Democracy is a system of government where the citizens exercise power by voting. In a direct democracy, the citizens as a whole form a governing body and vote directly on each issue. In a representative democracy the citizens elect representatives from among themselves; these representatives meet to form a governing body, such as a legislature. In a constitutional democracy the powers of the majority are exercised within the framework of a representative democracy, but the constitution limits the majority and protects the minority through the enjoyment by all of certain individual rights, e.g. freedom of speech, or freedom of association. "Rule of the majority" is sometimes referred to as democracy. Democracy is a system of processing conflicts in which outcomes depend on what participants do, but no single force controls what occurs and its outcomes; the uncertainty of outcomes is inherent in democracy, which makes all forces struggle for the realization of their interests, being the devolution of power from a group of people to a set of rules.
Western democracy, as distinct from that which existed in pre-modern societies, is considered to have originated in city-states such as Classical Athens and the Roman Republic, where various schemes and degrees of enfranchisement of the free male population were observed before the form disappeared in the West at the beginning of late antiquity. The English word dates back to the 16th century, from the older Middle French and Middle Latin equivalents. According to American political scientist Larry Diamond, democracy consists of four key elements: a political system for choosing and replacing the government through free and fair elections. Todd Landman draws our attention to the fact that democracy and human rights are two different concepts and that "there must be greater specificity in the conceptualisation and operationalization of democracy and human rights"; the term appeared in the 5th century BC to denote the political systems existing in Greek city-states, notably Athens, to mean "rule of the people", in contrast to aristocracy, meaning "rule of an elite".
While theoretically these definitions are in opposition, in practice the distinction has been blurred historically. The political system of Classical Athens, for example, granted democratic citizenship to free men and excluded slaves and women from political participation. In all democratic governments throughout ancient and modern history, democratic citizenship consisted of an elite class, until full enfranchisement was won for all adult citizens in most modern democracies through the suffrage movements of the 19th and 20th centuries. Democracy contrasts with forms of government where power is either held by an individual, as in an absolute monarchy, or where power is held by a small number of individuals, as in an oligarchy; these oppositions, inherited from Greek philosophy, are now ambiguous because contemporary governments have mixed democratic and monarchic elements. Karl Popper defined democracy in contrast to dictatorship or tyranny, thus focusing on opportunities for the people to control their leaders and to oust them without the need for a revolution.
No consensus exists on how to define democracy, but legal equality, political freedom and rule of law have been identified as important characteristics. These principles are reflected in all eligible citizens being equal before the law and having equal access to legislative processes. For example, in a representative democracy, every vote has equal weight, no unreasonable restrictions can apply to anyone seeking to become a representative, the freedom of its eligible citizens is secured by legitimised rights and liberties which are protected by a constitution. Other uses of "democracy" include that of direct democracy. One theory holds that democracy requires three fundamental principles: upward control, political equality, social norms by which individuals and institutions only consider acceptable acts that reflect the first two principles of upward control and political equality; the term "democracy" is sometimes used as shorthand for liberal democracy, a variant of representative democracy that may include elements such as political pluralism.
Roger Scruton argues that democracy alone cannot provide personal and political freedom unless the institutions of civil society are present. In some countries, notably in the United Kingdom which originated the Westminster system, the dominant principle is that of parliamentary sovereignty, while maintaining judicial independence. In the United States, separation of powers is cited as a central attribute. In India, parliamentary sovereignty is subject to the Constitution of India which includes judicial review. Though the term "democracy" is used in the context of a political state, the principles are applicable to private organisations. Majority rule is listed as a characteristic of democracy. Hence, democracy allows for political minorities to be oppressed by the "tyranny of the majority" in the absence of legal protections of individual or group rights. An essential part of an "ideal" representative democracy is competitive elections that are substantively and procedurally "fair," i.e. just and equitable
Walter Bendix Schönflies Benjamin was a German Jewish philosopher, cultural critic and essayist. An eclectic thinker, combining elements of German idealism, Western Marxism, Jewish mysticism, Benjamin made enduring and influential contributions to aesthetic theory, literary criticism, historical materialism, he was associated with the Frankfurt School, maintained formative friendships with thinkers such as playwright Bertolt Brecht and Kabbalah scholar Gershom Scholem. He was related by law to German political theorist and philosopher Hannah Arendt through her first marriage to Benjamin's cousin, Günther Anders. Among Benjamin's best known works are the essays "The Task of the Translator", "The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction", "Theses on the Philosophy of History", his major work as a literary critic included essays on Baudelaire, Kafka, Leskov, Proust and translation theory. He made major translations into German of the Tableaux Parisiens section of Baudelaire's Les Fleurs du mal and parts of Proust's À la recherche du temps perdu.
In 1940, at the age of 48, Benjamin committed suicide at Portbou on the French–Spanish border while attempting to escape from invading Nazi forces. Though popular acclaim eluded him during his life, the decades following his death won his work posthumous renown. Benjamin and his younger siblings and Dora, were born to a wealthy business family of assimilated Ashkenazi Jews in the Berlin of the German Empire; the patriarch of Walter Benjamin's family, Emil Benjamin, was a banker in Paris who had relocated from France to Germany, where he worked as an antiques trader in Berlin. He owned a number of investments in Berlin, including ice skating rinks. Benjamin's uncle William Stern was a prominent German child psychologist who developed the concept of the intelligence quotient, Benjamin's cousin Günther Anders was a German philosopher and anti-nuclear activist who studied under Edmund Husserl and Martin Heidegger. Through his mother, his great-uncle was the classical archaeologist Gustav Hirschfeld.
In 1902, ten-year-old Walter was enrolled to the Kaiser Friedrich School in Charlottenburg. Walter Benjamin was a boy of fragile health and so in 1905 the family sent him to Hermann-Lietz-Schule Haubinda, a boarding school in the Thuringian countryside, for two years. In 1912, at the age of twenty, he enrolled at the University of Freiburg, but, at summer semester's end, returned to Berlin matriculated into the University of Berlin, to continue studying philosophy. Here Benjamin had his first exposure to the ideas of Zionism, which had not been part of his liberal upbringing; this exposure gave him occasion to formulate his own ideas about the meaning of Judaism. Benjamin distanced himself from political and nationalist Zionism, instead developing in his own thinking what he called a kind of "cultural Zionism"—an attitude which recognized and promoted Judaism and Jewish values. In Benjamin's formulation his Jewishness meant a commitment to the furtherance of European culture. Benjamin expressed "My life experience led me to this insight: the Jews represent an elite in the ranks of the spiritually active...
For Judaism is to me in no sense an end in itself, but the most distinguished bearer and representative of the spiritual." This was a position that Benjamin held lifelong. Elected president of the Freie Studentenschaft, Benjamin wrote essays arguing for educational and general cultural change; when not re-elected as student association president, he returned to Freiburg University to study, with particular attention to the lectures of Heinrich Rickert. In 1914, at the outbreak of the First World War, Benjamin began faithfully translating the works of the 19th-century French poet Charles Baudelaire; the next year, 1915, he moved to Munich, continued his schooling at the University of Munich, where he met Rainer Maria Rilke and Gershom Scholem. In that year, Benjamin wrote about the 18th-century Romantic German poet Friedrich Hölderlin. In 1917 he transferred to the University of Bern, they had Stefan Rafael. In 1919 Benjamin earned his Ph. D. cum laude with the dissertation Begriff der Kunstkritik in der Deutschen Romantik.
Unable to support himself and family, he returned to Berlin and resided with his parents. In 1921 he published the essay Kritik der Gewalt. At this time Benjamin first became acquainted with Leo Strauss, Benjamin would remain an admirer of Strauss and of his work throughout his life. In 1923, when the Institut für Sozialforschung was founded to become home to the Frankfurt School, Benjamin published Charles Baudelaire, Tableaux Parisiens. At that time he became acquainted with Theodor Adorno and befriended Georg Lukács, whose The Theory of the Novel much influenced him. Meanwhile, the inflation in the Weimar Republic consequent to the First World War made it difficult for the father Emil Benjamin to continue supporting his son's family. At the end of 1923 his best friend Gershom Scholem immigrated to Palestine, a country under the British Mandate of P
Austria the Republic of Austria, is a country in Central Europe comprising 9 federated states. Its capital, largest city and one of nine states is Vienna. Austria has an area of 83,879 km2, a population of nearly 9 million people and a nominal GDP of $477 billion, it is bordered by the Czech Republic and Germany to the north and Slovakia to the east and Italy to the south, Switzerland and Liechtenstein to the west. The terrain is mountainous, lying within the Alps; the majority of the population speaks local Bavarian dialects as their native language, German in its standard form is the country's official language. Other regional languages are Hungarian, Burgenland Croatian, Slovene. Austria played a central role in European History from the late 18th to the early 20th century, it emerged as a margraviate around 976 and developed into a duchy and archduchy. In the 16th century, Austria started serving as the heart of the Habsburg Monarchy and the junior branch of the House of Habsburg – one of the most influential royal houses in history.
As archduchy, it was a major component and administrative centre of the Holy Roman Empire. Following the Holy Roman Empire's dissolution, Austria founded its own empire in the 19th century, which became a great power and the leading force of the German Confederation. Subsequent to the Austro-Prussian War and the establishment of a union with Hungary, the Austro-Hungarian Empire was created. Austria was involved in both world wars. Austria is a parliamentary representative democracy with a President as head of state and a Chancellor as head of government. Major urban areas of Austria include Graz, Linz and Innsbruck. Austria is ranked as one of the richest countries in the world by per capita GDP terms; the country has developed a high standard of living and in 2018 was ranked 20th in the world for its Human Development Index. The republic declared its perpetual neutrality in foreign political affairs in 1955. Austria has been a member of the United Nations since 1955 and joined the European Union in 1995.
It is a founding member of the OECD and Interpol. Austria signed the Schengen Agreement in 1995, adopted the euro currency in 1999; the German name for Austria, Österreich, derives from the Old High German Ostarrîchi, which meant "eastern realm" and which first appeared in the "Ostarrîchi document" of 996. This word is a translation of Medieval Latin Marchia orientalis into a local dialect. Another theory says that this name comes from the local name of the mountain whose original Slovenian name is "Ostravica" - because it is steep on both sides. Austria was a prefecture of Bavaria created in 976; the word "Austria" was first recorded in the 12th century. At the time, the Danube basin of Austria was the easternmost extent of Bavaria; the Central European land, now Austria was settled in pre-Roman times by various Celtic tribes. The Celtic kingdom of Noricum was claimed by the Roman Empire and made a province. Present-day Petronell-Carnuntum in eastern Austria was an important army camp turned capital city in what became known as the Upper Pannonia province.
Carnuntum was home for 50,000 people for nearly 400 years. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the area was invaded by Bavarians and Avars. Charlemagne, King of the Franks, conquered the area in AD 788, encouraged colonization, introduced Christianity; as part of Eastern Francia, the core areas that now encompass Austria were bequeathed to the house of Babenberg. The area was known as the marchia Orientalis and was given to Leopold of Babenberg in 976; the first record showing the name Austria is from 996, where it is written as Ostarrîchi, referring to the territory of the Babenberg March. In 1156, the Privilegium Minus elevated Austria to the status of a duchy. In 1192, the Babenbergs acquired the Duchy of Styria. With the death of Frederick II in 1246, the line of the Babenbergs was extinguished; as a result, Ottokar II of Bohemia assumed control of the duchies of Austria and Carinthia. His reign came to an end with his defeat at Dürnkrut at the hands of Rudolph I of Germany in 1278. Thereafter, until World War I, Austria's history was that of its ruling dynasty, the Habsburgs.
In the 14th and 15th centuries, the Habsburgs began to accumulate other provinces in the vicinity of the Duchy of Austria. In 1438, Duke Albert V of Austria was chosen as the successor to his father-in-law, Emperor Sigismund. Although Albert himself only reigned for a year, henceforth every emperor of the Holy Roman Empire was a Habsburg, with only one exception; the Habsburgs began to accumulate territory far from the hereditary lands. In 1477, Archduke Maximilian, only son of Emperor Frederick III, married the heiress Maria of Burgundy, thus acquiring most of the Netherlands for the family. In 1496, his son Philip the Fair married Joanna the Mad, the heiress of Castile and Aragon, thus acquiring Spain and its Italian and New World appendages for the Habsburgs. In 1526, following the Battle of Mohács, Bohemia and the part of Hungary not occupied by the Ottomans came under Austrian rule. Ottoman expansion into Hungary led to frequent conflicts between the two empires evident in the Long War of 1593 to 1606.
The Turks made incursions into Styria nearly 20 times, of which some are c
Siegfried Kracauer was a German writer, sociologist, cultural critic, film theorist. He has sometimes been associated with the Frankfurt School of critical theory, he is notable for arguing. Born to a Jewish family in Frankfurt am Main, Kracauer studied architecture from 1907 to 1913 obtaining a doctorate in engineering in 1914 and working as an architect in Osnabrück, Berlin until 1920. Near the end of the First World War, he befriended the young Theodor W. Adorno, to whom he became an early philosophical mentor. In 1964, Adorno recalled the importance of Kracauer's influence: or years Siegfried Kracauer read the Critique of Pure Reason with me on Saturday afternoons. I am not exaggerating in the slightest when I say that I owe more to this reading than to my academic teachers. If in my reading of philosophical texts I was not so much impressed with their unity and systematic consistency as I was concerned with the play of forces at work under the surface of every closed doctrine and viewed the codified philosophies as force fields in each case, it was Kracauer who impelled me to do so.
From 1922 to 1933 he worked as the leading film and literature editor of the Frankfurter Zeitung as its correspondent in Berlin, where he worked alongside Walter Benjamin and Ernst Bloch, among others. Between 1923 and 1925, he wrote an essay entitled Der Detektiv-Roman, in which he concerned himself with phenomena from everyday life in modern society. Kracauer continued this trend over the next few years, building up theoretical methods of analyzing circuses, films, tourism, city layout, dance, which he published in 1927 with the work Ornament der Masse. In 1930, Kracauer published Die Angestellten, a critical look at the lifestyle and culture of the new class of white-collar employees. Spiritually homeless, divorced from custom and tradition, these employees sought refuge in the new "distraction industries" of entertainment. Observers note that many of these lower-middle class employees were quick to adopt Nazism, three years later. In a contemporary review of Die Angestellten, Benjamin praised the concreteness of Kracauer's analysis, writing that "he entire book is an attempt to grapple with a piece of everyday reality, constructed here and experienced now.
Reality is pressed so that it is compelled to declare its colors and name names."Kracauer became critical of capitalism and broke away from the Frankfurter Zeitung. About this same time, he married Lili Ehrenreich, he was very critical of Stalinism and the "terrorist totalitarianism" of the Soviet government. With the rise of the Nazis in Germany in 1933, Kracauer migrated to Paris. In March 1941, thanks to the French ambassador Henri Hoppenot and his wife, Hélène Hoppenot, he emigrated to the United States, with other German refugees like John Rewald. From 1941 to 1943 he worked in the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, supported by Guggenheim and Rockefeller scholarships for his work in German film, he published From Caligari to Hitler: A Psychological History of the German Film, which traces the birth of Nazism from the cinema of the Weimar Republic as well as helping lay the foundation of modern film criticism. In 1960, he released Theory of Film: The Redemption of Physical Reality, which argued that realism is the most important function of cinema.
In the last years of his life Kracauer worked as a sociologist for different institutes, amongst them in New York as a director of research for applied social sciences at Columbia University. He died there, from the consequences of pneumonia, his last book is the posthumously published History, the Last Things Before the Last. Siegfried Kracauer's theories on memory revolved around the idea that memory was under threat and was being challenged by modern forms of technology, his most cited example was the comparison of memory to photography. The reason for this comparison was that photography, in theory, replicates some of the tasks done by memory; the differences in the functions of memory and the functions of photography, according to Kracauer, is that photography creates one fixed moment in time whereas memory itself is not beholden to a singular instance. Photography is capable of capturing the physicality of a particular moment, but it removes any depth or emotion that might otherwise be associated with the memory.
In essence, photography can not create a memory. Memory, on the other hand, is not beholden to one particular moment of time, nor is it purposefully created. Memories are impressions upon a person that they can recall due to the significance of the event or moment. Photography can work to record time in a linear way, Kracauer hints that floods of photographs ward off death by creating a sort of permanence. However, photography excludes the essence of a person, over time photographs lose meaning and become a "heap of details." This isn't to say that Kracauer felt that photography has no use for memory, it is that he felt that photography held more potential for historical memory than for personal memory. Photography allows for a depth of detail that can be to the advantage of a collective memory, such as how a city or town once appeared because those aspects can be forgotten, or overridden throughout time as the physical landscape of the area changes. Although he wrote for both popular and scholarly p
Minima Moralia: Reflections From Damaged Life is a 1951 book by Theodor W. Adorno and a seminal text in critical theory. Adorno started writing it during World War II, in 1944, while he lived as an exile in America, completed it in 1949, it was written for the fiftieth birthday of his friend and collaborator Max Horkheimer, who had co-authored the earlier book Dialectic of Enlightenment with Adorno. The book takes its title from Magna Moralia, a work on ethics, traditionally attributed to Aristotle, though modern scholarly consensus attributes it to a though sympathetic, writer; as Adorno writes in the Dedication, the "sorrowful science" with which the book is concerned is "the teaching of the good life", a central theme of both the Greek and Hebrew sources of Western philosophy. In the mid-20th century, Adorno maintains that a good, honest life is no longer possible, because we live in an inhuman society. "Life does not live", declares the book's opening epigram. Adorno illustrates this in a series of short reflections and aphorisms into which the book is broken, moving from everyday experiences to disturbing insights on general tendencies of late industrial society.
Topics considered include the subversive nature of toys, the desolation of the family, the ungenuinness of being genuine, the decay of conversation, the rise of occultism, the history of tact. Adorno shows how the smallest changes in everyday behavior stand in relation to the most catastrophic events of the twentieth century; the book acknowledges its roots in the "damaged life" of its author, one of many intellectuals driven into exile by fascism, according to Adorno, are "mutilated without exception". But as one of its aphorisms reads, "The splinter in your eye is the best magnifying glass." So, as splinters left over from the smashed mirror of philosophy, the book's fragments try to illuminate clues as to humanity's descent into inhumanity in their immediate surroundings. A kind of post-philosophy working against the "untrue whole" of philosophy proper, Minima Moralia holds fast to the Judeo-Christian-Enlightenment vision of redemption, which it calls the only valid viewpoint with which to engage a troubled world.
By bringing the "Messianic light" of criticism on a landscape of consummate negativity, Adorno attempts to "project negatively an image of utopia." While grieving the irretrievable loss of a paradise of a privileged childhood, Adorno confronts his sheltered existence with the primitive and anti-Semitic "nightmare of childhood" which he saw as being an incipient form of Fascism. He rejected any attempt, under the aegis of the USA, to reconstruct a 19th-century culture because any such attempt would either be false, or would set in motion the same dynamic that had produced fascism, reasoning inspired by Nietzsche's thought experiment of the eternal recurrence. Redemption would be a final break with a system which he regarded as deterministic in the large, producing a variety of alternative "virtual" histories, but virtual histories that would share common characteristics. Musically speaking and as seen in Mahler, certain themes would return, whether first as tragedy and as tragic and murderous farce.
Jaeggi, Rahel "“No Individual Can Resist”: Minima Moralia as Critique of Forms of Life" Constellations: An International Journal of Critical & Democratic Theory 12: pp. 65–82.
Marxism is a theory and method of working class self-emancipation. As a theory, it relies on a method of socioeconomic analysis that views class relations and social conflict using a materialist interpretation of historical development and takes a dialectical view of social transformation, it originates from the works of 19th-century German philosophers Friedrich Engels. Marxism uses a methodology, now known as historical materialism, to analyze and critique the development of class society and of capitalism as well as the role of class struggles in systemic economic and political change. According to Marxist theory, in capitalist societies, class conflict arises due to contradictions between the material interests of the oppressed and exploited proletariat—a class of wage labourers employed to produce goods and services—and the bourgeoisie—the ruling class that owns the means of production and extracts its wealth through appropriation of the surplus product produced by the proletariat in the form of profit.
This class struggle, expressed as the revolt of a society's productive forces against its relations of production, results in a period of short-term crises as the bourgeoisie struggle to manage the intensifying alienation of labor experienced by the proletariat, albeit with varying degrees of class consciousness. In periods of deep crisis, the resistance of the oppressed can culminate in a proletarian revolution which, if victorious, leads to the establishment of socialism—a socioeconomic system based on social ownership of the means of production, distribution based on one's contribution and production organized directly for use; as the productive forces continued to advance, Marx hypothesized that socialism would be transformed into a communist society: a classless, humane society based on common ownership and the underlying principle: "From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs". Marxism has developed into many different branches and schools of thought, with the result that there is now no single definitive Marxist theory.
Different Marxian schools place a greater emphasis on certain aspects of classical Marxism while rejecting or modifying other aspects. Many schools of thought have sought to combine Marxian concepts and non-Marxian concepts, which has led to contradicting conclusions; however there is movement toward the recognition that historical materialism and dialectical materialism remains the fundamental aspect of all Marxist schools of thought. Marxism has had a profound impact on global academia and has influenced many fields such as archaeology, media studies, political science, history, art history and theory, cultural studies, economics, criminology, literary criticism, film theory, critical psychology and philosophy; the term "Marxism" was popularized by Karl Kautsky, who considered himself an "orthodox" Marxist during the dispute between the orthodox and revisionist followers of Marx. Kautsky's revisionist rival Eduard Bernstein later adopted use of the term. Engels did not support the use of the term "Marxism" to describe either his views.
Engels claimed that the term was being abusively used as a rhetorical qualifier by those attempting to cast themselves as "real" followers of Marx while casting others in different terms, such as "Lassallians". In 1882, Engels claimed that Marx had criticized self-proclaimed "Marxist" Paul Lafargue, by saying that if Lafargue's views were considered "Marxist" "one thing is certain and, that I am not a Marxist". Marxism analyzes the material conditions and the economic activities required to fulfill human material needs to explain social phenomena within any given society, it assumes that the form of economic organization, or mode of production, influences all other social phenomena—including wider social relations, political institutions, legal systems, cultural systems and ideologies. The economic system and these social relations form a superstructure; as forces of production, i.e. technology, existing forms of organizing production become obsolete and hinder further progress. As Karl Marx observed: "At a certain stage of development, the material productive forces of society come into conflict with the existing relations of production or—this expresses the same thing in legal terms—with the property relations within the framework of which they have operated hitherto.
From forms of development of the productive forces these relations turn into their fetters. Begins an era of social revolution"; these inefficiencies manifest themselves as social contradictions in society which are, in turn, fought out at the level of the class struggle. Under the capitalist mode of production, this struggle materializes between the minority who own the means of production and the vast majority of the population who produce goods and services. Starting with the conjectural premise that social change occurs because of the struggle between different classes within society who are under contradiction against each other, a Marxist would conclude that capitalism exploits and oppresses the proletariat, therefore capitalism will lead to a proletarian revolution. Marxian economics and its proponents view capitalism as economically unsustainable and incapable of improving the living standards of the population due to its need to compensate for falling rates of profit by cutting employee's wages, social benefits and pursuing military aggression.
The socialist system would succeed capitalism as humanity's mode of production through workers' revolution. According to Marxian crisis theory, socialism is not an economic necessity. In a sociali
One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society is a 1964 book by the philosopher Herbert Marcuse, in which the author offers a wide-ranging critique of both contemporary capitalism and the Communist society of the Soviet Union, documenting the parallel rise of new forms of social repression in both these societies, as well as the decline of revolutionary potential in the West. He argues that "advanced industrial society" created false needs, which integrated individuals into the existing system of production and consumption via mass media, industrial management, contemporary modes of thought; this results in a "one-dimensional" universe of thought and behaviour, in which aptitude and ability for critical thought and oppositional behaviour wither away. Against this prevailing climate, Marcuse promotes the "great refusal" as the only adequate opposition to all-encompassing methods of control. Much of the book is a defense of "negative thinking" as a disrupting force against the prevailing positivism.
Marcuse analyzes the integration of the industrial working class into capitalist society and new forms of capitalist stabilization, thus questioning the Marxian postulates of the revolutionary proletariat and the inevitability of capitalist crisis. In contrast to orthodox Marxism, Marcuse champions non-integrated forces of minorities and radical intelligentsia, attempting to nourish oppositional thought and behavior through promoting radical thinking and opposition, he considers the trends towards bureaucracy in Marxist countries to be as oppositional to freedom as those in the capitalist West. One-Dimensional Man was the book. Marcuse criticizes consumerism, arguing that it is a form of social control, he suggests that the system we live in may claim to be democratic, but it is authoritarian in that a few individuals dictate our perceptions of freedom by only allowing us choices to buy for happiness. In this state of "unfreedom", consumers act irrationally by working more than they are required to in order to fulfill actual basic needs, by ignoring the psychologically destructive effects, by ignoring the waste and environmental damage it causes, by searching for social connection through material items.
It is more irrational in the sense that the creation of new products, calling for the disposal of old products, fuels the economy and encourages the need to work more to buy more. An individual loses his humanity and becomes a tool in the industrial machine and a cog in the consumer machine. Additionally, advertising sustains consumerism, which disintegrates societal demeanor, delivered in bulk and informing the masses that happiness can be bought, an idea, psychologically damaging. There are alternatives to counter the consumer lifestyle. Anti-consumerism is a lifestyle that demotes any unnecessary consumption, as well as unnecessary work, etc, but this alternative is complicated by the extreme interpenetration of advertising and commodification because everything is a commodity those things that are actual needs. In a 1964 letter to The New York Review of Books, Georg H. Fromm, William Leiss et al. outlined the major themes of the book as follows: The concept of "one-dimensional man" asserts that there are other dimensions of human existence in addition to the present one and that these have been eliminated.
It maintains that the spheres of existence considered as private have now become part of the entire system of social domination of man by man, it suggests that totalitarianism can be imposed without terror. Technological rationality, which impoverishes all aspects of contemporary life, has developed the material bases of human freedom, but continues to serve the interests of suppression. There is a logic of domination in technological progress under present conditions: not quantitative accumulation, but a qualitative "leap" is necessary to transform this apparatus of destruction into an apparatus of life; the analysis proceeds on the basis of "negative" or dialectical thinking, which sees existing things as “other than they are” and as denying the possibilities inherent in themselves. It demands "freedom from the oppressive and ideological power of given facts." The book is pessimistic about the possibilities for overcoming the increasing domination and unfreedom of technological society. One-Dimensional Man was the book.
Critical theorist Douglas Kellner writes in Herbert Marcuse and the Crisis of Marxism that One-Dimensional Man was one of the most important books of the 1960s and one of the most subversive books of the twentieth century. Despite its importance, it was—due to its subversive nature—severely criticized by both orthodox Marxists and academic theorists of various political and theoretical commitments. Despite its pessimism, represented by the citation of the words of Walter Benjamin at the end of this book that "Nur um der Hoffnungslosen willen ist uns die Hoffnung gegeben", it influenced many in the New Left as it articulated their growing dissatisfaction with both capitalist societies and Soviet communist societies. Philosopher Stephen Hicks argues that the book's popularity marked "a strong turn towards irrationality and violence among younger Leftists."The philosopher, Ronald Aronson, wrote that One-Dimensional Man is more prescient Marcuse could have realized and that it is more relevant today than ever.
Repressive desublimation Totalitarian democracy Minority rights J. L. Talmon Drux Flux, an animated short inspired