What is Class Consciousness?
Publisher: Liberation, New York, USA
Year Published: 1971 First Published: 1934
Resource Type: Book
Cx Number: CX5592
Critical of what he saw as Marxism's overly materialistic explanations, Reich proposes the perspectives of psychology and psychotherapy could revitalise radical political thought and the socialist movement.
Abstract: With socialism under sustained attack by 1934, Wilhelm Reich sets about to explain the way forward for the socialist movement. Critical of what he saw as Marxism's overly materialistic explanations, Reich proposes that new vocabularies of psychology could revitalise the movement: "While we present the masses with superb historical analyses and economic treatises on the contradictions of imperialism, Hitler stirred the deepest roots of their emotional being."
He distinguishes between two types of socialists: "that of the leadership and that of the masses." The former is based in technical and theorectical knowledge about revolution and economics. The latter is based in "the trivial problems of everyday life." Only through the forging of a new emotion-based socialist vocabulary can socialism hope to attract the kind ofwide-spread class consciousness it so desires for revolution.
Table of Contents
Chapter One: Dual Consciousness
Chapter Two: Some Concrete Elements In Class Consciousness And Some Inhibitions Found In The Mass Individual
Chapter Three: Bourgeois and Revolutionary Politics
Chapter Four: The Development of Class Consciousness Out of the Life of the Masses
Appendix: Principles for the Discussion of the Reorganisation of the Workers' Movement