The Domestication of Critical Theory

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9781783484317: The Domestication of Critical Theory

A critique of contemporary critical theory that traces transformative shifts in the discipline during the twentieth century and argues for a reformulation of critical theory in order to ensure the legacy of its political project.

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About the Author:

Michael J. Thompson is Associate Professor of Political Science at William Paterson University. He is the author of The Republican Reinvention of Radicalism (forthcoming), The Perversion of Subjectivity: Toward a Critical Theory of Consciousness (forthcoming) and The Politics of Inequality (2007). His many edited volumes include The Palgrave Handbook of Critical Theory (forthcoming) and Georg Lukács Reconsidered: Critical Essays on Politics, Philosophy, and Aesthetics (2011).

Review:

Michael J. Thompson’s trenchant critique of the later 20th century linguistic turn in critical theory recovers its Hegelian-Marxian and Weberian roots and revives its critique of capitalism. Thompson’s timely, lucidly argued reconstruction of the tradition provides vital analytical resources for illuminating immanent contradictions of the neoliberal regime and envisioning afresh progressive or emancipatory alternatives. (Robert J. Antonio, Professor of Sociology, The University of Kansas)

This is an important book which should be of interest to historians of sociology, social theorists, and critical theorists in particular... In short, The Domestication of Critical Theory is pathbreaking and, more critical theorists should follow that path to find out how far it will take them. (British Journal of Sociology)

Michael Thompson’s book is one of the most ambitious criticisms of the prevailing understanding of critical theory... to be read as (a) very good study in the context of traditional Marxism to criticise the later Frankfurt school. (Political Studies Review)

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Book Description Rowman Littlefield International, United Kingdom, 2016. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Critical theory was one of the most vigorous and insightful intellectual traditions of the twentieth-century. At its core was a critique of culture and consciousness tied to instrumental rationality and capitalist economic life. Yet, Michael J. Thompson argues in this highly original book that this once critical tradition has been domesticated - it no longer offers a philosophically convincing nor politically viable form of social critique. Thompson demonstrates that critical theory has surrendered its concerns with domination, alienation, and the pathologies of capitalist modernity and shifted its focus toward neo-Idealist themes. This new critical theory has turned its back on the insights of the classical critical theorists. Thompson traces how this shift occurred and how we can reclaim critique in an age of conformism, apathy, and depoliticization. He goes on to defend the different aspects of critical theory that can be used to reformulate social critique, one that must be brought into a dialogue with contemporary political, social and moral philosophy that protects the lasting and crucial legacy of critical theory as an emancipatory political project. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9781783484317

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Book Description Rowman Littlefield International, United Kingdom, 2016. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Critical theory was one of the most vigorous and insightful intellectual traditions of the twentieth-century. At its core was a critique of culture and consciousness tied to instrumental rationality and capitalist economic life. Yet, Michael J. Thompson argues in this highly original book that this once critical tradition has been domesticated - it no longer offers a philosophically convincing nor politically viable form of social critique. Thompson demonstrates that critical theory has surrendered its concerns with domination, alienation, and the pathologies of capitalist modernity and shifted its focus toward neo-Idealist themes. This new critical theory has turned its back on the insights of the classical critical theorists. Thompson traces how this shift occurred and how we can reclaim critique in an age of conformism, apathy, and depoliticization. He goes on to defend the different aspects of critical theory that can be used to reformulate social critique, one that must be brought into a dialogue with contemporary political, social and moral philosophy that protects the lasting and crucial legacy of critical theory as an emancipatory political project. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9781783484317

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