A Comparison of the Logical Structure of Marx and Marcuse's Alienation Theory

  •  Yu Feng    


“Economic & Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844” is one of Marx's early important works. In the manuscript, Marx, based on his criticism of "alienated labor", provided a new method or a new perspective for people to analyze practical problems. Marcuse inherited Marx's theory of "alienation" and depicted the historical prospect of "comprehensive alienation" in developed industrial society. Starting from Hegel, this paper analyzes and reveals the basic structure of alienation logic. Based on this, a systematic and comprehensive comparison is made between Marx's theory of alienation and Marcuse's theory of alienation from two aspects: the internal logic of alienation and the external logic of alienation. The final aim is to show Marcuse's inheritance and transcendence of Marx's theory of alienation. Marcuse basically followed the logical structure of Marx's alienation theory and abandoned the application of this concept in speculative sense. Marcuse based on the reality of the development of capitalism in new era, developed it into a theory of social criticism, and even regarded it as the inner motive force of the real political revolution.

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