Fall 2020: Additional Seminar Sessions on Marx


In connection with my fall seminar on Marxist Philosophies we will read and discuss brief excerpts from Marx’s writings, in order to get the proper background for the philosophers discussed in the graduate seminar.


Excerpts will be available on D2L.


Very brief introductions/questions to/for each session, open discussion of the text


Marx 101!


Theses session neither can replace a thorough study of Marx nor do they go beyond the surface of his thought.


Wednesdays, 3pm-4pm


The Zoom link will be distributed via email.

Texts (on D2L)

ML = McLellan, Marx Reader
P = Penguin edition of Grundrisse & Capital, Vol 1 & Communist Manifesto
A = Excerpt from a late Althusser text


September 30, Fetishism
Topic in class, 10/5: Lukacs
Selections from
Marx, Capital, Vol1, chapter 1.4 (P)

October 7, Relations & Labor
Topic in class, 10/12: Markus
Selections from
Marx, Feuerbach Theses 1,2&6 (ML 171-174)
Marx, Alienated Labour, in its entirety (ML 85-95, pay attention to the numbering (1)-(4) on p. 90-91)

October 14, Private Property & Sensuous Praxis
Topic in class, 10/19: Marcuse/Dunayevskaya/Fromm
Selections from
Marx, 1844 Manuscripts (ML 95-104, especially 98-103)
Marx, The German Ideology (ML 190-192)

October 21, Historical Materialism&Social Reproduction
Topic in class, 10/26: Heller
Selections from
Marx, The German Ideology (ML 176-184, especially 176-177; 182-183)

October 28, Dialectics & Social Totality
Topic in class, 11/2: Althusser/Social Reproduction
Selections from
Marx, Grundrisse Introduction, section 1 in its entirety (P, 83-88)

November 4, Contradiction&Method
Topic in class, 11/9: Althusser/Whole
Selections from
Marx, Grundrisse Introduction, section 2 in its entirety (P, 88-100)

November 11, Labour Power & History
Topic in class, 11/16: Althusser/Overdetermination
Selections from
Marx, Grundrisse Introduction, section 3&4 in its entirety (P, 100-109)
Marx, Capital, chapter 6 (P)
Althusser, Excerpt, On The History of the Capitalist Mode of Production (from “Book on Imperialism”) (A)

November 19, Ideology&State
Topic in class, 11/23: Althusser/Ideology
Selections from
Marx, The German Ideology (ML 184-197, especially 175-176; 180-181; 185-186; 188-189)
Marx, Comments on the Paris Commune (ML 584-603, especially 584-589)

November 26

Read Marx/Engels, Communist Manifesto, section 2, very carefully.

December 2, Classes & Theory/Praxis & Critique
Topic in class: Poulantzas/Classes
Selections from
Marx, Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right. Introduction (ML 71-82, especially 71-72; 77; 79-81)
Marx, The German Ideology (ML 192)
Marx, Letters to Ruge, 1843 (ML 43-45)