File spoon-archives/marxism2.archive/marxism2_1996/96-07-31.055, message 137

Date: Wednesday, 31 Jul 1996 12:33:13 NZT
Subject: Marxism and reductionism

 I am interested in the problem of reductionism in Marxist theory. The
term reductionism is used as a term of abuse by many social theorists -
but why. Marxism is seen as reductionist because it posits that political
social and other events can, in the last instance, be subsumed to the
economic.  The ongoing crisis of capitalism, seems to me to indicate that
reductionism is a valid theoretical approach to understanding what is
going on.

However, reductionism is still seen as a problem in Marxist theory. I am
trying to write an assignment re this subject, and need to check out
whether - is reductionism a problem, if its a problem then how can we
overcome it while retaining a Marxist analysis.

Any suggestions, discussion would be much appreciated.  This is the first
time I have posted to any list as I'm a newcomer to the internet.

Gerry Cotterell

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