[OPE-L] Ulrich Beck on cosmopolitanism

From: Jurriaan Bendien (adsl675281@TISCALI.NL)
Date: Sat Nov 24 2007 - 14:33:06 EST

Progressive sociologist Ulrich Beck, who is maybe a bit like Germany's John
Holloway, has published some "theses" on the world situation here

He writes among other things:

"It is a question of inverting Marx's basic idea: it is not that being
determines consciousness, but instead that consciousness maximizes new
possibilities for action (cosmopolitan perspective) by players who are
engaged in global political power relations. There exists a royal road to
the transformation of one's own power situation. But first you must change
your world-view. A sceptical, realistic view of the world - but the same
time a cosmopolitan one! It is an irony of history that the world-view
discredited by the collapse of communism in Europe has now been adopted by
the victors of the Cold War. The neoliberals have elevated the weaknesses in
Marx's thought to their own creed, namely his stubborn underestimation of
nationalistic and religious movements, and his one-dimensional, linear model
of history."

I'm in favour of Beck's cosmopolitan idea, but I think it is disappointing
that a leading sociologist gets it so wrong about Marx. It is doubly
disappointing that most of these ideas are just a rehash of old themes.


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