Get Against the Spiritual Turn: Marxism, Realism, and Critical PDF

By Sean Creaven

ISBN-10: 0415524040

ISBN-13: 9780415524049

The argument offered during this publication is that the new ‘spiritual’ trajectory of Roy Bhaskar’s paintings, upon which he first embarked with the e-book of his From East to West, undermines the elemental achievements of his prior paintings. the matter with Bhaskar’s new philosophical method (Transcendental Dialectical severe Realism or just Meta-Reality), from the critical-realist Marxist point of view counseled the following, is that it marks either a departure from and a negation of the sooner issues of Bhaskar to improve a realist philosophy of technology and under-labour for an emancipatory materialist socio-historical technological know-how. The end-result is a meta-philosophy that's irrealist, speculative, under-theorized, internally self-contradictory, and which can't supply philosophical assistance to liberatory social practices. against theist ontological logics extra ordinarily (including the much more rational theism offered by way of Margaret Archer, Andrew Collier and Doug Porpora), the argument of this ebook is that the earth-bound materialist dialectics of the classical Marxist culture, and the naturalistic humanism those dialectics under-labour at the terrain of socio-historical being, provide a way more promising future of severe realist idea and for liberatory politics and ethics.

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Additional info for Against the Spiritual Turn: Marxism, Realism, and Critical Theory

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As the postmodernists are today), without subscribing either to theism or any form of metaphysical idealism. Nor is my claim that all ontological idealists have believed in God (or gods), or that all theists have subscribed to ontological idealism. 7 Absolute subjective idealism denies the existence of matter, and this logically renders it dependent on a theistic or at least deistic conception of ‘ultimate being’. For, in the absence of a material substrate that is the basis of human consciousness, there is nowhere else other than some form of ‘higher’ (or perhaps ‘lower’) consciousness from which it could originate.

Moreover, I wish to argue that, by constructing their own ‘rationalized’ version of Christianity, the CR spiritualists mystify the real and essential nature of popular and institutional religiosity, which is not and cannot be a creature of reason, and which is politically and ethically problematic in a number of ways. Since Hartwig’s realist agnosticism (which allows the rational assertability of metaphysical idealism) rests its case on the impossible ideal of infallible knowledge,49 and since this realist agnosticism obviously stands or falls with the defensibility or otherwise of ontological idealism, this gives us ‘good enough’ (albeit fallible) reasons for accepting a thoroughgoing materialism as the ontological foundation of critical social theory and politics.

Is theism or ontological idealism inherently problematic? And, if it is, does this have negative consequences on the terrain of human and social practices? The argument of certain CR scholars, whom I have (rather crudely) dubbed the ‘CR spiritualists’, namely Margaret Archer, Andrew Collier and Doug Porpora, is that this is not the case. In their book Transcendence, they argue that theism (properly understood and correctly formulated) is compatible with CR philosophy, is rationally grounded (in human experience), is consistent with scientific knowledge, and is philosophically defensible.

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Against the Spiritual Turn: Marxism, Realism, and Critical Theory by Sean Creaven

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