Marxism and the Philosophy of Science with Helena Sheehan

Date: 2022-05-06T09:21:42+00:00


Djamil and Donald join Helena Sheehan, author of Marxism and the Philosophy of Science: A Critical History for a deep dive on the interactions between these two fields. They start off with Sheehan’s intellectual history, before discussing what Marxism is and how it relates to other philosophies of science. They talk about Marx & Engels’ relationship to science, in particular to Darwinism, Engels’ much maligned Dialectics of Nature, its relationship to Hegel, and the laws of dialectics. They continue with the Austromarxists and Neokantianism, its influence on Bogdanov and the Bolshevik Machists, and Lenin’s reply in Materialism and Empirio-criticism. They also discuss the criterium of practice, Bukharin’s philosophy of science and his influence via Science at the Crossroads on a generation of British Marxists including Bernal, Haldane and Caudwell. They finish with discussing the cold & warm split in Marxism.

Most works referred to can be found in Sheehan’s book, or in the Marxist Internet Archive’s Marxism and Science page.

Other works & authors mentioned include:
J. D. Bernal – Science in History
Nikolai Bukharin – Philosophical Arabesques, Historical Materialism
Loren Graham – Science in Russia and the Soviet Union: A Short History
Ian Hacking – Representing and Intervening
Boris Hessen – The Social and Economic Roots of Newton’s Principia
Kaan Kangal – Frederich Engels and the Dialectics of Nature
Leszek Kolakowski – Main Currents of Marxism
Alasdair Macintyre – After Virtue
Geoffrey Roberts – Stalin’s Library
David-Hillel Rubin – Marxism & Materialism
Gary Werskey – The Visible College

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