Post-Marx beyond Post-Marx: Autonomism and Discourse Theory

  • Jack Zeljko Bratich


Discourse had an easy entry but a difficult stay in Marxism. On the one hand, Marxist terms like consciousness, ideology, and culture had already provided fertile soil for discourse to take root. On the other hand, these very terms were relegated to a superstructural, even ephemeral, role in much of orthodox Marxism. The discursive turn was made possible by a crisis within Marxism itself: the failure of a certain explanatory model (the inevitability of proletarian revolution due to objective contradictions), the terrors unleashed by actually existing socialism (the USSR’s Cold War global expansion, the internments, the crushing of dissent), and the eruption of struggles during 1968 (around sexual desire, gender, ethnicity, race, and everyday life). All of these contributed, over time, to a questioning of fundamental commitments and epistemological certainties within Marxism. It was, in Laclau and Mouffe’s (1985) term, a “de-struction” of the history of Marxism (p. 96).


Socialist Strategy Discourse Theory Political Form Political Project Media Project 
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  • Jack Zeljko Bratich

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