Alabama and Tibet (?)

alec ramsdell a_ramsdell at
Thu Jul 9 08:06:24 PDT 1998

>Date: Wed, 8 Jul 1998 23:04:22 -0400 (EDT)
>From: Mathew Forstater <forstate at>

>I think what we are getting into here are the very important questions
>about what terms like "material", "social", "ideological" and even
>"real" mean and what their relations are.
>My views on these issues have been influenced by Raymond Williams, if
>helps to give some indication of my own take. I think a lot of
>arise from dichotomous treatments of physical/social, real/ideal,
>material/ideology, etc.

Yes, these are slippery questions and relationships. For grounding I often invariably come back to someone like Voloshinov, and think about how a sign is a "material" thing, and how ideology often operates in what we say whether we like it or not. Then I think of the Marxist bent in the so-called language poets (Ron Silliman, Charles Bernstein, mostly white guys), and deconstructionism, which I believe offers some good cognitive tools for approaching questions of the operation of ideology. Though it's none too helpful to be challenging the eptistemological grounding of the "fact" (maybe in an op-ed piece?).


______________________________________________________ Get Your Private, Free Email at

More information about the lbo-talk mailing list