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Market and ThoughtMeditations on the Political and Biopolitical$
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Brett Levinson

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780823223848

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: March 2011

DOI: 10.5422/fso/9780823223848.001.0001

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Negri and Marx on Language and Activism

Negri and Marx on Language and Activism

Has Deconstruction Anything to Say Now to Marxism?

(p.164) 8. Negri and Marx on Language and Activism
Market and Thought

Brett Levinson

Fordham University Press

Mainly through a reading of Antonio Negri's Marx beyond Marx and Marx's Grundrisse, the chapter responds to a question that has not yet been explicitly posed: why should language as cast by the Heideggerian and deconstructionist tradition—language as irreducible to communication and representation, hence subjectivity, utility, and all “cultural constructionisms” — matter to Marxism? It notes that because the state form remains a power, leftist activism must continue to attend to labor needs. Yet such activism cannot actually be practiced without care for language. The relation of labor and language is essential to Marxism since there is no labor without language. Furthermore, this chapter argues that no deployment of Marxism can today logically remain faithful to its task—the disruption of capital or, for Negri, the organizational activity that discloses capital as a contradiction—and refuse to address deconstruction's concern for language, and vice versa.

Keywords:   Negri, Marx, Grundrisse, deconstruction, Marxism, language, labor

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