Author(s): Perry Anderson
Politics | No Category
An explosive analysis of the central strategic concepts in the thought of the great Italian Marxist, Anderson's essay has been the subject of book-length attacks across four decades for its disentangling of the hesitations and contradictions in Gramsci's highly original usage of such key dichotomies as East and West, domination and direction, hegemony and dictatorship, state and civil society, war of position and war of movement. In a critical tribute to the international richness of Gramsci's work, it shows how deeply embedded these notions were in the revolutionary debates in Tsarist Russia and Wilhemine Germany, in which arguments criss-crossed between Plekhanov, Lenin, Kautsky, Luxemburg, Lukacs and Trotsky, with contemporary echoes in Brecht and Benjamin. A new preface considers the objections this account of Gramsci provoked and the reasons for them.