The Wager of Lucien Goldmann: Tragedy, Dialectics, and a Hidden God [NOOK Book]

Overview

In The Wager of Lucien Goldmann, Mitchell Cohen provides the first full-length study of this major figure of postwar French intellectual life and champion of socialist humanism. While many Parisian leftists staunchly upheld Marxism's "scientificity" in the 1950s and 1960s, Lucien Goldmann insisted that Marxism was by then in severe crisis and had to reinvent itself radically if it were to survive. He rejected the traditional Marxist view of the proletariat and contested the structuralist and antihumanist ...
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The Wager of Lucien Goldmann: Tragedy, Dialectics, and a Hidden God

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Overview

In The Wager of Lucien Goldmann, Mitchell Cohen provides the first full-length study of this major figure of postwar French intellectual life and champion of socialist humanism. While many Parisian leftists staunchly upheld Marxism's "scientificity" in the 1950s and 1960s, Lucien Goldmann insisted that Marxism was by then in severe crisis and had to reinvent itself radically if it were to survive. He rejected the traditional Marxist view of the proletariat and contested the structuralist and antihumanist theorizing that infected French left-wing circles in the tumultuous 1960s.Highly regarded by thinkers as diverse as Jean Piaget and Alasdair MacIntyre, Goldmann is shown here as a socialist who, unlike many others of his time, refused to portray his aspirations for humanity's future as an inexorable unfolding of history's laws. He saw these aspirations instead as a wager akin to Pascal's in the existence of God. "Risk," Goldmann wrote in his classic study of Pascal and Racine, The Hidden God, "possibility of failure, hope of success, and the synthesis of the three in a faith which is a wager are the essential constituent elements of the human condition." In The Wager of Lucien Goldmann, Cohen retrieves Goldmann's achievement--his "genetic structuralist" method, his sociology of literature, his libertarian socialist politics.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Goldmann (1913-70) was a major French Socialist writer and thinker of the postwar period. Though nominally an adherent of Marxism, he was critical of many of its views, and he wrote extensively on the boundaries between literature and sociology. Cohen's book is partly biographical (Part 1 focuses on Goldmann's life and intellectual development), partly analytical (Part 2 delineates his philosophical background; Part 3, his own thought). What emerges is a portrait of a brilliant mind at work, grappling with the problems of human existence and our place in history. Though Goldmann has been criticized at times for obscurity and for his dependence on Marxist terminology, his contribution to 20th-century thought is evident. A welcome addition to any collection containing Goldmann's works or emphasizing Western European intellectual history.-Terry Skeats, Bishop's Univ., Lennoxville, Quebec, Canada
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781400821266
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press
  • Publication date: 7/5/1994
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: Course Book
  • Pages: 368
  • File size: 517 KB

Table of Contents



Acknowledgments


A Note on Titles, Abbreviations, and Language in the Text


Introduction: Eppur si muove?

3

Pt. 1

Genesis



1

A Youth in Romania

15

2

Homeless

40

Pt. 2

The Philosophical Background



3

A Short History of Method

65

4

Lukacs, Marxism, and Method

92

Pt. 3

Faithful Heresy, Tragic Dialectician



5

The Dialectics of Lucien Goldmann

117

6

From a Hidden God to the Human Condition

154

7

Existentialism, Marxism, Structuralism

201

8

The Hidden Class: Goldmann's Unwritten Politics

250

9

Between Yes and No

283



Abbreviations Used in the Notes

291



Notes

293



Select Bibliography

331



Index

343

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