Pessimism of the Intellect, Optimism of the Will: Gramsci’s Political Thought in the Last Miscellaneous Notebooks

Abstract : Pessimism of the intellect, optimism of the will: Gramsci's political thought in the last miscellaneous notebooks Abstract: In the Prison Notebooks, Gramsci combines a "pessimistic" analysis of the growing authoritarian trends of the 1930s with an "optimistic" commitment to the potential for socialist transformation and the elaboration of an effective strategy for the workers' movement. By discussing key texts from the miscellaneous notebooks 14, 15, and 17, I investigate the way in which, in the last phase of his work in prison, Gramsci interprets the changing political and social dynamics that characterise "western" countries (and that are central, mutatis mutandis, also in present-day politics). In particular, I focus on the complex conceptual cluster elaborated by Gramsci (with the categories of "bureaucracy", "police", "discipline" and "political party") in order to illustrate the way in which he explains the transformations of the mechanisms of political participation, and the new, "totalitarian" forms of political engagement of his own times, as well as their possible solutions.
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Contributeur : Francesca Antonini <>
Soumis le : mardi 30 avril 2019 - 16:13:38
Dernière modification le : mercredi 22 mai 2019 - 16:23:25

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Francesca Antonini. Pessimism of the Intellect, Optimism of the Will: Gramsci’s Political Thought in the Last Miscellaneous Notebooks. Rethinking Marxism, Taylor & Francis (Routledge), 2019, 31 (1), pp.42-57. ⟨10.1080/08935696.2019.1577616⟩. ⟨hal-02116010⟩

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