If It Goes without Saying

Brett Levinson

in Market and Thought

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print December 2004 | ISBN: 9780823223848
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823235421 | DOI:
If It Goes without Saying

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This chapter examines “Ideology and Ideological State Apparatuses (ISA): Notes towards an Investigation”, the Louis Althusser text that has most influenced the post-1980 North American and British intellectual scene. Relating the state of modern thought to thought on the modern state, Althusser's essay asks: how does production ceaselessly maintain a similar worker/capitalist, subjugated/subject division, one that permits the capitalist/subject to exploit the worker/subjugated, thus preserving class difference? By way of explanation, the main sections of the essay present three complementary discourses: labor relations and labor exploitation (the Marxist section), cultural institutions (the Gramscian section), and psychological or psychoanalytic factors (the Lacanian section). To deploy the terms that Althusser would make famous, language interpellates the subjects into desiring a capitalism that they thereby reproduce.

Keywords: language; Ideological State Apparatus; education; Althusser; production; class difference

Chapter.  6767 words. 

Subjects: Social and Political Philosophy

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