Tuesday, 21 June 2005


What led Hobsbawm to Marxism? In his own words, “Pity for the exploited, the aesthetic appeal of a perfect and comprehensive intellectual system, . . . a little bit of the Blakean vision of the new Jerusalem and a good deal of intellectual anti-philistinism” (Eric Hobsbawm, (2002.) Interesting Times: A Twentieth-Century Life, New York: Pantheon,. p. 74; quoted by Robin Melville). And what did Marxism bring? Pitiless exploitation, the ugliness of a corrupt and totalitarian pseudo-intellectual system, the imposition of a Dantean vision of Hell on earth, and a great deal of mind-numbing philistinism. Any surprises? Were these not an inherent part of Marx’s vision?

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