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Marx's "First Thesis" on Feuerbach Author(s): S. Diamond and D. J. Struik Reviewed work(s): Source: Science & Society, Vol. 1, No. 4 (Summer, 1937), pp. 539-550 Published by: Guilford Press Stable URL: . Accessed: 15/03/2013 07:10
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is that the The chief defect of all previous materialism including Feuerbach's form of the the in or as conception."According German-English dictionary existence" that or "material which is mean either"sensitive faculty" Marx in the latter is used so it sense. (Zürich p. to be attached it may to the Muret-Sanders ness. p.not through thought for itself. form of human attitude. 15 Mar 2013 07:10:43 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .was developed by idealism . in tne preceding paragraph Hook writes: "The real significanceof Marx's criticism of Feuerbach has not been majorityof his zealous and 'orthodox' disciples. Without is The chief defect of all hithertoexisting materialism in the form is of the conceived sensuousness. in opposition to materialism. 2 Engels." of the rather stillask if thatis the meaning ambiguous has beenobscured to showthatitsreal meaning We shalltry by thismisin a negative is not Thesis and that the concerned. while practice is conceived and fixed only in its dirty-Jewish appearance. conceived is object only object. "FirstThesis.withthetheory in a recent The fulltextof theThesisappearsas follows translation.not subjectively. of the Thesis is translated sentence The first by SidneyHook in a different somewhat way: und Winterthur. i "Only through the senses is an object given in the true sense. he regards the theoretical attitude as the only genuinely in the Essence of Christianity.that of Feuerbach included . derZukunft derPhilosophie 1843). reality. Feuerbach wants sensuous objects. Grundsätze This content downloaded on Fri. Ludwig Feuerbach (New York. 273 1. 58.indeed. of knowledge. . practice.* such. not subjectively. sensed.COMMUNICATIONS MARX'S "FIRST THESIS" ON FEUERBACH beenread as a statehas generally Marx's"First Thesis"on Feuerbach Marx'sviewthatthe and as indicating of knowledge. of theoriginal: theambiguity retains which happened that the active side. From Hegel to Marx (New York." Feuerbach. 3 Hook. reality. idealism does not know real sensuous activityas from the thought-objects. really differentiated but he does not conceive human activityitselfas activitythrough objects. of course.activity. thatwhat the Thesis reallyaffirms activity. p. of cognition questioning process of cognition.The object identical with or given by thinkingis only a thought. Hence he does not grasp the significanceof "revolutionary. 73. Thus it but not as humansensuousactivity. Consequently. except interpretation. on thetheory ment the fact not passive. contemplation."of practical2 critical. 1934). one may viewof theprocess theMarxian thatthisis.but only abstractly. and secondary way. 3 but not as human sensoryactivity. 193b). in effect. since.We shall show that by that reality is human is. adequately grasped by the overwhelming 539 of theThesisis themeaning in interpretation The first arising problem translated above as "sensuousto the wordSinnlichkeit. the that only object or object. practice. .sensibility.

Hook's of translation is witha fundamental faulty problem interpretation. fact. 12. We are. not the undeniable fact that sensation precedes thought. p.It will be recalledthatthe "Theses deal of elaboration of 1845. Osnovnye VoprosyMarksizma (1908). the does not separatethe mind from 4 to what extent is in active man. in a it. 2745 Plekhanov.a subjective is an activity ofcognition "thattheprocess practice" witha matter but not confronted of translation. "La filosofia del Feuerbach e le critichedel Marx. « Mondolfo. (Printed separately." Hook again speaks with scorn of "orthodox should there be translated Marxists"who have not perceived that bürgerlicheGesellschaft . but Marx says that our ego cognizes an object by reacting upon it. There rather with connection in is.but the fact that man is led to thought mainly by sensations which he experiencesin the course of his own action on the outer world. 627. Towards the Understandingof Karl Marx.. Dialectics (New York." Cultura Filosófica. since Marx.. p. therefore. s Ibid. Here as well as in other importantworks of Marx the very language used will mislead the reader unacquainted with the technical jargon of those whom Marx criticized. the correcttranslationhad been published in the interim 4 Ibid. 1909. 1929). 1936). March-June. 14.. R.) 7 Jackson.Prato. Feuerbach. Engels. in preparation werewritten on Feuerbach" byMarxin theSpring of with Die Deutsche forthe writing.nevertheless as follows: passage This content downloaded on Moscow.Mondolfo and into Italian as sensibilità(Hook's "sensibility") lated Sinnlichkeit withthe theory discussed concerned the "FirstThesis" as beingentirely of knowledge. p. into the withthistranslation. translation who made a correct Plekhanov. body knowing." in harmony the passagehas usuallybeen interpreted Undoubtedly. Feuerbach emphasizes the view that our ego cognizes an object solely by exposing itself to the action of that object. 15 Mar 2013 07:10:43 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . what was at issue was. . 56. pp. 29. p.s SCIENCE AND SOCIETY 54° He declares thatthepassage"raisesthequestion themind to whatextent . translated as Fundamental Problems of Marxism (New York. together Ideologie. traditional with the consistent misinterpretation. and that .T. merely of the"FirstThesis"has been thatthefact of thisreading One result thatthisThesisactually did receive a good has apparently goneunnoticed at Marx'shands. discussing the "Ninth Thesis.." Later.transIn almostthe sameyearwhenPlekhanov wrotethis. A.or. lengthy except passage They have failed to understand Marx because to most of them the philosophy of Feuerbach has been a sealed book. took a verysimilarview when he explainedthe Russian. p.. For him.but he neglects to mention that he himself "civil society" and not "bourgeois society" made this error in his earlier book.6 "that mustbe read as meaning out that"sensuousness" Jackson points 7 to but be which is apprehended senses" seems the referring obviously by thatMarx recognizes of theThesiswhenhe declares to the first sentence 8 .Even with that work Feuerbach was nevercomof the section dealing though should Marx's notes that never obvious be studied it is fragmentary pleted.

withillustrations thatmakeits meaning Since unmistakable. as will be shown. when things are understood in this way.see notes io and 12. developed its industryand its commerce further. 15 Mar 2013 07:10:43 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions ." that is through the "spectacles. by industryand commerce."Furthermore.each of which stood on the shoulders of that which preceded it. but to make visible. that important * Feuerbach's erroris not that he subordinateswhat lies directlyat hand. that which lies directlyat hand. that is objective. the thoughtless." i3 and a higher contemplationthat sees the "true essence" of things. the real things.then crossed out.then crossed out.of science in general. and therefore at a given time that it was provided for Feuerbach's "sensuous certainty..n he necessarily strikes against things that contradicthis consciousnessand his feelings. we reproduce it hereat length. is therefore not . for justification of this translation. is a purely scholasticquestion. i.] 9 At this point the word "Sinnlichkeit"was written. and replaced by "sinnliche Welt" i2 Here "sensuous world" is our translationfor the word "Sinnlichkeit". that which is invisible to the common eye. including most corrections. The passage from"he says" to "the German" was writtenin by Marx. as they really are and have really happened." 10 in the firstcase. every profound philosophical problem resolvesitselfquite simplyinto a matterof empirical fact. the "Second Thesis": "The dispute over the reality or non-realityof thinking which is isolated frompractice.that which is understood of itself. is "What lies directlyat hand" is translatedfor "das auf platter Hand liegende" The occurrenceof this phrase with quotation marks in the text permits us to determine the exact passage in Feuerbach which Marx and Engels had in mind. thispassageis not (to our knowledge) available in English. sensuous contemplation (Anschauung) follows rather after ideation (Vorstellung) and phantasy.**For example. Even the objects of the simplest "sensuous certainty"are provided for him only by social development. The cherry tree. but the product of industry and of the status of society. He does not see that the sensuous world surrounding him is not something given from all eternity." "Man" is really "the German. We ask the readerto followour footnotes carefully.Immediate.a profane contemplation that sees only "what lies directly at hand. and this in the sense that it is an historical product. and replaced by io The manuscriptas a whole. ii At this point the word "Natur" was written. he must then take refuge in a double contemplation. COMMUNICATIONS Feuerbach's "understanding" of the sensuous world» is limited on the one hand to mere contemplation of it.but that in the last analysis he cannot square himselfwith the sensuous world12 except by viewing it with the "eyes.p.that disturb the harmony he has assumed to exist among all the parts of the sensuous world.even more clearly below. the objects and thoughtsinto ideas.not to change to get away fromthe sensuous.but to come to them.* In order to get these out of the way. and especially between man and nature." This content downloaded on Fri. then. the sensuous almost all fruittrees. and on the other hand to mere sensation. the result of the activityof a whole series of generations.and modified its social organization in accordance with the changed requirements. 69: "The sensuous is not immediate in the sense that it is the profane. he says "Man" instead of "real historical men." "sinnliche Welt.always the same.e. Man's firstcontemplation is itself only the contemplation of his ideas and phantasy. to the sensuous reality that is determined by more exact investigationof the sensuous fact." 14 Cf.was transplantedto our part of the world by commerce it is only through this action of a given society only a few centuriesago." of the philosopherez [Note in original text. It occurs in the Philosophie der Zukunft.54 1 in Die Deutsche in which theprincipal Thesis" Ideologie pointofthe"First is presented. in the contemplation of the sensuous world. is in Engels* handwriting. The task of philosophy.

a few abnormal cases excepted. if it were interrupted even for a single year. as well as its material. . he is forced to overworked. he sees a lot of scrofulous. p. through the sensuous activity of men. do existence and nature (Sein and Wesen) fall apart. Only in human life." This content downloaded on Fri. i. the foundation of the entire sensuous world. . Gesamtausgabe. p. and weaving-loomswere to be seen. . . 15 Mar 2013 07:10:43 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . capacity for contemplation. Engels' note to Marx. you are quite content to be a doorkeeper in a coal mine at seven years of age. 16Marx-Engels Gesamtausgabe. falls apart by loftyworks" about "substance" and "self-consciousness" itselfwith the insight that the famous "unity of man and nature" has always existed in form according to the lesser or and in every period has existed in a different industry. but where would science be without industryand commerce?Even this "pure" science receives its purpose.542 SCIENCE AND SOCIETY question about the relation of man to nature . republished in Moscow. To such an extent is this activity. is also your nature. 540.Feuerbach talks particularlyabout the perceptions of the natural sciences. 1927. 1932). the articulationof the various social classes. Bd. edited by Hermann Duncker (Berlin. Cf. . he and these knows no other "human relation" "of man to man" than love and friendship. . . where a hundred years ago Feuerbach sees in Manchester only factories.) He then comments:"A fine eulogy on the status quo. and therefore. and since that is your existence.he is an object for himself as a sensory object. is but (apart from the fact that he sees him only as a "sensuous object" and not as "sensuous activity"). that is my existence. for example. 17The connection between the last sentence of this passage and the last sentence of the "First Thesis" has already been pointed out in a German edition of Ludwig Feuerbach. 32-34.e.. i.and does not take men in their given social relationships." thus falling back into idealism at just the point where the communist materialist sees and at the same time the conditionsfor a reorganizationof industryas well the necessity " as of the social structure. as it exists today. only through industryand trade. and machines. 47. To be sure. 5. 5. just development greater the development of his productive forces on a correspondingbasis. this production. Unnatural cases." (Philosophie der Zukunft.this constant sensuous working and creating. is "Not only 'external* things are objects of the senses. but remains with the abstraction"Man". in idealized form.1«. he would verysoon be missinghis veryexistence. Feuerbach has the great advantage over the "pure" materialiststhat he understandsthat man also is a "sensuous object". themselvesdetermine the distribution. consumptivesufferers take refuge in "the loftier contemplation" and the ideal "equivalence in the species.because he confines himselfhere also to men. Industry and trade.mentioningsecrets which are disclosed only to the eye of the physicistand the chemist. viduals that compose it. and then only in abnormal. from hunger in place of healthy men. to stay fourteen hours alone in the dark. An appendix in this volume gives the variata.Abt. unfortunate cases. thus he manages to recognize "the real. where at the time of Augustus he would have found nothing but vineyardsand the villas of the Roman capitalists. or he discoversin the Roman only spinning-wheels campagna nothing but cattle pastures and swamps. production and the exchange of the necessitiesof life. he never arrives at the really existing. bodily men" only in sensation. Abteilung i. Feuerbach would not only discover an enormous change in the natural world. . out of which all the "unfathomably have taken rise. on which we have drawn for notes 10 and 12. Engels quotes the passage in which Feuerbach says: "Whatever my nature is. He gives no criticismof present living conditions. Man knows himself only . as man's the same of "struggle" with nature. He never reaches an understandingof the sensuous world as the total living sensuous activityof the indiwhen. that.p. and are in turn determinedby these as to the form in which they are carried on. . . Bd. . but he would also miss all humanityand his own indeed. under their actual living conditions. for example." Philosophie der through the senses 66 f. until industry. which have made them what they are.and thus it happens that. Zukunft.

. because the human being is appreciated only as an abstractly thinking being. and real fromthinking. its product. iß Gesamtausgabe. i.concretized itself in an object. product activity. Bd. (Still to be developed. all of which houses. factories. of man's own It is his the own "alienated work. . as a power which is independent of the producer. thismaybe put into the Usingthe terminology form that"human sensuous a partof theexternal becomes world. p. p. 19Ibid. as self-consciousness. trees.Abt. with the sensuous action. script The object which is produced by work. 531. overlooked thefactthatthisexternal as real men findit underreal historical was in large conditions. in Marx wrote: written 1844. reality independent had studied and they thesensory of men came process cognition whereby but they to knowaboutthatworld. p. his behavior toward himself as to an alien being. identifiedwith the real objective negation. consider theproblem ofman'srelation to therealexternal world(Sinnlichfrom thestandpoint ofthetheory ofknowledge are overlooking keit)solely its moreimportant that this world is of man's itself the aspect. of and achievement limitation: Hegel's appraisal This is the thought in the secondsentence whichrecurs of the Thesis thatHegel has recognized man'sactivity.. the act is only formal. product part It is a worldof streets. 5. The product of work is the work which has fixated itself. following: Your negation of the imagined object.. twomonths thenextyear. of the object as an object of consciousness." tences The last pointentered was the dealingagain withthisproblem.543 thispassagethere recurs theprincipal Throughout pointof the "First Thesis":The sensuous world is humanactivity. One wouldhaveto stretch a gooddeal to consider thisprimarily a discussion of cognition. 3. In Hegel. before the"Theseson Early probably writing Marxwrote on a page of thesamenotebook a fewbrief senFeuerbach. fields. 83. The real meaning and importance of the central idea of the "First Thesis"can bestbe appreciated its In a manuby tracing development.i8 COMMUNICATIONS Hegel "understands that work in abstraction is the self-reproduction of man. The point at issueis not whether is or but active that thosewho cognition passive. then faces it as an alien being. i. 167. practice. mines." The materialists existing had recognized of an external the existence of men. This content downloaded on Fri. however. activity" In another written the same Marx this writes manuscript during year. 20Gesamtausgabe." activity. 15 Mar 2013 07:10:43 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Bd. it is the concretizationof the work.i» of the laterdiscussion.Abt. but not the real activity. reality.) 20 activitydifferentiated out as "stillto be developed" WhatMarxpoints of course corresponds of all hitherto to "thechief defect materialism.

in the Essenceof Christianity Essence of the This mention of appearance.1903).in fact. p." form onlyin itsdirty-Jewish had a great thatthiswork withEngels'statement of Christianity. 237." problem. authors from the borrowed following phrases madebyFeuerbach: statements. bearing there are frequent Die Deutsche indeedthroughout playsupon Ideologie.Marx has chiefly to understand der Zukunft.. because in it my is a dirtyviewpoint. p. it does containthe veryheartand core of about in learning thatmanis active dialectic It doesnotassert materialism. is the supreme principle Utility.while for the real Communists thingis to overturn situation. onlywantsto evokea correct the existing the important fact. we mustof courseturnto the workmenof thissentence the meaning the "Theses.24 theform stainedby egoism. 23 of Judaism. profit. 80. Das Wesen des Christentums (Stuttgart. 15 Mar 2013 07:10:43 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . . together belief into the erroneous has misledmanyauthors on Marx. 22LudwigFeuerbach.22 influence willhavenoticed thatthe"Theses"arebasedprimarily uponit." sentence I wishto add a noteabout the fourth on Marx's anti-Semitism as evidenceof whichhas oftenbeen regarded Marx statesthat In thissentence manyreaders. Their prin. of the with man'sphysical theworld.135z±Ibid.The reader then Feuerbach's in mind passagesfrom that. of the "FirstThesis. Sämmtliche Werke. p. thatif the "FirstThesis" does not contain We can say in summary Marx'sviewson cognition. mostrecent work.Marx'sphrase describing to inferior theory. represent Feuerof defect the chief than his knowing..and has troubled and fixed is conceived . find There we the under fire.544 SCIENCE AND SOCIETY about an existing consciousness liketheothertheoreticians. is the practical of religion. the Philosophie However. diamond 21Ibid.. . but it identifies process hisactivity is another his action to of man's thinking toricalchange.theirGod. vi.2i more Man's doingis infinitely theconcretization ofhuman work. 31.Mehring: Karl Marx (New to theEssenceof Christianity any greatinfluence York. part. 137. And. as something toward attitude practice. practice ". s. . . The practicalviewpoint a thingis onlyformyown sake. untilthe present theirpeculiarcharacter have maintained The Jews day. Mehring overMarx. and egoismprecisely in of the world principle ciple. therefore. P. This content downloaded on Fri."and in mindthe factthatthroughout tionedin it. 23Feuerbach.egoism.The relation raisedbyMarxin the"SecondThesis. has pointedout thatEngelserredby ascribing p. 1935). important bach'sphilosophy so muchwrapped is thathe remains up in theproblem of cognition: Feuerbach.25 toward attitude notation Feuerbach's concise is onlya very Thus. p. 28. 25Ibid.

" science and society. No.not to speak of the dreaded Russophilia which the circumstances of Lenin's invoke. 2 F.Tolstoy. and nineteenthcenturiesis characterized by the contentionthat real explanationsare alwaysof a quantitativecharacter. The very existenceof science and society shows how deeply American Marxistsappreciate the need of rooting Marxism in American soil.English empiricismhas never gone to the extremesreached by continental rationalism.COMMUNICATIONS A REPLY TO PROFESSOR HOGBEN 545 1 "Our Social Heritage. He statesthreeobjections: (1) My articlereveals"obsessionalGermanophilia.never disbe but handmaids. literature."ConcerningMathematics. In due time and place we may as well expect obsessionalGallophilia and Anglophilia. and the gap betweenquality and quantity.3 thesesystems But Hogben is wrongin regardto the otherpoints. i. a "On closer inspectionwe find that this purely mathematicalpoint of view. 1. VI. Advancementof Learning. for example. Book 111. as we know. 137-152. belong to one national culture. 99). Bacon. as Hegel did. Bacon. In accusingme of "obsessionalGermanophilia. in which Quantity." {Encyclopadie." Let me begin by sayingthat Hogben's third objection is not without foundation. ."Hogben should remember that Marxism originatedin the worksof two Germans. Daressentially philosophy This content downloaded on Fri. But we emphatically science and deny that the great classicsof art.In a paper dealing with philosophical subjects.1 Professor Lancelot Hogben includessome criticisms of my article.Hegel." issue which appeared in the first this of journal. is identifiedwith the Idea no other than that of materialism.we may therefore reasonablyexpect some referenceto German authors." (2) It statesthat"the materialism eighteenth typicalof the seventeenth.French socialism and English economics. pp." (3) It states that "Hegel was the first great philosopherto recognize the relativecharacter of quantityfetishism.. special reference In a recentarticle.this definitestep in the developmentof the logical Idea. protested against the claims to certainty and logic. 2. . "which ought to advanced by mathematics so far as I know. of in such a that the the category quantity way exaggerated developed and the notable weaknessesof rôle it played in the old materialist systems wereseen to be logicallyconnected. Hegel has to French materialismof the eighteenthcentury."2 But English philosophy. necessarily nationality This does not mean that Hogben is wrong when he writes that we must seriouslydeal with the psychologicalproblem in national cultures. on German philosophy. Hegel consciously cussed the problemas thoroughly bridged showed theirrelativecharacter. 15 Mar 2013 07:10:43 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .It was based.Ch.

theirmathematical the old philosophers went approachto materialism further evenphysics.In myarticle to numbers in science medicine to all this. carbonand lightning Naturalscience shoesand guns.theWebbs. "quantity-fetishism" is thesolescientific Fromthisnaivestarting mathematics instrument. p.which however. in Marxist which as we haveseen. particular Hogbenknows becauseof an "obsessional Hegelophobia." of To showthe absurdity of myclaim that"the materialism typical the seventeenth.Note zum Anti-Dühring.thinking und Natur.commodities. of a indicative nations.He might James.machines.elements. and seek differences. Diderot. Most in "materialist of this list not the scientists are philosoJames and all those of Lamettrie. it proceeds to stripmatter of its different only qualitiesand to consider as fundamental whichcan be treated In thoseproperties mathematically. I to still maintain that for from materialist my ple. and radio. have added the Lyell.Darwinand Haeckel.54^ SCIENCE AND SOCIETY of all win. insight.Thus bothbrains waves. This content downloaded on Fri. Dialektik *F. Quantity. finds an imiron. biology. 473 of the 1935edition.I contrast approach to theold definition has to return of mathematics to mathematics as the and space.withtheexception phers. Rembrandt and Euclid are the property Confucius. are guilty who are. alongthesameroad and reduced chemistry. despitethe factthattheirworkhas peculiarities it to forget culture. this work in of task exactly performing developing portant quantitative is an important therefore and quantity element in natural science. Engels. characteristics. its importance sciences increases. 15 Mar 2013 07:10:43 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .Franklin." ofunduly is an especially clearexamofcourse. essentially goesback. and psychology and space. this. steamers and autos. broadly true. the statement and it has changed is. is characterized and nineteenth centuries by eighteenth charthe contention thatreal explanations are alwaysof a quantitative refers to Mill. Hobbes." Bacon.electricity.whoare aboutas materialistic Archbishop was. Hobbes. and in themoreabstract Materialism of it had explainedthe world the old schoolused to stop at this. but he seems of course. evolution materialism stress contention that old of materialism non-dialectical schools the My toomuchtheimportance of thecategory ofquantity is a well-known thesis to Hegel. ofmechanical intodialectical materialism." the form. qualitative whicheventually can be reducedto number crudeexternal relationships and stones arematter. a materialist and society. are onlyitsmostprominent Whenwe examine from things we ignore the pointof viewof quantity. onlythrough speaking. literature. ofnumber science does not alone consist of number and space. stressing quantity. point. Hogben Joule. colorand sounds. Lamettrie. philosophy Kepler Marx. as of Canterbury and thePope. acter. and ridiculous whotried to makematerialism "mechanism" byidentifying * In itssimplest is that belief "materialism. andspace.

fully escaped The principle Materialism passedinto Frenchraadoptedit wholesale. or our is coincident no as "thatwhich thought. out I and as and sixteenth humanism. of naturalscience. ofthese ments of nature characteristic on as the mostessential Emphasis quantity of in the of at the haditsorigin philosophies fifteenth beginnings capitalism. was explainedas chemistry.1.547 was the only it to suchabstractions. R. physics temin the a was seventeenth extension. E. 1. pointed in myarticle(p. odors. relative.Let us briefly motion ideas. of works in the in and youthful Keplerand greatsimplicity vigorand to hear and the ear to see colors. and developtouchupon the forms in the brain.but also saw in extension form mathematical ofa body. century thetraditional Platonism of a form of tookthe against struggle originally in full forth blossoms then of The philosophy quantity Aristotelianism. "Justas the eye was made not whatever to mind made so was the human understand.but quantity. immutable fluctuating subjective. withrnaterialism. you beGalileo makesa sharpdistinction saysKepler. upon having dependence 7 thustaking thegeometrical withsomepartof space. of matter physical in has ideas common whose of sensations. With the growth as such in its quantitative use morequalitative elements explanations. thought. materialist either no philosopher. duction many system Spinoza. In the as mathematics. matically 6 in thesensitive residence their mere names. or idealist. and mathematical. development 5 Kepler. beingabsolutely qualities. Burtt. COMMUNICATIONS This content downloaded on Fri. 21.however. chosenot only an external even modern materialism. Opera. primary the second. the nature forhis Ethics. chemistry onlyif physiology plete. of matter attribute the body only edge. e Cf. eighteenth century body a nineteenth in function of the a the stomach. p. Galileo.5 please. tionalism." thefirst and secondary tween objective. materialism saw as its task the reduction had to materialism to mathematics. and those analysis chemistry physiology. 93). 15 Mar 2013 07:10:43 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . per. as physics." coextended aspect rea mathematical. and employed into its definition. comthe considered It in physics. sounds. else than colorswere"nothing reducible tastes. The Metaphysical Foundations of Modern Physical Science (1932). knowledge a Hobbes defined was extension. and mechanics as mechanics. body. 75-837 Works. motions. p. 102. Ed. century. Frisch. all creative influenced This wayof thinking thought itsconsequences." solely holding of thatcentury. As long as mathematics by reducing of the world maturescience. knowlwasmathematical exactscientific ForDescartes. PP. but was the necessary This was not due to "mathematical arrogance" of a factwhichnobody these of thetechnical outcome days. century. The real worldwas forhim theworldof bodiesin matheand variable.

moralist contemporary good s Mathematicsfor the Million (New York. and thecondition ofnatural drove him terms science intoa mechanical in theseventeenth either directly. of mechanical materialism. Materialism. eventually man to a watch. however. chemistry. 15 Mar 2013 07:10:43 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .all remains century Togetherwith to direct the he ancestors of modern mabelongs Spinoza. .8 admirable in his recent explained It is notan accident mathewere thatso many of those days philosophers to be a good philosopher. therefore. right). as did Berkeley. Descartes.overcame.Diderot. Leibnitz materialists. empiricists. thedominie produced an example ofmechanical materialism takenoverbyreligion. orvia physiology. way. Lamettrie whichis compares thatof a physician. to mechanics. But themostpowerful and relentless criticism camefrom of thedevelopment thescience of physics. nature. ments and experiences ofbodiesthanextension. book. this he is camefrom sensualism and empiricism out. or in the We witnessé eighteenth century.however. The interest in social and political also gavenewmaterial matters forthought.I remember own religious instruction thisparableof the clock. he explains." did. who meetmaterialism authors. thegrowth itself. of physiology. 1937). physics chemistry it also in Boyleand other suchas Hartley. reduceall reality. This content downloaded on Fri. Boyle. philosophical of society His philosophy terialism. forman'sintellectual faculties hiddenmotioninsidehis in his masterful so far as the eighteenth body. better manifest thenature in When knowledge is reachedthrough it comesprimarily the senses. in form. good matheof but becamethe symbol character of the supposed mechanistic matics. D'Holbach findsthe reason in an internal. this The materialist. either matter with by endowing as Leibnitz or foundations of the "force. morethanhalfway. the world. and also fromthe internaldevelopment of mathematics.SCIENCE AND SOCIETY 54^ has better thanHogbenhimself. themany had.compared idealists how even in my their worldto a clock. Locke. Hogbenpoints (where told sentiGassendi Descartes that different arts. by attacking mathematics. and it There was a reaction in the new theory of the perioditself. century interpretation. through began to emancipate from itself its old schemes. qualitative interprets knowledge ofproperties ofmatter. is due to his diet of rare and bloodymeat. allowed.Idealismprotested. of biology.and his materialism. itsbestrepresentatives. youhad to be a good mathematician The clockwas perhapsthe mostcharacteristic of the period: instrument a simplemechanical whichnot only inspired mechanism. of chemistry. anatomy. weaknesses of and his belief that no one could a be doctrines. maticians. without to losingits tendency if onlyultimately. looksforthechanges and differences of man'sthought in the physics of the body.The snobbery of the Briton. Theretheprocess ofsocialand ethical behavior to lawsof goesalongthepathofa reduction which turn out to be lawsofmechanics.

A most extremeexpressionot this quantity-tetishism found in an article by W. in questions relating and ethicsregularly made conmaterialism mechanical In self-defense. cessions especially At theboundary linesbetween nature. in the Feuerbach.however. of use mathematics a the as basis This is exemplified flavor. whousedtheweakpoints oftheidealists. Luppol. every visual image of an atom is necessarily wrong. would ever be able to find out what light is. ofmechanism. philosophy especially to the that the leads link in chain a last youngHegelian. of social scienceand ethics.Sitz. Cf.It only extracts from it in increasing degree. Heisenberg. der Akad. Diderot (Paris. of butalsoin thephilosophy present than now find are ever.their geometrical qualities. materialism. From modern optics no man. evenwenta step century. in on theuse ofmathematical evenLaplacelikedto speculate probabilities a tribunal. has find that we in Germany. as an overemphasison one aspect of nature. "old-fashioned."Agnosticism no qualities." thistype from resulted a it into turned of quantity and thecontradiction haunting ghost worship scientists. criticism especially to attack materialism itself. bringing of are motions in whichthoughts a kind of physiological materialism. All qualities of bodies now appear as deduced. I.. 307. With science growing and quality.Reduction The physiologist bestmindsof the periodto be a kind of hocus-pocus.10 ofthenatural dreams thespeculative able to cope withthe was neverfully Mechanical indeed. is to be 10This ghost still walks. Heisenberg confineshimselfto the expressionof his dismay concerningthis divorce of natural science fromnature. (1872)that"there was led (1880) to his seven"worldriddles. idealistic by 9 Oeuvres. We idealism and materialism mechanical vaguer in some schools of an modern evenof thecrudest kind. of the to many seemed to quantity of quality had gonetoo far. quantity-fetishism. Condorcet. pp.that is. sounded This. p. of quantity of the relations a morebalancedunderstanding and a a materialist of nature. K.p. without to mechanical beinga naturalistwas a concession dominated of to show how the idea could be Manyexamples given quantity and D'Alembert the leadingmindsof the time. dialectics ofthenineteenth materialism to thevulgar concessions andin hisoccasional which of brand In this backward. 85 (1933). in the fields to idealism. born blind. flourishes quantity-fetishism principally constructed Moleschott of retinue deductions. are in reality who proclaimed Emildu Bois Reymond. Diderot. The here shows how natural science has more and more abandoned the task of bringphysicist ing life into sense-phenomena. its formal mathematicalside. To us it means the final exposure of quantity worship as a fetish. In modern atomic theorythe atoms lose their last property.represents he neversurpassed of Marx and Engels. in of the outcome judgments determining could achieve materialism in size and content.Essentially. matter. 29-40.COMMUNICATIONS 549 9 materialism. This content downloaded on Fri." became Materialism ofmaterialism. and matter to mind.For example. 1936). materialism. 322. 11. itsentire returned. Leipzig. 15 Mar 2013 07:10:43 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Science thedeathknellof theold materialism.

the mostimportant movement of liberalphilosophy of the present day.and the coofdistinguished scientists in different countries has already been operation of the sciences. sound as if he has ignoredthe development of thought since the time of Keplerand Galileo: "The process of eliminating the qualitiesis the ofall progress nucleus toward Final theexplaining sciences. STRUIK LOGICAL POSITIVISM AND THE UNITY OF SCIENCE Otto Neurath. Congress for the Unityof Scienceat HarvardUniversity in 1939. pp." thequantitative understanding through There is verylittlesciencein history: "Historical lack inner judgments connection in a highdegree. never understood with suchperfection thatthey can be fully deduced from thecircumstances. into that same empiri o-cri ti cism of Avenarius and Mach which Leninwarned in 1908. two The first in fact. The unity whichthismovement is to envisages. is about to be realized. understanding ofqualities is onlyposible method. thatall real explanations of a quanare always Thus. lackcommon elements. Vol.physicists. of Science.manynew nomenat certain of quite the opposite thecultivation stages 11Allgemeine 2nd ed. J. D. enlisted. 2." It is through materialists thatwe have learnedto transcend Hegel and the dialectical thisstageof materialist theory. April. (Berlin. resp. 15 Mar 2013 07:10:43 AM All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .263. No. butvery Historical facts are poorin Erkenntnisse. in particular. been an ideal of theViennaCircle.SCIENCE AND SOCIETY 55° forlogicalpositivism.11 The logicof thisreasoning leadsSchlick intoidealism. 4. the contention titative whichHogbenregards as sheer"rubbish/* liveson in good. Schlick. But Hogben is rightwhen he refers to it as "rubbish.72. Witness statements which like thoseof M. of solution. involve revolutionary though guage may . . thosewhichpermit So far. against. These disciplines they arevery richin material. be effected a unification of the of the sciences. 1 Unified Scienceand its Encyclopaedia. thatis.1925). 258. anhas recently x that the "International nounced of is Science well Movement" Unity underwayand thatan Encyclopaedia whichhas so long of theSciences. Philosophy 1937- This content downloaded on Fri. A common lanis a still its achievement exclude ofvarious and psychologists biologists departments and in the solution of the real problems cooperate metaphysical problems. Erkenntnisslehre. It is mainly by language construction of a that the common would enable scientists thought language . are to appearin timefortheFifth International volumes. one of the leadinglogical positivists.