val (euginie) wrote in reds_united,

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marxist aesthetics part 1

in my search for some sort of look into the whole question of how culteral production works into marxist theory. ive came to realise that marx never actually sat down and wrote his ideas on the matter. (he does use art and literature as examples to illustrate some ideas in his more earlier writings)
i think a main reason that art is overlooked is becuase it cant be cateragrized materially. in looking at the world through dialectic and materialist perspective is pretty simple, but the the issue of aesthetics can be pretty grey. Marx's ideas were a philosphy and i think that when people look at things in such black and white ways it takes away from the entirety of the picture. i dont think it is possible to apprieciate marx's aethstetic ideas and graps its potential when his entire doctrine is reduced to mere economics and politics, that ignores its philosphical essence. when looking at the question of aesthetics this becomes clear. art is an exspression of the artist's inner world, and how they preseive the world around them. now when somebody agrees with a certain viewpoint, it will be reflected in their work. but alas it cant be imposed/forced onto them. now with materialsim, the world is exsplained through science. but since art reflects an individual's personal exsperiences of the world they are apart of it shows a peice of this person, despite possible leanings in viewpoints or idealologies. Marx's works have breifly talked about that, but were never clearly defined.
when the october revolution happened in russia, and the people wanted an art to reflect the new society that they have worked, and fought for this presented a problem in what is socialist art? lenin obviously had his personal taists but he thought it was exstremly important to allow artists freedom in choice of medium, theme, form and style. like how we can imfer from his writings in "materialsim and empirio-critism" (published in 1909) this freedom was essential becuase like all other things- its historically conditioned. this writing and this implication from this writing (which was dealing with science and not aesthetics but used as the model for defining what is marxists aesthetics) this notsion of art as reflection... which mainly looks as art as its cognitive function and not looking at it in any other way. the way one reflects scientifically is very differnt from artistically. before i discress, after the novemeber revolution's victory, the people wanted an art that reflected the birth of a new society. for probally the first time the issue of marxist aethstics was put to the forefront. lenin made his personal taists known, but he never alloud these taists to become the norm or allow certain artists with a particular style or theme become the dominiate norm. becuase the government didnt have a definate possition on art this left the door open to artist exsperimentation. lenin did acknolege that art does play a social and educational role, it does work in differnt ways politics. keeping in the sprirt of this view, after lenin's death the bolshevik party in its 1925 resolution on the relationship between the part and literature, stated "the class character of art in general and literature in particular is expressed in dorms indinitely more varied than. for example, in politics." in this way the party remained faithful to the marxist thesis that art is an ideological fom that exspresses class interest, with out ignoring that complex middlework, art is not a simple, direct means of exspressing those interests.
it is important to note that the gains made by marxist aaesthetics in both capitalist and commmunints countries throws out the nationalistic notions and dogmas of "what" art is and is encredibly valuable. despite so many fucking contradictions on what is marxist aesthetics in looking at the whole we can find in them the answer.
so yes, im gonna continue trying to answer this question myself. i hope this made some sort of sence..
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