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One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology…

One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial… (1964)

by Herbert Marcuse

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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
As a beginner's student of philosophy and logic, I must say I had a tough time reading Marcuse's book.

This book was recommended by my American History professor. I was hooked by Marcuse's language and reason in the beginning of the book. It is very wordy; a lot of ideas were repeated throughout the book and general concepts looped were within chapters.

To the lover of philosophy and holder of an open mind, I challenge you to read this book! ( )
  mezcalita | Sep 10, 2014 |

[If linguistic analysis in the tradition of Wittgenstein] contributes to enclosing thought in the circle of the mutilated universe of ordinary discourse, it is at best entirely inconsequential. And, at worst, it is an escape into the non-controversial, the unreal, into that which is only academically controversial.
This is my kind of philosophy.

To say that this meta-context is the Society (with a capital 'S') is to hypostatize the whole over and above the parts. But this hypostatization takes place in reality, is the reality, and the analysis can overcome it only by recognizing it and by comprehending its scope and its causes.
Although it does have its problems, including too much of Marx's embrace of technology:

the break in turn depends on the continued existence of the the technical base itself....The qualitative change rather lies in the reconstruction of this base--that is, in its development with a view of different ends.
A worthwhile read. ( )
  dmac7 | Jun 14, 2013 |
This is one of the most difficult books I have read and most of it probably needs a training in philosophy. I suspect a lot of its influence was mediated through reviews and summaries. It is clear that he thinks that the proletariat has been repressed by new methods of control and that there is more hope in the lumpen-proletariat. ( )
  jgoodwll | May 12, 2012 |
Marcuse's examination of advanced industrial societies in the post-War world. Still holds up after nearly half a century, though it does snow some creakiness at the seams.
  Fledgist | Jun 28, 2010 |
This is Marcuse's most famous work and one that was a major influence on and during the student revolts all over the European continent of 1968. Many of the catchphrases of that time, such as "repressive tolerance" and the like, are derived directly from Marcuse. He has since lost much of his popularity and audience, and in my view, quite deservedly so.

His main thesis is that modern man has become one-dimensional due to the totalitarian, all-encompassing exercise of power by the entrenched capitalist class. While this of itself is not such a bad idea, though certainly romanticizing and exaggerating reality, his approach to explaining and attacking it leaves very much to be desired. Marcuse overuses empty or unexplained phrases endlessly (like "cutting off perspectives through an overwhelming ossified concreteness of imagery" and similar things) while at the same time hardly making use of any prior thought or philosophy on the subject at all. This makes the impression of much ranting and little content. Even worse is his general laziness as a thinker - he never actually bothers to explain why such a full-spectrum dominance has occurred or how he wants to prove its existence, he merely asserts it and then goes on about the manifold bad effects it has.
Rather bizarre in this context, and perhaps even nihilistic, is his general dislike of what he perceives as "rationality". He only uses this word in negative contexts (particularly in the context of industrial expansion) and seems to consider it the primary form of "one-dimensional thinking", affected by the symbolism of capitalism. Now it is one thing to say that the fashionable concept of rationalism is false and ill-founded, but to reject relying on rational processes altogether as he seems to do is a bit too much.

To put it bluntly, everything Marcuse has written in this book has also been written in, say, Debord's "The Society of the Spectacle", and then in half as many words and quite more philosophically coherent. The early Marcuse (of Eros and Civilization) was much better; this book warrants no more interest than a purely antiquarian historical one. ( )
5 vote McCaine | Feb 2, 2007 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Herbert Marcuseprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kellner, DouglasIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0807014176, Paperback)

Originally published in 1964, One-Dimensional Man quickly became one of the most important texts in the ensuing decade of radical political change. This second edition, newly introduced by Marcuse scholar Douglas Kellner, presents Marcuse's best-selling work to another generation of readers in the context of contemporary events.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:16:14 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Sometimes a book upsets everything you take for granted. Could two people have survived a WWII massacre? Why is a young man lying in a coma decades later? What is the truth about a woman who roves the world with a chameleon's ability to change who she is? This book is about the degrees of separation between us that we ignore at our peril.… (more)

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Beacon Press

An edition of this book was published by Beacon Press.

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