The Gramscian influence … has been enormous, but the types of intellectual that prevail today are that of the “desecrator” or “demystifier” and that of the “expert” or “technician”; what relationship do they have with the Gramscian figure of the “organic” intellectual?
I reply that they are the result of its decomposition. The intellectual was assigned by Gramsci a function somewhat similar to that which Marx assigned to the proletariat: that of one who, by freeing himself, frees the world.
The decomposition turns him into an official of the culture industry, dependent on a powerful class that needs both the intellectual desecrator (as “custodian of nihilism”) as well as the corporate expert.
The process that led to it is not difficult to reconstruct, in a negative way. In fact, how does this kind of intellectual take shape? Without [Marxist] economism, the opposition will become that between traditional intellectuals and progressive intellectuals.
As historicists, they will no longer be able to speak in the name of a utopian socialism; not even a scientific socialism, given the abandonment of the materialistic-economistic, objectivistic aspect of Marxism; simply in the name of history as a process of self-transcendence.

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More from @AugustoDelNoce

25 Sep
In a [conception of] politics that obeys the postulate of [original] sin, the struggle against evil and the realization of a relative degree of perfection is the task of the individual, and thus is a struggle that can, indeed, minimize evil, …
… which is beatable in that precise moment and at that precise point, but cannot extinguish it at its root; and the politician’s ministerial, and not dominative, task is that of establishing the best conditions to facilitate this struggle. What evil? The definition can change.
In a society characterized by unity of faith, evil will be identified above all with any attack on what is thought to be the objective truth; in a society characterized by a plurality of spiritual families evil will be identified above all with the forced imposition of the truth.
Read 5 tweets
24 Sep
Fascism and anti-fascism [are] successive and opposite moments of a further revolution than Marx-Leninism. There are singular symmetries between Mussolini’s fascism and Gramsci’s anti-fascist unity.
The term ‘fasces’ evokes the idea of ​​divergent political forces, perhaps with opposing ultimate goals, which are associated against a common adversary. … What is essential in fascism as well as in Gramsci’s [anti-fascist] block is the “against”; …
… the opponent of fascism was outside, hence its encounter with nationalism; that of Gramscian communism is inside, in the form of the old “common sense”; in short, of pre-modern intellectual habits.
Read 5 tweets
4 Sep
What cultural idea led people [incorrectly] to generalize the idea of Fascism to the point of including [in it] any movement that was either authoritarian or generically inclined to defend the past … [and also] to interpret Nazism as the necessary conclusion of this idea?
You must think of the standard education of a secular intellectual. It was based – and it is still based, although recently there has been more critical awareness – on an act of faith (which is analogous to the faith in religious revelation of medieval philosophers) …
… [in] the idea of “modernity” as a “value”, i.e., the vision of history as an irreversible process toward the disappearance of religious transcendence. … Supposedly, a certain order of truths and values passed away, and it is no longer possible to return to them.
Read 5 tweets
16 Aug
A transposition of totalitarianism from the “physical” to the “moral” … [is achieved] through the creation, which is arranged by the domination of culture and education, of a new “common sense”, in which traditional metaphysical questions no longer resurface.
It is with regard to Gramsci that we can understand in all its depth the apparently very simple formula with which Eric Voegelin defined totalitarianism: “the prohibition of asking questions”.
This definition states its novelty: because the conformism of the past was a conformism of answers, while the new [conformism] results from a discrimination against questions whereby indiscreet questions are stigmatized as expressions of “traditionalism”, of “conservatism”, …
Read 5 tweets
13 Aug
The secular philosophers of the twentieth century, be they idealists, or Marxists, or neo-positivists, can be defined collectively as “philosophers after the death of God”, this death having been accepted as a result of history.
But this idea, as an interpretation of the historical process particular to modern thought, has also been accepted in an inverted form, as regards its evaluation, by the critics of the modern world:
… by traditional Catholics for whom the modern world is a process of constant distancing from the truth, so that atheism would be “the truth of modern thought”; …
Read 6 tweets
5 Aug
Let us move on to the contemplative aspect of Vico’s ‘New Science’: “the reader will experience in his mortal body a divine pleasure as he contemplates in the divine ideas this world of nations in all the extent of its places, times and varieties” (sec. 345).
What the ‘New Science’ leads to is a feeling of admiration for the architecture of the universe, considered from the standpoint of its historical laws. But Malebranche had said exactly the same, in reference to the general laws of the physical world: …
… “I do not admire so much the trees covered with flowers and fruits as their marvelous growth as a result of the natural laws”. Learning to behold the fabric of the world and the principles of unity that govern it, …
Read 5 tweets

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