you like me to redact those parts of your essay and provide you with a new word count?

    The other information you provide is relevant to the issue, and I'll look at that, later, but why do you say your site is specifically to criticize "materialist dialectics" when according to you, you accept the materialist dialectics of Aristotle [and other Greek philsophers] and you even ascribe, it appears, a materialist dialectic to Smith, Kant, and Ferguson.

    Are you also criticizing the materialist dialectic of those you cite approvingly, Asor?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rosa Lichtenstein View Post
    'Comrade' Artesian:



    'Dialectical contradiction', and I'm in good company asince no one seems to know what it means.
    I'm afraid you cannot understand it. For me it is a completely plain concept and a very useful one.
    patiently explain (Lenin)

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  21. #415
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    'Comrade' Artesian:

    You're hilarious, and pathetic-- I say I read the essay, and you say I didn't, and then prove I didn't by citing something you quoted from Hegel in the essay itself? No, no way, because there is nothing in the essay from Hegel. You find something in footnote 40 where you quote Hegel. You are absolutely correct, I barely glanced at the footnotes.
    So, you are trying to tell us that you read an essay of nearly 59,00 word long in 14 minutes.

    Then you admit that I'm right that I did quote Hegel, but still you find that an excuse to abuse me some more.

    I should said "read through" the essay, or skimmed the essay looking for your direct quotations of Hegel. Believe me, it is not my claim to say I have read everything that Asor has produced. I was looking, and looking only for your direct quotations from Hegel's works in that essay. I immediately disregarded all your quotes and comments on secondary sources-- Lenin, Plekhanov etc. That really reduces the word count, Asor-- would you like me to redact those parts of your essay and provide you with a new word count?
    So, you now admit you lied.

    Yes, if you want to do a new word count, that's fine by me.

    The other information you provide is relevant to the issue, and I'll look at that, later, but why do you say your site is specifically to criticize "materialist dialectics" when according to you, you accept the materialist dialectics of Aristotle [and other Greek philosophers] and you even ascribe, it appears, a materialist dialectic to Smith, Kant, and Ferguson.
    Where do I say I accept the 'materialist dialectics' of Aristotle? Or that I accept his 'dialectic method'? Or that I agree with anything Aristotle has ever said?

    and other Greek philosophers
    Which ones?

    [Watch this mystic go very quiet here. He demands things of me, let's see him try to substantiate this invention.]

    Once more, we see you resort to invention and lies.

    Are you also criticizing the materialist dialectic of those you cite approvingly, Asor?
    Are you capable of telling the truth, class-traitor?

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    Vyborg:

    I'm afraid you cannot understand it. For me it is a completely plain concept and a very useful one.
    And yet, like other dialecticians who say this sort of thing -- and there have been many here at RevLeft who have claimed this, but who have gone very quiet when challenged in the following way: You will find it impossible to say in what way it is useful, or what sense it does make.

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    Where Rosa? Just here:

    " [FONT=&quot]You will note that nowhere do I say Marx was an "anti-dialectic"; his 'dialectic' more closely resembles that of Aristotle, Kant, Ferguson, Millar, Smith, Robertson and Stewart[/FONT]"

    and here:


    "And, the conclusion that Marx adopted the dialectic method of Aristotle, Kant and the Scottish School, is, as I have pointed out to you several times already (you really do need to get new glasses), my inference."

    and here:

    "Hegel had mystified Aristotle and Kant, Marx simply indicated that he rejected this. So he is not using Hegel's method, just signalling his return to Aristotle."


    and here:


    Maybe so, but the seeds of the labour theory of value are in Aristotle:


    So... you say you are not saying Marx is anti-dialectical, just that his dialectic is closer to that of Aristotle and the Scots, you attribute to the Scots the first tries at historical materialism-- and quote extensively from a paper on the Scots influence on Hegel--

    The inescapable conclusion, a far more inescapable conclusion than your fantasy that Marx extirpated Hegel, is that you are not anti-dialectic, anti materialist-dialectic, you are anti-Hegel's dialectic-- a dialectic whose "rational kernel" you have claimed repeatedly was taken over from the Scots, Kant, Aristotle.

    So I ask you, are you criticizing the materialist dialectic of Marx's which is akin to Aristotle's, Kant's and the Scots? Or is that no dialectic at all, and your statement that you are not "anti-dialectic" is one more idiocy pulled from your bag of sophistic tricks?

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  25. #418
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    'Comrade' Artesian:

    Where Rosa? Just here:

    " You will note that nowhere do I say Marx was an "anti-dialectic"; his 'dialectic' more closely resembles that of Aristotle, Kant, Ferguson, Millar, Smith, Robertson and Stewart"

    and here:

    "And, the conclusion that Marx adopted the dialectic method of Aristotle, Kant and the Scottish School, is, as I have pointed out to you several times already (you really do need to get new glasses), my inference."

    and here:

    "Hegel had mystified Aristotle and Kant, Marx simply indicated that he rejected this. So he is not using Hegel's method, just signalling his return to Aristotle."

    and here:

    Maybe so, but the seeds of the labour theory of value are in Aristotle
    Indeed, but where do I say I accept it?

    You see, you are so used to lying, you just can't tell when you are and when you aren;t...

    Fortunately for the good people here, I can.

    So... you say you are not saying Marx is anti-dialectical, just that his dialectic is closer to that of Aristotle and the Scots, you attribute to the Scots the first tries at historical materialism-- and quote extensively from a paper on the Scots influence on Hegel--

    The inescapable conclusion, a far more inescapable conclusion than your fantasy that Marx extirpated Hegel, is that you are not anti-dialectic, anti materialist-dialectic, you are anti-Hegel's dialectic-- a dialectic whose "rational kernel" you have claimed repeatedly was taken over from the Scots, Kant, Aristotle.

    So I ask you, are you criticizing the materialist dialectic of Marx's which is akin to Aristotle's, Kant's and the Scots? Or is that no dialectic at all, and your statement that you are not "anti-dialectic" is one more idiocy pulled from your bag of sophistic tricks?
    Nice rhetoric, but, and I hate to spoil your rant, where do I say I accept Aristotle's version?

    And you will just have to wait until I publish something on Historical Materialism to see what criticisms I make.

    If you can't wait, try going here:

    http://************************/Not-So-Smartesian.htm

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rosa Lichtenstein View Post
    Vyborg:



    And yet, like other dialecticians who say this sort of thing -- and there have been many here at RevLeft who have claimed this, but who have gone very quiet when challenged in the following way: You will find it impossible to say in what way it is useful, or what sense it does make.
    I dont find it impossibile, but useless, as you will not be convinced by anything to understand that without dialectics Marxism is completely baseless and fruitless.

    The contradictions are everywhere, in society, in class struggle, in how economy works. If you cannot see them or understand how they work you really cannot grasp reality at all.

    If you refuse dialectic you are left with formal logic, that is a method without dynamic and change, but in the real world changes do happen
    patiently explain (Lenin)

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    Quote Originally Posted by vyborg View Post

    If you refuse dialectic you are left with formal logic, that is a method without dynamic and change, but in the real world changes do happen
    Good point. Logic and mathematics work according to the axioms and rules that we set. But dialectics draws its fundamental laws from observing the real world.

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