Individualism (was: Re: Survivor!)

Charles Brown CharlesB at
Tue Oct 24 11:01:34 PDT 2000

>>> gcf at 10/24/00 12:42PM >>>

The sort of "individualism" referred to above is a _simulacrum_ of individuality, produced and marketed precisely because industrial society tends to deprive most of its constituents of both individuality _and_ community in the service of mass production, consumption and political control.

Actually, among human beings and, I think, most primates, individuality and community are interdependent; one might even say two facets of the same organization of life. The consciousness and self-consciousness of the individual are supported by a complex web of social relationships in which each individual is a unique and valued member. To the extent that one deprives individuals of their individuality one amputates their ability to form communities. Hence the atomization of society which leads to the need for the simulacrum of individuality. This is one of the major problems of the system of collectivization we call capitalism.

One would expect that those who felt this deprivation most keenly would be the first to fetishize the simulacra of individuality in one guise or another -- if not "This Bud's for you" then cults of personality.


CB: Marx and Engels do not reject the notion of individuals. They claim that communism will allow a fuller and more all around development of individuals.

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