Article ID: CBB920181224

Negative Dialectics and the Critique of Economic Objectivity (2016)


This article explores Adorno’s negative dialectics as a critical social theory of economic objectivity. It rejects the conventional view that Adorno does not offer a critique of the economic forms of capitalist society. The article holds that negative dialectics is a dialectics of the social world in the form of the economic object, one that is governed by the movement of economic quantities, that is, real economic abstractions. Negative dialectics refuses to accept the constituted economic categories as categories of economic nature. Instead, the article argues, it amounts to a conceptualized social praxis [begriffene Praxis] of the capitalistically constituted social relations, which manifest themselves in the form of seemingly independent economic categories. Economic nature is a socially constituted nature, which entails the class antagonism in its concept. The article concludes that for negative dialectics the explanation of real economic abstractions lies in the understanding of the class-divided nature of human practice.

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Authors & Contributors
Berenson, Edward
Dominique Meeùs
Manfred Gangl
Daniel Luban
Naum S. Imyanitov
Graham Clure
History of the Human Sciences
History of Political Economy
History of European Ideas
William and Mary Quarterly
Revue d'Histoire Moderne et Contemporaine
Public Understanding of Science
University of Toronto Press
New York University
Cambridge University Press
Political economy
Science and society
Science and politics
Marx, Karl
Adorno, Theodor W.
Engels, Friedrich
Rousseau, Jean-Jacques
Alchian, Armen Albert
Pollock, Frederick (1845-1937)
Time Periods
19th century
20th century
18th century
17th century
21st century
Great Britain
Atlantic world
Atlantic Ocean
London (England)
United States
Institut für Sozialforschung, Frankfurt am Main

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