Australian Journal of French Studies

Thinking about Conflict with, or without, Karl Marx? The Academic “Feud” in Contemporary French Political Philosophy

Australian Journal of French Studies (2022), 59, (2), 118–129.

Abstract

The philosophical and political advantages tied to a break with Marxist thinking have been notable. With such a break with Marxism, economic and scientific determinism have been discounted—and it is in this sort of determinism that a classic critique of Marxism finds a reason for discrediting the Marxist-Leninist project. However, it seems that the cost of totally abandoning Marxist thinking has not been sufficiently examined. This article proposes a comparative study of two philosophers’ conceptions of conflict: Chantal Mouffe’s perspective will be examined and compared to Cornelius Castoriadis’s view of radical democracy and its treatment of conflict. The article seeks to show that a full break with Karl Marx weakens political radicalism. In other words, by opting for a perspective on conflict that fully renounces the Marxist view, Mouffe is doing away with the idea of direct democracy and/or that of a revolutionary project. Her approach differs from that of Castoriadis who seeks, in some sense, to remain faithful to the emancipatory aspects of Marxian thought.

Access Token
£25.00
READ THIS ARTICLE
If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here
If you have private access to this content, please log in with your username and password here

Details

Author details

CERVERA-MARZAL, MANUEL