Thu Jan 05, 2017 10:29 pm
Thu Jan 19, 2017 10:56 pm
Sat Jan 21, 2017 2:24 pm
Sat Jan 21, 2017 4:29 pm
Sat Jan 21, 2017 6:16 pm
Why not just post here directly?
The problem with the idea that we need to "move toward class consciousness" is the assumption that the working class isn't conscious to begin with. It implies a problem needing to be fixed among the working class, in terms of an intellectual deficit, and that the only people to be tasked with correcting this deficit are the left among the working class or, worse, petty bourgeois intellectuals who have self-appointed this task.
Workers have consciousness. Class consciousness, even. We understand where we are and what our role is in capitalism; that is, we're exploited. Being a class in itself, which we are as a default, means consciousness is achieved already and there's no where for it to be raised or move toward. Every single time you hear a member of the working class complaining about their jobs, their boss, their shitty health insurance; worrying over an impending foreclosure, being kicked out for non-payment of rent, so on and so forth, is an instance of consciousness.
What we need to move to is a class for itself. But that comes from dialogue. Not "education." Working out, as a class, alternatives. It doesn't imply the "teacher" and "student" dichotomy that "educating" or "moving toward consciousness" implies. If any consciousness raising needs to take place, it needs to take place among the left with the understanding that it's not us who lead the revolution but the working class as a whole."
Sat Jan 21, 2017 9:26 pm
What we need to move to is a class for itself
Tue Jan 24, 2017 8:46 pm
And yet, we're having this discussion nonetheless.
Okay, but this isn't to do with consciousness or the related idea of "consciousness raising." The idea that there is some playa of consciousness is inherently condescending because it implies someone knows less than you and is in a position to be taught something by someone self-appointed.
If there is "consciousness," like I said, it starts with the proletariat's default position, as a class in itself. Any recognition of alienation, whether or not the worker says that it's alienation or is even familiar with the concept, is a form of consciousness as a member of the class. You're conflating aspirationalism with the ignorance of class. In fact, in a way, the "waiting to make it" is itself consciousness and awareness of being apart of the working class. Which just makes the concept redundant and not really worth pursuing in analysis, unless your aim is to place yourself above someone else in order to "teach" them.
I don't know if "line cutting" is supposed to mean something other than what I think it does? (Cutting in line, or whatever, at the lunch room?) If so, then of course not. That's not in relation to their condition of exploitation. If not, then you'll have to expand more on what you mean here.
Solutions come from the working class itself when it turns into a mode of becoming a class for itself. It's not the socialist's job to propose solutions or try to direct the worker's movement. Another note here is that there's a difference between "class consciousness" and a class for itself. If I'm bullied at school, I understand the conditions in which I stand. I'm thinking, complaining and cognizant of my condition in itself. When I choose to fight back, I'm acting for myself. But at no point did my consciousness lack because of my lack of fighting back or my not knowing what I could do to stop the bullying, even if it ended up with my conclusion that "maybe I should just switch schools." The same concept applies here: by being a class in itself, consciousness is achieved by default. Being a class for itself is just the class being ready to organize on the premise of their own liberation after suffering abuse.
The line "But we, as Marxists" is part of this problem. That by virtue of being Marxists, it assumes that we actually know all the ins and outs of the capitalist system, and that we need to be self-appointed teachers to those who experience alienation.
No one can do that except for the working class itself.
Sun Jan 29, 2017 6:47 pm
Sun Jan 29, 2017 7:46 pm
Sun Jan 29, 2017 10:37 pm