By Alasdair MacIntyre
Even supposing Alasdair MacIntyre is healthier recognized at the present time because the writer of "After advantage" (1981), he was once, within the Nineteen Fifties and Nineteen Sixties, probably the most erudite individuals of Britain's Marxist Left: being a militant inside, first, the Communist celebration, after which the recent Left
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Extra info for Alasdair MacIntyre's engagement with Marxism : selected writings 1953-1974
Thus, in his introduction to Marx’s ideas for an academic audience, while he powerfully argued that ‘the most As he wrote in ‘Breaking the Chains of Reason’: ‘Our deep need is . . to provide all the growing points of human activity against the present social order with coherent theoretical expression, so that they may be rationally guided and effective’. 85 On this, see Blackledge 2005a and 2007a. 86 Birchall 2000. 87 Whether or not this observation was correct of Marx, it certainly appeared to be true of MacIntyre, who was unable to conceptualise any contemporary conditions under which a mass movement might realise his vision of socialism.
Disengagement, 1964–8 MacIntyre’s rejection of Marx’s crisis theory, alongside his argument that the modern capitalist division of labour increased the fragmentation of the working class, implied that the workers’ cries for freedom would remain atomised and therefore that the tasks facing socialists were much more daunting, indeed overwhelming, than more orthodox Marxists allowed. This is the conclusion implied in his works of the later 1960s, which, while written when he was still nominally an editor of International Socialism, universally suggested little or no hope for revolution.
67. In relation to the IS, Ian Birchall writes: ‘[Tony] Cliff…distrusted MacIntyre’s academic philosophical work, which he believed had little to do with Marxism’. Personal communication, Birchall to Davidson, 24 August 2000. It should be added, of course, that MacIntyre was scarcely alone in producing professional work which did not reflect his Marxist beliefs. Indeed, even such cadres as the SLL’s Cliff Slaughter produced fairly anodyne sociology during their day jobs. See, for example, Slaughter 1956.
Alasdair MacIntyre's engagement with Marxism : selected writings 1953-1974 by Alasdair MacIntyre