Louis Althusser

(redirected from Althusser)
Also found in: Dictionary.

Althusser, Louis


Born Oct. 16, 1918, in Algiers. French Marxist philosopher and member of the French Communist Party. Professor at the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris. Writer of essays on the history of philosophy, the theory of knowledge, and dialectical and historical materialism. (The collection, For Marx, 1965, which contains Althusser’s historical and philosophical writings; To Read “Capital,” 1965, written with J. Rancière and P. Macherey.)

Althusser treats the problems of the dialectic as logic, primarily on the basis of an analysis of the conceptual philosophic structure of Capital. He concentrates his attention on the theoretical and cognitive tasks that arise in studying the structure of integrated developing systems. He stresses the radical novelty of Marx’s method of thinking, distinguishing it sharply both from the Hegelian method (he rejects the formula “Hegel stood on his head” as the characteristic of the relationship between Marx and Hegel) and from the humanistic anthropological interpretation of Marxism. Althusser’s views are usually regarded as similar to the ideas of structuralism. Althusser and his co-workers are also elaborating a theory of knowledge (a so-called historical epistemology) and a theory of historicophilosophical method.


Lire le Capital, vol. 1–2. Paris, 1965. (With J. Rancière and P. Macherey.)
Pour Marx, 2nd ed. Paris, 1966.


References in periodicals archive ?
Des auteurs comme Frantz Fanon, Louis Althusser, John Berger, Jean Pierre Vernant, Pierre Vidal Naquet, Yve Lacoste, Yannis Ritsos, Tahar Ben Jelloun et Nazim Hikmet ont ecrit chez lui.
If Althusser and his predecessors are right, and, following Engels, "in the last instance" (9) that which happens on the level of the superstructure is constrained by the need to reproduce the real relations of class domination, (10) then the changes in speed, in the rhythm and movement of value-in-motion, (11) should illustrate a qualitative difference between the subject of our era and the subject of an era that lacked this level of concentration and centralization of capital, lacked these particular forces of production stored up and utilized in the confrontation against living-labor.
According to Althusser, it is through interpellation that an individual is constituted as a subject.
In "Ideology and Ideological State Apparatuses," Louis Althusser suggests that ideology works to mask and displace any antagonistic forces that are a challenge to the current system.
The protagonists are freelance journalists caught up in a mysterious case of murder and cannibalism, a story inspired in part by the life of Louis Pierre Althusser, a French Marxist who strangled his wife.
Anyone who knows just a bit about modern art should be able to recognize color as its alpha and omega--and that's a matter of feeling, not theory; how the effort to understand that feeling might relate to Mao or Althusser, Freud or Greenberg, is secondary.
Louis Althusser and Jacques Lacan defined this new intellectual labor as the production of a new language.
To describe that issue it is possible to draw on the traditional Marxist theory of ideology, especially as per Althusser (1994).
He examines the "ideologistes" and Napoleon, ideology-critique and ideology-theory according to Marx and Engels, the concept of ideology Ron the Second International to "Marxism-Leninism," the concept of ideology from Lukacs to the Frankfurt School, Louis Althusser's ideas on ideological state-apparatus and subjection, the period from the collapse of the Althusser School to postculturalism and postmodernism, Pierre Bourdien's field habitus and symbolic violence, ideology-critique with the hinterland of a theory of the ideological, Friederick Hayek and the ideological dispositif of neoliberalism, and the unfulfilled promise of the late Foucault and Foucaultian "governmentality studies.
He reflects on Nagarjuna in light of Hume, Althusser, and the search for the Higgs Boson, as ways to start remapping worlds which stop reifying false premises.
From Lukacs to Althusser, we find under the notion of ideology a struggle to reframe the relation between the categories of subject, consciousness, truth and representation.
In the second chapter she examines the use of Spinoza by late twentieth-century French Marxists, especially Louis Althusser.