By Mitchell Cohen

In The guess of Lucien Goldmann, Mitchell Cohen presents the 1st full-length examine of this significant determine of postwar French highbrow existence and champion of socialist humanism. whereas many Parisian leftists staunchly upheld Marxism’s “scientificity” within the Nineteen Fifties and Sixties, Lucien Goldmann insisted that Marxism was once through then in critical hindrance and needed to reinvent itself appreciably if it have been to outlive. He rejected the conventional Marxist view of the proletariat and contested the structuralist and antihumanist theorizing that contaminated French left-wing circles within the tumultuous 1960s.

Highly looked by means of thinkers as assorted as Jean Piaget and Alasdair MacIntyre, Goldmann is proven right here as a socialist who, not like many others of his time, refused to painting his aspirations for humanity’s destiny as an inexorable unfolding of history’s legislation. He observed those aspirations as an alternative as a guess corresponding to Pascal’s within the lifestyles of God. “Risk,” Goldmann wrote in his vintage research of Pascal and Racine, The Hidden God, “possibility of failure, desire of luck, and the synthesis of the 3 in a religion that is a bet are the fundamental constituent components of the human condition.” In The guess of Lucien Goldmann, Cohen retrieves Goldmann’s achievement—his “genetic structuralist” approach, his sociology of literature, his libertarian socialist politics.

Originally released in 1994.

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