Kritike: An Online Journal of Philosophy (Jun 2009)

Eroticizing Marx, Revolutionizing Freud: Marcuse’s Psychoanalytic Turn

  • Jeffry V. Ocay

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 3, no. 1
pp. 10 – 23


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The conclusion arrived at in the article titled “Heidegger, Hegel, Marx: Marcuse and the Theory of Historicity,” which appeared in a previous issue of this journal, accounts for Herbert Marcuse’s view of the possibility of the individual to become disposed to radical action. Marcuse thus wants to suggest that there is still hope for the Enlightenment’s project of “emancipation,” and that there is still a revolutionary subject who can carry out this political struggle for liberation. The progression of consciousness which results in a historically conscious individual exemplified by the “consciousslave” in Hegel’s discussion of master-slave relation provided Marcuse the basis of his claim that the individual can be an active and dynamic political subject. Yet the slave who realizes via the notion of labor that it is himself and not the master who is truly free is, after all, still a slave. This means that individuals still need to fight for their freedom.