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Georg Lukacs: From Romanticism to Bolshevism

Georg Lukacs: From Romanticism to Bolshevism

Current price: $24.95
Publication Date: November 21st, 2023
Publisher:
Verso
ISBN:
9781804295496
Pages:
256
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Description

On the 100th anniversary of the publication of History and Class Consciousness, a new edition of this indispensable guide to Lukacs's thought and politics

The philosophical and political development that converted Georg Lukács from a distinguished representative of Central European aesthetic vitalism into a major Marxist theorist and Communist militant has long remained an enigma.

In this this now classic study, Michael Löwy for the first time traced and explained the extraordinary mutation that occurred in Lukács's thought between 1909 and 1929. Utilizing many as yet unpublished sources, Löwy meticulously reconstructed the complex itinerary of Lukács's thinking as he gradually moved towards his decisive encounter with Bolshevism.

The religious convictions of the early Lukács, the peculiar spell exercised on him and on Max Weber by Dostoyevskyan images of pre-revolutionary Russia, the nature of his friendships with Ernst Bloch and Thomas Mann, were amongst the discoveries of the book.

Then, in a fascinating case-study in the sociology of ideas, Löwy showed how the same philosophical problematic of Lebensphilosophie dominated the intelligentsias of both Germany and Hungary in the pre-war period, yet how the different configurations of social forces in each country bent its political destiny into opposite directions. The famous works produced by Lukács during and after the Hungarian Commune—Tactics and Ethics, History and Class Consciousness and Lenin—were analysed and assessed. A concluding chapter discussed Lukács's eventual ambiguous settlement with Stalinism in the thirties, and its coda of renewed radicalism in the final years of his life.

In this new edition, Löwy has added a substantial new introduction which reassess the nature of Lukacs's thought in the light of newly published texts and debates.

About the Author

Michael Löwy is Research Director of Sociology at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, Paris. His previous books include Redemption and Utopia: Liberation Judaism in Central Europe, Marxism in Latin America and The War of the Gods: Religion and Politics in Latin America.