By James Martin
During this new creation to Antonio Gramsci's suggestion, James Martin reconstructs the primary analytical topics of the Italian Marxist's recognized legal Notebooks : the 'organic' intellectuals, the relation among nation and civil society, and the progressive social gathering. The modern relevance of his notion 'hegemony' to the research of country legitimacy is seriously thought of and the restrictions of Gramsci's historicist Marxism to knowing social complexity are defined. The booklet should be of curiosity to undergraduates and academics within the social sciences.
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Extra resources for Gramsci's Political Analysis: A Critical Introduction
The Notebooks consist of thirty-three handwritten school exercise books. Four of these contain translation exercises that Gramsci practised whilst in prison, the other twenty-nine contain the notes and essays that we know as the 'prison writings'. The letters from prison (Gramsci, 1994a and 1994b) also contain important remarks about his study plans as well as clues to his research methods and interests. 1 All in aU, Gramsci's Notebooks add up to nearly three thousand pages. The obvious 'note' form defies the simple imposition of a formal structure and consequently the casual reader of the 'critical Intellectuals and Political Leadership 41 editions' (which reproduce the original format) may be put off by the fragmentary character of the texts.
The Bolshevik seizure of power was greeted with enthusiasm by the 'intransigent' Left and was interpreted by them as an affirmation of their hostiUty to the bourgeois state and their recommendation of a more active form of revolutionary politics. 20 Gramsci's Political Analysis For Gramsci in particular, it provided an opportunity to confront the passivity he associated with Second International Marxism and, importantly, to theorize revolution as the formation of a new kind of state. I will deal with each of these aspects below.
This issue was tackled in more depth in his 'Lyon Theses' (1926c) and his unfinished essay 'Some Aspects of the Southern Question' (1926b). In the 'Lyon Theses', Gramsci outUned the particular weaknesses of industrial capitalism in Italy. He pinpointed the importance of the founding compromise between industrial and agrarian interests and the consequent absence of a unitary ruling class (1926c: 492). This placed the industrial working class in a unique position, providing it with a 'unitary function' that the bourgeoisie was unable to fulfil.
Gramsci's Political Analysis: A Critical Introduction by James Martin