Part 2. Antonio Gramsci: the theory of hegemony
The classic version of the Marxist paradigm, as it is known, was guided to the opening of the mechanisms of economic exploitation in capitalist society. Do not forget that the living conditions of the lower strata of the population and especially the proletariat in the West, the Marx really was horrific: the workers eked out a living in poverty, worked 12-16 hours a day without holidays, sick, and was widely used child labor, sometimes almost 5-8 year olds.
There were no trade unions, which would protect the proletariat from arbitrary hosts, the structures of the social sector — health clinics, kindergartens. In the working-class neighborhoods dominated by illness, alcoholism, rampant child mortality. And it's still the living conditions of the poor people who were "lucky" because they got what no, and the work that we talk about the crowds of unemployed vagrants, impoverished peasants and artisans. We add that the heavy, unbearable fate of the Western proletarians of the 19th century, in general, described with unconcealed indignation not only Marxist authors — although today's Russian propagandists uncontrolled market and would not hurt to read them, especially Engels' book on the situation of the working class in England — but classics of English and European literature, for example, Dickens.
On the other hand, even modern Western economists from among the apologists of bourgeois society, extremely highly of the Marxist analysis of the mechanism of capitalist production. Marx, indeed, succeeded brilliantly show how the machine works and the capitalist economy, and what is the "secret" of capitalist exploitation, which, in contrast to, for example, feudal exploitation, is not immediately visible, in other words, to solve the mystery of surplus value by which bourgeois proletarian deprives them well-earned wealth. Much has been done by the classics of Marxism and to expose the propaganda of the bourgeois democrats passages of universal equality, the rights of the citizen, the impact of society on the government — after all it is with the presence of the wealth of some and poverty for others, in the omnipotence of the monopolies and the biased media and corrupt government officials, in short in terms of the classical capitalist democracy becomes an empty phrase. In many ways, Marxism and became a theoretical strength, which has adopted the Western labor movement, and it is thanks to him that it was able to turn his shanty protest organized resistance to capitalist exploitation, which greatly weakened the "clutches" of the economic pressure on the workers and the underclass. All this — and breaks the capitalists, frightened the international communist and social democratic movement and the mass demonstrations of trade unions, as well as the growth of technology and the opening of new markets, including the robbery by the capitalists of the colonies, gradually made the situation of the workers in the West, more and more tolerable (though crises , suddenly turns into thousands and thousands of poor people still raged there until the second half of the 20th century — think of the American "Great Depression"). Thus, the economic critique of capitalism, which the toolkit was developed classical Marxism, became to some extent irrelevant to the situation in the West, although it is not abolished, of course, its importance as such — the capitalists are not suddenly become a philanthropist, remembering the rules of morality, simply inhuman oppression workers in the pursuit of super-profits migrated from Europe and North America to Africa and Asia (by the way, note to those who believe in the propaganda stories about the "civilized" Western bourgeois, we can report that it continues to this day in the factories of multinational corporations "Nike" and "Adidas" in the Third World are not met the basic conditions of work, until recently, TNK "Nike" in Malaysia was used child labor. But change came the economic exploitation of other, more subtle forms of repressive control and suppression. Perhaps the first Western "leftists" who did the analysis of this phenomenon was the Italian Communist, a hero of the Resistance, who died in the Nazi torture chambers Antonio Gramsci.
To refer to this new kind of social pressure Gramsci uses the term "hegemony", borrowed them from Russian Marxism, but filled with new content. The hegemony of the bourgeoisie carried out by means of a number of institutions — schools, trade unions, political parties, associations, which subtly inspire the masses quite specific ideas to justify the domination of the bourgeois class, and representing its dominance is "natural, immutable order of things." And, as the conductor of the special advocates of such ideas, fostered by the ruling elite social group — the bourgeois intellectuals, the power of influence which is particularly serious because of the fact that it is made largely come from the people. So, the main tool of hegemony — created by the bourgeois intelligentsia and the same ideology pursued by the masses, and it can be expressed in many different forms — from direct political appeals to the hints contained in the seemingly "apolitical" works of literature or endorsed by the Ministries of the school curriculum. Regardless of this, they are all aimed at creating a certain — a profitable hegemonic mindset. With the ideology of capitalism, and managed to overcome the crisis that seemed classics of Marxism, it will soon be resolved by the proletarian revolution. Gramsci refers in this case to the political ideas of Machiavelli, who taught that the power based only on the power of bayonets, and able only to intimidate people and kill dissidents, but it seems strong, in fact, she is weak and highly unstable; same strong power, seeking to convince people in its legitimacy, necessity, and even natural, and repressive measures are used only in extreme cases.
Thus Gramsci offers a Marxist analysis of the shift from the economic basis of society on a critical analysis of the ideological and political superstructure. The Communist Party by Gramsci must become a smart staff, busy exposing all forms of bourgeois propaganda of deception. Only such "molecular blows" on the propaganda schemes to convince Gramsci, you can crush the colossus of modern capitalism. Communists and all the opposing forces of capitalism, warns Gramsci, will be a long, trench warfare with the bourgeois ideological machine, and it will look like, rather than on the preparation and implementation of a popular uprising, and methodical, long-term work of sabotage behind enemy lines.
Despite the fact that the figure of Gramsci in his lifetime, and even more so after his death became a legend, his ideas have had on Western thought is not left such an impact, he had dreamed of and that would have been expected. The theory of hegemony was not accepted by the mass workers' parties of the West, while still playing a significant role in "big politics" — by virtue of their orthodoxy, and bureaucratization. Moreover, Gramsci would have been outraged after learning that his theory soon became actively learn and use biased system of bourgeois intellectuals — in order to further confirm that hegemony, which fought against Gramsci. However, his work is still not in vain — the theme of the ideological hegemony of the bourgeoisie had a peculiar development in the western unorthodox Marxists — the so-called "new left" and grew up in the theory of "liberal totalitarianism."
Part 1. "Another West" Western intellectuals against capitalism