In our discussion of the equilibrium between society and nature, we found that this equilibrium is being constantly disturbed and constantly reestablished, that there it is subject to contradictions which are constantly overcome and then set up anew, and then again overcome, and that this constitutes the fundamental course of social evolution or social decline. W e must therefore give some attention to this "internal life" of society.
In discussions as to the relative standard of social evolution, we often hear such judgments as: "the degree of social evolution is determined by the quantity of soap used"; others measure the stage of this advance by the extent of the ability to read and write; still others, by the number of newspapers; a fourth group, by the state of technical progress; a fifth group, by the stage of development of the sciences, etc. A German professor (Schulze-Gaevernitz; see his book Volkswirtschaftliche Studien aus Russland) has advanced the proposition that the stage of civilization is best indicated by the manner of constructing toilet conveniences. We find that beginning with the latter and rising to the most sublime products of the human mind, everything has been used as a standard by which to measure the stage of social development.
Where is the truth? Whose yardstick is the true yardstick? Why have there been so many different answers to this single question?
A consideration of all the above answers will show that each of them is more or less correct. Does not the use of soap increase with the growth of "culture and civilization"? It does; so does the number of newspapers, or the social technology, or science. At any given time, the social phenomena of the period are always related with each other; just what this relation is, is another question, which we shall discuss very soon. But that there is such a relation no one can doubt; that is why all of the above answers are right. Just as the age of a man may be approximately determined on the basis of the structure and hardness of his bones, or on the appearance of his face (his color, wrinkles, growth of hair, etc.), or his mode of thought, or his mode of linguistic expression, so we may also judge the stage of growth of society on the basis of a number of indications, for all these indications are connected with other indications, and with still others, etc. If we stand face to face with beautiful products of art, or complicated systems of science, we rightly declare that these things could not be produced except in a highly developed society. We should make the same remark in the presence of a rich and complicated technology, and our remark would be just as correct. The fact that the most varied social phenomena are connected, are mutually conditioned, is almost self-evident. A series of simple questions will convince the reader immediately. Was futurist poetry possible, for example, a century ago? No, it was not. Could Eskimos living on the ice have invented wireless telegraphy? Is it possible for present-day science to predict man's fate from the stars? Could Marxism have originated in the Middle Ages? It is obvious that all these things are impossible. Futurism could not have appeared one hundred years ago, because life was then calmer and quieter; futurism grew up in pavemented cities, with their noise and racket, their nervous exhaustion, in the militaristic turmoil of a dissolving bourgeois civilization. This poetry of the brazen blare could no more have grown up one hundred years ago than ivy could grow on a recently tarred roof. Eskimos living on the ice could not have invented the wireless telegraph, for they cannot even handle an ordinary telegraph instrument. Present-day science does not occupy itself with such idiosyncrasies as reading the stars, because science at its present level despises these things. Marxism could not have begun in the Middle Ages, because the proletariat was not yet in existence, and therefore there was no soil in which the Marxist theory could grow. Now we have a highly developed technology, a proletariat, a great number of newspapers, advertising on a tremendous scale, trusts, futurism, aeroplanes, the electron theory, Mr. Rockefeller's dividends, strikes of coal-miners; the Communist Party, the League of Nations, the Third International, electrification projects, armies consisting of millions, Lloyd George, Lenin, etc.; and all these things are manifestations o£ the same period, the same epoch, just as we may also regard as manifestations of another epoch (the Middle Ages) all of the following: the power of the Popes at Rome, a comparatively low level of technology, compulsory labor of peasant serfs, science in the hands of priests (scholastic philosophy), the search for the philosopher's stone (which would turn base metals into gold, etc.), the inquisition, poor roads, illiteracy even among kings, village-commons, witches, trade guilds, dog Latin (spoken and written by scholars), robber knights, etc. Lenin, Lloyd George, Krupp, these have no place in the Middle Ages. And, on the other hand, we do not expect to find on the Red Square in Moscow, a medieval tournament with knights doing each other to death for the favor of a lady's smile. "Other times, other songbirds; other songbirds, other songs." There is no doubt of the general connection between social phenomena, of the "adaptation" of certain social phenomena to others, in other words, of the existence of a certain equilibrium within society between its elements, its component parts, between the various forms of social phenomena.
Auguste Comte already stated that the various phases of social life are always adapted to each other at any period (the so called consensus). Müller-Lyer (Phasen der Kultur, München, p.344) states this even more clearly: "Any sociological function, any cultural phenomenon, for instance, art, science, manners, economy, state organization, freedom of the individual, philosophy; the social position of woman, etc., down to the use of soap, and the like, may be taken as the measure of the cultural level. And, if all the cultural phenomena should develop parallel to each other and at the same rate, it would not matter which of these criteria should be applied." One of the latest writers of the hard-pressed German bourgeoisie, Oswald Spengler (Der Untergang des Abendlandes, München, 1920, vol. i, p.8), writes: "How many people know that there is a profound relation in form between the differential calculus and the dynastic state principle of the epoch of Louis XIV, between the ancient state form of the polis (in Greece) and Euclidean Geometry, between the perspective drawing of western painting and the conquest of space by railroads, telephones, and long-range guns, between contrapuntal instrumentation in music and the economic credit system?" Spengler's formulation may be disputed, but there is no doubt of the correctness of his thought: that the most varied social phenomena are interrelated.
We defined society above as an aggregation of persons. In the broader sense, however, society also includes things. Present-day society, for instance, with its vast stone cities, its giant structures, its railroads, harbors, machines, houses, etc.; all these things are material technical "organs" of society. Any specific machine will at once Lose its significance as a machine outside of human society; it becomes merely a portion of external nature, a combination of pieces of steel, wood, etc. When a great liner sinks to the bottom, this living monster with its powerful engines that cause the whole marvelous structure of steel to vibrate, with its thousands of appliances of every possible kind, from dish-rags to wireless station, now lies at the bottom of the sea and the whole mechanism loses its social significance. Barnacles will attach themselves to its body, its wood constructions will rot in the water, crabs and other animals will live in the cabins, but the steamer ceases to be a steamer; having lost its social existence, it is excluded from society, has ceased to be a portion of society, to perform its social service, and is now merely an object - no longer a social object - like any other part of external nature which does not come in direct contact with human society. Technical devices are not merely pieces of external nature: they are extensions of society's organs; we may therefore take a broader view of society than we have thus far done; we may make it include also things, i.e., society's technical apparatus, its system of working devices. Strictly speaking, not all things are included among the means of production; some may even have a very remote relation with this production, aside from the fact that they themselves constitute products of material production: for example, books, maps, diagrams, museums, picture galleries, libraries, astronomical observatories, meteorological stations (we always speak of their "physical equipment"), laboratories, measuring instruments, telescopes and microscopes of every kind, test-tubes, retorts, etc. All these things are not directly connected with the process of material production and consequently are not a part of social technology, may not be considered among the material productive forces; nevertheless, everyone knows their function; they are not merely sections of external nature; they also have their "social existence"; they also must be included under our concept of society in its broader application.
We have seen in chapter iv that society constitutes a system of persons considered together; now we see that things must also be so considered. But, in the narrower sense of the word, we understand by "society" not merely the aggregate of persons involved, but the connected system. We first regarded these persons as material bodies at work. Society therefore, as we have explained, is above all a working organization, a human working apparatus. But we know very well that human beings are not merely physical bodies, they think, feel, wish, pursue goals and are constantly changing in their thoughts and desires. The relations between persons are not only material working relations, but also psychical relations, "mental" relations; society produces not only material objects: it also produces the so called "cultural values": art, science, etc.; in other words, it produces ideas in addition to things. These ideas, once they have been produced, may be developed into large systems of ideas.
The trinity of elements in society therefore includes: things, persons, ideas. We must by no means assume that these are independent elements: it is, of course, clear that if there were no people there would be no ideas, that ideas exist only in people and do not swim about in space like oil on the surface of water. But this does not prevent us from distinguishing these three elements; it is likewise clear that there must be a certain equilibrium between the three elements. Roughly speaking: society could not exist, unless the system of things, the system of persons, and the system of ideas were adapted each to the other. We shall have to go into this more in detail; we shall then understand the relation between phenomena that is so manifest on the surface, and concerning which we spoke in the preceding paragraph.
We have already pointed out that in a consideration of social phenomena it is necessary to begin with the social, material productive forces, with the social technology, the system of tools of labor. We may now supplement these remarks. In speaking of the social technology, we of course meant not a certain tool, or the aggregate of different tools, but the whole system of these tools in society. We must imagine that in a given society, in various places, but in a certain order, there are distributed looms and motors, instruments and apparatus, simple and complicated tools. In some places they are crowded close together (for instance, in the great industrial centers), in other places, other tools are scattered. But at any given moment, if people are connected by a labor relation, if we have a society, all these instruments of production-tools and machines, large and small, simple and complicated, manual or power-driven-are united into a single system. (Of course, a certain type of tool is always predominant: at the present time this is the type of machines and mechanisms, while formerly it was that of hand tools; the significance of apparatus and self-acting machinery is increasing more and more.) In other words, we may consider the social technology as a whole, in which each of the parts at a given moment is socially necessary (inevitable). Why may it be so considered? Wherein lies the unity of all the parts of the technical system of society?
In order to grasp this matter fully, let us suppose that on a certain day - let us say, in modern Germany, all the machines serving the purposes of coal mining should miraculously ascend to heaven. The result would be a cessation of practically the entire industrial life. It would be impossible to obtain fuel for factories and shops; all the machines and instruments in these factories would stop working, i.e., would be eliminated from the process of production. The technology of one branch would thus influence practically all the other branches. As a matter of fact, the various branches of production constitute a whole, not only in our thoughts, but objectively, in reality; they make up a single social technology. The social technology, we reiterate, is not therefore a mere aggregate of the various instruments of labor, but is their connecting system. On any individual part of this system depends all the rest of the system. At any given moment, also, the various parts of this technology are related in a certain proportion, a certain quantitative relation. If, in a certain factory, we must have a certain number of spindles and a certain number of workers to provide material for a certain number of looms, the more or less normal progress of social production throughout society will also involve the presence of a certain definite relation between the number of blast furnaces and the number of machines and mechanical tools in metallurgy, as well as in the textile industry, the chemical industry, or any other industry. To he sure, this relation may not be precisely fixed, as in a single factory; but between the "technological systems" of the various branches of production there does exist a certain necessary relation, which may in unorganized society be the result of a blind natural process, while in organized society it is the result of a conscious process; but it exists in all society. It is inconceivable, for instance, that a factory should have ten times as many spindles as it needs; it is likewise inconceivable that ten times as much coal should be mined as is needed, and that the machines and appliances used in mining coal should be ten times as numerous as is required in order to supply the other branches of production. Thus, as there is a definite relation and a definite proportion between the various branches of production; there is also in social technology a certain definite relation between its parts as well as a definite prevailing proportion. This circumstance changes the mere aggregate of tools, machines, instruments, etc., into a system of social technology.
This being the case, it is also clear that each given system of social technology also determines the system of labor relations between persons.
Is it conceivable, for instance, that the technological system of society, the structure of its tools, should be along certain lines, while the structure of human relations should be along entirely different lines? More concretely: is it possible that the technological system of society should be based on machines, while the productive relation, the actual labor relation, should be based on petty industry working with hand tools? Of course, this is an impossibility; wherever a society exists, there must be a certain equilibrium between its technology and its economy, i.e., between the totality of its instruments of labor and its working organization, between its material productive devices and its material human labor system.
Let us explain by means of an example, namely, by means of a comparison between so called "ancient society" and present-day capitalist society; let us begin with technology. Albert Neuburger,1) who is inclined more to exaggerate than belittle the accomplishments of ancient technology, says: "Aristotle in his Problems of Mechanics enumerates for us the auxiliary mechanical devices made use of in ancient times. They include only the following: the draw-well (lever with counter-weight), the equal-armed balance, the unequal-armed, or Roman balance (steelyard), the tongs, the wedge, the axe, the windlass, the cylindrical roller, the wagon-wheel, the shaft, the pulley, the sling, the rudder, the potter's wheel, as well as revolving wheels of copper or iron with different directions of revolution, which very probably are equivalent to our toothed wheels (gear-wheels)."
These are the most rudimentary technical appliances, otherwise known as "simple machines" (lever, inclined plane, tongs, rollers). It is obvious that not much advance was possible with such devices, which were used chiefly in the working of metals. It is clear that only the metallic skeleton of the productive forces constitutes the first permanent basis for their development. Yet, of the metals worked, gold was the most important; the greater quantity of metal was used for the manufacture of objects intended for non-productive consumption. The sole exception is blacksmith work, by means of which rather primitive tools were produced with the aid of hammer, anvil, tongs, file, vise, and other comparatively simple instruments (producing principally axes, hammers, hoes, horseshoes, nails, chains, pitchforks, shovels, spoons, etc.); the casting of metals stood chiefly in the service of turning out statues and other non-productive objects. It is therefore not surprising to learn that Vitruvius defines a "machine" as a "device made of wood".
"For whole centuries technology stood still," says Salvioli,2) of course not meaning an absolute stagnation, but an extremely slow development of ancient technology.
These technical devices naturally also determined the type of worker, the degree of his skill, and also the working relations, the productive conditions.
There could only be one type of worker under such a technology: a hand worker, a petty artisan. Blacksmiths, carpenters, masons, weavers, goldsmiths, miners, wagon-builders, saddlers, harness-makers, lathe-workers, silversmiths, potters, dyers, tanners, glassmakers, locksmiths, etc., etc., such are the types of productive workers.3) Thus, the social technology conditioned the character of the living working machinery, i.e., the type of worker, his labor "skill". But this technology also conditioned the relation between the persons at work. As a matter of fact, because we see here enumerated a number of types of workers, it is plain that we are dealing with a division of production into a number of branches, each one of which produces only a single type of worker. This is called the division of labor.
The cause of this division of labor was the existence of corresponding labor tools. But this division of labor was of a peculiar kind: "The division of labor could not here lead to the results which it has had in modern societies, for in ancient times this division was not a function of the machine process. It was not an outgrowth of a system of great factories (de grandes usines), but of petty and medium-sized industry."4) "Large-scale production was foreign to the ancient world, which never advanced beyond the stage of petty artisanry."5) Here is a different form of productive labor conditions, also based, as we have seen, on the system of technology. Even when we learn of great structures being raised, we must remember that they were often accomplished by means of petty labor. Thus, in the case of the construction of one of the great aqueducts at Rome, the government signed a contract with three thousand master masons; these worked together with their slaves. And in cases where production was on a comparatively large scale, it could, under the prevailing system of technology, exist only by making use of forces lying outside the economic system: for instance, slave labor, whole armies of slaves being imported after the conclusion of victorious wars, who were sold and distributed to the great estates and the slave-operated factories (ergastula). Under a different system of technology, slave labor would have been impossible: the slaves spoil delicate machinery, and slave labor does not pay. Thus, even such a phenomenon as the labor of imported slaves can be explained, under the given historical conditions, by the tools with which social labor works. Or, to take another example: we know that, in spite of the rather high development of commercial-capitalist conditions in ancient times, the economy of that period was on .the whole a natural economy (payments in commodities, in kind, rather than in money). People were not in close economic relations; the exchange of commodities was much less developed than in our day; great quantities of products were turned out in the great estates (latifundia) and in jail-like shops, for their own consumption. This is also a definite stage of labor, a form of productive relation, and again the explanation is evident: it can be explained on the basis of the low development of the productive forces, the weakness of technology. Under such a technical system, it was difficult to attain a great excess production. In a word, it is evident that the relations between people in the labor process are determined by the stage of advance in the evolution of technology; the ancient economy was, as it were, adapted to the ancient technology.
Let us compare this condition with that under capitalist society. Taking up, in the first place, the matter of technology, it is sufficient to cast a glance over a list of some of the branches of production. Let us consider only two of the groups of capitalist industry: the construction of machinery, instruments and apparatus, as one branch, and the electro-technical industry, as another branch. Here is the picture that presents itself:
I. Manufacture of machines, instruments and apparatus
a. power machines
b. manipulating machinery in general use
c. manipulating machinery in various special branches
d. repair-shop machinery
e. boilers, appliances and inventory
f. machine instruments and machine parts
g. mill construction
h. ship-building and the construction of marine machinery
i. the construction of airships and aeroplanes, and their parts
j. gas tanks
k. production of vehicles
l. manufacture of clocks and watches, and their parts
m. production of musical instruments
n. optical and other delicate mechanical devices, also the preparation of zoological and microscopical specimens
o. the production of globes and lamps (except such as are connected with the
II Electrical Industry
It is sufficient to compare this list with the "machines" spoken of by Aristotle or Vitruvius, to understand the tremendous difference between the technology of ancient society and that of modern capitalist society. Just as the ancient technology determined the ancient form of economy, so capitalist technology determines the present-day capitalist economy. If we could enumerate the entire population, let us say, of ancient Rome and of present-day Berlin or London, and divide these populations into trades, by their actual occupations, the profound gulf that separates us from ancient times would become apparent. We now have (as a result of our machine technology) types of workers that never existed in ancient times. Instead of the petty artisans (for instance, the fabri ferrarii),7) we now- find, in our society, electricians, machinists, machine constructors, boiler-makers, engine-lathe workers, frazers, optical instrument makers, compositors, lithographers, railroad workers, locomotive engineers, firemen, steam-hammer attendants, harvesting machinery workers, mowing machinery workers, sheaf-binding machinery workers, tractor repairers, electrical engineers, chemists, specialists on steam-boilers, linotypers, etc., etc. These types of workers did not exist even in name, for no corresponding branch of production, and consequently no appropriate tools of labor, existed in this field in ancient times. But even if we take up those species of workers whose names are still the same and who existed in earlier days, we shall find that there is again a great difference. For instance, what is there in common between the present-day weaver who works in a great textile factory and the artisan or slave weaver in ancient Greece or Rome? The latter would feel as much out of place in a modern factory as would Julius Caesar in a New York subway train. We have different labor forces, of different labor skill. Our labor forces are the product of a different technology, and they have become adapted to that technology.
The existence of a great number of industrial branches which were not present in earlier times results chiefly in the fact that the division of labor today is entirely different. But the division of labor constitutes one of the fundamental conditions of production. The modern division of labor is determined by the modern instruments of labor, by the character, description, and combination of machines and tools, i.e., by the technical apparatus of capitalist society. The typical form of a modern industrial establishment is that of the large factory. We no longer have the small production unit, the artisan industry, nor even the domestic industry of the latifundium owner; we have instead a gigantic organization embracing thousands of persons, distributed to their various posts in a definite order, and performing their allotted tasks. If, as an example of a capitalist enterprise, we take Mr. Ford's automobile factory in Detroit; its emphatically modern character is the first trait to strike the eye: a precise division of labor, much machinery, operating automatically under the supervision of the workers, the strict adherence to a correct succession of operations, etc. Parts of the product are carried along by slowly moving belts or platforms, and the various types of workers at their machines execute their specific tasks on the partly finished articles as they go by. The entire labor process has been calculated down to the second. Each displacement of the worker, each motion of hand or foot, each inclination of the body, all have been foreseen. The "staff" supervises the general course of the work; everything goes by the clock, or rather, the chronometer. Such is the division of labor and its "scientific efficiency" according to the Taylor system. Such a factory, if we consider its human structure, i.e., the relations between the individuals composing it, also constitutes a productive relation, in which the distribution of persons and their relation with each other are determined by the system of machinery, the combinations of machines, the technology, the organization of the factory inventory.
"The present development of technology must be considered as the dominating factor in the organization of labor ". The machine does not stand alone in the factory; all the machines are arranged in groups; they are related to each other or connected in their operations. The transfer of a job from one machine to another . . in the eyes of the technical supervisor, is a calculable quantity. The labor plan, the distribution of location in labor, transportation, are likewise precisely regulated, made automatic, standardized . . . and gradually changed into a precisely calculated mechanism of operative administration. . . In the general system of this movement of things, the movement of man turned out (also his influence on others) . . often to be a determining oasis . . . there arose a system of scientific movement" (A. Gastev: Our Tasks - Labor Organization, in the Annual of the Labor Institute, No. t, Moscow, 1921, pp.12, 13, in Russian). An idea of the many branches of work in the great metal factories will be given by the branches found in Russian factories: mechanical, electrical, blacksmith, boiler, molding, casting steel, iron foundry, iron rolling, heating metals, Martin blast furnaces, Siemens ovens, crucibles, carriages, chemical treatment of wood, construction work, auxiliary operations. The following categories of workers were found in the Putilov Works in 1914-1916: locksmiths, lathe-workers, milling machine workers, planers, chiselers, borers, welders, stampers, ussemblers, blacksmiths, hammerers, pressers, pointers, stokers, furnace foremen, rollers, machinists, cutters, potters, molders, smelting furnace workers, paperers, joiners, carpenters, painters, tinsmiths, plumbers, cable workers, unskilled workers, men and women (cf. Metal Workers' Gazette, St. Petersburg, 1917, p.13, in Russian). Many of the names of these occupations show that they are bound to a specific instrument, tool, or machine. In a certain combination of these working onstrumerits, in their distribution in the plant, a certain distribution. of men is also involved, the latter being determined by the former.
Precisely as the production relations in ancient Greece or Rome were an outgrowth of the system of technology characteristic of petty and medium production, so the conditions of large-scale production in modern times are a result of the modern technology. Here again, there is a relative equilibrium between the social technology and the social economy.
We have above observed that the poor technology of ancient times resulted in a poor exchange process, and that the economy remained for the most part economy in kind: the relation between the economies was very loose; such were the definite production relations of antiquity. But modern capitalist technology permits the sending forth of huge quantities of products. The division of labor also has its influence in causing the entire production to be made for the market. For the manufacturer does not himself wear the millions of pairs of suspenders turned out by his factory. Therefore, the production conditions of the commodities economy are also a consequence of the technology of our day.
We have approached the question from four different angles: first, the nature of the labor forces; second, the distribution of labor between them; third, the extent of production, i.e., of the organization of individuals in the various economies; fourth, the relations between these various economies; and in every case we have seen from the example of the two different societies chosen (the ancient and the modern) that the combinations of the instruments of labor (the social technology) are the deciding factor in the combinations and relations of men, i.e. in social economy. But there is another phase of the production relations, namely, the question of the social classes, which is to be discussed later in detail; let us consider this question now from the standpoint of the production relations.
In considering the relations of men in the production process, we observe everywhere (except in the so called primitive communism) that the groupings of men are not accomplished in such manner as to cause the various groups to lie in a horizontal line, but rather in a vertical line. For example, in the conditions of medieval serfdom, we find at the top the owners of the estates, under them the administrators, mayors, supervisors, and at the bottom the peasants. In capitalist production relations we find that men are not only distributed among molders, machinists, railroad workers, tobacco workers, etc., all of whom - in spite of the great differences between their tasks - are working along the same lines-occupying the same relative station in production; but we find that here too a number of persons stand above the others in the labor process: above the workers are the "salaried employees" (the medium-grade technical staff: master mechanics, engineers, specialists, agricultural experts, etc.); above these "salaried men" stand the higher officials (superintendents, directors); above them are the so called owners of enterprises, capitalists, the commanders-in-chief and controllers of the destinies of the production process. Let us also consider the latifundium of a rich Roman landlord. Here again we find a regular gradation of persons; on the lowest rung of the ladder are the slaves ("the speaking instruments", instrumenta vocalia, as the Romans termed them, as distinguished from the "semi-speaking instruments", instrumenta semi-vocalia, namely, bleating cattle, and the "mute instruments", instrumenta muta, inanimate objects); above the slaves stand the slave drivers, overseers, etc.; then come the superintendents; finally we have the owner of the latifundium himself, with his honored family (his wife usually had charge of certain domestic operations). A blind man can see that we are dealing with differently constituted relations between persons at work. All the persons enumerated participate in one way or another in the labor process and therefore have certain definite relations to each other. In classifying them, we may divide them according to their trades and callings; but we may also divide them according to their classes. If our division is on the basis of occupations or callings, we shall have blacksmiths, locksmiths, lathe-workers, etc. In the higher class, chemists, mechanics, boiler-engineers, textile experts, locomotive specialists, etc. It is obvious that the locksmiths, lathe-workers, machine-workers, stevedores, are in one class, while the engineer, the specialist, etc., are in another class; the capitalist, who has control of all, is again in another class. These persons cannot all be thrown into the same pot. In spite of the division between the work performed by the locksmith, the turner and the compositor, they all stand in the same relation to each other in the general labor process. Quite different is the relation between locksmith and engineer, or between locksmith and capitalist. Furthermore, the locksmith, turner, linotyper, individually and as a body, are in the same relation to all the engineers and in the same remoter relation to all superintendents, "captains of industry", capitalists. The greatest differences here are in the productive function, in the productive significance, in the character of the relations between men; the capitalist in his factory distributes and arranges his workers as he might things or tools; but the workers do not "distribute" the capitalists (under the capitalist system of society); they "are distributed" by these capitalists. This is a relation of "master and servant", as Marx says, with "capital in command". It is their different function in the production process that constitutes the basis for the division of men into different social classes.
An important point to be noted here is the nature of the relation between the process of production and that of distribution, since we have seen that the latter is, so to speak, the reverse side of the social process of production. Concerning this subject of the process of distribution, Marx says the following: "In the most shallow conception of distribution, the latter appears as a distribution of products and to that extent as further removed from and quasi-independent of production. But before distribution means distribution of products, it is, first a distribution of the means of production, and, second, what is practically another wording of the same fact, it is a distribution of the members of society among the various kinds of production (the subjection of individuals to certain conditions of production). The distribution of products is manifestly a result of this distribution, which is bound up with the process of production and determines the very organization of the latter. To treat of production apart from the distribution which is comprised in it, is plainly an idle abstraction. Conversely, we know the character of the distribution of products the moment we are given the nature of that other distribution which forms originally a factor of production" (A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy, Chicago, 1913, p.286).
These sentences of Marx deserve more of our attention.
We find, first of all, that the process of the production of products determines the process of the distribution of products. If, for example, production is carried on in independent establishments (by various capitalist enterprises, or by individual artisans), each establishment no, longer producing all of its requirements, but turning out some special product (watches, grain, iron locks, hammers, tongs, etc., as the case may be), it is obvious that the distribution of the product will take the form of exchange. Persons producing locks cannot clothe themselves in such locks or consume them for dinner, nor can persons producing grain lock their barns with grain; they must have locks and keys for this purpose. The manner of production which is followed also determines the manner of distributing the product; this distribution may not be considered as independent of production. On the contrary, it is determined by production and, together with it, constitutes a section of material social reproduction.
But production itself involves two further "distributions": first, the distribution of persons, their arrangement in the production process, depending on their function, as already discussed; second, the distribution of production tools among these persons. These "distributions" are a part of production or, in the words of Marx, are "involved" in production. We have seen, for example, in one of the systems of society discussed, namely, capitalist society, that its "distribution of persons" also includes a division into classes, based on the difference of function in the productive process. But this varying "distribution of persons", depending on their varying assignment in production is also connected with a distribution of the means of labor: The capitalist, the owner of the latifundium, and the estate owner control these means of labor (factory and machinery, the estate and the compulsory shops, the soil and structures), while the worker has no instruments of production aside from his own labor power; the slave does not even own his own body, nor does the peasant serf. It is therefore obvious that the varying function of classes in production is based on the distribution of instruments of production among them. In his review of Marx's book, A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy, Engels says: a "Economy deals not with things but with relations between persons and in the last analysis between classes; but these relations always are bound up with things and appear as things."8) For example, the current class relations in capitalist society, namely, the relations between capitalists and workers, are bound up with a thing: the instruments of production in the hands of the capitalists, controlled by the latter, not owned by the workers. These instruments of production serve the capitalists as tools for the obtaining of profits, as means of exploiting the working class. They are not mere things, they are things in a special social significance, in that they here serve not only as means of production, but also as a means of exploiting wage laborers. In other words, this thing expresses the relation between classes, or, in the words of Engels, these class relations are bound up with the thing. In the last analysis, this thing, in our example, is capital.
The special form of production relations, therefore, existing in the relations between classes, is determined by the varying function of these groups of persons in the production process, and the distribution of the means of production among them. This fully conditions the distribution of the products.
The capitalist obtains profit because he owns instruments of production: because he is a capitalist.
The class relations in production, i.e., the relations bound up with the varying distribution of the means of production, are particularly important in society. It is they which determine in the first place the outline of society, its system or, in the words of Marx, its economic structure.
Now, the production relations are extremely numerous, and varied. If we recall, furthermore, that we are considering the distribution of products as a portion of reproduction, it also becomes clear that the relations between persons in the process of distribution are also included in the production relations. In a complicated system of society there are innumerable such relations, such as, between merchants, bankers, clerks, brokers, tradesmen of all kinds, workers, consumers, salesmen, traveling salesmen, messengers, manufacturers, ship-owners, sailors, engineers, unskilled workers, etc., etc., which all constitute production relations. All are interwoven in the most varied combinations, the most peculiar patterns, the most unusual confusions. But the fundamental scheme of all these patterns is important; namely, the relations between the great groups known as social classes. The system of society will depend on the classes included in society, their mutual position, their functions in the production process, the distribution of instruments of labor. We have a capitalist society if the capitalist is on top; we have a slave system if the estate owner is on top, and in control of everything; we have a dictatorship of the proletariat if the workers are on top. To be sure, even the absence of all classes would not mean the disappearance of society, but merely the disappearance of class society. There were no classes, for example, in the primitive communist society, nor will there be any in the communist society of the future.
We observed above that the production relations change with the social technology; a glance at the actual historical development of any society will be sufficient to show that this principle also holds good in such production relations as are simultaneously class relations. Great shifts of classes have taken place, for instance, before the eyes of the present generation. Not many decades ago, there was still a considerable class of independent artisans, which subsequently declined because of the growth of the machine technology, and, consequently of large-scale production, of the factory system. Simultaneously, the proletariat increased, as did also the industrial upper bourgeoisie, while the small artisan disappeared. The class alignment necessarily changed, for with the changes in technology there are also associated changes in the distribution of labor in society; certain functions in production disappear or fall into the background; new functions arise, etc., simultaneously, class groups are altered; in a society having a low stage of the productive forces, industry will not be highly developed, while the social economy will still be rural and agricultural in character. It will not surprise us to find the rural classes predominating in such a society, with the class of country squires standing at the head. On the other hand, in a society with highly developed productive forces, we shall find a mighty industry, cities, factories, villages, etc., with the urban classes attaining great influence. The landed proprietor yields place to the industrial bourgeoisie or other sections of the bourgeoisie; the proletariat becomes a great power.
A constantly progressing realignment of classes may totally change the form of society. This will particularly be the case if the class at the bottom comes out on top, a process which is to be described in the following chapters. For the present we shall merely state that class relations also - the most important part of production relations - change with the changes in the productive forces. "These social relations between the producers, and the conditions under which they exchange their activities and share in the total act of production, will naturally vary according to the character of the means of production. With the discovery of a new instrument of warfare, the firearm, the whole internal organization of the army was necessarily altered, the relations within which individuals compose an army and can work as an army were transformed, and the relation of different armies to one another was likewise changed. We thus see that the social relations within which individuals produce, the social relations of production, are altered, transformed, with the change and development of the material means of production, of the forces of production" (Karl Marx: Wage-Labor and Capital, New York, Labor News Company, 1917, pp.35, 36). In other words: "The organization of any specific society is determined by the condition of its productive forces. With an alteration of this condition, the social organization also will necessarily change sooner or later. Social organization is therefore in unstable equilibrium 9) at all points where the social forces of production are growing"10) (or falling, N.B.).
The totality of the production relations, therefore, is the economic structure of society, or its mode of production. This is the human labor apparatus of society, its "real basis".
A consideration of the production relations will show that they depend on the manner in which the persons involved are distributed in space. The relation is expressed in the fact that each personas already shown, has his place as a screw in the mechanism of a watch. It is precisely this definite situation in space, in the "theater of labor" that makes of this arrangement, this distribution, a social relation of labor. No doubt, every object is situated in space, moves in space, but here men are joined, particularly, by the definiteness of their working positions, as it were. This is a material relation like that of the parts in the mechanism of a watch. We must not overlook the fact that the critics of historical materialism are constantly confusing terms because the word "material" has a number of meanings. Thus, the historical process, for instance, is traced back to material "needs" or "interests", whereupon the refutation of historical materialism is proclaimed, since it has been rightly shown that "interest" is' not a material thing in the philosophical sense of the word, but obviously psychical. We admit that interest is not matter; but it is too bad that even certain "advocates" of historical materialism (who usually associate Marx with some bourgeois philosopher, since they are opposed to philosophical materialism) are guilty of such a confusion in terms. Max Adler, for instance, who weds Marx to Kant, regards society as a totality of psychical interactions; for him everything is psychical. Here is a specimen of this nature: "A relation is, however, by no means `matter' in the sense of philosophical materialism, which puts matter on the same level with psychic substances. It is always difficult to find a relation between the `economic structure', `the material element' of historical materialism, and the `matter' of the former theory, no matter how this theory be understood . . . and what is true of the cause is also true of the effect. Instruments of production are rather products of the `human mind:" (Max Zetterbaum: Zur materialistischen Geschichtsauffassung in Die Neue Zeit, Vol. 21, part ii, p.403. ) Zetterbaum is confused by the fact that machines are not made by soulless men. But as men themselves are not begotten by corpses, he considers everything in society to be a product of spirit without body - a very virtuous spirit therefore. It follows that the machine is psychical, and society has no "matter". But is obvious that sinful flesh is somewhere involved, for even a sinless spirit could not beget men and machines. Furthermore, a fleshless spirit would not even desire to occupy himself with such affairs. What remains of the "relation"? We must again point out to Herr Zetterbaum that the solar system is a material system; that we call it a system because its parts (sun, earth, other planets) are in definite relations to each other, occupy a certain position in space at any given moment. Just as the totality of planets, in certain relations with each other, constitutes the solar system, so the totality of persons in production relations constitutes the economic structure of society, its material basis, its personal apparatus. Kautsky, who sometimes confuses technology and economy most sinfully, also makes some very vulnerable statements. All such claims may be answered by the following passage from the arch-bourgeois, Werner Sombast. This professor, who is quite free from materialism, tells us: "Figuratively speaking, the economic life may be considered as an organism consisting of a body and a soul. The external forms of the operations of the economic life are its body; the forms of economic and factory operation, the most varied organizations within which and with the aid of which the economic process continues." (Werner Sombart: Der Bourgeois, München and Leipzig, 1913, pp.1 & 2.) Of course, the entire economic structure of society must be included under the head of economic form and economic organization, being therefore, "figuratively speaking", the body of this society.
Among the remaining phases of social life which we must now consider are such phenomena as the social and political system of society (the state, the organization of classes, parties, etc.); manners, customs and morals (the social norms of human conduct); science and philosophy; religion, art, and finally, language, the means of communication between men. These phenomena, excepting the social and political system, are frequently referred to as our "mental" or "spiritual culture".
The word culture comes from a Latin verb meaning "to cultivate". Culture therefore means everything that is the work of human hands, in the wider sense, i.e., everything produced by social man in one form or another. "Mental culture" is also a product of the social life, is included in the general life-process of society. It cannot be understood unless it be interpreted as a portion of this general life-process. Yet, certain bourgeois scholars would isolate this "mental culture" absolutely from the life-process of society, i.e., they would deify it, make it an entity independent of the body, a disembodied spirit. Thus, Alfred Weber (Der soziologische Kulturbegriff, in Verhandlungen des zweiten deutschen Soziologentages, Tübmgen, 1913), who considers the expansion of social life, its intricacy and wealth, as a process of external civilization, writes: "But we feel today that culture is superior to all these things; that culture means something different to us ". Only when " life, rising above its necessities and utilities, has assumed a higher level than these things, only then have we a culture" (pp.10, 11; Weber's italics). In other words, culture is a portion of life, but is not determined by the necessities and utilities of life, i.e., it transcends the bounds of society, is not conditioned by this society. It is obvious that such a point of view would lead to a renunciation of science and an acceptance of faith. Note that Weber's chief proof is the fact that "we feel".
A useful transition to a consideration of this "mental culture" is a study, in broad outline, of the social and political structure of society, which is directly determined, as we shall see, by its economic structure.
The most obvious expression of the social and political structure of society is the state power, which will be understood if we understand the necessary condition for the existence of a society of classes. For in such a society the various classes must have different interests. Some possess all; others, practically nothing; some are in command, and appropriate to themselves the products of the work of others; others obey, carry out the commands of strangers, and yield up what they have produced with their own hands. The position of the classes in production and distribution, i.e., the condition of their existence is their function in society, "their social being", results also in the growth of a specific consciousness. As everything in the universe is the result of the conditions that bring it about, the various situations of the classes must result in a difference in their interests, aspirations, struggles, even in their death struggles. It is interesting to observe the nature of the equilibrium existing in the structure of a society of classes. The fact that such a society, in which, in the words of an English statesman, there are in reality two "nations" (classes), can exist at all, without danger of disintegrating at any moment, is of itself very striking.
Yet there is no doubt of the existence of class societies. In some way or other, a unifying bond has been attained in such societies, a sort of hoop holding together the staves of the barrel; this hoop is the state, an organization of all society, with its threads, retaining them all in the system of its tentacles. If we should ask how the state originates, we should not be satisfied with any answer attributing a supernatural origin to the state, nor with any declaration that the state stands beyond all classes; for the simple reason that classless persons do not exist in a class society. There would therefore be no material with which to construct an organization standing outside of all classes or above all classes, no matter how often this may be asserted by bourgeois scholars. The organization of the state is altogether an organization of the "ruling class".
It now becomes of interest to determine which is the ruling class, for we shall then understand which class is represented by the state power, which subjugates all the other classes by means of its strength, its force, its mental system, its widely ramified apparatus. The question is not difficult to answer. In capitalist society, we find the capitalist class dominant in production; it would be absurd to expect to find the proletariat permanently dominant in the state, for one of the fundamental conditions of equilibrium would now be lacking; either the proletariat would also seize control of production, or the bourgeoisie would seize the state power. The existence of a society with a specific economic structure also involves the adaptation of its state organization; in other words, the economic structure of society also determines its state and political structure. The state, furthermore, is a huge organization embracing an entire nation and ruling many millions of men. This organization needs a whole army of employees, officials, soldiers, officers, legislators, jurists, ministers, judges, generals, etc., etc., and embraces great layers of human beings, one superimposed on the other. This structure is a precise reflection of the conditions in production. In capitalist. society, for example, the bourgeoisie is in control of production, and therefore also of the state. Following upon the manufacturer comes the factory superintendent himself, often a capitalist; the same is true of the ministers of a capitalist state, its politicians in high places. From these circles are recruited the generals for the army; the intermediate positions in production are filled by the technical specialist, the engineer, the technical mental worker; these mental workers occupy the posts of intermediate officials in the state apparatus; they often furnish the army officers. The lower employees, as well as the soldiers, are furnished by the working class. Of course, there are many fluctuations, but the structure of the state authority corresponds closely, on the whole, to the structure of society.
If we should assume, for a moment, that by a miracle the lower employees had raised themselves above the higher employees, our assumption would involve a loss of equilibrium in the whole of society, i.e., a revolution. But such a revolution also cannot take place unless corresponding alterations have already been accomplished in production. Here also it is apparent that the structure of the state apparatus itself reflects the economic structure, i.e., the same classes occupy relatively the same positions.
Let us give a few examples from various times and places. In ancient Egypt, the administration of production was practically identical with that of the state, the great landlords heading both. An important fraction of production was that turned out by the landlord state. The role of the social groups in production coincided with their caste, with whether they were higher, middle, or lower officials of the state, or slaves (Otto Neurath: Antike Wirtschaftsgeschichte, Leipzig, 1909, p.8). "The families of the `great' are of course landholding families, but they are also, above all, a bureaucratic nobility." (Max Weber: Agrarverhältnisse im Altertum, in Handbuch der Staatswissenschaften, vol. i.) Sometimes the combination of state authority and leadership in production was emphatically formulated. In the Fifteenth Century, the banking house of the Medici ruled the Italian trade-capitalist Republic of Florence: "The Bank of the Medici and the Florentine State Treasury were identical. The bankruptcy of this commercial firm occurred at the same moment as the collapse of the Florentine Republic" (M. Pokrovsky: Economic Materialism, Moscow, 1906, p.27, in Russian). In the second half of the Eighteenth Century, the landlords were dominant in Russian production, ruling over the peasant serfs. These landlords therefore also controlled the state, being specially organized as a privileged nobility. When the peasants rose under Pugachov, the landlord-empress Catherine II served as an incarnation of the existing state power, when she aided - as "landholder of Kazan" - in forming a cavalry regiment for putting down this "rabble", wherewith she aroused a veritable storm of imperial fidelity among the Kazan landlords. Her frequent association with French free-thinking philosophers did not prevent Catherine from introducing serfdom into Ukraine, a contrast which has been well stated by A. Tolstoi:
"The great population
In your lands
Longs for Freedom
From your hands.
Then spake she full of noble zeal:
Messieurs, vows me comblez,
Whereupon she extended serfdom
To cover Ukraine also."
In the United States, financial capital, a clique of bankers and trust magnates, is dominant in production; they also control the state power to such an extent that congressional decisions are not made before they have been most thoroughly discussed behind the scenes by combined capital.
But the social and political structure of society is not limited to the state authority. The ruling class, as well as the oppressed classes, present the most varied organizations and forms of common action. Each class usually has its vanguard, consisting of its most "class-conscious" members, and constituting the political parties competing for domination in society. Usually, the ruling class, the oppressed classes, and the "middle classes", each have their specific party. Since there are various groups existing within each class, it is obvious that a class may have a number of parties, though the most permanent and fundamental of its interests can be expressed only in one party. Besides the regularly organized bodies, there may be a number of other bodies: the present-day American capitalists, for example, have not only organizations to combat the workers, but also special organizations for election manipulations (Tammany Hall, for example) and organizations for recruiting strike-breakers, organizations of industrial spies (the Pinkerton and other detective agencies), the secret groups of the most influential capitalist firms and the most powerful politicians, following strictly conspirative methods; the official state organs always carry out the will of these bodies. In Russia, there was an auxiliary organization of the state of the landed proprietors, namely, the semi-criminal band of the "Black Hundred" which had affiliations with the reigning Romanov dynasty. This role was played in Italy, in 1921, by the Fascisti, and in Germany by the Orgesch.11) The oppressed classes also have a number of economic organizations in addition to their parties (for instance, the trade unions), not to mention fighting organizations and clubs, in which we may include such bodies as the "bands" of Stenka Razin or Pugachov.12) In short, all organizations waging the class war, from the jeunesse dorée of the German student fraternities up to the state power itself, on the one hand-from the party to the club, on the other hand; all these are a portion of the social and political structure of society. Their basis is as clear as day; their existence is a reflection and an expression of classes; here also economy conditions politics.
In our consideration of this "political superstructure", we cannot afford to lose sight of the fact that - as the above examples alone would show - this political superstructure is not merely a personal apparatus. It consists, for all society, of a combination of things, persons, and ideas. For instance, in the state apparatus, we have a specific apparatus of things, a specific hierarchy, a certain specific system of ideas (procedure, laws, ordinances, etc.), etc. In the case of the army, which is a portion of the state, we have a special "technology" (cannons, rifles, machine-guns, commissary supplies), its specific arrangement of men, "distributed" in a certain way, and its own "ideas", which have been insinuated into the minds of all the members of the army by means of a complicated military drill and a special educational apparatus (spirit of subordination, discipline, etc.). Viewed from this angle, the picture of the army will suggest the following inferences. The technology of the army is determined by the general technology of productive labor in the given society; cannons cannot be manufactured before the casting of steel has been learnt, i.e., before the necessary means of production have been obtained. The distribution of persons, the structure of the army, depends on the military science and also the class alignment of society. On the existence of weapons, and on the nature of these weapons, depends the division of the army into artillery, infantry, engineers, cavalry, sappers, etc.; on this will depend what types of soldiers, superiors, persons with special functions (for example, telephone operators) are present in the army. On the other hand, the class alignment of society will determine from what social layer the staff of officers is recruited; by the representatives of what class the actions of the army are controlled, etc.; finally, the specific mental attitudes with which the army is imbued are conditioned, on the one hand, by the army structure (memorizing regulations, cadavre obedience, etc.), and on the other hand by the class structure of society. In the Tsar's army the slogan was "Obey the Tsar", "For God, Emperor and Fatherland"; in the Red Army the slogan is "Preserve discipline in order to protect the workers against the imperialists." These examples are sufficient to show that the social and political superstructure is a complicated thing, consisting of different elements, which are interrelated. On the whole, this structure is determined by the class outline of society, a structure which in turn depends on the productive forces, i.e., on the social technology. Certain of these elements are directly dependent on technology ("the art of war"); others depend on the class character of society (its. economy), as well as on the technology of the superstructure itself ("army management"). All the elements of the superstructure are therefore directly or indirectly based on the stage that has been reached by the social productive forces.
A special place among human organizations is held by the organization of the family, i.e., the living together of men, women, and children. This clan organization, which was constantly changing, was based on certain economic conditions. "The family, also, is not only a social, but preeminently an economic formation, based on the division of labor between man and woman, on `sexual differentiation' " Primitive marriage is nothing else than the expression of this economic union." (Müller-Lyer, ibid., p.150; cf. Marx: Capital, vol. i, Chicago, 1915, p.386: "Within a single family " there arises a primitive distribution of labor based on differences of sex and age . . . .") The family thus arises as a firm unit by reason of the alterations in the economic order of the clan, which was a primitive state of communism (the original form of relation between the sexes was promiscuity, i.e., unregulated sexual relations between men and women). M. N. Pokrovsky characterizes the primitive Slavic family as follows: "The members of this family, workers in the same economy, soldiers of the same detachment, and finally, worshipers of the same god, participants in the same rite" (History of Russia, Moscow, 1920, pp.17, 18, in Russian). But the economic basis of such a family is further clarified by the following fact. "It would be erroneous," "to assign a dominant importance to these says M. N. Pokrovsky, blood ties: they are customary, but not inevitable. Such collective establishments were conducted in the North (of Russia) by persons who were strangers to each other, on the basis of contracts; they founded such communities, not for all time, but for a definite period, for instance, for ten years " Here also, the economic connection antedates the ties of blood, the `relation' in our sense of the term" (ibid., p.16). The changed forms of family relations, in accordance with the economic conditions, may be traced even in modern times: we need only to compare the peasant family, the workers' family, and the modern bourgeois family. The peasant family is a firm unit, for it is based directly on production. "There must be a woman in the house," for who else would milk the cows, feed the pigs, cook the food, tidy the rooms, wash, take care of the children, etc.? The economic significance of the family is so great that marriages are dictated by specific economic calculation: "there is no woman in the house". Economically considered, the members of the family are "workers" and "eaters". Built up on this comparatively rigid basis, the peasant family is itself characterized by patriarchal rigidity, when untouched by the "corrupting" influence of the city. The workers' family is different. The worker has no economy of his own. His "household" is a consumption economy only; it consumes its wages. Simultaneously, the city, with its saloons, restaurants, laundries, etc., makes the household largely superfluous. Finally, large-scale industry disintegrates the family, forcing the proletarian woman to work in a factory. More mobile, less stable forms of family relations arise from these circumstances. In the upper middle class, private property requires the preservation of the family. But the increasing parasitism of the bourgeoisie, and the growth of entire strata who live by cutting coupons, transform the wife into a thing, into a bedizened but very stupid plaything, a boudoir appurtenance. The various forms of marriage (monogamy, polygamy, polyandry, etc.) are likewise dependent on the conditions of economic evolution. Furthermore, it must not be forgotten that sexual intercourse has practically never been limited to the family. The forms of prostitution, and their distribution, are again connected with the economy of society; we need only to point out the rô1e of prostitution in the capitalist system. It seems reasonable to assume that communist society, which will definitely abolish private property and the enslavement of women, will witness the disappearance both of prostitution and the family.
The other phases of the "superstructure" are a result of man's living in society, or in individual sections of society, in a condition either of outright conflict or of incomplete harmony. The expression of this condition is the social necessity of social norms, including customs, morals, law, and a great number of other standards ("rules of decent behavior", "etiquette", ceremonial, etc.; also the constitutions of the various societies, organizations, brotherhoods, etc.), all of which are produced by the accumulation of contradictions in a mature and complicated society. The most striking of these contradictions is the class contradiction, which therefore "demands" a mighty regulator for the purpose of suppressing this contradiction at certain times; the state power with its legal decisions, its standards of law, constitutes such a regulator. There are also subsidiary contradictions between the classes, within the classes, also within trades, groups, organizations, and in all human categories in general. Regardless of his class position, each individual comes in contact with all kinds of people, is subject to various influences which interact at many points; he finds himself placed in swiftly changing circumstances, which may disappear and later again assert themselves. Contradictions are here found at every step, and yet society and certain groups within it continue their relatively permanent existence. The capitalists, owners of enterprises, traders, merchants, compete in the market; yet they rarely resort to armed conflict with each other within the same state, and their class does not collapse because of the competitive struggle between its members. While buyers and sellers have distinctly opposed interests, they do not belabor each other physically. There are unemployed persons among the workers, whom the capitalists attempt to win over during a strike; but not every such person can be utilized; the class bond among the workers is too strong. This condition is a result of a great variety of standards existing by the side of the legal standards. These supplementary norms impress themselves on the minds of men, apparently from some inner source, and appear sacred to them, being voluntarily adhered o. Of such nature, for example, are the rules of morality, which are represented in a commercial society as eternal and immutably sacred laws, radiating their own light and binding on all decent eople; similar is the case with customs, "duties to the great departed", "rules of decency", "courtesy", etc.
In spite of the alleged "supernatural" character of these laws, their earthly roots may easily be traced, regardless of the pious awe of all their submissive adherents. A closer observation forces us to recognize two fundamental conditions: first, that these laws are subject to change; second, that they are connected with class, group, occupation, etc. It is also obvious that "in the last analysis" they are likewise conditioned by the level attained by the productive forces. In general, these rules indicate the line of conduct conducive to a preservation of the society, class, or group in question, and requiring a subordination of the individual to the interests of the group. These norms are therefore conditions of equilibrium for holding together the internal contradictions of human social systems, whence it results that they must more or less coincide with the economic structure of society. It is impossible, for instance, in any society, for the system of its dominant manners and customs to be in permanent contradiction with its fundamental economic structure. Such an opposition would mean the complete absence of the fundamental condition for social equilibrium. It is on the basis of the economic conditions that law, customs and morals are evolved in any society; they change and disappear with the economic system. Thus, in capitalist society, the capitalist controls things (instruments of production), a condition which is reflected in the laws of the capitalist state, in the so called right to private property, which is protected by the entire apparatus of the state power. The production conditions of capitalist society are juridically termed property relations; these relations are supported by many laws. A condition under which the laws of capitalist society would not protect the property relations of this society, but destroy them, is inconceivable. Similarly, the "moral consciousness" of capitalist society reflects and expresses its material being. Thus, in the field of private property, morality teaches that theft is to be condemned; honesty and the inviolability of the property of others are inculcated. And quite naturally, for without this moral law which has imbedded itself in the minds of men, capitalist society would at once disintegrate.
Apparent contradictions to the above can be easily disposed of. While communists do not believe in the sacredness of private property, they do not approve of stealing. It may be urged that this indicates the presence of something that is sacred for all men, that cannot be explained by earthly causes. The facts of the case are quite different: it is true that communists by no means recognize the inviolability of private property; the nationalization of factories is an expropriation of the bourgeoisie; the working class appropriates "the property of others", transgresses the right of private property, undertakes a "despotic intervention in the right of property" (Karl Marx: The Communist Manifesto). But communists condemn stealing, for the reason that individual thefts by each worker from the capitalists, for his own advantage, would not result in a common struggle, but would make the worker a petty bourgeois. Horse-thieves and swindlers will not fight in the class struggle, even though they may be offspring of the proletariat. If many members of the proletariat should become thieves, the class would break down and be condemned to impotence; therefore, communists condemn stealing, not in order to protect private property, but in order to maintain the integrity of their class, to protect it from "demoralization" and "disintegration", without which protection the proletariat can never be transformed into the next following stage. We are therefore dealing with a class standard in the conduct of the proletariat. It is obvious that the rules we have considered are determined by the economic conditions of society.
The proletarian standards, of course, are in contradiction with the economic conditions of capitalist society. But we have been speaking of dominant standards; as soon as the proletarian standards become dominant, capitalism will be a thing of the past (see next chapter).
A number of examples will be given to explain the above statements. In the sexual field, at a certain stage of development, when the clan was still based on bland relationship and members of other clans were considered enemies, marriages between close relations were not objectionable; particularly sacred was a marriage with one's mother or daughter (in the ancient Iranian religion).
When the productive forces were at a low level, and the social economy could not afford any superfluous ballast, manners and morals required the slaying of old men, as is reported by the ancient historians Herodotus, Strabo, etc. This was the cause for the voluntary self-poisonings (reported by Strabo) of old men. On the other hand, where these old men had a function in production or administration, morality required that they be honored (cf. Eduard Meyer: Elemente der Anthropologie, pp.31-33, et seq.). The close-knit nature of the clan, its solidarity when combating enemies, assumed the form of blood revenge, in which women also participated. Thus, we read in the Nibelungenlied:
"Chriemhilda did revenge her wrongs,
in way that will affright;
She slaughtered, without fear or shame, the king, and loyal knight!
They both were singly manacled, in fast and dreary place;
So that those knights ne'er saw again each other, face to face,
Save when she took her brother's head to Hagen, with own hand,
Chriemhilda vengeful wrath was such, as baffles ail command."
(Das Nibelungenlied, or Lay of the Last Nibelungers, English transl. by Jonathan Birch, Berlin, 1848.)
Eduard Meyer correctly says: "In content, the laws of morality, of customs, and of justice, depend on the social order and the communal views of the community, prevailing at the time " They may therefore be diametrically opposed in content, if they represent different societies and different periods" (ibid., p.44). In ancient China, a peculiarly constructed feudal state authority with a great stratum of officials of various degree, was of great importance. The rule of this feudal-bureaucratic stratum was ideologically based on the teaching of Confucius, a system of rules of conduct. One of the most important points in this moral teaching was the doctrine of respect and submission to those in authority (Hiao); "Calumnies must be borne, even though they drive us into death, if the honor of the master require it; one can (and should) always make good all the master's errors by faithful service; such was Hiao" (Max Weber: Gesammelte Aufsätze zur Religionsphilosophie, Tübingen, 1920, vol. i, p.419). Violation of Hiao was the only sin. One who did not understand this, who therefore had no grasp of "propriety" (a fundamental conception in the Confucian doctrine) was a barbarian. "Respect (Hiao) toward one's feudal lord was enumerated together with that toward parents, teachers, superiors in the official hierarchy, and officeholders in general" (ibid., p.446). Discipline, like respect, is a worthy virtue. "Insubordination is worse than baseness" (p.447). The case may be generally stated: "Better be a dog in peace, than a man living in anarchy," as Cheng Ki Tong says (p.457). "Like any code for officials, the Confucian code of course also condemned any participation by officials in business, directly or indirectly, as ethically objectionable and not in accord with their rank" (p.447). Friends must be chosen only from one's own rank, for they can fulfil all the ceremonies; the population consists of "stupid men" (yun min), as contrasted with the man of princely station. Characteristically enough, this entire system of standards supporting the feudal noble regime was called the "great plan", hung fan, (p. 454). It is obvious that this teaching is closely related with the system of society. The numerous "Chinese ceremonies" were in reality based on the dominant currents of thought, and served as a complicated silken tissue enmeshing the social structure and guarding the existing order.
Or, let us consider the medieval knights of Northern France, in the Twelfth and Thirteenth Centuries, who sang of their fair ladies and fought tournaments "for them"; their "ideal" views of "honor and love" bore all the earmarks of a caste honor (cf. H. Helmolt, Weltgeschichte, Leipzig and Vienna, vol. v). The chief role played by knighthood in society was that of war and strategy. The "standards" therefore had to serve the purpose of training a military type of man, segregated in a special class. "A knight, who " had shown himself to be a coward, was cast out, publicly outlawed by the herald, cursed by the Church; his escutcheon and arms were destroyed by the hangman, his shield tied to the tail of a horse and smashed by the animal in his swift course "" "For training in the profession of arms, there were tournaments, in addition to military campaigns and feuds" (p.496).
"As the capitalist relations grow, the dominant customs, morals, etc., change. Generous wastefulness is replaced by a desire for accumulation and the corresponding virtues." "A decent man is not honored by his lordly manner, but by his keeping order in his establishment" (W. Sombart, Der Bourgeois, p.140). "One must refrain from revelry, must appear only in decent company; must not be addicted to drinking, gambling, women; one must be a good `citizen' even in one's external conduct, for reasons of business interest. For, such a moral conduct of life raises one's credit" (ibid., pp.162, 163). Of course, this pious Protestant morality was succeeded by a different morality when the situation of the bourgeoisie changed, the business of the firm no longer depending on the conduct of its owner.
It is an even easier matter to show how law changes with the economic structure, for here the class character of law is manifest everywhere. But even such intangible standards as those of fashion depend - as may be easily proved - on social conditions. For a bourgeois it is "indecent" not to dress in accordance with his standing; for this class trait of clothing indicates "persons of quality". Even revolutionists are subject to the caprices of fashion; a party fashion in the revolution of 1905 was the wearing of black blouses by the Social-Democrats (a sign of the proletariat), while the Social-Revolutionists preferred red ones (revolutionary peasantry); you could hardly find a dozen intellectuals in any big city, who had participated in the revolution and yet ignored these passively accepted party fashions.
In addition to a class morality, we also have subdivisions of this morality, for example, professional ethics, the vocational morals of physicians, lawyers, etc. There is also a thief morality ("there is honor among thieves"), which is rather strictly complied with. All the standards above mentioned constitute firm bonds emphasizing the unity of a society, a class, a vocational group, etc.
Science and Philosophy are also a category of social phenomena. We shall see that the latter is based on all the accomplishments of the former. Any fairly advanced science is a very complicated thing,, not limited to systems of ideas alone. The sciences have their technique, their physical apparatus, instruments, appliances, charts, books, laboratories, museums, etc.; any laboratory or any scientific expedition, to the North Pole or to Central Africa, will serve as an illustration; they also have their personal apparatus, sometimes highly organized (for example, scientific congresses, conferences, academies and other organizations, with their periodical and other publications); and finally, there is the system of ideas, of thoughts in orderly arrangement, constituting the science in the proper sense of the word.
The following principle is of fundamental importance: every science is born from practice, from the conditions and needs of the struggle for life on the part of social man with nature, and of the various social groups, with the elemental forces of society or with other social groups. "The savage has had the most varied experiences; he can distinguish venomous and edible plants, pursue the traces of game and protect himself from beasts of prey and venomous serpents. He can make use of fire and water, select stones and wood for his weapons, smelt and work metals. He can count and calculate with his fingers, make measurements with his hands and feet like a child, he sees the firmament, observes its motions and the changed positions of sun and planets. All or most of his observations are made casually or for the purpose of a useful application. These primitive observations are the germ of the various sciences. The latter can only exist when freedom from material cares has resulted in a sufficient quantity of comfort and leisure, and when the intellect has been sufficiently strengthened by frequent use, to make observations per se . . , a matter of interest."13) Science therefore can begin only when the growth of the productive forces has left free time for scientific observation. Also, the original material of science is material taken from the field of production. It should therefore not surprise us that the immediate maintenance of life by production, i.e., the interests of production, gave the first impulse to the growth of science. Practice created theory and impelled it onward.
Astronomy arose from the need of finding one's bearings by the stars in desert plains, from the significance of the seasons in agriculture, the need of a precise division of time (astronomical control of clocks, for instance), etc. Physics was intimately connected with the technique of material production and warfare. Chemistry arose on the basis of an expanding industrial production, particularly mining; the beginnings of chemistry are already found in Egypt and China, in the manufacture of glass, dyeing, enameling, the production of paints, metallurgy, etc.; the word chemistry is derived from chemi, "black", thus suggesting its Egyptian origin. Alchemy is found among the ancient Egyptians, the outgrowth of the desire to find the law of transmutation of metals into gold; in the Fifteenth Century, chemistry was much aided by medicine. Mineralogy arises from the use of metals in production, and their study for purposes of production. Botany originally consisted of a knowledge of healing plants, later of useful plants, still later, of plants in general. Zoology developed from the necessity of understanding the useful and harmful qualities of animals. Anatomy, physiology, pathology, started from practical medicine (the first "specialists" in this field were Egyptian, East Indian, Greek and Roman physicians, such as the Greek Hippocrates, the Roman Claudius Galenus, etc.). Geography and ethnography were developed by trade and colonial warfare. The ablest commercial peoples of antiquity (for instance, the Phwnicians, Carthaginians, etc.), were also the best geographers. Geography was neglected in the Middle Ages, a great renewal of interest in the subject coming in modern times, beginning with the Fifteenth Century, in the era of the colonial wars waged by the trade-capitalist nations, and the half-commercial, half-predatory, half-scientific voyages connected with these wars. The voyages and discoveries were performed chiefly by the predatory commercial nations: Portugal, Spain, England, Holland. Ethnology was also encouraged by colonial policy, the practical question being the learning of a method of utilizing savages for labor for the advantage of the "civilized" bourgeoisie. Mathematics, the science that is apparently most remote from practice, was nevertheless of practical origin; its original tools were those first used in material production: the fingers, hands, feet (counting on one's fingers), the quinary, decimal, vicenary systems; the original designations for the angles, etc., after the bend in the knee; units of length: the ell, foot, etc. (cf. Cantor: Vorlesungen über die Geschichte der Mathematik, Leipzig, 1907, vol. i). The material basis of mathematics was the needs of production: surveying ("geometry" means "earth-measurement"), the erection of buildings, measuring the content of vessels, shipbuilding; still earlier, the number of cattle; in the commercial period, commercial arithmetic, inventory, balance-sheet, etc. The Egyptian and Greek geometers, the Roman agrimensores, the Alexandrian engineers ( for instance, Hero of Alexandria, who invented a sort of steam-engine) were simultaneously the first mathematicians (Rudolf Eisler: Geschichte der Wissenschaften, Leipzig, 1906). The case of the social sciences (as already discussed in our Introduction) is in no way different. History arose from the need of knowing the "destinies of nations", for purposes of practical politics. Legal science began with the collection and codification of the most important laws, again for practical purposes. Political economy arose with capitalism, originally as a science of merchants, serving the needs of their class policy. The philological sciences arose in the form of "grammars" of the various languages, as a result of commercial relations and the requirements of intercourse. Statistics began with merchants' "tables", each dealing with a specific country (likewise, the first beginnings of political economy; one of the earliest economists, William Petty, calls one of his works: "Political Arithmetic"), etc., etc. New sciences are arising from production before our very eyes, for instance, the technical experiences acquired in the application of the Taylor system give rise to so called psycho-technxcs, the psychophysiology of labor, the theory of the organization of production, etc.
With the gradual extension, division, and specialization of the sciences, their direct or indirect dependence on the stage of the productive forces nevertheless continues in evidence. As the natural human organs, in the direct process of material production in society, are "extended," and by this extension, "contrary to the Bible", are enabled to embrace and manipulate a much greater material, so the "extended" consciousness of human society is science, increasing its mental compass and enabling it to grasp and consequently better to control, a greater mass of phenomena.
It is interesting to note that many bourgeois scholars, when speaking concretely of science, involuntarily assume this materialist standpoint. But they dare not pursue it to the end. Thus a well-known Russian scholar, Professor Chuprov (junior) speaks of the "significance of science" as follows: "While life remains uncomplicated, men in their daily affairs content themselves with the `experiences of life', an accidental method of accumulating incoherent bits of knowledge and habit, passed on from father to son as a tradition. But as the sphere of interest widens, these formless bits of knowledge cease to fulfil requirements; there arises a need for systematic work; consciously and planfully devoted to an understanding of the surrounding universe, i.e., science. As soon as men have learned that scientia et ptentia humana in idem coincident (science and human knowledge are identical), and that quod in contemplatione instar causae est, id in operatione instar regulae est (that which appears as cause in observation, is the rule in the effect), they grasp the thought that ignoratio causae destituit effectum. (failure to recognise the cause destroys the result), and learn to appreciate science as the basis of practical labor"(Outlines of the Theory of Statistics, St. Petersburg, 1909, pp.21, 22, in Russian).
The connection between the state of science and the productive forces of society is of manifold nature. This connection must be studied from a number of angles, for it is not as simple as may first appear. We shall therefore have to turn our attention, in our consideration of science, to its technique, its special organization of work, its content, its method (or alleged method), for all these components interact mutually and produce the level of the given science at a given time. Each of these elements will lead back directly or indirectly to the social technology.
In the first place, the very existence of society is possible only after the productive forces have attained a certain level in their development. If the labor surplus is absent or limited and not increased, the growth of science is impossible.
"This desire for science could not be displayed before man had satisfied his other appetites . . . . Certain very old observations are handed down to us from China, India, Egypt, but it is interesting to note that they were but imperfectly developed in those countries" (A. Bordeaux: Histoire des sciences physiques, chimiques et géologiques au XIX siècle, Paris and Liege, 1920, p.11).
The content of science is determined in the last analysis by the technical and economic phase of society; these are the "practical roots", which explain why an identical scientific discovery, invention, or study, may be achieved simultaneously in different places, perhaps quite "independently". The "ideas" are said to be in the air, meaning that they grow out of the existing stage of life. That has been produced by the level of the productive forces.
In his Histoire, A. Bordeaux mentions the following discoveries resulting, as he puts it, from the presence of ideas "in the air", and from the conditions of life (par l'existence des idées dans l'air et par les circonstances de la vie): the discovery of the relation between heat and mechanical work, induction, the induction coil, the Gramme ring, the infinitesimal calculus (mentioned not only by Leibnitz and Newton, but also by their predecessors Fermat, Cavalieri, etc., as far back as Archimedes). Bordeaux concludes: "As for science, . . . it shows " how difficult it is to determine which person really made a certain discovery" (ibid., p.8). Let us note that the practical object of a science by no means presupposes that each scientific principle directly influences practice. Assuming the theorem A to be important for practice, and that this theorem cannot be proved except with the use of the theorems, B, C, D, and that the three latter theorems are of no direct practical value (being, as we say, of "purely theoretical interest"), these theorems nevertheless are indirectly of practical significance as links in a single scientific chain. There are no useless or worthless scientific systems, just as there are no useless mechanical tools.
While the problems have been put chiefly by technology and economy, their solution in many sciences depends on alterations in the scientific technique, whose instruments are of extraordinary importance in widening the horizon. The microscope, for example, was invented in the first half of the Seventeenth Century and of course, had an immense influence on the evolution of science by favoring the development of botany, zoology, anatomy, in creating a new branch of science, bacteriology, etc. Equally obvious is the role of technique in astronomy (equipment of observatories, varieties of telescopes, devices for photographing stars, etc.). , In its turn, scientific technique depends on the material production in general (is a product of material labor). In scientific work, we usually find a corresponding organization of this work, also influencing the state of scientific knowledge. The division of scientific labor (specialization in science), the organization of great scientific units (e.g., laboratories), the establishment of scientific bodies and scientific intercourse are extremely important. All these phases, again, are ultimately determined by the economic and technical conditions; thus, modern chemical laboratories grow with the industrial plants to which they are attached; scientific intercourse becomes more frequent with the greater frequency of economic connections, etc. But technical and economic conditions also "condition" science in another respect. With the rapid expansion of technology, economic conditions and the entire standard of life are constantly changing, resulting not only in a swift growth of science, but in its acceptance of the concept of change as a guiding factor (use of the dynamic method, see chapter iii). Conversely, where technology is conservative and of slow growth, the economic life will also advance but slowly, and the human psychology infers that all things are permanent. Society then marks time and is governed by the principle of permanence. The class characteristics in the various branches of science also present themselves, reflecting either the mode of thought characteristic of the specific class, or the interests of the class. Mode of thought, interests, etc., are, in their turn, determined by the economic structure of society.
Let us give a few of these relations. In ancient times, technology - as we know - developed slowly, with a resulting slow advance in technical knowledge. "This neglect of technology has several causes: in the first place, antiquity was "entirely aristocratic in its attitude. Even prominent artists, such as Phidias, are classed as artisans; they are incapable of bursting through the stone wall " separating the aristocratic circle " from the artisans and peasants. . . A second cause of the slight progress of technical discovery in antiquity is in its slave-holding system " We therefore find a lack of any impulse to develop the machine as a substitute for manual labor " Science " was dead and the interest in technical problems, except for a few curiosities, such as water-clocks and water-organs, had died out" (Hermann Diels: Wissenschaft und Technik bei den Hellenen, in Antike Technik, Leipzig and Berlin, 1920, pp.31-33). Thence the character of the existing science: "The natural sciences probably arose as a by-product of artisan work. But since such work, as well as any manual work, was despised in ancient society, and as the slaves who observed nature were sharply distinguished from the masters who speculated and worked as amateurs at their leisure, often knowing nature only by hearsay, it is easy to explain much of the naive, vague and mystical nature of ancient natural science" (Ernst Mach: Erkenntnis und Irrtum, Leipzig, 1905, p.95, Mach's italics). In the Middle Ages we have a feeble and primitive technology, with feudal relations in economic life, an entire system of superiors has been elaborated, culminating in the landlord and monarch. It should not surprise us to learn that the dominant thought was not very mobile, resisting all that was new (heresy was punished with burning and quartering), not occupying itself with the investigation of nature, but delving in theological problems. The important problems of discussion were: the bodily size of Adam, whether he had brown or red hair, how many angels could stand on the point of a needle, etc. This immobile, conservative theological (formal, "scholastic") character of the science of the time, entirely opposed to experimental investigation, may be explained by the conditions of the social life, by the technical and economic relations, which ultimately rested on the stage of social evolution. The case became quite different, when capitalist relations began to grow. We now are no longer dealing with a rigid technology, but with one that is rapidly changing, with new branches of production constantly growing up; we now need mechanics, engineers, chemists, and not theologians or knights; warfare also requires scientific knowledge, as well as mathematics. It is natural that this shift in the technical and economic relations also necessarily resulted in a transformation of science: Scholasticism, Latin, Theology, etc., gave way to an experimental investigation of nature, to the natural sciences, to the Realist School. We have here given an example of the general transformation in the content of science. We might, with close study, also trace this transformation in the methods of investigation, the tools of scientific thought, and in many other phases of science.
An example of the influence of the class psychology, and consequently also of the class structure of society, is afforded by the organic theory in sociology, already mentioned by us. Professor R. J. Wipper says the following on this subject: "The comparison of society with an organism, the expression, the `organic connection of the individual with society', as contrasted with the connection in a mechanical society, all these comparisons, formulas, and antitheses were launched by the reactionary publicists of the Nineteenth Century. In setting up this organ as opposed to a mechanism, these publicists were attempting to distinguish their demands sharply from the didactic and revolutionary principles of the previous century (the Era of Enlightenment). `The state is a mechanism', was the old terminology: equal rights for all men, whose totality constitutes the sovereign people; `the state is an organism', was the new slogan: arrangement of men in a traditional social hierarchy, subjection of the individual to a `natural' group, .e., his subordination to the old social authority. Translated into concrete language, the 'organic' relations mean: serfdom, the guild system, subordination of workers to employers, defense of the honor and privileges of the nobility, etc." (Wipper: A Few Observations on the Theory of Historical Knowledge, in the collection Two Intelligentsias, Moscow, 1912, pp.47, 48, in Russian.)
We give below a few additional data on the history of mathematics, since it is commonly assumed that mathematics, being a purely contemplative science, has nothing in common with practical life. We take them from the very important work of M. Cantor (Vorlesungen über die Geschichte der Mathematik, Leipzig, 1907, vol. i). Mathematical knowledge arose among the Babylonians, developing on the basis of surveying, measuring the cubic contents of vessels, commercial arithmetic, and the need of a precise division of time (the calendar) into years, days, hours, etc. The original mathematical instruments were the fingers. Later, calculating machines: a rope with little rods (Sumerian: tim) in geometry; later, an instrument recalling the astrolabe. Mathematical study was closely connected with religion, the numerals at first indicating the gods, their celestial precedence, etc. Mathematics attained a high state of development among the Egyptians; the ancient mathematical "Calculation Book of Ahmes" (its precise title is: "Rules for obtaining a knowledge of all obscure things " of all secrets which are contained in objects") contains such headings as: "Rule for Calculating a Round Granary", "Rule for Calculating Fields", "Rule for Making an Adornment", etc. (ibid., pp.58, 59). Arithmetical and occasionally algebraic operations are illustrated by means of problems clearly indicating the conditions of practice. This practice involves: distribution of grain, distribution of rye, calculation of receipts, etc. " (p.79 et seq.). The concluding statement of this mathematical primer clearly shows its connection with agriculture; we read: "Catch vermin, mice, gather fresh weeds, numerous spiders, beg (the god) Ra for warmth, wind, high water" (p.85). The fingers were obviously the first calculating instruments, later a sort of board (with knotted twine, as in the case of the Peruvians). The basis of geometry was surveying; besides problems in the measurement of fields, Ahmes also has problems for calculating the volume of granaries and the amount of grain they may hold (p. 98). The Greek historian Diodorus writes of the-Egyptians: "The priests teach their sons two kinds of writing, the so called sacred writing and a common writing. They diligently study geometry and arithmetic. For the river (the Nile) changes the country considerably each year, thus producing much litigation concerning boundaries between neighbors; such divisions cannot be adjusted without direct measurements made by a geometer. Arithmetic serves them in their household affairs" (p.303, my italics, N. B.). The astronomical, geometrical and algebraic rules were first connected with religious rites; they were sacred mysteries in which only a select few were initiated. The so called "harpedonapts" (rope-weavers, or literally, rope-knotters) possessed the trade secret of setting the rope, of placing it at the proper angle with the meridian, etc. (In fact, in general, the angles and sides of pyramids, the arrangement of their parts, had a certain sacred astronomical-scientific meaning, which was probably imparted to the "sons of the priests".)
Among the Romans, geometry advanced with the needs of landed property, which was so holy that even the gods possessed it. Mathematics attained its highest development ("exceptional period," according to Cantor). This exceptional condition of development was due to the presence of two practical problems: the construction of the calendar (the so called Julian Calendar; Julius Caesar himself wrote a book on the stars, De astris), and the great survey of the Roman Empire. The latter problem was solved under Augustus, the great Greek engineer and mathematician, Hero of Alexandria, being invited to conduct the work; for the first time a complete map of the entire empire was compiled. We later find, in Columella, a consideration of mathematics in its relations with agriculture; in Sextius Julius Frontinus, a treatment of mathematics as applied to the calculation of aqueduct tubes (the important mathematical symbol p, to represent the ratio between circumference and diameter of the circle). In the so called Codex Arcerianus (a legal-scientific reference work for administrative officials of the Roman Empire, in the Sixth and Seventh Centuries, A.D.), we find a number of articles on field-surveying for purposes of taxation (Cantor, ibid., p.454).
The development of arithmetic was due chiefly to the demands of trade. Interest calculations, according to Horace an accomplishment of daily use, calculations of inheritance bequests, in accordance with the complicated Roman legislation, merchants' calculations - they were the motives underlying the evolution of arithmetic.
Among the ancient East Indians, we find astronomy, algebra and the beginnings of trigonometry. The conditions in this country resemble those found among other ancient peoples. The mathematical chapters of a learned collected work (the Aryabhattd) give evidence, in the designations and content of the problems, of the living basis of Indian mathematics. A mathematical method, for instance, is suggested in the following verse: "Multiplications become divisions, divisions become multiplications; what was profit becomes loss, what was loss becomes profit" (p.17). In another passage we find the problem: "A sixteen-year-old female slave cost thirty-two nishkas; how much will a twenty-year-old slave-girl cost?" (p.618). Interest calculations follow (at the rate of 50 per cent. per month!); also problems for calculating all kinds of commercial transactions (p. 619), etc. The unknown quantities designated by x, y, x, in present-day algebra, were called by the Indians "coin" (rupaka), the positive quantities were "assets" (dhana or sva); the negative quantities, "liabilities" (rina or kshaya) (p.621). Architecture and its mathematical rules were here also enveloped in mystery, having a specific astronomic and divine significance. The measurement of fields, the construction of palaces and temples, the calculation of contents, were the moving impulse in Indian geometry. Among the ancient Chinese, the evolution of mathematics proceeded along the same general lines, with the class character of science, its monopoly, more sharply expressed (there were three sets of numerals, one for state officials, one for science, one for civilian merchants. In a collection of laws (Tcheou ly), we find the following mathematical offices: the hereditary dignity of court astronomer (fong siang ski) and court astrologer (pao tshang shi); followed by the head-geometer (liong jin), to whom was entrusted the laying out of the walls and palaces of cities, below him a special official for the measuring apparatus (tu fang shi), who performed measurements with an instrument called to küei, namely, a shadow indicator, making the necessary calculations, etc. (p.676).
It is easy to conclude from the above: 1. that the content of science is given by the content of technology and economy; 2. that its development was determined among other things by the tools of scientific knowledge; 3. that the various social conditions now encouraged, now retarded progress; 4. that the method of scientific thought was determined by the economic structure of society (the religious, divinely mysterious character of ancient mathematics, in which even a number sometimes designated a divinity, is a reflection of the feudal-slaveholding order of society with its inaccessible ruler, its priestly officials, etc.); 5. that the class structure of society impressed its class stamp on mathematics (in part merely on the mode of thought, in part on the form of material interest, excluding ordinary mortals from the sacred mysteries). In modern times we find the same causal relations, but they are more complicated and, of course, different in form; the technology and the economic conditions have changed entirely.
Religion and Philosophy. Religion and philosophy are the next forms of the superstructure to which we shall devote our attention.
The thoughts and observations accumulated by human society give rise to the need of grouping and classifying them; science has resulted from this need. But science began, at a very early stage, to be subdivided into various branches, and within these special sciences there proceeded an "adaptation of thoughts to thoughts", ie., a systematization. But, in addition, a need was felt for some thing that would hold together all these "knowledges" and "errors", that would realize an equilibrium between them. Religion and general science had to provide this uniting principle; it is that which had to furnish the answers to the most abstract and general questions: as to the cause of all existence; the nature of the universe; whether the universe is as it seems, or otherwise; the nature of mind and matter; the possibility of a knowledge of the universe; the nature of truth; the ultimate causes of all phenomena; the nature of truth; ultimate causes of all phenomena; the existence of limits to human knowledge, the defining of these limits; and a host of similar questions. Of course, our answer to these questions will influence our conception of any specific phenomenon. If, for instance, all depends on the will of God, who guides the world according to his divine plan, all our knowledge must be arranged in teleological or theological order, and at certain epochs science actually assumed this form. All phenomena then required us to seek the so called "hand of God", the divine purpose. But if the gods are not involved, if a causal relation is the only element of importance, our attitude toward the phenomena of the universe becomes quite different. If philosophy and religion, therefore, are the spectacles through which all facts are viewed at a certain stage in evolution, a study of the conditions underlying the construction of these "spectacles" is very important.
As for religion, we already know that its "essence" is a "faith" in supernatural powers, in miraculous spirits; this "faith" may be in one or more such forces, may be crude, or more intangible and ethereal. This notion of "spirit", "soul", etc., was a reflection of the particular economic structure of society at the time when the "eldest of the clan" - and later, the patriarch - arose (in the patriarchate; the case is essentially the same in the matriarchate), in other words, when the division of labor led to the segregation of administrative work. The eldest of the clan, the guardian of its accumulated experience in production, administers, commands, outlines the plan of labor, represents the active "creative" principle, while the rest obey, execute commands, submit to the plan handed out by their superior, act in accordance with another's will. This mode of production became a pattern for the interpretation of all phases of existence, particularly man himself. Man was divided into "body" and "spirit". The "spirit" guides the "body", and is as much superior to the body as the organizer and administrator is superior to the simple executant. In one passage, Aristotle compares the soul with the master and the body with the slave. All the rest of the world began to be considered in accordance with the same scheme of things: behind each thing, man saw the "spirit" of this thing; all nature became animated with a "spirit", a scientific conception which is known as "animism", from the Latin anima ("soul"), or animus ("spirit"). This conception, once established, necessarily led to the origin of religion, beginning with the worship of ancestors, of the elders of the clan, of supervisors and organizers in general. Their "spirits" or "souls" were naturally considered to be the most intelligent, most experienced, most powerful spirits, capable of giving aid, and on whom all things depended. Here we already have a religion, showing in its origin that it also is a reflection of production relations (particularly those of master and servant) and the political order of society conditioned by them. The whole world was explained in accordance with the pattern used to explain life in society; in all its later history, religion shows alterations proceeding parallel with the alterations in the production relations and the social-political relations; in a society consisting of loosely connected clans, each with its own elders and princes, religion assumes the form of polytheism; should a centralized monarchy arise, it will be found paralleled in heaven, where a single God will mount the throne, as cruel as the ruler of the earth; the religion of a slaveholding commercial republic (for instance, the Athens of the Fifth Century B.C.) will show the Gods organized as a republic, even though the goddess of the victorious city, Pallas Athena, may be given unusual prominence. And, parallel with the hierarchy of officials found in any "respectable" state, we also find a corresponding organization of saints, angels, gods, etc., in heaven, arranged in accordance with their dignity, rank, and order.14) Furthermore, a division of labor is instituted among the gods, as among mundane superiors; one is made a specialist for military affairs (Mars in the Roman mythology, St. George or the Archangel Michael, the Archistrategus, in the Greek Catholic Church); another for commercial matters (Mercury); a third, for agriculture, etc. The parallel even extends to amusing details; for instance, among the Russian saints there are "specialists" (like the spetses in Soviet Russia) for horsebreeding (Frol and Lavr). Any relation of domination and subjection is paralleled by a religion reflecting this relation. As actual life presents cases of war, enslavement, and insurrection, so religion teaches that these also occur in the celestial spheres; devils, demons, princes of darkness, are merely a heavenly parallel to the hostile leaders seeking to destroy the state on earth; in heaven they attempt to undermine the Emperor, the Almighty, and subvert the entire celestial order.
This theory of the origin of religion, which we accept absolutely, belongs, to A Bogdanov, and was first formulated in the Russian handbook: Contributions to Social Psychology. Later special investigations have entirely confirmed this conjecture, which is touched upon by H. Cunow in his book: Ursprung der Religion and des Gottesglaubens, Berlin, 1920. Cunow objects to the conception which would have religion emanate from the various observations of external nature, and rightly declares: "We may indeed, since each conceptual image is determined by the conception at its basis (its sub-stratum), maintain in a certain sense that both the natural environment and the social life determine the religious ideology; but, aside from the fact that the view of nature is in turn largely dependent on the degree to which man has succeeded in technically utilizing the forces of nature in the production of his material life (Herr Cunow should have remembered this when he took up a discussion of the productive forces, N. B.), the natural conceptual image furnished only the external adornments, one might almost say, only the local color for the religious system of thought" (p.20, my italics, N. B.). But Herr Cunow does not pursue this thought to its logical conclusion and falls a victim to the most incredible childishness. Thus, he states (p.24): "All natural and semi-civilized races are naturally (!) dualists." This recalls Adam Smith's designation of "exchange" as an "entirely natural" property of man, or the explanation of the origin of science in man's innate "tendency to causality". According to Cunow, the fact that man has both soul and body is "fortified" by dream-visions and the trance (fainting) condition (something apparently, leaves the body, later returning to it). But only that which is can be "fortified". Perhaps death is a phenomenon calling forth the notion of a "soul" separate from the "body". But Cunow himself gives us examples (pp.22, 23) of savages who do not understand the necessity of natural death, in fact, many tribes (John Fraser reports this of the Australians in New South Wales) ascribe death itself to "the mysterious malignance of an evil spirit" (p.23). In other words, this explains nothing at all. (We may mention in passing that M. N. Pokrovsky derives religion from the fear of death, from those departed, etc. But suppose even the conception that all men are mortal is lacking? It is obvious that Pokrovsky considers "natural" or primitive what is really a historical category, historical in its origin.) In Cunow's mind, religion evolves as follows: Beginnings of a spirit worship, then totem worship (totems are the birds, animals, plants, that were once the coats of arms of the tribes) and ancestor worship. But in almost all of the examples mentioned by Cunow, his "most primitive" spirits are the spirits of ancestors. In his chapter on "the beginnings of spirit worship", Cunow writes: "Only the spirits of close relations or, at any rate, of members of the same horde are regarded as well disposed. And not always even these; the spirits of the dead of strange hordes and tribes are all considered as hostile" (pp.39, 40). The name "Father" is given to the spirit of either parent (p.40), to that of grandfather and great-grandfather (p.41), to any spirit at all (p.41), etc. Cunow gets nowhere by this method. On p.6 he accepts the formula that religious impressions are called forth by the "impressions . . . of social life" (my italics, N. B.). But on p.17 he has already ceased to speak of the social nature of the spirit, now speaking of "its own nature, its own origin, growth and decay, particularly death" (Cunow's italics). But Cunow will surely not dare term birth and death as specifically social phenomena! In reality, what is true of external nature is also true of the biological nature of man: the impressions of all these phenomena, (death, sleep, trance, as well as thunderstorms, earthquakes, will-of-the-wisps, the sun, etc.) furnish a partial material out of which the total is built up from the point of view of dualism; a dualism by no means innate, but arising from the fundamental conditions of social life.
We are giving so much attention to Cunow because his book - on the whole quite valuable, is almost the only Marxian work on the history of religion. Eduard Meyer (ibid., p.87) considers the fundamental cause for the origin of religion to lie in the direct presence of a "causality instinct" and an (also "directly given"!) dualism; man experiences within himself two parallel sets of phenomena in causal relation with each other.: on the one hand, phenomena of consciousness (feeling, conceiving, volition), on the other hand, bodily movements, arbitrary actions, resulting from the above. "The dualism of body and soul is therefore a primitive experience, and not the product of reflection, of however primitive a nature". This marvelous theory "on the one hand" flies in the face of the facts and "on the other hand" explains nothing: it contents itself with a description of that which requires explanation. Professor Achelis comes closer to a correct understanding of the matter (Soziologie, in Sammlung Göschen, Leipzig, 1899, pp.85 et seq.); he considers religious conceptions to be "merely a mirror of social-political conceptions and institutions" (p.91). Even death was able to arouse the attention of the savage, only in society (p.97; Achelis is closer to the truth here than Cunow). All the differentiations in political power and standing, shown by the various concrete forms of organization, are here found faithfully reflected; the chieftains and kings among men are paralleled by the great gods among the lesser spirits, the imposing figure of a more or less generally recognized ruler predominates - quite on the earthly pattern - in the motley crowd of different gods" (p.96). But Achelis' excellent (because it is Marxian) chapter on religion does not prevent him from shamefully distorting Marx, from never mentioning him by name, and from taking off his hat to religion! Here we are obviously dealing with a contradiction between the evolution of science and the interests of the bourgeoisie.
We shall now furnish examples for the correctness of the Marxian standpoint. For the ancient Babylonians (two or three thousand years before Christ), "heaven is a prototype of earth, everything earthly is created in accordance with the heavenly pattern, an indissoluble bond exists between the two" (Professor B. A. Turayev: History of the Ancient Orient, vol. i, p.124, in Russian). The gods are the protectors (spirits) of individuals ("God", "My God", are equivalent to our "patron saints"), of streets, cities, regions, etc. "The divinity is indissolubly connected with the destinies of its city . . its magnitude grew with the expansion of the city territory, if the inhabitants annexed other cities, the divinities of the subject peoples were subjected to the home divinity; on the contrary, the removal of a divine image from the city and the destruction of its temple were equivalent to the political destruction of the city" (p.124.). By the side of the great gods (Anu, Enlil, Ea, Sin, Shamash, etc.), there are also a number of smaller spirits, of celestial (ihihi) and terrestrial spirits (anunaki). Parallel with the formation of the Babylonian monarchy proceeds that of the celestial monarchy: "The rise of Babylon carried in its wake certain changes in its Pantheon. The god of Babylon had to take the place of honor. Such a god was Marduk, whose name was of Sumerian origin. He was the god of the sun in springtime. The dynasty of Hammurabi (a Babylonian king whose code of laws has been found in excavations on the site of ancient Babylon, N. B.) elevated him into a supreme god" (p.127). The following "evolution" took place in the case of the other great gods: "Enlil, king of heaven and earth, handed Marduk " the domination over the four lands of the world and his name as ruler of these lands." As for Ea, Marduk was proclaimed his first-born son, to whom his father had graciously ceded his rights and his power, his role in the creation of the world (p.127). When the Babylonian monarchy, had struck firm root, there "gradually arose" the conception of unified power, manifesting itself in countless visible forms, and accordingly bearing countless different names. The priests began to maintain that the other great gods were merely manifestations of Marduk. "Ninib is Marduk of Strength, Nergal is Marduk of Battle, Enlil is Marduk of Might and Dominion" (p.129). Here is a fragment of a hymn of prayer to the god Sin, excellently characterizing the monarchic construction of the celestial power: "Lord, ruler of the gods, sole great lord in heaven and on earth . . Thou who hast created the earth, founded the temples and given them names, Father, begetter of gods and men " mighty leader, whose mysterious depth has been sounded by no god " Father, Creator of all beings; Ruler, thou who desirest the destinies of heaven and earth, whose bidding is inexorable, who providest warmth and cold, who rulest living things, what god is like unto thee? Who is great in Heaven? Thou alone; and on earth who is great? When thy word resounds in the heavens, the ihihi fall into the dust, when it resounds on earth the anunaki kiss the dust . . . Ruler ! In thy rule on heaven and earth, none is like unto thee among the gods, thy brethren", etc. (quoted from B. Turayev, ibid., p.144). Sin is here depicted almost as a celestial emperor, before whom all appropriate ceremonies are carried out (bending the knee, kissing the ground, etc.). It is self-evident that the official religion always has expressed chiefly the idea of the ruling class, as we may note even in little things. For instance, in the feudal period, when warlike virtues were esteemed highest, and the ruling class, representing particularly the warlike great landlords, only those feel at home in the hereafter who have fallen in battle, while those "for whose gifts in the hereafter no one can have much concern", namely, the poor, fare but poorly.
Max Weber furnishes us with a mass of valuable material concerning the religion of the ancient East Indians, in his interesting investigations on the economic morality of the world religions (ibid., vol. ii, Hinduismus and Buddhismus). Here the economic and vocational stratification of society into classes directly assumes the form of castes, later confirmed by religion. According to the old legal code of Manu, the four chief castes are - the Brahmans (priests, scholars, noble literati), Kshatryas (noble knights, warriors), Vaiçias (farmers, later also usurers and merchants), and Sudras (slaves, artisans, etc.). A caste is thus "always essentially a purely social, eventually a vocational subdivision of the social community" (p.34). The Brahmans and Kshatryas control everything and everybody. The Vaiçias are considered only as a "pure" caste, worthy of handing food or water to the Brahmans. The Sudras are divided into "pure" and "impure"; a noble will accept no water from the latter; no barber may cut the nails of their feet, etc. Below the impure Sudras there are also other "impure" castes; some may not enter any temples; others are so "impure" that even to touch them is defiling; in some cases approaching within sixty feet of such a person is an "impurity" for a noble or other "pure" person. Food is rendered "impure" by the mere glance of the "impure", etc. (p.46); even the excrement of a Brahman may have religious significance (p.62). Thousands of rulers and religious ceremonies support the existing order. Kings and rulers are descended from the Kshatryas; the aristocratic nature of the state extends also to the economic life (price-fixing, taxes in kind, national storehouses), with a monstrous bureaucratic mechanism (p.69). Max Weber considers the following as the two fundamental religious ideas growing out of this soil (pp.117-121): the idea of transmigration (samsara) and the doctrine of reward and punishment (karma). All acts of men are recorded; each has his account, his good and evil actions being balanced: after death, he will be reincarnated in the form to which the balance-sheet of his actions, at the moment of his death, entitles him. He may come to life again as a king, as a Brahman; he may be transformed into a worm in the entrails of a dog. The basis of the most important virtues is the observance of the caste order. The slaves, the impure, must know their place. He who is unfailing, who never forgets his "impurity", may perhaps in the life after death become a noble; but on earth the caste system is not to be tampered with. "Accidents of birth" do not exist; the individual is born into the caste which is his by reason of his conduct in an earlier life (p.120). This doctrine expresses most distinctly the social order and the interests of the ruling classes, but we find this reflection even earlier. For instance, the gods of the Vedas (ancient sacred hymns) "are functional and heroic gods of a type externally similar to those in Homer, and the heroes of the Vedic period are warlike kings dwelling in mountain fastnesses and fighting in chariots, having retinues . . . and with . . . a predominantly cattle-breeding peasantry" (p.29). The characteristic gods are "Indra, god of thunderstorms and therefore (like Yahveh) a warlike and heroic god of impetuous character . . and Varuna, the wise, all-seeing functional god of the eternal order, particularly the legal order" . . . (p.29). It should be remembered that the heavens were originally destined only for the Brahmans and Kshatryas-(cf. p.119). Alongside of the official religion of the ruling classes, there was also a religion of the people, often including, among other things, sexual manipulations. The Vedas designate one of these cults as an "evil custom of the subjected ones". We are, therefore, dealing with class religions. For instance, here is the description of the religious split in Southern India (reminding one somewhat of the schism in the Russian Church): a portion of the lower castes and the royal artisans, coming from other parts, there opposed reglementation by the Brahmans, and thus arose the still existing schism of the Valan-gai and the Iden-gai, the castes "to the right" and "to the left" (p.324). Among the ancient Greeks, the feudal order, and later the slave order, were reflected in heaven, Zeus being the chief of all the gods, Demeter the goddess of agriculture, Hermes, the god of trade and intercourse, Hellos the god of the liberal professions (arts).
The class struggle proceeded along these lines. In Athens, in the Fifth Century (period of highest culture and incipient decay), religion was one of the chief weapons of the ruling class of the commercial "democracy". "In the opinion of Sophocles (one of the "orthodox" poets of the time, N. B.), the entire world will perish if faith ceases, for all the moral and state regulations, according to Sophocles, depend on the will of the gods" (Eduard Meyer: Geschichte des Altertums, vol. iv, p.140). The opposition element of the nobility and the declassed strata make use of a criticism of religion in order to criticize the existing order. The merchant democracy imposes the death penalty for expressions of doubt as to the existence of the gods.
The ancient Slavs present the same picture. Ancestor worship, worship of tribal gods, of house-gods, of vocational gods, are found here also. The most important national god was that of the traders and noble warriors, simultaneously also god of thunder: Perim. Paradise was reserved for departed princes and their retinue; there was no place for ordinary mortals (M. N. Nikolsky: Primitive Religious Faith and the Origin of Christianity, in Pokrovsky's History of Russia vol. i, in Russian; Nikolsky himself finds the origin of religion in the fear of the departed, etc.). Let us now consider the modern forms of the Christian religion. The Russian "Orthodox" Church was a precise reflection of Byzantine-Muscovite absolutism. God is the emperor; the Mother of God the empress; St. Nicholas the Wonder-Worker and the other popular saints are his ministers of state. Under them is an entire nation of officials (angels, archangels, cherubim, seraphim, etc.). Due division of labor exists between these heavenly courtiers. Saint Michael is Commander-in-Chief; the Mother of God is first lady of the court; Saint Nicholas is principally the god of fruitfulness of the soil; Saint Pantelemon is a sort of medicine-man; the victorious Saint George is the divine warrior; etc. The more distinguished saints have finer honors: better halos, fairer raiment, sacrifices. etc. The class struggle repeatedly assumed religious forms in Russia (schisms; the sects of the Stundists, the Flagellants, Molokans, etc.). We cannot pursue this subject here, but merely point out that the Russian designations for divinity distinctly indicate the true origin of these precise notions of godhood: "Lord" (Gospod) is practically the same as gospodin ("master"); "God" (Bog) has the same root as bogaty ("rich"). Ruler, heavenly father, judge, father, etc., such are the names of the feudal-noble monarch who looks upon the people as his slaves. Absolutism had good reason to be content with the "Orthodox" Church.
Religion, as a super-structure, consists not only of a system of ideas that have been fitted into a pattern, but like science it also has a corresponding personal organization (ecclesiastical organization) and a system of special methods and rules in the worship of God (the "services": "liturgy", high mass, low mass, with many ceremonials, conjurations, magic formulas and a great number of unintelligible magic incantations), the god's cult.
This phase of the religious superstructure is also indissolubly bound up with the course of social life. "The Church has at every epoch reproduced and repeated contemporary society within itself, in its economic and cultural traits. In the period of the feudal magnates, the church was a feudal magnate, while democratic elements and the forms of financial economy were expressed by the Church in the period of the rise of the cities", etc.15) The original form of the professional clergyman was the sorcerer, mountebank, clairvoyant, prophet, soothsayer, etc., whom Eduard Meyer considers as the earliest social classes known to us. In general, the highest class of priests were a portion of the ruling class, reflecting its division of labor, some of the rulers becoming military leaders, others priests, others legislators, etc. It does not surprise us to find the Church "reproducing and repeating contemporary society".
The dominant church also constitutes an economic organization whose economic conditions are a portion of the general economic conditions of society as a whole. "Thus, we learn from the legal code of laws of Hammurabi, king of Babylonia, that the Temple of the god Shamash executed many transactions and usually collected 20 per cent. interest, the rate rising.to 33¯ per cent. and even to 40 per cent. in the case of loans on grain.16) In the Middle Ages, the Roman Catholic Church was a veritable feudal kingdom with a tremendous economic system, imposts and taxes (the so called "tithes") and administrative mechanism. Similarly, the monasteries and lavras (groups of monasteries) in Russia accumulated immense wealth; characteristically enough, the magnificent edifice of the Moscow Stock Exchange belonged to the Troitsa-Sergius Lavra. The Church, in addition to serving as a pacifier of the masses, restraining them from violations of the established order of things, itself was and still is a portion of the exploiting machinery, constructed according to the same general plan as the larger exploiting society.
Society, except in its initial stage, was always class society; its production relations were those of domination and submission; its political system was a reflection and an expression of this condition. Its religion justified this condition and secured its acceptance by the masses, sometimes by very skilful means (as in the case of the Hindoo doctrine of reincarnation and compensation, discussed .above). But this conciliation did not always last; the oppressed classes, unable to free themselves entirely from the religious mode of thought, would set up their own religion in opposition to the orthodox religion; so called "heresies" arose in opposition to the orthodox Church doctrine; we now have an official Church and also special religious groups of "dissenters", sometimes organized illegally and conspiratively, with priests and prophets of their own, who are also their political leaders.
A short time ago, such a view of religion and the church would have been considered as downright blasphemy, but even bourgeois investigators who have made a special study of the subject now accept this view. One of the best modern students of religion, Max Weber, arrives at the following conclusion with regard to Asiatic religions: "On the whole we observe everywhere the same group of cults, schools, sects, orders of all kinds, which is also characteristic of occidental antiquity. Of course, the competing tendencies were not looked upon with equal favor by the temporary majority in the ruling classes, or by the political powers. There were orthodox and heterodox persons, the former including a number of more or less legitimate schools, orders, and sects. Particularly important for us is the observation that they were distinguished from each other socially. In the first place, . . . according to the strata of society in which they existed; in the second place, however, . . . . according to the species of salvation ministered to the various strata of their adherents. We find the former case, where, for instance, an upper social class that rigidly condemns the entire religion of redemption is opposed by popular soteriologists 17) among the masses, as was typical of China. But we also find the various social strata following different forms of soteriology." 18) As an example of the class struggle waged under a religious flag, we may take the so called (Protestant) Reformation, the first onslaught of certain classes on feudal rule and its expression in Western Europe, the Roman Catholic Church. The ruling princes all sided with the Pope; the petty provincial nobility and the bourgeoisie with the moderates, headed by Luther; the artisans, semi-proletarians and a portion of the peasants joined the extreme sects (Anabaptists, etc., sometimes not without an element of communism). The religious struggle, slogans, groups of adherents, of the various tendencies were a precise reflection of the struggle, the aspirations, and the alignments in the socialpolitical field.
The religious superstructure is thus determined by the material conditions of human existence; its nucleus is the reflection of the social-political order of society. Other ideas group themselves about this nucleus, but their simple axis remains the social structure as transferred to the invisible world, and furthermore, as viewed from a specific class standpoint. "Soul" is here also a function of social "matter".
The following objection might be raised in the case of capitalist society: while religion continues to exist in that society-throughout Europe in the form of monotheism - the capitalist social order has different forms of bourgeois domination in politics (monarchy, republic)., and while production relations are based on domination and submission, they are not monarchic in character; the capitalist is a monarch in his own factory, but in society the class of capitalists usually does not operate through a single person. The Marxian theory affords, however, the only possible explanation of the religious forms of our day; the apparent contradiction above mentioned is easily disposed of.
In feudal society, the monarchs and princes and officials under them had control of the semi-natural economy (economy in kind) but under capitalism we have a powerful, new, impersonal regulator, of elemental nature: the market, with its incalculable caprices, exalting some and destroying the lives of others, playing with men as a blind, irrational inscrutable force. "What is our life? A trifle; let the luckless dog bemoan his lot," says the poet; divinity now distributes the lots. The Greeks and Romans already had their Parcae, their Moira, their Ananke ("necessity"), a compulsory force superior even to the gods; this conception was associated with the growth of exchange relations and the consequent commercial wars which endangered the very existence of Greece. The gods (the individual God also) have not always been disembodied spirits; they were fond of eating and drinking, they cohabited with women, assuming the form of a dove for the purpose, in the case of the "Holy Ghost". (In Greece, where homosexual practices were 'frequent, Zeus adopted the shape of an eagle in his intercourse with the boy Ganymede.) But the economic evolution which brought about an economy based on exchange and undermined the feudal political system, not only plucked from the god his eagle's and dove's feathers, but deprived him of his beard, his mustaches, and the other attributes of his previous incarnations. The pious bourgeois now believes in God as an unknown, unknowable, divine power on which all things depend, but with no external relation with man: the divinity is a spirit, not a crude aboriginal form. The condition may be stated as follows: economy is characterized, on the one hand by a relation of domination and submission, and on the other hand by unorganized exchanged relations; the preservation of religion at all is due to the former circumstance, while the latter explains the meagre and fleshless character of God today.
But we must not forget that we are here considering only the fundamental ideas of religion. The subsidiary notions must always be explained from the peculiar conditions of development.
In concluding our consideration of religion, we must not fail to point out that the proletariat - holding our view of religion - is faced with the necessity of actively combating it. Hermann Gorter, in his book Der historische Materialismus, not only departs from philosophical materialism, but takes a purely petty bourgeois and opportunistic view of the attitude which would regard religion as every man's private affair. His view of this attitude is that it is equivalent to our paying no attention to religion, which will disappear of itself. But nothing "disappears of itself" in society; as early as in the days of Marx, we find the latter, in a brilliant essay (Critique of the Goths Program),19) poking fun at the Gorter view of "religion a private matter". Marx considers this slogan to mean merely that the workers must demand of the bourgeois state that it shall not poke its police nose into things that do not concern it; but it by no means signifies that the workers are to be "tolerant" of all the remnants of the wretched past, of all the powers of reaction. We may not regard Gorter's point of view on this subject as at all revolutionary or communist; it is a genuinely Social-Democratic point of view.
We now turn our attention to Philosophy, which is a meditation on the most abstract questions, a generalization of all knowledge, a science of sciences. When the sciences had not yet developed or been differentiated from each other, philosophy and religion (from which it had not yet parted company) also embraced purely scientific questions, including that fragmentary knowledge of nature and man that was available at the time. But even after the various sciences began to exist independently, philosophy still retained a field of its own, namely, the common element of all the sciences and particularly the subject of man's knowledge and of its relation to the world, etc. Philosophy must coordinate science in spite of the tatter's manifold subdivision; must furnish a common framework for all the things that are known, serving as a foundation to the total view of life (Weltauffassung). At the beginning of this book, we discussed the question of causality and teleology, which is not specifically a question of physics, or political economy, or philology, or statistics, but a universal concern of all the sciences: a philosophical question; similar is the question of the relation between "mind" and "matter", in other words, "thought" and "being". The individual sciences do not give special attention to this question, but it concerns them all, as do also tech questions as: do our senses correctly reflect the outer world? does this world exist as such? what is truth? are there limits, or not, to our knowledge? etc. As each science classifies and systematizes the ideas connected with its domain, so philosophy continues to assemble and systematize our total knowledge from a single point of view, thus creating an orderly structure of the whole. Philosophy might therefore be said to occupy the highest place in the human spirit and it is more difficult to trace its earthly and material origin than in the case of other subjects. Yet here again we may ascertain the same basic law of nature: the final dependence of philosophy on the technical evolution of society, the level attained by the productive forces. Inevitably, we here encounter a complicated form of such dependence, for philosophy does not issue forth directly from technology, being separated from the latter by a number of links. A few examples will make this clear. We have stated that philosophy systematizes knowledge, the general results of the individual sciences; it therefore is directly conditioned by the stage at which these sciences stand; if for any cause the social sciences develop, philosophy will shade off in that direction; but if, at the given time, the natural sciences engage the general attention, the fundamental note of philosophy will be quite different. These results are produced by the social psychology, the general mental attitude, prevailing in the given time and place, which is in turn an expression of the alignment of classes, the conditions of their existence; these "conditions of existence in general" are governed by the situation of the classes in the social economy, and the latter is the result of the given level of the productive forces. We thus find a number of links interposed between the productive forces (technology) and philosophy.
If a certain philosophic doctrine is gloomy in its nature (a pessimistic philosophy), or asserts the impossibility of all knowledge, or the vanity of all things, their frail and transitory nature, we must look for an explanation to the current psychology from which such a philosophy is born. Detailed investigation will show that such gloomy thoughts do not arise independently, but that they must express a defeat of some section or class of society, or of all classes of society; there seems to be no escape, the love of life has been lost; a gloomy philosophy is the product of this mood. Or, suppose a certain society is involved in a passionate struggle between the classes and their parties; this condition will be reflected in the philosophy of the period, for man does not lead a double life: it is the same man or the same class that is engaged in the political struggle and cogitating on the "final cause" of things. Such social struggles will place their stamp on the psychology and be reflected in the "sublimest" constructions. Or, if we assume a society whose tempo has become excessively slow: life creeping along monotonously day by day; today another yesterday, tomorrow another today, etc.; tradition, routine, time-honored precedent, control all things; no changes in technology, in social life, in science; men die, other men are born, with thoughts precisely like those of their predecessors, etc. Such a rigidity of a whole society will necessarily cause its philosophy to be based in general on the notion of immutability, of permanence. The causal chain may be traced back as follows: a philosophy of inertia; a science of inertia; a social psychology of inertia; a technology of inertia. Examples might be multiplied, but we consider that the ultimate dependence of philosophy on the social economy and technology has been proved.
The entire history of philosophic thought will support the above.
In ancient Greece, usually considered the classic home of philosophy, the earliest philosophical systems arose in the Ionic commercial cities. These cities lay on the great maritime routes between Asia Minor and Europe; the meshes of economic relations with Egypt also centered here. More than anywhere else in the world as then known (Sixth and Fifth Centuries, B.C.), trade, artisan work, and slave industry - particularly trade - were developed here. Together with economic intercourse with other countries, there was an exchange of ideas, influence of Babylon, Egypt; "cultural life" flourished. We have the beginnings o£ the natural sciences, astronomy, geometry, arithmetic, medicine. On this basis, the first philosophical systems also grew up: so called natural philosophy, i.e., a philosophy connected with the natural sciences, its task being to find the natural basis of all being. The Ionic school (Thales, Anaximander, Anaximenes, and their disciples) sought the unity of matter now in water, now in air, now in infinity, etc. In addition to their observations on the "essence of things", we find many scientific observations among these philosophers; Anaximander, for example, devised a geographical map that remained in use for some time. In the Ionic school, philosophical thought was not yet separated from scientific observations connected with practice. We then find a growth of wealth, its accumulation, an increase of slave labor, of parasitism in the higher classes of society; simultaneously, an increased contempt for labor, for the life of the worker, for production, for a direct engaging in trade (not through employees); all this retarded the development of scientific technical thought, transforming philosophy into a thoroughly unworldly "speculation". But it does not follow that philosophy therefore "developed out of itself"; it continued to be shaped and conditioned by the social life. For instance, let us consider the philosophy of one of the greatest Greek philosophers, Heraclitus of Ephesus; he was born in a rich commercial city which had passed through many tribulations (wars, civil wars, etc.). "In the Era of Tyrants, Ephesus was as much torn by internal dissension as any other Ionic city" (Edward Meyer, ibid., p.216). The commercial aristocracy had struck deep roots here and was politically dominant over the agrarian aristocracy. Heraclitus was of an old noble family, which had retained feudal-royal traditions, "and he was, if not a partisan of the aristocrats, yet a fanatical opponent of the democracy, of rule by the blind mob" (p.217). Being a counter-revolutionary, he shunned politics himself, and he even expounded his philosophy in a particularly obscure, semi-conspirative language. "One is worth tens of thousands for me, if he is the best one," he wrote. "What manner of sense and reason have they (the present rulers, N. B.)? They run after minstrels and permit the mob to teach them, since they know not that most men are evil and few good. Rather than all other things, the best choose a single thing, namely, eternal fame among mortals; but the mob feed themselves like cattle" (p.218). It is to this principle of the persecuted aristocracy of birth that we must trace the philosophy of Heraclitus, born among turbulent transformations and dissensions. Society, torn by many conflicts, nevertheless exists as a whole, with all its contrasts and confusions. Such is the universe also. The essence of each thing consists in the fact that it is a whole and not a whole, concordant and discordant, constructive and destructive, one consisting of all and all of one . . . . It is precisely in these contrasts that we have the unity, the "essence of things" (p.220). It is folly to speak of peace when there is no peace; one cannot have peace when the enemy prevails. Therefore: "War is Father and King (!) of all things, he has made some men gods, others men, some slaves, others free men." "Homer, who wished to see struggle (eris) eliminated from among gods and men, was not aware that he was thus renouncing all new birth" (p.220). It is absurd to speak of peace when all is in commotion and change. As a matter of fact, there is nothing rigid and immutable. "We cannot step into the same river, for ever different water flows along." We hear it said everywhere that. the present order is good, but truth is relative. "The ocean is the purest and the impurest water, potable and beneficent for fishes, non-potable and ruinous for men" (p.220). It matters not that merchants and democratic upstarts now rule the city; we must not regard only the surface of things, but must penetrate below the surface: "The sense is deceived; even the eye, a better witness than the ear" (p.219). Changes are constantly maturing in life; what exists must perish. "Fire lives through the death of Earth, Air through the death of Fire; Water lives through the death of Air, Earth through the death of Water." Not only are the classes constantly succeeding one another, but social things also are constantly changing place. "Everything is exchanged against fire, and fire against everything, as commodities against gold and gold against commodities" (p.221). The essence of society is this substance of gold, which can purchase everything; the omnipresent and impenetrable power of gold. Therefore, Fire, the incarnation of this force, is the essence of things, the life-giving force, from which all else emanates. "The life spirit also, the soul, is Fire and warmth." Market, competition, war, are elemental in nature; they are a compulsory and omnipotent fate. Therefore God also is not a human being with curly hair, but a fleshless, inevitable universal law; "the predestined compulsion of fate (eimarmeun auaukh), imposing its eternal regulations, its `measures' on all things, which they may not exceed without falling forfeit to the Erynnyes, the hand maidens of justice." But divinity, reason, Logos, fate, ruling the world, will ultimately reestablish justice, which has been crushed to earth; the day of judgment will come when "Fire will fall upon all things and seize and judge them." "Dike (Justice) will take hold of the architects and witnesses of falsehood" (p.222).
We can thus see the factors of the social life of his times peering through the philosophy of Heraclitus, woven in a peculiar pattern: the nature of the economy developing under the banner of gold, the class struggle, the aristocracy as an opposition party, the hope for a better future, words of encouragement, faith in victory, a support for this faith in the fact that all things are changing, the assumption of an impersonal destiny and a mysterious Reason ruling the world - these reflections of the laws of a commercial world, with competition and warfare, rejecting productive labor; the aristocrats by birth, hating the mob; the traditions of the nobility and the feudal warrior caste, etc., etc, These are the social roots of Heraclitus' philosophical constructions. Quite characteristically, while Heraclitus, a member of the opposition and representing the aristocracy, and therefore not interested in preserving the existing order of things, was defending the principle of change, of contradictions, of struggle, of dynamics, the philosophers of the other - the ruling-school - were with equal vigor defending the principle of immutability and permanence. The greatest of these philosophers was Parmenides. Anaxagoras, a close associate of the leader of the Athenian commercial democracy in the Fifth Century, Pericles, and the official state philosopher of Athens, so to speak, made a very ingenious attempt to shift the center of gravity of this passionate philosophical dispute. "The Hellenes," he taught, "have no right to speak of rising and passing away, for existing things clearly show that what is present now is produced by mixture and elimination" (Eduard Meyer, ibid., p.235). In other words, Aiiaxagoras represents the point of view of gradual evolution; which is precisely what we should expect from the social position of his class. Anaxagoras, by the way, among his other ideas, also did much to advance the atomic theory.
We cannot dwell in detail here on Greek philosophy. It was manifestly incapable of finding a solution by making it up of whole cloth and elaborating intangible impressions of social life, which was meanwhile becoming more and more confused. The extremely complicated struggle and the very restless condition of the leading cities produced numerous currents, disputes, and criticisms; the social ties, standards, and traditional morals were falling into decay. Men "were becoming confused". Parallel with this tendency, the whole of philosophy accomplished a sudden shift in the direction of a so called practical philosophy, i.e., considerations concerning the nature of man, morality, etc. Instead of investigating the essence of the universe, attention began now to be given to the essence of man, of standards of conduct, of duty, of "good" and "evil"; on the one hand we have the sophists, subjecting everything to their criticism, on the other hand Socrates. We have already mentioned, at the beginning of this book, the greatest philosopher of slaveholding antiquity, a man of outspoken "Black Hundred" tendencies, Plato, with his perfected system of philosophical idealism, incorporating, at one and the same time, pure reason and the Good as well as the big stick for the slaves. We may take another example, from the period of the decay of the Roman Empire, simultaneously a period of decay of the entire ancient Mediterranean civilization. The cities grew with tremendous rapidity; commodities were accumulated by plundering colonies and exploiting slaves; the ruling class was absolutely parasitic, as were also the great numbers of free lumpenproletariat, corrupted by state alms; the slaves were oppressed as never before; such, in broad outline, is the internal situation. Seneca, a philosopher of the Stoic school, a rich man, imparts the philosophy of life to his friend Lucilius: "What is there that can tempt you away from death? You have tasted all the enjoyments that might make you hesitate; none of them are strange to you; you have had your fill of all. You know the taste of wine and of honey; is it not a matter of indifference to you whether one hundred or one thousand bottles of them pass down your throat? Also, you have tasted oysters and crabs. Thanks to your splendid living, nothing remains untasted for you in the years that are to come. And can you not separate yourself from these things? What is it you may still have to regret? Friends? Home? Do you really value them so highly that you would sacrifice yourself for them to the extent of postponing your supper-hour? Oh, had it been in your power, you would have extinguished the sun itself, for you have accomplished nothing worthy of the light. Confess it: you are hesitating to die, not because you will be sorry to leave the Curia, the Forum, or the beauties of nature. You are merely sorry to leave the flesh-market, and yet you have already tasted all its supplies." (Seneca: Letter to Lucilius, here quoted from N. Vassilyev: The Question of the Decay of the Western Roman Empire, Transactions of the University of Kazan, vol. 31, in Russian). This is a philosophy of absolute individualism, of persons recognizing no social ties; a pessimism, an advocacy of death, a fruitless criticism of all social institutions, a worship of abstract reason which despises all things; such is the philosophy of the time. Is it not a faithful reflection of the psychology of an over-sated, decaying, parasitic class, which has lost all taste for life? This psychology is an outcome of the social-economic conditions prevailing at the time.
In the Middle Ages, the dominant system in Europe was that of feudalism, with a huge hierarchy of subjection; the Church also was constructed along these lines. Standards of law, manners, religion, all these forms of the superstructure were expressive of this system and served to consolidate it. It is obvious how significant a role must here be played by religion. For the foundation of religion is a relation of domination and subjection; consequently, particularly on the firm foundations of feudalism, a system of religious, spiritual serfdom necessarily and inevitably flourished. Therefore, philosophy also is distinctly religious in tone; it served as the maidservant of divinity (ancilla theologiae).
The typical orthodox philosopher of the Middle Ages, Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274; his principal work is the Summa Theologiae, "Theological Encyclopedia") clearly reflects the feudal conditions in his philosophy. The world is divided into two portions: the everyday visible world and the "forms inhabiting it". The highest and "purest" form is God. In addition to God, there are certain particular, specific "forms" (formae separatae), arranged according to certain degrees of dignity or rank: angels, the souls of men, etc. This entire philosophical system is based on the idea of constancy, of tradition, of authority. "Step by step, as the bourgeoisie developed, there also developed an immense advance of science; astronomy, mechanics, physics, anatomy, physiology, again received attention. The bourgeoisie needed, in order to develop its industrial production, a science that would investigate the properties of natural bodies and the mode of operation of natural forces. Hitherto, however, science had been only the humble handmaiden of the church. . . Now science rebelled against the church; the bourgeoisie needed science and joined in the rebellion" (Friedrich Engels: Über historischen Materialismus, Die Neue Zeit, 1893, vol. ii, part i, p.42). These needs for further growth were even reflected in cases where an agrarian aristocracy was at the helm. Thus, in England, the first harbinger of the great upheaval in the entire conception of the universe, and consequently in philosophy also, was Lord Francis Bacon (1561-1626). Bacon held that nature should be studied in order to be controlled. For this, we need above all "the. art of invention" (ars inveniendi); the old scholastic nonsense, and even Aristotle, must be thrown into the scrap-heap. Now, "the old is done for; reason is victorious" (vetustas cessit, ratio vicit). Marx considered Bacon as the founder of English materialism. "For him, natural science was true science and the physics of the senses was the most distinguished part of natural science . . . . In his teaching, the sciences cannot deceive us; they are the source of all knowledge. Science means experimental science; it consists of the application of a rational method to that which is perceived by the senses. Induction, analysis, comparison, observation, experiment, are the principal conditions for a rational method. Among the properties inherent in matter, motion is the first and foremost" But Marx also discovers many "theological inconsistencies" in Bacon. (Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels: Die heilige Familie, 1845, pp.201 et seq., also quoted by Engels in Über historischen Materialismus, cited above.) In view of the period and the point of view of Bacon's class, we could not expect any other condition.
French materialism in the Eighteenth Century declared war most emphatically on the feudal conception of the universe, in the field of philosophy, just as the bourgeoisie was declaring war on feudal society in the field of politics and economy. This materialism supported and energetically expounded the doctrine of the English philosopher Locke, according to which man has no "innate ideas", all the psychical elements in man being merely a "modification" of feeling; this phase of the doctrine is termed sensualism. Feeling is declared a property of matter. Simultaneously, Locke believed in the omnipotence of human reason and of "rationalism", the whole being permeated with an individualism that is also found expressed in the field of "practical philosophy" (the "rights" of the individual, the "freedom" of the individual, etc.). This philosophy, extremely revolutionary in its time, is an outgrowth of the revolutionary position of the bourgeoisie of the period, which was destroying the feudal world, its traditions, its Church, its religion, and its theological and conservative philosophy. The revolutionary attitude of the bourgeoisie may easily be explained by the social economy of the Eighteenth Century and by the conditions of the productive forces, which had encountered, in the feudal system, a great obstacle in their development, and which, operating through the bourgeoisie, the petty bourgeoisie, the artisans, and the semi-proletarians, were obliged to break down these barriers.
In order to make the dependence of philosophy on the course of social life even clearer, we shall consider as our final example the philosophy of the bourgeoisie in the period of its decay, after the imperialist world war of i9t4-1918. The great crisis of the war, the crisis in economy, the social crisis which is bringing about a collapse of capitalism before our eyes, shattering its entire cultural structure to its very foundations, is producing among the ruling classes a psychology of despair, of profound skepticism, of pessimism, a lack of confidence in one's own forces, in the power of the intellect in general; this results in a return to mysticism, a seeking for the mysterious, an inclination toward occult rites and ancient religions, by the side of a reawakening of the modern form of parlor magic, spiritualism. In many of its traits, this philosophy recalls that of the ruling classes in the declining period of the Roman Empire. We shall close with a few specimens of this philosophy, characteristic of the collapse of capitalism.
Paul Ernst (Der Zusammenbruch des deutschen Idealismus, Leipzig, 1918) is our first example. Ernst offers a criticism of the capitalist organization which led to war; this blind organization oppressed the individuality of man. "Whence can a change come? There is but one way: humanity must bethink itself of itself; it must become aware of the fact that the most distinguished task imposed upon it by God (!) is that of setting goals for itself and its actions" (p.400). Ideal wisdom, says Ernst, is found in China! "We must attain clarity on the point that the foundations for the sufferings of men do not lie in institutions, but in the attitudes creating institutions " Why has capitalism never succeeded in gaining a foothold in China? For the simple reason that the Chinese loves and honors agricultural work, and always succeeds in obtaining the little parcel of land (!) that he needs, and can produce on it what is required for his simple tastes ". We want nor reforms or revolutions, but an introspective return to true morality" (pp.406, 407). The ultimate source of all the goals are men of a higher order. "The highest of our metaphysical thought we owe to men who lived naked in the for forests in India and nourished themselves on grains of rice, begged by their disciples" (p.418). Therefore, we are to infer, according to Ernst, that the highest forms and methods of knowledge are those devised by men who have sucked the divine wisdom from their own thumbs; the highest forms of life are those of the Chinese peasant and his virtuous spouse. The solution offered by present-day philosophical thinking is: a flight from civilization, which has run into a blind alley.
Hermann Keyserling says in his Reisetagebuch eines Philosophen: "All truth (is) in the last analysis symbolical; the sun more correctly expresses the character of the divine . . .than does the best formulation of a conception. Therefore, all the worshipers of God are right in the eyes of God" (the author is not joking; he is serious! N. B.). "The divine reveals itself to man everywhere in the frame of his intimate prejudices." According to Keyserling, the Hindu fakirs are the ideal in faith and knowledge; for there is no cruder superstition than the belief in the insurmountable character of natural determinism. . . Man is spirit in his profoundest essence, and the more he recognizes this, the more firmly he believes it, the more of his fetters will fall away from him. It is therefore possible that, as in the Hindu myth, perfect knowledge may even overcome death (pp.282, 283). "And he who is perfectly instructed, he who is of spiritual practices, utilizes faith according to his desire as an instrument. So far had gone the greatest among the Indians. . .They knew that all religious formations were of human origin. But they sacrificed now to this god, now to that, devout in their hearts, knowing well that this practice is useful to the soul" (p.284), etc., etc.
Oswald Spengler says in Der Untergang des Abendlandes (München, 1920): "Systematic philosophy is today infinitely remote from us; ethical philosophy has reached its termination. There is still a third possibility, corresponding to Hellenic skepticism, within the Western mentality" (p.63). This is a skeptical history of philosophy. Spengler considers the entire history of humanity and puts the idea of fate in the place of the idea of causality. It devolves upon each society, according to Spengler, to accomplish a cycle, running from youth to age and terminating in death; the European cultural cycle has exhausted its creative powers and is on the downward path. Our task is to predict this downward motion and adapt ourselves to the inevitable.
The bourgeois philosophers, like the over-satisfied Roman higher bureaucrats, and the effeminate noble "sages" make journeys to foreign countries, in quest of men going about naked, in order to learn the great secret. Spengler predicts the fate of the Roman Empire for Europe, but he is reckoning without his host; while his glances have been turned to India and China, he has been blind to the proletariat at home. While in "ancient times" the lower classes were only capably of bringing about the "philosophy" of Christianity, we now have Marxian communism which cannot but gain strength in the ruins of the "Abendland" (occident). This communism has its own philosophy, a philosophy of action and battle, of scientific knowledge and revolutionary practice.
We thus are again led to conclude that philosophy also is not a thing that is independent of social life, but that it is a quantity that changes in accordance with the changes in the various phases of society, i.e., in the last analysis, with the changes in economy and technology.
We shall now take up another order of social phenomena - art. Art is as much a product of the social life as is science or any other outgrowth of material production; the expression "objects of art" will make this apparent. But art is an outgrowth of the social life in the further sense that it is a form of mental activity. Like science, it can develop only at a certain level of productive labor, in default of which it will wither and perish. But the subject of art is sufficiently complicated to justify an investigation of the manner in which it is determined by the course of social life; the first question requiring an answer is: what is art; what is its fundamental social function?
Science classifies, arranges, clarifies, eliminates the contradictions in the thoughts of men; it constructs a complete raiment of scientific ideas and theories out of fragmentary knowledge. But social man not only thinks, he also feels; he suffers, enjoys, regrets, rejoices, . mourns, despairs, etc.; his thoughts may be of infinite complexity and delicacy; his psychic experiences may be tuned according to this note or that. Art systematizes these feelings and expresses them in artistic form, in words, or in tones, in gestures (for example, the dance), or by other means, which sometimes are quite material, as in architecture. We may formulate this condition in other words: we may say, for example, that art is a means of "socializing the feelings"; or, as Leo Tolstoi correctly says in his book, art is a means of emotionally "infecting" men. The hearers of a musical work expressive of a certain mood will be "infected", permeated, with this mood; the feeling of the individual composer becomes the feeling of many persons, has been transferred to them, has "influenced" them; a psychic state has here been "socialized". The same holds good in any other art; painting, architecture, poetry, sculpture, etc.
The nature of art is now clear: it is a systematization of feelings in forms; the direct function of art in socializing, transferring, disseminating these feelings, in society, is now also clear.
What conditions the development of art? What are the farms of its dependence on the course of social evolution? In order to answer these questions, we must analyze an art - we have selected Music for this purpose - into its component parts. Our investigation will show the following elements: 1. the element of objective material things, the musical technology: musical instruments and groups of musical instruments (orchestra, quartette, etc.; the combinations of instruments may be likened to combinations of machines and tools in factories); also, physical symbols and tokens: systems of notation, musical scores, etc.; 2. the human organization; these include many forms of human association in musical work (distribution of persons in the orchestra, the chorus, in the process of musical creation; also, musical clubs and societies of all kinds); 3. the formal elements of music, including rhythm, harmony (corresponding to symmetry in the graphic and plastic arts), etc.; 4. the methods of uniting the various forms, principles of construction, what corresponds to style in some arts; in a broader sense, the type of artistic form; 5. the content of the art work, or, if we are dealing with an entire movement or tendency, the content of all the works; we are chiefly concerned here not with the method of performance, but with its substance, let us say with the choice of "subject" of presentation; 6. as a "superstructure of the superstructure", we may also include, in music, the theory of musical technique (theory of counterpoint, etc.).
Let us now consider the various causal relations between the evolution of music and social evolution in general, which is ultimately based on the economic and technical evolution of society.
First. We shall not again emphasize the fact that art may not flourish before a certain level has been attained in the productive forces of society.
Second. Only in a certain social "atmosphere" may art (and specifically, music) be singled out for development from among the innumerable forms of the superstructure. For example, in discussing the question of technology and art among the Greeks in the Fifth and Fourth Centuries B.C., we found that there was no growth of technical or natural sciences at all, but that philosophical speculation was widespread. There is no doubt that the "superstructure" in general rises at a fast pace if social technology is moving at a fast pace; but there is also no doubt that the superstructure does not move forward (or backward) uniformly; nor does material production advance uniformly; for instance, the manufacture of sausages may not keep abreast of the evolution of the productive forces to the same extent as the construction of locomotives or the production of castor oil. Certain forms of production usually develop much faster than others; in fact some such forms may be entirely absent, for certain reasons. The "superstructure" shows the same conditions: in Athens, in the Fifth Century B.C., technology fared badly, while speculative philosophy flourished. In America, in the Twentieth Century, technology is supreme and philosophy is neglected. Church hymns (a branch of the general field of music) were once universal, but it would be difficult to find many persons today - except a few :moldy old men and pious old women - who are fond of the conventional hymns. The mental "shoots" of society are the highest outgrowth of the superstructure, and we naturally expect that shoot to burgeon that happens to receive the most generous supply of sap. In ancient Athens it was an "ignoble" thing, worthy only of stupid artisans, to concern oneself with an investigation of nature by means of experiment; the disfavor in which the natural sciences were held is easy to understand; it was a result of the class alignment, of the social economy, which in its turn was conditioned by the social technology. Similarly, in the case of music, hymns might be quite important at an epoch when music still the "handmaiden" - as was also philosophy - of religion. But such hymns are as appropriate to a highly developed capitalist society as General Ludendorff's trousers to Father Sergius. The function of music in society is therefore dependent on the state of the latter, on society's mood, means, views, feelings, etc. The explanation of the latter is found in the class alignment and the class psychology, which are ultimately based on the social economy and the conditions of its growth.
Third. The "technique" of music depends in the first place on the technique of production. Savages cannot build pianos; this prevents them from playing the instrument or composing pieces for it. It is sufficient to compare the primitive musical instruments (aside from the natural instrument, the human voice), those developed from horn and pipe, from the needs o£ the chase,20) with the complicated construction of the modern piano, to grasp fully the function of these instruments. "Music is not possible as an independent art until appropriate tools have taken shape and developed: the instruments and their development." 21) "Music can express the gamut of emotions only within the scale of the available instruments."22) The production of such things as the telescope and the piano are a portion of the social material production; it is obvious that musical "technique" (now meaning the instruments) depends on the technique of this material production.
Fourth. The organization of persons is also directly connected with the bases of the social evolution. For instance, the distribution of the members of an orchestra is determined precisely as in the factory, by the instruments and groups of instruments; in, other words, the arrangement and organization of these members is here conditioned by musical technique (in our restricted sense of the word) and, through it, based on the stage in social evolution, on the technique of material production as such. Similarly, the organization of persons in another musical field, let us say, a musical society, is the result of a number of conditions of social life, principally, a love of music (resulting from the social psychology, as above discussed), the opportunities afforded the various classes to indulge this predilection (for instance, the amount of unoccupied time available to the various classes, i.e., the class alignment and the degree of productivity of social labor), which elements govern the number of members, the extent and nature of their activity, the character of the membership, etc. Or, in the case of the creative process, we also find a number of forms for the human relations involved, the oldest of which is the impersonal stage (individual names are not handed down), the so called "folk songs". Here the art work is produced in an elemental manner by thousands of nameless artists. Quite different is the case when the individual artist works "on order", by the command of a prince, king or wealthy man. The case is again different when the artist works as an artisan for an unknown market, on whose caprices he depends. An artistic production may also result when the latter assumes the form of a social service, etc. These forms of human relations are obviously based directly on the economic structure. In the slaveholding system, the musicians were slaves; not so long ago, we still had serf musicians in Russia, performing and composing not to satisfy a market requirement, but at the command of a feudal magnate. Of course, these elements are expressed in the art work.
Fifth. The formal elements (rhythm, harmony, etc.) are also connected with the social life. Many of these elements are already present in prehistoric times, even in the animal kingdom. Karl Bucher says 23) concerning rhythm among horses: "Rhythm springs from the organic nature of man. Every normal use of his animal body he seems to control, as a regulating element of economic utilization of energy. The trotting horse and the laden camel move as rhythmically as the rowing fisherman and the hammering blacksmith. Rhythm awakens a feeling of well-being; it therefore not only renders work easier, but is a source of esthetic pleasure and the element of art to which all persons respond, regardless of their mental nature." Quite true; but rhythm has also developed - as Bucher points out in his work - under the influence of social relations and particularly under the direct influence of material labor (the "workers' songs", like the Russian Dubinushka, arose on the same basis; rhythm here is an instrument of labor organization). In other words, while the formal (such as rhythm) may have arisen in prehistoric times, became man, they do not evolve from within them but under the influence of social evolution.
A further circumstance is worth mentioning. At a certain stage of development, only the simplest rhythms are available to man ("as monotonous as the singing of cannibals"); he has no ear for the complicated rhythm perceived by a man at a different stage of development. A. V. Lunacharsky, in one of his essays on art, says: "From all of the above (i.e., the determining role of economy, N. B.) it by no means follows that . . . the forms of creative work may not have their own immanent psycho-physiological laws; they have such laws and are entirely conditioned by them (my italics, N. B.) in their specific form, while the content is given by the social environment." We learn later on what is meant by this: "The immanent psychological law of evolution in art is the law of complication. Impressions of similar energy and intricacy begin, after a number of repetitions, to exert less and less force on the mind, and to be capable of suggesting a lower intricacy. We experience a sense of monotony, of boredom (`it gets on my nerves'); it follows that every school of art will naturally seek to make more complicated and to enhance the effect of its works" (A. V. Lunacharsky: Further Remarks on the Theatre and Socialism, in the collection Verslziny, p.196 et seq., in Russian). We thus find the "psycho-physiology" contrasted with the "economy"; the "content" is left to economy, the "form" to psycho-physiology. This point of view seems to us to be at least insufficient, if not wrong. As a matter of fact, if we consider the evolution of those elements that we regard as formal, we shall find that this evolution has by no means proceeded at a uniform rate. The music of the savage, the number of harmonious tones produced by him, was very poor; yet, the social evolution itself was not characterized by great speed; manifestly the musical supply lasted for a long time, did not produce "boredom" for a long time. "Antiquity did not know our modern harmony and made use of unison arrangements; it took a long time for it to become accustomed to the octave. . . We have reason to believe that it is only recently that the fourth has been recognized as a harmonic interval" (L. Obolensky: The Scientific Bases of the Beautiful and of Art, p.97, in Russian). Therefore, the formal elements become more complicated as a consequence of the more complicated structure of life for an increasing intricacy of life alters the psycho-physiological "nature" of man. The "crude" hearing of the savage is as much a function of social evolution as is the "fine" hearing of the inhabitants of the great capitalist cities with their extremely delicate nervous organization. The "immanent laws" therefore, are merely another phase of the social evolution. And since the social evolution is conditioned by the evolution of the productive forces, they constitute "in the last analysis" a function of these productive forces. For, man alters his nature in accordance with his influence on the external universe.
Sixth. The type, the style, is also conditioned by the course of social life. It embodies the current psychology and ideology; it expresses those feelings and thoughts, those moods and beliefs, those impressions, those current forms of thought, that "are in the air". Style is not only external form, but also "embodied content with its corresponding objective symbols"; the history of the styles is an expression of the "history of the systems of life".24) "The style of form is a reflex of the social vitality." 25) The religious music of the ancient Hindoo hymns (the Vedas) have not the same "style" or construction as - let us say - a French music-hall song or the battle-song of the revolution, the Marseillaise. These productions are the outgrowth of different environments, different social soils, and their form is consequently different; the religious hymn, the battle-song, the vaudeville song, cannot be composed or constructed in the same way; even their form expresses different feelings, thoughts, and views. This difference is a result of the difference in the situation of the societies or classes involved, and this difference is conditioned by the economic development and consequently, by the state of the productive forces. Furthermore, the style depends also in high degree on the material conditions of the specific work of art (for instance, instrumental music is conditioned by the nature of the instrument) as well as by the method of artistic creation (we have already discussed the organization of persons in music), etc. All these phases likewise depend on the fundamental causal relation in social evolution.
Seventh. The content ("subject"), almost impossible to isolate from the form, is obviously determined by the social environment, as may be readily seen from the history of the arts. It is obvious that artistic form will be given to what is engaging the attention of men in one way or another at the given moment. The creative spirit is not stimulated by subjects that do not hold its attention, but those things that constitute the central interest of society or of its various classes are given treatment, thus reflecting this general interest in the form of "mental labor". "There is indeed a certain moral temperature governing the general condition of manners and minds (des esprits)."26) "The artistic family (Taine here means a specific `school' or tendency in art. N.B.) is situated within a larger community; namely, the surrounding world, whose taste conforms with that of the school. For the state of morals and of mental life is the same for the public as for the artists; the latter are not isolated men." 27) These statements by Taine are entirely correct, but Taine seems incapable of thinking them out to their ultimate conclusions, which would lead him into the acceptance of impious materialistic inferences. We have again and again discussed, in another shape, this question of the "moral of the "milieu", of which Taine speaks; both "mental life" in general, feelings and moods, do not develop out of themselves; we know that this social consciousness is the social being, i.e., the conditions of existence of society and its various parts (classes, groups). These conditions also give birth to the various "tastes". As a result, the content of art is also determined, in the last analysis, by the fundamental natural law character of social evolution; its content is a function of the social economy, and therefore of the productive forces.
Eighth. Musical theory is obviously directly connected with all the foregoing, and therefore "subject" to the movement of the productive forces of society.
We have outlined the fundamental chains of causality that exist in music; they do not at all exhaust the subject; in the first place, probably not all of these relations have been enumerated above, and, in the second place, there is in addition a mutual interaction of all these elements, resulting in a much more complicated and confused pattern, the general outlines of which, however, follow the scheme above indicated. Nor does it follow that the other arts will show precisely the same pattern as we have traced in the case of music. Each art has certain special earmarks: for instance, the material objects involved in singing are reduced to a minimum (there are notes, but the "musical instrument" remains the human voice alone); in architecture the role of the material, the tools, the purpose of the buildings (temple, residence, palace, museum, etc.), is of immense importance; the student must not neglect such distinctions, but we shall always find that the following holds, good: directly or indirectly, art is ultimately determined in various' ways by the economic structure and the stage of the social technology.
At the early stages in its evolution, when human society had barely begun to turn out surplus products, art was in direct contact with; practical material life. The earliest forms of art are the dance and; music, and so much of poetry as was involved in the combination..; The original aim of these arts was to produce a mood of unity, as a preparation for a certain act (a sort of practice or repetition of the: act itself). Among certain "savage" tribes, the "council-dances", the "terrifying war-dances", etc., accompanied by the clapping of hands,` later also by primitive musical instruments, are examples of such dances. Rhythm developed together with work, as a principle of organization, as is excellently shown by Karl Bücher. The "challenging" dance of the New Zealanders may be taken as an example; it is accompanied by terrible grimaces and the utterance of threats (in order to frighten the opponent); also, the dances and songs representing the chase, fishing, etc. A particularly important part is played by the so called work-song, constructed on the rhythm of the work performed, the text being developed from the sound involuntarily ejaculated in the course of this work. The songs of the shepherds, or of the Bedouins as they direct the steps of the camels on their travels through the desert, etc. - these are directly connected with the daily labor of the environment. As society grows, and new ideologies arise, as "civilization", etc., increases, art of course absorbs all these elements and ceases to be directly connected with the material life of production. For instance, as religion develops, music, the dance, etc., become a part of the cult. In Egypt, the ruling classes made a sort of mystery of music; the priests were scholars and musicians; religious music concerned them chiefly; the enslaved masses had their own music "at home, in the fields" (Kothe, ibid., p.11). We find the same condition among the East Indians, whose musicians formed a privileged caste (special families of musicians and singers): among the Assyro-Babylonians, whose conditions required them to wage war more frequently than other nations. Their music is principally military and military-religious in character (as suggested by, the instruments: cymbals, kettle-drums, etc.). The earliest musical works of the Greeks, of which we know, were the work-songs of shepherds, and war songs ("songs of victory"); only later, songs of social and family type (laments on the dead, wedding-songs, etc.): Among the Romans, there were chiefly shepherd and peasant songs (their instrument was the reed, fistula) and war-songs (the loud brass instruments were first introduced by the Romans. the trumpet, tuba; curved horn, lituus; a sort of trombone, buccina, etc.). Similarly, the other forms of art also have their roots in practice. Primitive painting, ornament, has its origin in poetry; for example: the; ornaments in many cases still suggest the earlier combination of pot and woven basket. Furthermore, the beginnings of painting simultaneously serve as the beginnings of writing. The first step in the development of script were drawings set down to aid the memory. The Bushmen, as well as the East Indians, attempt to record certain visible objects on stone. The hieroglyphic inscriptions of the Egyptians, the Mexican symbols, are above all depictions of objects. Tattooing is closely connected with this practice. "The practice of tattooing of words and syllables developed from more primitive forms. The earliest stage was that of pictorial representations on the human body (tattooings), with the purpose not only of securing religious effects (warding off spirits, etc.), but also of making known the tribe, the rank, age, etc., of those marked in this manner" (R. Eisler: AIlgemeine Kulturgeschichte, 3d ed., Leipzig, 1905, p.42). Markings for the purpose of producing terror, and adornments, must also be considered here. Since such adornments had the purpose of causing admiration and producing an impression, they were used chiefly in warfare (cf. Lippert: Allgermeine Kulturgeschichte); they include, for instance, the "war-masks" of Germanic tribes, which were used in war, according to Tacitus (here is the germ of sculpture). Architecture is chiefly "technical" in character, as will be readily understood; originally it amounted merely to the construction of (materially) useful edifices. "The Greek temple and Gothic spire are both merely the permanent representations of useful wooden constructions" (John Ruskin: Lectures on Art, New York: Maynard, Merrill & Co., 1893, p.42). "The lovely forms of these were first developed in civil and domestic building, and only after their invention, employed ecclesiastically on the grandest scale" (ibid., p.141). Of course, the direct influence of production relations made itself particularly noticeable here; in Egypt, the firm construction of the houses with their receding walls, was due to the overflowing of the Nile, as such walls were capable of offering more resistance to the rush of waters. Columns were used as props before the arch and vault were known.
In order to show the dependence of form, and therefore of style, on the social environment, we shall offer a few examples in this field, taking our material chiefly from the interesting investigations of Wilhelm Hausenstein. In the primitive reproductive arts, we may discern two periods: a purely naturalistic period (representing things as they were) on the one hand, and a conventionalized ornamentation and symbolic drawings, with little resemblance to reality, on the other. In the former case, we have drawings of bisons, horses, mammoths, reindeer, scenes of the chase, etc., found on the walls of caves, or drawn on the bones of horses, the teeth of mammoths, or reindeer antlers, etc. In the second period, we have chiefly conventionalized idols and human and animal figures. Max Verworn explains this circumstance as follows: "The palaeolithic hunter of the earlier period did not yet possess, as far as we know, the notion of the soul. " He looked for nothing behind things (i.e., was not yet an animist, N.B.). He had no metaphysics; he concerned himself only with what he perceived, fully resembling the Bushman in this respect." On the other hand, "all tribes among whom the conception of the soul and other religious conceptions have gained a control over life, as among negroes, American Indians, South Sea Islanders, we find extremely ideoplastic (" i.e., symbolic not `naturalistic', or in Verworn's words, `physioplastie', N. B.) art." (Max Verworn: Zur Psychologie der primitiven Kunst, Naturwissenschaftliche Wochenschrift, New Series, vol. vi, Jena, 1907; also quoted by Hausenstein, ibid., p.38). Hausenstein observes that Verworn does not pursue the thought to its conclusion; Hausenstein finds the nucleus of the matter in the fact that the hunter is more an individualist, the peasant more of a collectivist. But the fact of the matter is that "ideoplastic art", like religion, grows with the growth of particular conditions of production, namely, the relation of domination and subjection In the feudal era, this relation attains huge dimensions in production and ; the gulf between the slave and the despot may indicate the extent of this relation. This condition determines the specific style of all feudal eras, has brilliantly analyzed by Hausenstein. The power and domination of the divine despots, of mighty feudal kings, of Pharaohs, their unattainable sublimity, valor, audacity, etc., as opposed to common mortals - this is the essential point expressed in the feudal styles of the Egyptians, Assyro-Babylonians, of the earliest Greeks, Chinese, Japanese, Mexicans, Peruvians, East Indians, as well as in the Romanesque and early Gothic art of Western Europe (Hausenstein: Versuch einer Soziologie der bildenden Kunst, in Archiv für Sozialwissenschaft und Sozialpolitik, May, 1913, pp.778, 779). Literary examples from the epochs mentioned will support this statement. From the legal code of the Babylonian king Hammurabi, whom we have mentioned before, we take the words: "I am Hammurabi, the incomparable king. With the mighty weapon given me by Zamama and Innanna, with the wisdom given me by Ea, with the reason bestowed upon me by Marduk, I have destroyed the enemies to the North (above) and to the South (below), have terminated dissension, have bestowed prosperity upon the laid . . . .The great gods called me . . . . I am the beneficent shepherd . . . . I am Hammurabi, the King of Truth, upon whom Shamash bestowed the quality of justice. My words are good, my deeds incomparable, sublime. . .They are a pattern for the wise, to attain fame" (quoted from Turayev, ibid., pp.114, 115). The following eulogy of a king is found on an Egyptian tomb: "Praise the king in your bodies, bear him in your hearts. He is the god of universal wisdom living in hearts . . . . He is the radiant sun illuminating both the earths more than the disk of the sun; he makes more things green than the great Nile; he fills both the earths with power, he is breath-giving life . . . .The king is sustenance. Multiplication is his lips, he is the begetter of what is, he is Hnum, original Father of man . . . .Battle for his name," etc. (ibid., p.325). Meanwhile, "in good society", the lower stations were despised. An Egyptian father, giving paternal advice to his son, wants the latter to become a court scribe, and speaks of the lower trades as follows: "I have never seen a smith serve as an envoy, or a jeweler as an ambassador; but I have seen a smith working at his forge; his fingers were like the hide of a crocodile; he spread an odor worse than rotten fish-roe. . . The peasant wears an eternal garment (i.e., never changes it, N. B.). His health may be compared with that of a man lying under a lion . . . . The weaver in his workshop is weaker than woman; his feet lie against his stomach; he has nowhere to breathe. If he does not complete his daily task, he is beaten like lotus on a swamp," etc. (ibid., p.231). The Egyptian king Yakhmos says of himself: "The Asians approach full of fear and are judged by him; his sword enters into Nubia, the fear of him into the land Fenekha; the fear of his splendor is like that of the God Min," (ibid., p.272). Fritz. Burger thus characterizes the ancient Egyptian, i.e., feudal, art (Weltanschaasungsprobleme und Lebenssysteme iii der Kunst der Vergangenheit, pp.43, 44): "Egyptian art is an embodiment of the notion of immortality, not as mere symbol, however, but as a reality (the `eternal' pyramids, of unusual permanence, statues, etc., N. B.). . . A powerful suggestion of force emanates from them; they make us bend the knee; they have the awe-inspiring quality of a higher existence incorporated within them they bear witness to the disciplined strength of life in its dreadful tension, to a super-personal eternal power, whose pride keeps us at a distance, to the soulless severity of a being that is indifferent to all mere matters of detail; they reflect the brilliancy of their master's light, as remote as the stars." Therefore: "Every feudal civilisation carries on a worship of quantity" (Hausenstein: Die Kunst und die Gesellschaft, p.46). The huge pyramids, the gigantic monuments of the Pharaohs or the Assyrian-Babylonian kings, are a form of greatness and might; art is monumental and frontal; the "interior decoration" of the present-day bourgeoisie would not have sufficed for feudal conditions; the bearing of the figures of rulers is prescribed exactly: upright stature, not human, but half divine, as opposed to the slaves and ordinary mortals (the ancient Greeks designated the bearing of a slave, etc., by the word proskynesis, i.e., "dog-like creeping"). One of the best specialists on Egypt, Ehrmann, maintains that the human body is represented in a number of different forms in Egyptian painting, according to the social rank: it is natural for ordinary mortals, conventionalized for superiors; virile power is represented by a wide chest, not foreshortened as perspective would require; among the Egyptians, the chest is always given its full width, even if the figure stands in profile. The same spirit also prevailed in archaic, feudal, early Greek art (the heroic "energetic power of early Attic art", "the severe energy of the Dorians", the so called "Doric style"; (cf. B. Haendcke: Entwicklungsgeschichte der Stilarten, Bielefeld-Leipzig, 1913, p.10). Approximately the same condition is found among the East Indians, Peruvians, Mexicans, Chinese and Japanese. "When the Mexican Aztec succumbed to the Conquistadors under Hernando Cortez, the style of this kingdom was almost identical both socially and aesthetically with the style of the feudal despotism," (Hausenstein, ibid., p.77). In literature we find in addition to the eulogies of kings, in inscriptions and elsewhere, also heroic warlike epics, and the heroic-knightly drama; among the Greeks, the Iliad and the Odyssey; among the Japanese, the knightly drama, glorifying the fidelity of the Samurai, who were the feudal masters; among the Incas, likewise the heroic drama, etc. A divine sublimity, a crude strength, both inaccessible to ordinary mortals, are expressed also in medieval European art, particularly in the architecture of the cathedrals, built in the course of many years by great numbers of unknown persons; later, in the bourgeois epoch, these gloomy and solemn structures began to be designated as "citadels of the spirit".
The transition from the feudal style to the bourgeois styles begins everywhere with the growth of trade, of commercial capital, or trade. capitalist relations, in the Athens of the Fifth Century, in the Italian commercial city republics of the Renaissance, later in the commercial cities of all Europe. The process was finally completed with the definite collapse of feudalism, i.e., with the victory of the French revolution (1789-1793). In the place of the masses, held down by the feudal system, by the scale of hierarchic relations, we have the bourgeois individual with his commercial calculations, his thoughts of profit, "a man and a citizen". In music the situation is as follows to the Sixteenth Century, the community principle prevailed (i.e., in the sense of feudal restrictions, serfdom, but after all a form of organization, N. B.); the individual was relegated entirely to the background. He was absorbed in the family, the community, the Church, the guild or brotherhood, the state. Accordingly, choral music was the prevalent form of the times. But now the individual also wished to make himself felt (i.e., the energetic, vigorous bourgeois individual, then still "young" eager for knowledge, capable of practical calculations, N. B.),and therefore we find individual singing and . . . the musical drama growing up by the side of the chorus" (Kothe, ibid., p.159). The new musical style (stile rappresentativo, i.e., the style of theatrical performances, of opera, of drama), practically constituted a transition to recitative, i.e., half singing, half conversation; melody, rhythm, etc.; all were subordinated to a faithful representation of the words of the text. ("It is extremely interesting to note the concomitants of the circumstance that this new musical style arose simultaneously in three quarters," writes Kothe, ibid., p.161, "so that it is difficult to determine the real `inventor'." The reader should recall, in this connection, Bordeaux' remark concerning the similar condition in science, already mentioned in our discussion of that "superstructure"). The trained merchant replaced the royal-feudal religious banner with a desire for the earthly, for the individual human. Leonardo da Vinci, one of the greatest artists of all times and peoples, and one of the most significant of all humans, magnificently expressed the new tendency of thought in many fields: as a philosopher, inventor, natural scientist, mathematician, an incomparable artist, and even as a poet. "Leonardo renounces all mysticism. He reduces the fact of human life to the law of circulation, well known and well drawn by him. With cold cynicism, he analyzes the structural laws of the world of human forms, and with an intellectual brutality that is above all sentimentality, he graphically depicts the sexual act. . . He approaches the problem of light by the path of knowledge; the influence of light and atmosphere on form becomes the problem of experimental optics. The rhythm of graphic composition is for him a geometrical secret; the wonderful panel with Saint Anna, the Madonna, the Jesus child, and the Lamb, is doubtless the outcome of very exhaustive mathematical combinations, of painful thought concerning the theory of curves" (Hausenstein, ibid., pp.100-102). Realism, rationalism, individualism, these are the "-isms" of the Renaissance. In poetry, the path of transition from the Medieval-Gothic style to the new style is successively marked by Dante, Petrarch, Boccaccio, etc. The "content" of this art is a criticism of feudal churchdom, a rejection of the feudal style in favor of an elegant style of the world; realistic, but also personal, individual. The connection with the social life is here clearly evident.
Unfortunately we cannot dwell on all the art forms, for instance, on the Baroque, on which, by the way, we have an excellent Marxian work by Hausenstein, Vom Geist des Barock (München, 1920). We shall proceed at once to the modern period. Just before the French Revolution, the so called Rococo style prevailed, the social basis of which was the rule of the feudal aristocracy and the financial oligarchy (haute finance), parvenus who bought ducal and princely titles and adopted aristocratic manners. Positions of tax-farmers were sold, manipulations and dubious financial operations were carried on on the Stock exchange; commercial and colonial policy, domination by the nobility, which needed money and sold its titles, rich burghers who bought these titles (also purchasing the young scions of the nobility '`as husbands for their daughters), etc., such was the environment "up above". This environment determined the manners peculiar to this gallant "period". Life was dominated by love, not as a powerful passion, but in the form of philandering, which had become the trade of elegant idlers. The ideal type was that of the specialists in deflowering virgins (the deverginateur); the frivolous doctrine of the "proper moment" for this operation constituted practically the spiritual axis of the age. Rococo art, with its delicate and absolutely erotic curves, is a perfect reflection of these traits in the social psychology (cf. Hausenstein: Rokoko; Französische und deutsche Illustratoren des XVIII Jahrhunderts, München, 1928). With the growth of the bourgeoisie, with their battle and victory, a new style was brought forth, the best representative of which is, in French painting, David. This style was the embodiment of the bourgeois virtues of the revolutionary bourgeoisie: the ancient "simplicity" of its forms expressed its "content", concerning which Diderot wrote that art must have the purpose of glorifying great and fine deeds, of honoring unhappy and defamed virtue, of branding flagrant vice and of inspiring tyrants with fear. Diderot also advised dramatists "to get close to real life"; he himself blazed the trail in literature for the so called "bourgeois drama" (Cf. Fr. Muekle: Das Kulturproblem der französischen Revolution, vol. i, Jena, 1921, pp.177 et. seq.); which was called le genre honnête (Beaumarchais' Le Mariage de Figaro may be taken as a specimen). The social roots of this genre honnête are perfectly manifest. If, after having viewed a painting by Watteau, of the Rococo School, we return to our room and open J. J. Rousseau's Nouvelle Héloise, we shall find we have entered a different sphere (George Brandes: Main Currents of the Nineteenth Century Literature, New York, vol. i, p.17). This changed artistic sphere corresponds closely with the changed social sphere; the burgher has become the hero in the place of the enervated parlor butterflies of the aristocracy, and he begins to create his genre honnête.
For purposes of contrast, it would be very interesting to consider the art of the dying bourgeoisie. This art has been expressed with `particular sharpness in Germany, where, by reason of the military collapse and the Peace of Versailles, on the one hand, and the constant menace of a proletarian uprising on the other hand, the general basic note in the life of the bourgeoisie has become particularly gloomy; where the capitalist mechanism is deteriorating most rapidly, and where, therefore, the process of "unclassing", of transforming bourgeois intellectuals into human "riff-raff", is rapidly proceeding, into individuals thrown from their course by the pressure of great events. This condition of hopelessness is expressed in a strengthening of individualism and mysticism. There is a convulsive grasping for a "new style", for new forms of generalization, without any possibility of finding them; each day brings some new "-ism", which does not hold the ground for long. Impressionism is followed by Neo-Impressionism, then by Expressionism, etc. A vast number of tendencies and experiments, an accumulation of paper theories, but no reasonably solid synthesis. This may be observed in painting as well as in music, poetry, sculpture, in short, all along the line. Bourgeois reactionaries, timidly recording the gradual disintegration of their culture, of their:: class, formulate this process in some such way as this; a faith in the mysterious is developing; a belief in witchcraft and miracle-workers, in spiritualism and theosophy. "The head of a group of so called occult devotees writes book after book and delivers lecture after lecture " Diligent spiritualists, Christian Scientists, or theosophists, have a lot to say, but are neither moved by the alleged revelations,`nor moving by their communication" (Max Dessoir: Die neue Mystik und die neue Kunst, in Die Kunst der Gegenwart, Leipzig, 1920, p. 130). "Our latest artists also maintain that what they create is the expression of the contents of visions (my italics, N. B.), and that each art work consists of `ecstatic gestures' of the soul" (p.132). We are asked to consider this as an expression of magic idealism; "in poetry, sacrificing the sentence to the word, or even Dadaism (the derivation of this name from `da-da', the earliest sound produced by infants, is illustrative of the childish attitude characteristic of this tendency, N. B.) ; in painting and sculpture, a crude childish trifling " Christian Scientists, astrologers and their ilk, distort the admitted fact that wisdom is not exhausted by the logic of syllogisms, into a laudation of prenatal negro metaphysics" (ibid., pp.133, 134). Little closed groups, cliques, leagues, are promulgated, within which the. artists surrender themselves to a mysterious contemplation of the hereafter and the joys of this wondrous creation. Together with this tendency, we find an inclination toward "emotional communism", an indication of the profound fall of the bourgeoisie as a class. Mysticism is therefore triumphant. Jules Romains (Manuel de deification, quoted by Dessoir, ibid., p.137), requires "a state of mystical rapture as a condition for the conquest of the world by art", and Dessoir, having become sufficiently tired of this image, expresses the single hope that this unhealthy mysticism may in some way be healed by a return to the path of faith in the God of earlier days! (p.138). An expressionist theorist, Theodor Daubler (Der neue Standpunkt, Leipzig, 1919, p.180), excellently expresses this essentially and profoundly individualist point of view of the disintegrated social atoms: "The: center of the world is in every ego, even in the ego-justified work." Of course, this point of view leads to mysticism. "We hear everywhere pronounced the cry: `Away from nature!' It is obvious what this means, as far as expressionist poetry and graphic art are concerned: a departure from what is supplied us by the senses, a transcending of the limits of sensuous experience, a tendency to elevate oneself to that which lies behind phenomena" (ibid., p.142). In music we are led to super-music, to anti-music, without harmony, with. out rhythm, without melody, etc. (Arnold Schering: Die expressionistishe Bewegung in der Musik, in the work already quoted, Einführung in die Kunst der Gegenwart, pp.142 et seq.). A general social evaluation of all this business from the point of view of capitalist culture is given by Max Martersteig (Das iiingste Deutschland in Literatur and Kunst, ibid., p.25): "The states of rapture produced by the suffering of monstrous things must yield place to reason. No variety of war psychosis or disarmament psychosis may any longer, serve as an excuse for fragmentary and anarchic work." The author invokes a spirit of "highest responsibility", but his invocations will be of no avail, for it is impossible to find a new sublime synthesis in the decaying temple of capitalism; debris and ruins, an incoherent mystical babbling and the "ecstasies" of theosophical sects, will now be inevitable. Such always has been the case in civilizations destined to early extinction.
We shall also say a few words on fashions, which have already been touched upon. In certain respects, fashions are related to art (in "style": e.g., the garments and costumes of the Rococo period corresponded perfectly with the Rococo art). In other traits, fashion is connected with standards of conduct, with the rules of decency, customs, etc. Fashions therefore also develop in accordance with the social psychology, the succession of its forms, the rate of change, depending in turn on the character of this social development. Here, for instance, we find the roots of the inordinately swift changes of fashions at the end of the capitalist period. "Our inner rhythmics (corresponding to the headlong course of life, N. B.) require shorter and shorter periods for each new impression" (Georg Simmel: Die Mode, Leipzig, 1918, p.35). Wherein lies the social significance of ions? What is their role in the current of social life? Here is Simmel's brilliant answer: "They are . . . a product of the division along class lines, the case being similar to that of a number of other social formations, particularly with honor, having the double function of holding a group together and at the same time keeping it separate in other groups . . . . Thus, fashions on the one hand express one's connection with those of equal rank, the unity of the circle defined by these fashions, and simultaneously the exclusiveness of this group as opposed to those further down in the scale" (ibid., pp.28, 29).
Language and thought, the most abstract ideological categories of the superstructure, are also functions of social evolution It has sometimes been fashionable among Marxists or pseudo-Marxists to declare that the origin of these phenomena has no relation with historical materialism. Kautsky, for example, went so far as to claim that the powers of human thought are almost unchanging. Such is not the case, however; these ideological forms, so extraordinarily important in the life of society, constitute no exception to the other ideological forms of the superstructure in their own origin and evolution.
A preliminary question must first be disposed of: namely, the doubt that at once appears in a discussion of language and thought. It is customary to admit that language is a social relation, a tool in the intercourse between men, an instrument of cohesion; and that Marx is right when he states that it would be absurd to speak of an evolution of language if men did not speak to each other. But the case with thought seems different, for each individual thinks, has his own brain, and only a mystic could attempt to seek the roots of this individual human thought in society. This objection is based on an incomplete understanding of the close relation between thought and language. Thought always operates with the aid of words, even when the latter are not spoken; thought is speech minus sound. The process of thinking is a process of combining concepts, which are always dealt with in the form of word symbols. A person who has made excellent progress in a foreign language may begin to think in that language. In fact, it is easy to find illustrations, in the reader's own experience, of the fact that the process of thought, of rumination, is accomplished with the aid of words. This being the case, and if we admit that speech is associated with society in its origin as well as in its growth, it results logically that the same must be true of thought. And the facts show that the evolution of thought has coincided with that of language. One of the most distinguished philologists, Ludwig Noire, says: "The social activity directed toward a common goal, the most ancient labor of the elders of the clan, is the source from which language and reasoning originated."28) Human speech is as much an outgrowth of the sounds ejaculated during labor as are music and song. Philology has shown that the original basis of the vocabulary is the so called action roots, the earliest words being such as designated chiefly an action (verbs). In the later growth of language, objects also received their designations (nouns), insofar as these objects were prominent in the labor experience of man; such names were given chiefly to the tools used, and were developed from the verbal terms for the actions involved. Parallel with this evolution proceeded the consolidation of more definite concepts out of the mass of material which - figuratively speaking - filled man's head, echoed in his ears, appeared before his eyes, etc. But the concept is the beginning of thought.
The further evolution of thought and language proceeds along the lines followed by the other forms of the ideological superstructure; namely, they follow the evolution of the productive forces. In the course of this evolution, the external world ceases to be a world per se, becomes man's world; ceases to be mere matter, becomes material for human action; instruments of material labor, coarse at first, later more and more delicate, as well as instruments of scientific knowledge, together with the countless "feelers", such as machines, telescopes, acute reasoning, aid society in its annexation of more and more of this external world to society's sphere of labor and knowledge. A vast number of new concepts, and consequently of new words, is the result; language his enriched and is made to include the totality of subjects that constitute the concern of human thought and speech, i.e., of human communication.
The "fullness of life" results in the "richness" of language. As some shepherd tribes ("pure cattle breeders") have no subject of conversation but their cattle, owing to the fact that the low level of their productive forces restricts their entire life to the sphere of production, and their language therefore remains directly connected with the process of production. If, as a result of enhanced productive forces, a huge and complicated ideological superstructure has been erected, language will of course embrace this superstructure also, i.e., the connection of language with the process of production is more and more indirect; the dependence of language on the technique of production is now an indirect dependence; the causal chain now runs through the dependence of the various superstructural forms on the process of production, and even the latter dependence may no longer be a direct one. The increased :number of words borrowed from foreign languages is a good example of the manner in which language grows. Such borrowings result from an economy of universal dimensions and the development of a number of practically identical things in many countries, or of events having universal significance (telephone, aeroplane, radio, Bolshevism, Comintern, Soviet, etc.). It would lead us too far afield to point out in detail that the character, the style of a language also changes with the conditions of the social life; but it is worth while to mention that the division of society into classes, groups, and occupations also impresses its mark on a language; the city-dweller has not the same language as the villager; the "literary language" is different from "common" speech. This difference may become so great as to prevent men from understanding each other; in many countries there are popular "dialects" that can hardly be understood by the cultured and wealthy classes; this is a striking example of the class cleavage in language. And the various occupations have their special languages; learned philosophers, accustomed to dwell in a world of subtle distinctions, write - and sometimes even speak - a language that only their fellows can understand. The desire to indulge in such forms of expression is partly due to the same cause that produces fashions in dress; namely, to distinguish these persons from "everyday mortals". Thus, a Russian noble landowner would show his "class" by bringing back with him from Paris, clothes of foreign design, an expensive mistress, and an accentuated pronunciation of the letter r. Wundt shows that the peculiar intonation of the Puritans also had this social character; they not only took the names of patriarchs and prophets, but even imitated in their speech the chanting tones in which the Bible is still read aloud in the Jewish synagogues. Wundt rightly observes that the philologist cannot afford to consider language as a phenomenon that is isolated from human society; on the contrary, our conjectures as to the evolution of linguistic forms must accord with our view of the origin and evolution of man in general, the growth of the forms of social life, the origin of customs and law.
Thought has not always followed the same lines. Certain respectable scholars find that science originates in man's mysterious and universal inclination toward causal explanations, but they do not consider the question of the cause of this extremely laudable tendency. But we may now consider the mutability of the types of thought to have been definitely established. Thus, Lévy-Brühl devotes a whole book 29) We are quoting chiefly from Professor A. Pogodin's Russian work, Border-Regions between the Animal and Human, in New Ideas in Sociology, Collection No.4to the mode of thought of savages, which he considers entirely different from the present "logical" thought, terming it pre-logical. In savage thought, details and specific things are often not distinguished from the general or even the whole; one thing is confused with another. The entire world is not a system of things, but a system of mobile forces, man being one of these; individual man is not a personality: personality is absolutely socialized, being absorbed in society and not distinct from the latter. The "fundamental law" of savage thought is not the concept of causal succession, but what Lévy-Brühl terms the law of "participation" (loi de la participation), if it is possible to exert an influence on any object under conditions which-from our point of view-preclude such a possibility. "The law of participation permits him to shift from the individual to the group and from the group to the individual without the slightest difficulty. Between a bison and bisons in general, between a bear and bears in general, between a reindeer and reindeers in general, this psychology accepts a mystical participation.30)
This psychology has no place for the species as an aggregate, or for the individual existence of its members, in our sense of these words." Lévy-Brühl himself finds a connection between this type of thought and a certain type of social existence, in which personality had not yet been differentiated from society, i.e., he connects this stage of thought with primitive communism.
Causality, as found among savages, is not our causality, but an animistic causality, the result of the inclination of the savage to seek a spiritual, divine, or daemonic principle operative in all situations. All things that come to pass have been "ordained" by someone: cause seems identical with a command emanating from a superior spirit. The law of causal succession becomes the whim of the Supreme Being, the spiritual ruler (or rulers) of the universe. Therefore, while the tendency to seek causes seems to be present in man, savage man seeks causes of a specific kind, causes emanating from a certain higher power. Of course, this type of thought is also related with a certain social order. It is typical for a society that already shows the presence of a hierarchy in production and social polity.
The further course of development presents the same process; it has already been touched upon in our discussion of philosophy. The above examples suffice to show that thought and the forms of thought are a varying quantity, and that this variability is based on the variability in the evolution of society, its organization of labor, and its technical backbone.
An excellent recapitulation of this subject is the magnificent formulation made by Karl Marx in his A Contribution to a Critique of Political Economy:
"In the social production of their lives, men enter into specific, necessary relations, independent of their wills, production relations, which correspond to a certain specific stage in the evolution of their material productive forces. The totality of these production relations constitutes the economic structure of society, the real basis, over which there rises a legal and political superstructure, and to which there correspond specific social forms of consciousness. The mode of production of material life conditions the social, political, and mental life-process in general. It is not the consciousness of men that determines their being, but, on the contrary, their social being determines their consciousness" (Zur Kritik der politischen Okonomie, Stuttgart 1915, p.IV.).
The huge "superstructure" that rises over the economic basis of society is of rather intricate internal "structure". It includes material things (tools, instruments, etc.), the most various human organizations, furthermore, strictly coordinated systems of ideas and forms; furthermore, vague, non-coordinated thoughts and feelings; finally, an ideology "of the second degree", sciences of sciences, sciences of arts, etc. We are therefore obliged, in 8t precise analysis, to resort to a certain definition of terms.
We shall interpret the word "superstructure" as meaning any type of social phenomenon erected on the economic basis: this will include, for instance, social psychology, the social-political order, with all its material parts (for example, cannons), the organization of persons (official hierarchy), as well as such phe. nomena as language and thought. The conception of the superstructure is therefore the widest possible conception.
The term "social ideology" will mean for us the system of thoughts, feelings, or rules of conduct (norms), and will therefore include such phenomena as the content of science (not a telescope, or the personal staff of a chemical laboratory) and art, the totality of norms, customs, morals, etc,
Social psychology will mean for us the non-systematized or but little systematized feelings, thoughts and moods found in the given society, class, group, profession, etc.
In our treatment of science and art, law and morality, etc., we were dealing with certain unified systems of forms, thoughts, rules of conduct, etc. Science is a unified, coordinated system of thoughts, embracing any subject of knowledge in its harmony. Art is a system of feelings, sensations, forms. Morality is a more or less rigid coordination of rules of conduct giving inner satisfaction to the individual. Many other ideologies may be similarly defined. But social life also includes a great mass of incoherent, non-coordinated material, by no means presenting an appearance of harmony, for instance, "ordinary, everyday thought" on any subject, as distinguished from "scientific thought". The former is based on fragments of knowledge, on disorderly, scattered thoughts; it is a mass of contradictions, or incompletely digested notions, freakish conceptions. Only when this material has been subjected to the sharp test of criticism, and stripped of its contradictions, do we begin to approach science. But, alas, we live in "every-day" life! Among the countless mutual interactions between men, out of which social life is built up, there are many such non-coordinated elements: shreds of ideas (yet expressing a certain knowledge), feelings and wishes, tastes, modes of thought, undigested, "semi-conscious", "vague conceptions of God" and "evil", "just" and "unjust", "beautiful" and "ugly", habits and views of daily life; impressions and conceptions as to the course of social life; feelings of pleasure or pain, dissatisfaction and anger, love of conflict or boundless despair, many vague expectations and ideals; a sharp critical attitude toward the existing order of things, or a delighted acceptance of this "best of all worlds"; a sense of failure and disappointment, cares as to the future, a bold burning one's bridges behind one, illusions, hopes of the future, etc., etc., ad infinitum. These phenomena, when of social dimensions, are the social psychology. The difference between the social (or "collective") psychology and ideology is merely in their degree of systematization. The social psychology has often been apparent in bourgeois society in the mysterious envelope of the so called "popular spirit" or Zeitgeist, frequently conceived as a peculiar single social soul, in the literal sense of the word. But, of course, a folk-soul, in this sense, does not exist, any more than there can exist a society which is an organism with a single center of consciousness. Society then becomes a huge monster lying in the midst of nature
In the absence of such an organism, we can hardly speak of a mysterious folk-soul or a "popular spirit", in this mystical sense. Yet we do speak of the social psychology, to distinguish it from the individual psychology. This apparent contradiction may be answered as follows: the mutual interaction between men produces a certain psychology in the individual. The "social" element exists not between men but in the brains of men; the contents of these brains are a product of the various conflicting influences, the various intersecting interactions. No mental life exists except that which is found in the individual "socialized" human being, who is subject to all such interactions; society is an aggregate of socialized humans and not a huge beast of whom the individual humans are the various organs.
G. Simmel excellently describes this: "When a crowd of people destroy a house, pronounce a judgment, utter a cry, we here have a summation of the actions of the individual persons, constituting a single event recognized as a realization of a single conception. A frequent confusion takes place here: the single physical result of many, subjective mental processes is interpreted as the result of a single mental process, namely, a process in the collective soul" (G. Simmel: Soziologie; Untersuchungen über die Formen der Vergesellschaftung, Leipzig, 1908, pp.559 560). Or - to use another example - when some new and greater thing than their individual aspirations or actions arises from the mutual interaction of men, "when examined closely " we find that such cases also involve the conduct of individuals, who are influenced by the fact that each is surrounded by other individuals; this results in nervous, intellectual, suggestive, moral transformations of man's mental constitution as compared with its operation with regard to different situations, in which such influences are absent. If these influences, mutually interacting, produce an internal modification in all the members of the group, in a like direction, their total action will no doubt have a different aspect from that of each individual, if each had been placed in a different, isolated situation" (ibid., p.560).
Yet such words as Zeitgeist, popular mood, etc., are not without meaning: they indicate the existence of two conditions that may be noted everywhere: they indicate the real existence, first, of a certain predominant current of thoughts, feelings, moods, a prevailing psychology, at any given time, giving color to the entire social life; second, the alteration of this prevailing psychology according to the "character of the epoch", i.e., according to the conditions of social evolution.
The prevailing social psychology involves two principal elements: first, general psychological traits, perhaps found in all classes of society, for the situations of the various classes may have certain common elements in spite of class differences; second, the psychology of the ruling class, which enjoys such prominence in society as to set the pace for the entire social life and subject the other classes to its influence. The former case is illustrated in the feudal eras, in which the feudal lord and the peasant present certain common psychological traits: love of traditional practices, routine, submission to authority, fear of God, generally backward ideas, suspicion of innovation, etc. This results from the fact that both classes live in a stagnant and almost inert society; the more mobile psychology is later developed in the cities. Another cause of this condition is the unlimited authority enjoyed by the feudal lord on his estate and by the peasant in his family. The family then was an organized labor unit; in fact, the labor bond remains an important element in the peasant family to this day. The authority of the feudal lord is therefore found paralleled in the patriarchal order of labor relations in the family, as expressed in the complete submission to the "head of the family": "the old man knows!" At a certain stage of social evolution, the Zeitgeist was a conservatism of feudal nobility and peasant serf. In addition, of course, the prevailing social psychology also presents factors characteristic of the feudal lords alone, which were disseminated only by virtue of the dominant position of the feudal nobility.
Much oftener, however, we encounter cases in which the social 'psychology, i.e., the prevailing social psychology, is that of the ruling class. In the second chapter of the Communist Manifesto, Marx says: "The prevailing ideas of a period have always been simply the ideas of the ruling class." The same might be said of the social psychology prevalent at a given time. Our discussion of ideologies has already shown a number of examples of feelings, thoughts, moods, predominant in society. Let us examine a specific case: the psychology of the Renaissance, with its highly developed pursuit of pleasure, its parading of Latin and Greek words, its ingenious erudition, its love of distinguishing one's own ego from the "mob"; its elegant contempt for medieval superstition, etc.; this psychology obviously has nothing in common with that of the Italian peasantry of the same epoch; but was a product of the commercial cities, and of the financial cities, of the financial-commercial aristocracy in those cities. At precisely this period, the city began to control the provinces; the cities were ruled by bankers, who married into the families of the prominent nobility. The psychology of this class was the ruling psychology; it is expressed in many monuments - literary and other monuments - of the epoch. The development of the productive forces among the ruling class causes mighty levers to be fashioned for molding the psychology of the other classes. "The three or four metropolitan sheets will, in our future, determine the opinion of the provincial papers and therefore the popular will", is the frank statement of Oswald Spengler,31) the philosopher of the German bourgeoisie of the present day.
Yet, it is obvious that no permanent, uniform, integral "social psychology" may exist in a class society; at most there are certain common traits, whose importance should not be exaggerated.
The same applies to so called "national characteristics", "race psychology", etc. It goes without saying that Marxists do not "in principle" deny the possibility of certain common traits in all the classes of one and the same nation. In one passage, for instance, Marx even allows for a certain influence of race, in the following words: "The same economic basis - the same in its principal conditions - may present infinite variations and gradations in their manifestation, owing to countless different empirical circumstances, natural conditions, racial relations, historical influences working from without, etc., which cannot be understood without analyzing these empirically given circumstances" (Marx: Capital, vol, iii). In other words, if any two societies are passing through the same stage of civilization (feudalism, let us say), they will nevertheless present certain (perhaps unimportant special traits. These special traits are the result of certain deviations: in the conditions of evolution, as well as of the special conditions of evolution in the past, It would be absurd to deny such peculiarities, as it is impossible to deny certain peculiarities in the "national character," "temperament," etc. To be sure, the presence of a class psychology may by no means be taken as a proof of certain special "national" traits (Marx, for instance, spoke of the philosophy of Bentham as a "specifically English" phenomenon; Engels described the socialism of the economist Rodbertus as a "Prussian junker socialism," etc.). We may therefore also agree with Dr. E. Hurwicz - now Cunow's companion-in-arms in the noble task of destroying the Bolsheviks - when he writes: "Vocational psychology does not exclude the possibility of national psychology", and "the psychology of caste does not differ in this respect from the local psychology: neither precludes the possibility of a national psychology" (E. Hurwicz: Die Seelen der Völker, Gotha 1920, pp.14, 15). But the facts are these: Marxists explain these national traits on the basis of the actual course of social evolution; they do not merely point at them; in the second place, they do not overestimate these peculiarities, or remain oblivious of the forest because of its many trees, while the worshipers of "national psycholy," etc., lose sight of the forest altogether; in the third place, they do not set down the absurd things cooked up by learned and unlearned babblers and philistines on the subject of the "national soul". Everyone knows, for example, that any Russian philistine considers philistinism to be a permanent and immutable quality of the Germans; yet the German workers are now proving that such is not the case. We all know also how much humbug has been written about the "Slavic spirit". When Hurwicz exclaims with rapture that Bolshevism is merely a topsy-turvy Tsarism, that the government methods in both cases are the same, etc., he reveals to us not the properties of the "Russian spirit", allegedly responsible for this similarity, but the qualities of the spirit of an international petty bourgeois, now serving as a prop to the Social-Democratic parties.
The class psychology is based on the aggregate of the conditions of life in the classes concerned, and these conditions are determined by the position of the classes in the economic and social political environment. But the intricacy of any social psychology must not be overlooked. For example, similarities of form may be found in quite different class psychologies; thus, two classes engaged in a life and death struggle with each other of course represent an entirely different content of feelings, aspirations, impressions, illusions, etc., while the form of their psychology may quite similar: passionate zeal, furious and fanatical aggression, even their specific forms of heroic psychology.
The fact that the class psychology is determined by the totality of the conditions of the class life, based on the general economic situation, should not lead us to ascribe the class psychology to selfish interest, which is a very frequent error. No doubt class interest is the main sinew of the class struggle, but class psychology includes many other elements. We have already observed that the philosophers of the ruling class in the period of the decline of the Roman Empire preached self-extermination with some success, because their preaching was an outgrowth of the psychology of this class, a psychology of repletion, satiety, of disgust with life. The causes for this psychology may be definitely traced; we have already found its roots in the parasitic rô1e of the ruling class, which did nothing and merely lived in order to consume, to try out, to surfeit itself with all things, as was natural in view of its economic situation, its function (or lack of function) in the general economy. The psychology of satiety and necromania was a class psychology. Yet we may not say that Seneca, when he preached suicide, was expressing the interest of his class.32) The hunger strikes in the Tsarist prisons, for example, were acts in the class struggle, a protest in order to fan the flame of conflict, a symbol of solidarity, a device to maintain the ranks of the fighters, and this struggle was dictated by class interests. At times, despair seizes the masses or certain groups, after a great defeat in the class struggle, which is of course connected with class interest, but the connection is somewhat peculiar: the conflict went on under the impulse of the hidden springs of interest, but now the fighting army has been defeated; the result is: disintegration, despair, a longing for miracles, a desire to escape mankind; thoughts turn heavenward.33) After the defeat of the great insurrections in Russia in the Seventeenth Century, which had taken the form of religious dissent, "protest assumed many varied forms under the influence of defeat and despair": retirement to the wilderness, self-incineration. "Hundreds, even thousands, seek their death in the flames .... ecstatic dreamers clothe themselves in pure funereal raiment and lie down in the coffins that have already been prepared, to wait for the crack of doom." 34) This psychology also finds expression in the two contemporary poems quoted by Melgunov
Dear Mother Desert,
Release me from earth's sufferings,
Receive me in your arms,
Dear Mother Desert,
Kind Mother, keep me.
Coffin of pine-wood,
There will I lie,
Waiting for the last trump.
It is obvious that the phenomenon of class psychology is of very complicated nature, not capable of direct interpretation as interest only, but always to be explained by the concrete environment in which the specific class has been placed.
In the psychological structure of society, i.e., among the various forms of the social psychology, we must not omit to mention the psychologies of groups, occupations, etc. There may be several groups within one class; thus, the bourgeoisie includes a bourgeoisie of high finance, a trading bourgeoisie and an industrial bourgeoisie; the working class includes the aristocracy of skilled labor, together with slightly skilled labor and wholly unskilled labor. Each of these groups has special interests and special characteristics; thus, the highly skilled worker likes his work and is even proud of being superior, as a worker, to the others; on the other hand, he is ambitious, and assumes certain bourgeois inclinations, together with his high collar. Each occupation bears its mark; when we berate the bureaucrats, we mean a certain professional psychology of negative virtue: routine, red-tape delays, precedence of form over substance, etc. Vocational types of psychology arise, their mental traits a direct result of the character of their activity, whence follows also a corresponding tinge in their ideology. Friedrich Engels says: "Among the practical politicians and the theorists in jurisprudence, and among the jurists in particular, this fact is first completely lost sight of. Since in each single instance the economic facts must take the form of juristic motives so as to be sanctioned in the form of law, and since, therefore, a backward view must be taken over the whole existing system of law, it follows therefrom (in the opinion of these persons, N. B.) that the juristic form appears to be the whole and the economic content nothing at all."35) His trade psychology will quickly betray a man; a minute's conversation will tell you whether you are dealing with a clerk, a butcher, a reporter, etc. It is a characteristic fact that all these traits are international; you find them everywhere. By the side of the class psychology, which is the plainest, most pregnant and most significant form of the social psychology, we find a group psychology, a vocational psychology, etc.; being determines consciousness. In this sense we may say that each grouping of men-even in an amateur chess club or chorus-imparts a certain-sometimes almost imperceptible -stamp on its members. But since the existence of a certain grouping of persons is nevertheless always associated with the economic structure of society, being ultimately dependent on the latter, it follows that all the varieties of the social psychology are quantities to be explained by the social mode of production, the economic structure of society.
What is the relation between the social psychology and the social ideology? The social psychology is a sort of supply-chamber for ideology; or, it may be compared with a salt solution out of which the ideology is crystallized. At the beginning of this section, we stated that the ideology is distinguished by the great coordination of its elements, i.e., the various feelings, thoughts, sensations, forms, of which it is composed. The ideology systematizes that which has hitherto been not systematized, i.e., the social psychology. The ideologies are a coagulated social psychology. For example, early in the history of the workers' movement, there was a certain crude discontent among the working class, a sense of the "injustice" of the capitalist order, a vague desire to replace this system by some other system; we could not call this an ideology. Later, however, this vague tendency was definitely formulated. Things were coordinated, a set of demands (a program, platform) arose, a specific "ideal" began to appear, idealism, etc.; here we have an ideology. Or, we may find that the discomforts of a situation, and the aspiration to cast it off, find expression in a work of art; here also we have an ideology. It is sometimes difficult to draw the line sharply; the actual process is a slow solidification, consolidation, crystallization of the social ideology out of the social psychology. A change in the social psychology will of course result in a corresponding change in the social ideology, as we have pointed out above. The social psychology is constantly changing, simultaneously with the alterations in the economic conditions from which they grow, for the latter bring about a constant regrouping of these social forces, a growth of new relations, based on the successively altered levels of the productive forces as has been already point out.
Having given a number of examples in our discussion of ideology, we need not dwell upon the alterations in social psychology as connected with the alterations in ideology; we shall merely point out that the latest books are now devoting considerable attention to the question of the so called "spirit of capitalism", ix., the psychology of the entrepreneurs. For instance, the works of Werner Sombart (Der Bourgeois, etc.), Max Weber, and more recently Professor Dr. Hermann Levy (Soziologische Studien über das englische Volk, Jena 1920). Marx wrote, in the First Volume of Capital: "Protestanism, by changing almost all the traditional holidays into workdays, plays an important part in the genesis of capital" (Chicago, 1915, p.303, footnote) Marx repeatedly points out that the bigoted, frugal, parsimonious, and at the same time energetic and persistent mentality of Protestanism, abhorring the pomp and luxury of Rome, is identical with the mentality of the rising bourgeoisie. People poked fun at this statement; but now prominent bourgeois scholars are developing this very theory of Marx, of course without giving credit to its originator. Sombart proves that the most varied traits (avarice for gold, untiring lust for adventure, inventive spirit, combined with calculation, reason, sobriety) gave rise to the so called capitalist spirit" by reason of their united presence. It goes without saying that this spirit could not have developed out of itself, but was shaped by an alteration in the social relations; parallel with the growth of the capitalist "body" proceeded a growth of the capitalist "spirit". All the fundamental traits of the economic psychology are reversed: in the pre-capitalist era, the basic economic notion of the nobility was that of a "decent" life, "according to station". "Money exists in order to be spent," wrote Thomas Aquinas; things were managed poorly, irrationally, without proper bookkeeping; tradition and routine predominated; the tempo of life was slow (almost every other day a holiday) initiative and energy were lacking. On the other hand, the capitalist psychology, which replaced the feudal-chivalrous psychology, is based on initiative, energy, briskness, rejection of routine, rational calculation and reflection, love of accumulating riches, etc. The complete upheaval in men's minds proceeded simultaneously with the complete upheaval in the production relations.
The question of ideologies and of the superstructure in general must also be considered from another standpoint. We have already seen that the various forms of the superstructure are a composite quantity, by the nature of their construction, and include things as well as persons; the ideologies themselves are a sort of mental product. This being the case, we necessarily consider the forms of the superstructure in their evolution (and consequently also the ideological process) as a special form of social labor (but not of material production; the two must not be confused) In the beginnings of "human history", i.e., at the time when surplus labor did not exist, we find practically no ideology. Only later as surplus labor arises, "a class which is relieved of directly productive labor is formed by the side of the great rnajority which does nothing but toil; this new class takes care of the common concerns of society: supervision of labor, affairs of state, justice, sciences, arts, etc. Therefore, we find at the basis of the division into classes: the law of the division of labor" (Friedrich Engels: Die Entwicklung der Sozialismus von der Utopie zur Wissenschaft, Berlin, 1920, p.49) In one passage, Marx designates priests, lawyers, the ruling classes, etc., as the "ideological classes". In other words, the ideological processes may be considered as a specific form of labor within the general labor system. This labor is not material production, nor does it constitute a portion of this material production, but results from the latter, as our study of ideologies has shown, and sets up an independent domain of social activity. The increasing division of labor is an expression of the increasing pro ductive forces of society, wherefore the growth of the pro ductive forces conditions also a division of labor in the field of production, accompanied by an isolation of the ideological labor having its own division of labor. "The division of labor is not a characteristic of the economic world; its growing influence may be observed in the most varied fields of society, in the increasing specialization of political, administrative, legal functions. The same thing may be observed in art and science." 36) We may now view the whole of society as a huge working mechanism, with many subdivisions of the divided social labor. This great labor aggregate may be divided into two great categories, first, material labor, "production" as such; second, the various forms of labor in the superstructure, the work of supervision, etc., as well as ideological labor as such, The organization of this labor goes hand in hand with the organization of material labor, and is along the same general lines; it includes a class hierarchy, those holding the means of production being at the top, and those without such means at the bottom. In the process of material production (1) those in charge have a special role in this process, which is (2) determined by the fact that the means of production are in their hands, and (3) they also have control of distribution by virtue of this circumstance; such also is the case in almost all the branches of "superstructural" labor. The army has already served as an illustration; the same might be noted in science and art. A great technical laboratory, under capitalist society, has an internal organization similar to that in the factory. The theatre, under capitalism, has its owner, its manager, its actors, its "supes"; its technical employees, its clerks, workers, just as in a factory. We consequently find here, (i.e., in a class society) various functions socially connected with these persons; the higher function involves, so to say, a possession of the "means of mental production", constituting a class monopoly; in the distribution of the products of material production (men live, of course, by consuming material commodities), the possessors of these "instruments of mental production" obtain a greater share of the social product than their subordinates.
We know how firmly the ruling classes have clung to the monopoly of knowledge. In antiquity, the priests who held this monopoly barred the "temples of science", to which they admitted but a few chosen ones; knowledge itself was enveloped in the shroud of a divinely awful mystery, accessible to only a few of the wise and just. The store set by this monopoly by the ruling classes is apparent, for example, from the following words of the well-known German idealist philosopher, F. Paulsen: "Anyone whose social conditions force him to remain a manual worker by trade and status, would not find it a gain to have received the schooling of a scholar; such training would not enhance, but darken his life" (Friedrich Paulsen: Das moderne Bildungswesen, in Kultur der Gegenwart, part i, section i, p.24; we may observe in passing that this gigantic work, the Kultur der Gegenwart - a product of the finest brains among the German professors - is dedicated to Emperor William II!). Apparently the honored philosopher and idealist regards a man as bound down to the compulsory labor of capitalism, even in his mother's womb, and deprives him of education even before he has seen the light of the sun.
The monopoly character of education was the principal reason for the opposition of the Russian intellectuals to the revolution of the proletariat; conversely, one of the principal achievements of the proletarian revolution was the abolition of this monopoly.
: An inspection of material production will show that it is divided into a number of branches; in the first place, into manufacturing and agriculture, both of which are further subdivided into a great number of sections, from mining operations and grain-growing to the manufacture of pins and the raising of lettuce. Here, as in the "superstructure", there are large subdivisions (such as those previously considered, i.e., administration, the setting of standards, of science, of art, of religion, of philosophy, etc.); furthermore, each of these subdivisions is further ramified (for instance, science now consists of many branches; so does art). In material production, as we have seen, a certain rough proportion must exist - if society is to go on - between the various branches of production. Even in a blind, capitalist social order, with no social plan of production at all, but rather with anarchy in production, i.e., a disproportion between the various branches of production, even here we find a constant adjustment within this anarchy; violent disturbances of this proportion meet with their reaction, of course, not without much pain, and not for long periods, but there is a certain temporary equilibrium, for otherwise capitalist society would go to pieces as the result of a single industrial crisis. While it is possible for a society to exist in spite of the fact that there is no harmony between its material production and the other forms of its labor, the non-material forms, such a society will not grow but decline. For instance, where too much labor is allotted to the maintenance of theaters, the government mechanism, or the church, or art, the productive forces themselves will decline. It is obvious that this would be the case, for instance, in a community in which there was one worker and seven men supervising and calculating his product, with two others encouraging him by singing, and another man governing the whole process. Since all must eat, it is obvious that such a labor system would not endure for long. But it is also quite obvious that - in spite of all the effort the workers might put in - a working community would fare very badly unless its various members formed a coordinated system, in which their product was duly tabulated, and in which certain individuals took care of relations with the outside world. Therefore, if society as a whole is to endure, there must exist within it a certain condition of equilibrium (though it be unstable) between the material work as a whole and the superstructural work as a whole. Let us assume for a moment that all the scholars (mathematicians, engineers, chemists, physicists, etc.) in the United States of America should disappear overnight; the huge production of that country could not go on, based as it is, on scientific calculation, but would decline. Let us assume, on the other hand, that 99 per cent. of the present workers should suddenly be miraculously transformed into learned mathematicians, not participating in production. The resulting bankruptcy would be complete; society would perish. Not only is a certain proportion (even though its limits be indefinite) necessary in any society between the total material labor and the total superstructural labor, but the distribution of labor within the superstructure, i.e., among the various forms of the "mental" supervising and other activity, is also of importance. As there is a certain equilibrium between the various forms of material labor (these various forms tend to equilibrium, as Marx puts it), so there must be a certain modicum of such equilibrium between the branches of ideological work, in fact, of the "superstructural" work in general. The coordination of these ideological "branches of production" is ultimately determined by the economic structure of society. Why, for instance, was so vast a quantity of national labor in ancient Egypt devoted to the construction of the huge pyramids, great Pharaonic statues, and other monuments of feudal art? For the simple reason that Egyptian society could not have maintained itself without constantly impressing upon the slaves and peasants the sublimity and the divine power of their rulers. In the absence of newspapers and telegraph agencies, art served as the ideological bond; it was therefore a sine qua non for this society and took an enormous share of the country's labor budget. Similarly, "ethics", the establishment of moral standards, assumed a very important place in Greece at the end of the Fifth Century B.C, because the question of the relations between men and of the regulation of these relations, had become particularly acute, even for the ruling classes, who were impelled by the great gulfs that had opened up, to seek to conciliate divergent tendencies. Art is but feebly developed in the United States of America of our day, while the same country is a pioneer in the study and application of the science of organized production as a whole (the Taylor system, vocational psychology, psycho-physiology of labor, etc.), because American capitalism does not need to resort to art in order to mould the minds of the people; this task is excellently performed by a capitalist newspaper press that has been perfected to the point of virtuosity; the question of a national production, a "scientific management", is of immense importance in the life of such a system.
A certain proportion between the parts is therefore necessary in the field of "superstructural" (and consequently of any ideological) labor, so long as society is in a state of equilibrium, this proportion between the various branches of mental work, and their distribution, being determined by the economic structure of society and the requirements of its technology.
An interesting application of these observations may be made to the school, which is one of the fields of ideological labor. Indeed, schools (universities, high schools, elementary schools) are the sphere of common social labor in which instruction is given, in which the labor forces are endowed with a certain skill, a specific "training", simple human labor power being thus transformed into specific labor power. One person studies medicine, another law, military science, engineering, etc. The same condition of affairs is found throughout the field of instruction, i.e., all those special processes in which specific abilities are imparted to men, which are required for the performance of more or less specialized functions; essentially there is no difference between the trade school that turns out locksmiths, and the educational institution that turns out the geniuses of the pulpit, or the Tsarist cadet school, producing its crack officers. It follows that: the school system, its division into various branches (commercial schools, trade schools, cadet schools, schools of engineering, universities, etc.) are an expression of society's need for various kinds of skilled - material and mental-labor.
A few examples will clarify our thought.
In the Middle Ages, the school stood in the sign of the priesthood. Feudal society could not exist without a tremendous development of religion. Therefore: "The monastic and cathedral schools and the overwhelming number of chancellor universities, the life in the bursae, and the instruction in the artistic faculty - all these had a monastic priestly tinge, everything having been devised and arranged according to the ecclesiastical theological spirit" (Theobald Ziegler: Geschichte der Pädagogik, in Handbuch der Erziehungs- und Unterrichtslehre für höhere Schüler, vol. i, Miinchen 1895, P. 33). "Except the few medical and legal professional schools, the universities as well as the lower schools were concerned above all with the training of clerics" (ibid.). In addition, there were schools for training knights; in these, "education" no longer served to develop priestly "labor power", but brightly "labor power". The boys were instructed chiefly in seven virtues (probitates); these were "the seven probitates of the knight, six of them being purely physical arts (equitare, natare, sagittare, cestibus certare, aucupari, scacis ludere: riding, swimming, archery, fencing, hunting, chess-playing) and the remaining one, versificare, poetry and music" (ibid.). Obviously, this must have produced a different type of man, necessary for feudal society.
But now we have the growth of cities, the commercial bourgeoisie, etc.; the result of this condition is well described by Professor Ziegler, whom we have already quoted: "But (p.34) new educational needs arise in another field. In the blossoming cities, the merchant and the artisan (my italics. N.B.) required a different practical education than was given to the scholar or judge; the erection of schools by the city was resorted to, for the purpose of providing these circles with the necessary important instruction."
With the development of industrial capitalism and the increasing demand for skilled labor, the so called trade school is born in the field of material labor. "In order to support the national industry, governments and private persons began to establish trade and artisan schools, destined to provide such vocational instruction to the pupils as they had formerly obtained in the master's shop" (N. Krupskaya: Popular Education and Democracy, Moscow, 1921, p.94., in Russian). This school undergoes certain changes with the growth of large-scale industry, and the increasing demand for masters, supervisors, foremen, etc. (ibid., p.96). Simultaneously, the intermediate schools and higher trade schools, giving more prominence to natural science and mathematics, now flourish on a very large scale, also commercial universities, agricultural schools, etc
The above cited German idealist philosopher, F. Paulsen, expounds the significance of capitalist education with frank brutality. These passages in his work are so instructive and give so precise a picture, that we must present them unabridged (Paulsen's frankness may be explained by the fact that he is contributing to a thick and heavy volume which will not fall into the hands of the workers; he therefore writes for the capitalist bandits only, and can afford to tell tales out of school)
"The actual outline of the educational system is determined everywhere, in the main, by the outline of society and its stratification. . . The form of the public educational system will always reflect the condition of the society producing it. Society shows everywhere a double stratification: a grouping according to the form of the social performance of labor, and a grouping by property relations. The first grouping furnishes the division into vocational stations; the difference in property gives rise to the division into social classes. Both have an influence on the educational system; the main outlines of the social performance of labor, the vocational social station, determine on the whole the varieties of instructional type; the class membership or the property standing of their families to a great extent determines the distribution of young men to the various courses. . . It (society) needs and has motor, executive, and mentally operating and guiding functions and organs. The first group includes all those whose labor achievement is essentially that of bodily strength and manual dexterity; here we should place the industrial workers and artisans of all kinds, rural workers and small peasants, and, lastly, those employed in trade and transportation as the lowest executive instruments. The second, group includes those whose vocational task essentially is that of controlling the social labor process and giving instructions and guidance to manual laborers; here belong the factory owners and technical specialists, managers of great farms, merchants and bankers, higher employees in trade and transportation, also subaltern officials in the service of nation and community. The third group, finally, includes those professions customarily classed as "learned"; their practice requires an independent grasping and extending of scientific knowledge: here belong research workers and inventors, also the incumbents of the higher places in the civil and military service, in church and school, physicians, engineers in high position, etc." (Paulsen, in Kultur der Gegenwart, part i, section i, pp.64, 65). The grading of the schools corresponds to these three groups. Paulsen's statements are an excellent indication of the school mechanism: on the one hand, it provide the necessary number of labor forces for each material and mental task; on the other hand, the higher ideological functions always remain fixed to a certain class, the educational monopoly, and with it the capitalist order of society, being thus maintained. But Paulsen is wrong in placing himself and his ilk over the manufacturers and bankers whose boots the learned gentlemen lick on all necessary and unnecessary, occasions.
Thus the school illustrates the practical roots of all ideologies. If any mathematician should be indignant at our suggesting that his "pure science" has any earthly import, we shall merely ask him to inform us why mathematics is studied by the merchants' sons in the commercial high schools, the would-be agronomists in the agricultural schools, the would-be engineers in the engineering schools, etc. He may reply that only the riff-raff of the profession would consent to give them instruction; we should then ask him why `pure mathematicians - who really seem quite ignorant of practical life - should deliver lectures before persons preparing for the professions of engineering or agriculture. Our mathematician may go so far as to say that there are some scholars that give no instruction, deliver no lectures. But surely - as we should then assert - these men write books which are read by professors who give instruction to future engineers who make use of what knowledge they acquire in order to calculate problems in the construction of bridges, steam-boilers, electrical power stations, etc.
Furthermore, the case of the school indicates the relative need of the specific society for various types of skilled labor, including the "highest".
The various sciences are therefore as much interconnected by the bond of labor as are the various branches of material labor. Likewise, the other branches of ideological labor are connected with the sciences, all being based ultimately and constantly on material labor.
We may now take up a more detailed study of the significance of all the varieties of the superstructure, including the ideologies, which may best be done in a critical examination of the objections commonly raised by the opponents of the theory of historical materialism.
First, there are the objections to the practical roots of ideology, to the claim that the forms of the "superstructure", including those of ideology, have any significance as services. We are told that scholars or artists very often are not concerned at all with the practical role played by their thoughts or constructions. On the contrary, the scholar, in his search for "pure truth", is merely expressing his love of this goddess; his marriage to her is a love-match, based on no practical considerations of any kind. Similarly, we are told that the true artist loves art for art's sake. Art is his highest goal; art alone gives life meaning for him. As a. jurist may declare that he would wish to see the world destroyed; rather than that justice be not done (fiat justitia, pereat mundus!), so the true musician would give everything else in the world for a single glorious symphony. The true artist lives for his art, the, scholar for science, the jurist for the state (Hegel, for instance, considers the Prussian junker capitalist state to be the highest manifestation of the world-spirit in human history, and therefore worthy of receiving self-sacrifice), etc.
Now, is it true that scholars and artists have this attitude, or are they pulling the wool over the eyes of the public? While the latter may sometimes occur, we have not the right to approach the subject from this angle. Thousands of examples prove that a true scholar, or artist, or theoretical jurist, loves his vocation as he loves himself, without regard to its practical phases. But it would be wrong to have the matter end there, for the subject of the psychology of the ideologists is not to be confused with their objective role; man's view of his labor is not identical with the role, the significance, of his labor for society. Let us examine the growth of an ideology. Mathematics, for instance - arose on the basis of practical needs - became specialized and divided off into a number of branches. The specialist is not aware of the practical needs satisfied by his science. He is interested in his "own work"; the more he loves it, the more productive will it be. Other persons, working in other fields, will apply his theory. Before the days of specialization, the practical significance of science was apparent to everyone; now it has been lost. Knowledge formerly served practice, even in men's minds; it still serves practice, but the minds of the closeted specialists represent knowledge as entirely divorced from practice. The causes are not far to seek; man's thinking is influenced by his being. To a man working in one ideological field only, this field must appear as the navel of the earth, about which all else revolves. This man lives in the atmosphere of his specialty, for - as Engels has excellently put it - ideology is simply the "occupying oneself with thoughts as with independent entities developing independently, subject only to their own laws."37) Before the days of specialization, a man might have thought: "I guess I'll take up some geometry, in order to measure the fields down by the shore next year." But the mathematical specialist would probably say: "I have got to solve this problem; it is my life-work." Somewhat different in expression, but identical in sense, is Ernst Mach's formulation of the case: "For the artisan, and more still for the scientist, the quickest, simplest mental acquisition - with the slightest mental outlay - of a certain field of natural phenomena is itself an economic object, in which, although it was originally a means to an end, there is now no longer a thought of physical need, once the corresponding mental impulses have developed and demand exercise." 38) Thus, the system of the superstructure, from the social-political to the philosophical phase inclusive, is connected with the Cmnomic basis and the technical system of the specific society, being a necessary link in the chain of social phenomena.
In this connection, Engels says in a letter addressed to Franz Mehring, dated July 14, 1893: "Ideology is a process accomplished, to be sure, by so called thought, but with a false consciousness. This mess does not know the actual motive forces behind it, otherwise it would not be an ideological process. Being a process of thought, it derives its content as well as its form from pure thought, either on its own part or on that of its predecessors. It works with mere mental material, which it assumes and accepts as the product of thought, and for which it does not seek any more remote process, that may be independent of thought, and all this is self-evident to this process, for it regards all action, since it works through thought, as also in the last instance based on thought " This illusion of an independent history; of national constitutions, legal systems, ideological conceptions, in each special field of knowledge, is the element that leads most persons astray mentally" (Mehring: Geschichte der deutsehen Sozialdemokratie, Note to Book i, Stuttgart 1919, p.386).
Another frequent objection to our theory results from pretending that it declares economy to be the only true element in life, all other elements being childish folly, illusions, vague mists. This conception represents historical materialism as stating the existence of various factors in history: economy, politics, art, etc., some of which are very important, others unimportant, with the economic "factor" as the only real "factor", all the others being a sort of fifth wheel of the wagon. This representation of the Marxian conception is then diligently bombarded with refutations; it is pointed out that many other things are important besides economy; but it would be erroneous to interpret our view of ideology in this way; the superstructure is not "child's play". We have shown that a destruction of the capitalist state would make capitalist production impossible, that a destruction of modern science would involve also that of large-scale production and technology; that an elimination of the means of human intercourse, language and literature, would cause society to disintegrate. The theory of historical materialism does not deny the importance of the superstructure in general and of the ideologies, in particular, but explains them. As we have shown in our chapter on Determinism and Indeterminism this is quite a different attitude.
It would be equally incorrect to consider the various "factors" from the point of view of their unequal value; to admit the importance of economy, but to belittle that of politics or science. Many misunderstandings result from such an interpretation. Why attempt to set up a scale of the relative importance, of these "factors" when we recall that capitalist economy could not exist without capitalist politics? It would be difficult to decide whether - in a rifle - the barrel or the trigger was the more important; or - in the human body - the left hand or the right foot; or - in a watch - the spring or the cog-wheel. Some things are more important than others; economy is more important than dancing; but in many cases it is absurd to make such a statement A system may contain sections that are of equal importance for the existence of the whole. The trigger is as important in a rifle as the barrel; a single screw in a piece of mechanism may be as important as any other part, for without it the mechanism might cease to be a mechanism. Similarly, in a consideration of the "superstructural" labor, as a portion of the total social labor, it would be equally absurd to ask either of the following questions: Which is more important for modern industry, metallurgy or mining? Which is more important, direct material labor, or labor in economic administration? At certain stages in evolution, the two may be inseparable. "This theory (the theory of these factors, N. B.) played the same role in the evolution of social science. The progress of natural science has shown us the unity of these forces, the modern doctrine of energy. Likewise, the progress of social science has necessarily led to a displacement of the theory of factors - this product of social analysis - by a synthetic conception of social life." 39) We therefore reject the theory of factors. But there remains a basis for the distinction between material production and the superstructure, and for a study of their mutual relations.
The true difference is in the different character of their functions. The administration of production does not play the same part as does production itself. The former eliminates, friction, systematizes and coordinates the various elements of work, or to put it differently - institutes a certain adjustment of work. We have also seen, for instance, that morality, customs, and other standards, coordinate men's actions and keep them within certain bounds, thus preventing society from disintegrating. Science likewise (let us suppose we are speaking of the natural sciences) ultimately serves as a guide for the process of production, increases its effectiveness and regulates its operation. We have defined the similar function of philosophy, which coordinates and regulates (or seeks to do so) the contradictions between the various sciences, due to their division of labor.
Philosophy arises from the sciences, as the administration of production arises from production; neither is "primary"; both are "secondary", neither "original", both "derivative"; yet, philosophy controls the sciences, to a certain degree, for it imparts to them their "common point of view", their "method", etc.
Another example that has already been treated is that of language; the latter grows out of production, develops under the influence of the social evolution, i.e., its evolution is determined by the natural law of social evolution. The function of language is to coordinate man's actions, for mutual understanding is the simplest form of adaptation, coordination, in relations, actions, even - to a certain extent - in feelings, etc. The fundamental import of the distinction between material production and ideological labor - or any other "superstructural" labor - should now be clear: Their mutual relation is in the fact that ideological labor is a derived quantity, also constituting a regulating principle. With regard to the whole of social life, the distinction lies in their difference of functions.
We have now practically answered also the question as to the reverse relation, "the influence of the superstructure on the economic basis and on the productive forces of society". The superstructure, growing out of the economic conditions and the productive forces determining these conditions, in its turn, exerts an influence on the latter, favoring or retarding their growth. But, in either case, there is no doubt of this reverse process. In other words: a constant process of mutual cause and affect is in operation between the various categories of social phenomena. Cause and effect change place.
But if we recognize this mutual influence, what becomes of the bases of Marxian theory? For most bourgeois scholars admit a mutual interaction. May we still say that the productive forces and the production conditions are the basis of our analysis? Are not our own hands destroying what they have built up? These doubts are quickly disposed of. However numerous these mutual, influences, the basic fact remains: at any given moment the inner structure of society is determined by the mutual relation between this society and external nature, i.e., by the condition of the material productive forces of society; the change in form, however, is determined by the movement of the productive forces. We go; further than merely to admit the existence of a set of mutual relations, for we understand that all the countless processes at work within society, all their intersecting, colliding, accumulating forces and elements are operating within a common frame, provided by the mutual relation between society and nature. Perhaps our opponents will attempt to controvert this principle, already known to Goethe in its general outlines, and expressed by him in his poem, "The Metamorphosis of Animals", a poem not so well known as his "Metamorphosis of Plants".
Alle Glieder bilden sich aus nach ew'gen
Und die seltenste Form bewahrt im Geheimen das Urbild.
Also bestimmt die Gestalt die Lebensweise des Tieres.
Und die Weise zu leben, sie wirkt auf alle Gestalten
Mächtig zurück. So zeiget sich fest die geordnete Bildung
Welche zum Wechsel sich neigt durch düsserlich wirkende Wesen.
[ The following inadequate English translation of these lines is submitted, existing collections of Goethe's poems in English having neglected this poem:
All the limbs take shape according to laws immortal,
Even unusual forms always remaining close to original type
... Thus the animal's mode of life determines its figure
As well as its habits; it has a mighty reverse influence
On all types. Thus the orderly formation is firmly shown,
Tending to fluctuate as influenced by beings working from without.
This thesis is irrefutable; it follows that our analysis must begin with the productive forces, that the countless mutual dependences between the various parts of society do not eliminate the basic, ultimate dependence of all social phenomena on the evolution of the productive forces; that the diversity of the causes operating in society does not contradict the existence of a single unified causal relation in social evolution.
We cannot take up here the individual objections of the various bourgeois scholars; their number is legion. Essentially, they are all chewing the same old insipid cud. Let us take one of the latest "critical" essays as an example; Professor V. M. Khvostov expounds Marx's theory as follows, "It consists on the whole (!) in assigning, among the historical factors (!), the chief place to the economic factor (!) . . . all other phenomena being shaped under the one-sided (1) influence of the economic conditions" (Khvostov: Theory of the Historical Process, in Russian, p.315). After our recent remarks in large type, we need hardly to inform the reader whether Khvostov's conception of Marxian theory is a correct one. But, to do him justice, Mr. Khvostov constitutes no exception; on the contrary, the greater the erudition displayed in the refutation of Marx, the greater the 'ignorance displayed in expounding his doctrine.
We shall take one more specimen of "refutation" (from the same professor): "I believe(!) that man is characterized by the most varied aspirations. In the first place, he is concerned with preserving his physical existence, for which he undertakes certain actions. In the second place, he makes an effort to evaluate the universe in himself, and this is a peculiar human tendency, independent of any material calculations. In the third place, man also possesses such desires as, for example, the love of domination, the love of freedom; men also have religious, esthetic, needs, a need for the sympathy of their surroundings, etc," (ibid., pp. 317-320). Having served us this chowder of human needs, Khvostov draws the conclusion that a "monistic explanation . . . is impossible". But Khvostov's example, quoted above, will serve to indicate the full absurdity of his view (quite current among "scholars" all over the world), as well as the necessity for a monistic explanation. In fact, is it not a parody of scientific thought; to consider the tendency to religion, to domination, etc., as eternal categories? Khvostov never even thinks of asking for an explanation of them. Religion exists; how shall we explain it? Well, by means of man's need of religion. Domination exists; why? Simply because: man has a desire for domination. Is this not similar to "explaining" sleep as due to a force that "puts to sleep"? Can anything be explained in this way? By the use of this method, everything in the world can be "explained" without turning an eyelid: the state is explained by the desire for the state; art, by the desire for art; the circus by the desire for the circus; Khvostov's explanations, by the need felt for Khvostov's' explanations; walking, by the desire for walking; and so on, ad infinitum. Such a "theory" of the historical process is not worth a penny. "The love of liberty is an inherent tendency in man." Nothing could be farther from the truth! Was the "love of liberty" an inherent tendency in Nicholas II, during his reign, or in his class? Of course not. In spite of Khvostov, this noble impulse is not, therefore, present in all men. When we have understood this, we are faced with the next question: "Why do certain men have this tendency; while others do not?" And then - oh, horror! - we must go back to the conditions of their existence, etc. The same applies to all the rest of Khvostov's "different needs". The scholars of the bourgeoisie, in kicking against the traces of a monistic interpretation, are in reality fighting against any form of explanation at all.
We are now prepared to discuss the general question of the possibility of distinguishing a definite "characteristic" of each specific "era". Shall we perhaps find that the connection existing between all the social phenomena will express itself in the existence of some element common to all? We have seen that they are all determined "in the last analysis" by the productive forces and the production relations. How may this connection be recapitulated in a few words? How shall this problem be approached? Let us consider art, one of the "finest", "most complicated" phenomena of mental life. In each epoch, as we have seen, art has its own "style", expressing itself in specific forms, indicative of the specific content (let us recall the example of the Egyptian art), which - in turn - is indicative of a specific ideology; the ideology is the outgrowth of a specific psychology; the psychology of a specific economy; the economy of a specific stage of the productive forces.
Now, if we observe a certain definiteness of forms in all the fields of social life, may we assert that all these fields have their style? We may; it is as reasonable to speak of the "style" of science", as of the style of "art". We may speak of a "style of life", i.e., of typical, specific forms of life. 40) We may in a certain sense speak of the style of the social economy, meaning precisely what Marx terms the "production relations", the "mode of production", the "economic structure of society". As the style of a certain building is determined by the specific combination of its elements, so the "style" of social economy expresses itself in the peculiarities of the production relations, the specific manner in which the elements of the social whole are connected with each other. "The peculiar shape and manner in which this union is realized distinguishes the various epochs of the social structure."41) But in addition to the "mode of production", there is also a "mode of conception", as Marx puts it. Such is the "style" of the ideology of the given period in general, i.e., that special combination of ideas, thoughts, feelings, forms, characteristic of the specific epoch, "the uniformity of scientific thinking, of conceptions of the world and of life", to use the words of Professor Marbe.42)
Is it possible thus to distinguish the "mode of production" and the "mode of conception"? Is it possible to distinguish between the economic "style" of a specific society and the ideological "style"? From what has been said concerning the superstructures in general and the ideologies in particular, it is certain that we have the right to do this.
We may show this by means of an example: feudal society; the economic style of feudal society is expressed in the principles of a fixed hierarchy, the idea of rank. Marx characterizes the feudal epoch as follows: "Here, instead of the independent man, we find everyone dependent, serfs and lords, vassals and suzerains, laymen and clergy. Personal dependence here characterizes the social relations of production just as much as it does the other spheres of life organized on the basis of that production":43) This character of the economy and the other spheres of life is precisely the "style" of the epoch, the hierarchical arrangement by rank, in economy; the hierarchical dependence in the other spheres of life; the hierarchical "style" of the entire ideology. Indeed, the entire philosophy of man was then religious, and religion is a philosophy that explains everything in a hierarchical manner; according to rank. Science is permeated with this idea of rank; so is art; and we find this condition expressed in the "style", In the Middle Ages, rank is the "style" of all of life. And the uniformity of this style proves the dependence of the "mode of conception" on the "mode of production", of the system of ideas on the system of persons, the latter in turn being conditioned by the system of objects, i.e., by the social material productive forces. Such a basic stratum of style as is here afforded by hierarchy or rank, may be termed the "formative principle of social life", based, as we have seen, on the production relations.
This unity in the style of life is so obvious that even many bourgeois scholars come very close to accepting this view. Karl Lamprecht, for example, sets up the doctrine of the "dominant of personality," i.e., the prevailing type of psychology, changing with the conditions of the epoch, in which the old dominant is destroyed and a new one arises, a new "style of life" being created (K. Lamprecht: Moderne Geschichts. wissenschaft, Berlin 1920, pp. 77 et seq.). In the solution of the question of formative principles, we also have a fairly simple solution of the question raised by Hammacher. The latter mobilizes the following chief objection to the theory of historical materialism: "It remains a constant problem why only the economic relations could obtain admission into the historical soul" (Emil Hammacher: Das philosophisch-okonomische System des Marxismus, Leipzig, 1909, p.178). This enigma is easily solved. Men are influenced not only by economic stimuli, but by everything that lies within the sphere of their experience; the general formative principles are determined, however, by the production relations, which are therefore "reflected" also in the ideological fields. This may be best observed in the case of religion. No doubt sunlight, thunder, death, sleep, all found "admission to the historical soul." But the conception of godhood, of a "sublime power", of "rank" in creation, did not arise until rank had already been established in social life, Into this frame, all "appropriate" phenomena were jammed in, including sleep and death. Approaching the subject from another angle: in bloody despotisms, the god of war was frequently the chief of all the gods. Being the god of war, he naturally also became god of thunder and lightning, which were the most awful "belligerent" forces of nature. Thunderstorms made an impression on the "historical soul", but this material was shaped by the frame of the social relations. We might ask why the social relations give shape to this material; where is the inner relation? The reason is very simple: the social environment has the foundations of its life in the production relations " "We know that the uniformity of psychical phenomena may be traced back to the uniformity in the conditions of these phenomena" (Marbe, ibid., p.52). Many facts taken from this field are "to a certain extent cultural products; Huber (in Zeitschrift fiir Psychologie, vol. 59, 1911, pp.241, et seq.) has shown that in experiments in psychological association, the quality of the reaction words depends, among other things, on the vocation and the habits of life of the persons experimented on" (Marbe, ibid.). In other words, different answers will be given to the same question (for instance, a request for a certain word), depending on the "habits of life" of the persons experimented on. It is, therefore, not surprising to find the social psychology and ideology to be dependent on the mode of production of material life, and simultaneously on the productive forces.
Any investigation of society will encounter certain historical types of society. In other words, there is no such thing as society "in general"; we are always dealing with society in a specific historical raiment; each society wears the uniform of its time. For we know that any specific society is an aggregate of human beings in constant interrelation with each other, these interrelations being based on the labor relations of men, on the system of production relations, if these mutual labor relations be visualized at any given moment. But this system of production relations is the aggregate of human beings arranged in a specific manner, namely, of beings connected not only by a labor bond, but by a specific type of such bond. It is therefore evident that society exists only on a specific labor basis, and as this specific basis, the specific mode of production, gives rise to a specific mode of conception (view of life), it follows that it will condition the type of society as a whole, and not only in its material productive or economic portion. The technology conditions the mode of production; the mode of production conditions the view of life; this chain uniting the material, human, and mental system creates a certain type of society. As we distinguish genera, species, and families in the animal world so we distinguish social types in sociology. This has been repeatedly emphasized, but we must again point out as our basic thought, that this difference between the social "types" may be traced not only in the economic field, but also in any other series of social phenomena. The type of a society may be inferred from its ideology as well as from its economy. Feudal art permits one to draw conclusions as to feudal conditions of production; feudal conditions of production enable one to make inferences as to feudal art, or religion, or feudal thinking in general, etc., etc. The deciphering of certain literary monuments excavated by the archaeologists enables us to form a picture of the life and manners of races that have disappeared. A reading of Hammurabi's Codex makes the economic life of Babylon live in our minds. The Iliad and the Odyssey permit us to form a conception of early Greek history, etc.
The historical forms of society, the specific nature of these forms, are applicable not only to the economic basis, but also to the aggregate of social phenomena, for the economic structure also determines the political structure and the ideological structure. One being given, the other is also given. To be sure, this does not mean that a type of society must be so sharply distinguished from another as to leave no common traits between them. "Epochs in the history of society are no more separated from each other by hard and fast lines of demarcation, than are geological periods." 44) On the contrary, in actual reality we find that each new social type, each new social structure may present very great and decisive remnants of the old economic formations. For example, we find in modern capitalist society a great number of remnants of earlier economic forms. Thus the entire great class of the peasantry, with its economic life, may be considered on the whole as a remnant of the feudal ages; the petty artisans likewise, etc. "Pure" capitalism implies a bourgeoisie and a proletariat, but not a peasantry, not an artisan class, etc. If such "purity" cannot be found in the economic structure, it is obvious that there will be a certain "mingling of ideas" in the ideological field also. Capitalist society may therefore present us with many remnants of feudal ideology, for instance, among the landed nobility and the peasantry, rural classes that are based on earlier agricultural relations, and which still retain certain traditional traits. The interweaving of economic forms will be accompanied by an interweaving of ideological forms, with the result that there never is an absolutely uniform "mode of production", and of course - still less - a uniform "mode of conception" (for, the latter varies even among the various classes that may at the given moment be a part of the same economic structure). It does not follow, however, that we cannot and should not distinguish between the various types of production relations. For, in any actually existing society, a certain type of production relations is dominant, and there is also therefore a certain prevalent "view of life". Werner Sombart is right when he says: "I distinguish a certain epoch in the economic life by the predominance of a specific spirit in a specific period.45) Marx, speaking of capitalism, likewise terms it "the form of society in which capitalist production is predominant".46) As we may distinguish between ape and man in the animal kingdom, in spite of their many common traits, so we may distinguish also between the various forms of society in spite of their common traits; in spite of the fact that the "higher" forms frequently present quite useless remnants of older forms (so called "rudiments"), which are incomprehensible at first sight.
In chapter iii, we have already spoken of the necessity of distinguishing, in any treatment of society, the social form which is rooted in the peculiarities of the economic structure. This conception has been vigorously and repeatedly opposed by official bourgeois science, which is hostile to the notion of a radical transformation of social relations. Bourgeois scholars themselves now admit that the crux of the matter is in the above fact. Thus, Dr. Bernhard Odenbreit writes: "Marx, as is only natural in the case of a `revolutionary', has a particularly sharp eye for the historical, transitory nature of all social institutions. This general social understanding is joined with a consciously critical reflection on the narrower field of political economy" (Plenge: Staatswissenschaftliche Beiträge, No. 1; B. Odenbreit: Die vergleichende Wirtschaftstheorie bei Karl Marx, Essen-on-Ruhr 1919, p.15). Precisely so! The "sharp eye" for that which is changing will be found only in the revolutionary. This is, of course, one of the principal reasons for the superiority of the social sciences of the revolutionary proletariat over the social sciences of the counter-revolutionary bourgeoisie.
In so called primitive communism, the oldest form of society known to us, the type of production relations in which the economic "personality" is not yet isolated from the "horde", We also find the corresponding forms of consciousness: absence of religion, of ideas of rank, even of the notion of personality, of the individual per se. Similarly, a consideration of so called feudal society shows that its "essential traits consist on the one hand in the splitting up of the land into a number of independent estates, principalities, and privileged holdings, and on the other hand in the organization of these holdings by means of contractual vassal relations."47) The style of economy is here hierarchic; likewise, the style of politics, of the ideology. As we have already seen, the notion of rank is everywhere prevalent. The basis is the large landed estate (nulle terre sans seigneur, "no land without its master"), inert and uneventful. The economic bonds are bonds between feudal landowners and serfs; these relations are stable immobile, and - from the point of view of the members of feudal society - immutable; everything is "fixed" in its place in the hierarchic order. Let the shoemaker stick to his last! The same; condition was reflected in the political superstructure that was expressive of these production conditions.
"The hierarchic tendency of feudal life was elevated by the learned jurists of the Thirteenth Century into a theory and a system " 48) The preachers have a clear vision of the horizontal distribution of society as a whole, even though it be divided into masters and servants. The latter are admonished to follow the words of the apostle commanding slaves to obey their masters, since God has installed kings and dukes on earth, and other men in order that the latter might obey the former. God so disposed things as to enable the weak to depend on the strong." 49) The entire conception of life is religious, i.e., permeated with the notion of rank, or, to use another term, it is authoritarian. Its rigidity, its fidelity to tradition, are a natural result. Science consists chiefly in interpreting tradition and the Sacred Scriptures; art is "divine", magnifying in its form and content the "higher" celestial and terrestrial powers; the dominant morality and the dominant manners and morals are those inculcated by feudal fidelity, noble arrogance, pious awe of the commandments of ancestors, respect for "gentle bearing" and "gentle lineage". Quod licet Jovi, non licet bovi. In other words, we are here dealing with a specific social "species", a specific form of society, beginning with its material basis, and rising to the "highest" forms of social consciousness.
Let us now consider capitalist society, whose economic basis is an entirely different type of relations. "The contrast between the power, based on the personal relations of dominion and servitude, that is conferred by landed property, and the impersonal power that is given by money, is well expressed by the two French proverbs, Nulle terre sans seigneur, and L'argent n'a pas de maître."50) In this sentence, Marx has revealed one of the fundamental relations in capitalist society, namely, the connection between the various enterprises through the market, whence results also the impersonal power of this market and the impersonal, "abstract" power of money. But there is another phase also: the impersonal, social power of money turned to capital nevertheless finds its master, in so far as a simple commodities production is transformed into a capitalistic production.
"Just as every qualitative difference between commodities is extinguished in money, so money, on its side, like the radical leveler that it is, does away with all distinctions. But money itself is a commodity, an external object, capable of becoming the private property of any individual. Thus social power becomes the private power of private persons."51) From this follows another trait in the economy of capitalist society, namely, its hierarchic character. This trait has also been brilliantly outlined by Marx, particularly in his chapter on cooperation 52): "The control of the capitalist is " in form " despotic. As cooperation extends its scale, this despotism takes forms peculiar to itself. Just as at first the capitalist is relieved from actual labor so soon as his capital has reached that minimum amount with which capitalist production, as such, begins, so now he hands over the work of direct and constant supervision of individual workmen, and groups all workmen into a special kind of wage laborer. An industrial army of workmen, under the command of a capitalist, requires, like a real army, officers (managers), and sergeants (foremen, overlookers), who, while the work is being done, command in the name of the capitalist. The work of supervision becomes their established and exclusive function."
The capitalist mode of production is therefore twofold in character: on the one hand, it is the summation of the individual private economies, "enterprises", united by the anarchic bond of the market, through exchange, the blind elemental force of the market controlling each individual economy; on the other hand, it is a hierarchic system, with "capital in command". Naturally, this mode of production has also produced its corresponding view of life. Its "style" must reflect its twofold nature. And indeed, "the view of life" of capitalist society is characterized on the one hand by what Marx terms the fetishism of commodities, and on the other hand by the principle of rank, which we have already observed in feudal society. The combination of these two "formative principles" results in the fundamental style of the "view of life" prevalent in the capitalist world.
We must now define the fetishism of commodities. In a society of commodities capitalism, the enterprise works "independently" for an unknown market. But each labor here constitutes a section of the social labor, all the sections being mutually dependent; but the social relation between men, actually at work for each other, is concealed to the eye. If we were dealing with a socialist economy in which all things proceed according to plan, it would be perfectly clear at first glance that men are working for each other, that each individual type of labor is merely a section of the general social labor, etc. The relations between men would then be clear, the mists dispelled. But the case in the capitalist world is quite different. Here the labor relation between men is invisible, being concealed by the manipulations of the market, where commodities are shifted, sold and bought. The market is not rationally controlled by men, but, through its prices, controls men. Men observe the movements of commodities without understanding that they are working for each other, all men being related by the common labor bond. The latter appears to them as a specific miraculous power of commodities, as a "value" of these commodities. Relations between men present themselves as relations between commodities. That is what we mean by the fetishism of commodities, the ascribing to commodities of qualities truly inherent in human labor. This fetishism, which causes "a definite social relation between men . . . to assume in their eyes the fantastic form of a relation between things",53) constitutes the peculiar earmark of the capitalist "view of life". We have already observed that bourgeois scholars, artists, philosophers, etc., are irritated by discussions concerning the social roots of science, art, or philosophy. They are out and out fetishists, for they disregard the social connections, being unable to conceive of their inspired, divine labor as merely a portion of the total social labor.
The fetishism of the capitalist world is very graphically indicated in the field of the so called moral standards, of "ethics," a favorite topic with the learned professors. We have already ascertained that the ethical norms are the rules of conduct for the preservation of the society, or of the class, or of the vocational group, etc. They have a necessary, social, service significance. Yet, in fetishistic society, this human and social significance of standards is not recognized. On the contrary, these standards, i.e., the technical rules of conduct, appear as a "duty", dwelling far above men, like any other external divine compulsion. This inevitable fetishism of ethics is excellently expressed by the bourgeois philosophic genius, Immanuel Kant, in his doctrine of the "categorical imperative".
The proletariat must approach the question from a different angle. The proletariat must not preach a capitalistic fetishism. For the proletariat, the standards of its conduct are technical rules in precisely the sense of the rules according to which a joiner constructs an arm chair. The latter, wishing to construct an armchair, will plane, saw, glue, etc., which acts are involved in the labor process itself. He will not interpret the rules of woodworking as something foreign to him, of supernatural origin, whose victim he is. The attitude of the proletariat in its social struggle is precisely the same. If it would attain communism, it must do this and that, as the joiner at work on his armchair. And everything required, from this point of view, must be done. "Ethics" will ultimately, in the case of the proletariat, be transformed into simple and easily understood technical rules of conduct, such as are required for communism, and thus it will really cease to be ethics at all. For the essence of ethics is in the fact that it involves norms enveloped in a fetishistic raiment. Fetishism is the essence of ethics; where fetishism disappears, ethics also will disappear. For instance, no one would think of designating the constitution of a consumer's store or of a party as "ethical" or "moral", for anyone can see the human significance of these things. Ethics, on the other hand, presupposes a fetishistic mist, which turns the heads of many persons. The proletariat needs rules of conduct, and it needs to have them very clear, but it has no need of "ethics", i.e., a fetishistic sauce to flavor the meal. Of course, it is obvious that the proletariat will not at once succeed in liberating itself from the fetishism of the commodities society in which it lives; but that is another question.
The fetishism of the ideology of capitalism and commodities is merged with the principle of "rank", and these two fundamental formative principles constitute the nucleus of the capitalist mode of thought, the framework for the ideological material. Capitalist society is thus a special type of society, with special characteristic traits in all the "levels" of social life, up to the highest ideological superstructure. The type of economic structure, therefore, also determines the type of the social-political structure and of the ideological structure. Society has a basic "style" in all the dominant phenomena of its life.
We have examined above the phenomena of social equilibrium; but we must not lose sight of the fact that we are dealing with a mobile equilibrium, i.e., a situation in which equilibrium is being constantly disturbed, then reestablished on an altered basis, then again disturbed. We are dealing, in other words, with a process of contradictions, not of rest; we are not discussing a condition of absolute adjustment, but a struggle between opposites, a dialectic process of motion. In considering the structure of society, ie. the mutual relation between its parts, we may not conceive of this relation as a perfect harmony between these parts. Every structure involves internal contradictions; in every social class form, these contradictions are very sharp. Bourgeois sociologists, while recognizing the mutual relation of the various social phenomena, do not understand the internal oppositions of the social forms. In this respect, the entire school founded by the originator of bourgeois sociology, Auguste Comte, is very interesting. Comte recognizes the relation between all the social phenomena (the so called "consensus") in which its "order" is expressed. But the contradictions within this "order", particularly such as lead to its inevitable destruction, do not receive his attention. On the other hand, for the advocates of dialectic materialism, this phase is one of the most essential, perhaps the most essential phase. For, as we have seen, the contradictions in any given system are precisely the "moving" element, leading to an alteration of forms, to a characteristic transformation of species in the process of social evolution or social decline.
In our consideration of the social structure, we have seen that its alterations are closely connected with the alterations in the relation between society and nature. The latter equilibrium we have designated as an external equilibrium, while the equilibrium between the various series of social phenomena has been called the internal equilibrium of society. If we now regard all of society from the point of view of a contradictory evolution, we are at once faced with a number of questions: in the first place, we shall find the existence of contradictions within each series of social phenomena (for example, in economy, the contradictions between the various labor functions; in the social-political structure, the contradictions between classes; in ideology, contradictions between the ideological systems of the classes, etc., not to mention many other contradictions); we shall find also, without difficulty, the contradictions between economy and politics (for instance, when legal standards have been outdistanced by the economic evolution, and a "reform" becomes mature); between economy and ideology; and between psychology and ideology (for instance, the need of something new is felt, but the new has not yet been expressed in ideological form); between science and philosophy, etc. These are contradictions between the series of the various social phenomena.
Both elements are a necessary part of the internal equilibrium; but there is a contradiction between society and nature, a disturbance of equilibrium between society and its environment, which finds its expression in the movement of the productive forces. This is the field of external equilibrium. Of course, there is another extremely important case of contradiction, namely, that between the movement of the productive forces and the social-economic structure of society (and all the rest of the social structure).
In this case, the relation obtaining between society and nature comes in conflict with the relations developed within society. Obviously, this conflict, this contradiction, must play a very important role in the life of society, for it concerns the bases of the existing "order", the "pillars" on which the given order rests.
We have here sketched only the principal questions involved in the social contradictions, the investigation of which is to be the subject of the next chapter, which will deal with society in motion. Thus far, we have considered chiefly the structure of society, of the given social form. We shall now undertake a treatment of the transitions from one structure to another. Again we emphasize that the law of social equilibrium is a law of mobile equilibrium, that includes antagonisms, contradictions, incompatibilities, conflicts, struggles, and - this is particularly important - that it cannot dispense, under certain circumstances, with catastrophes and revolutions, which are absolutely inevitable. Our Marxian theory is the revolutionary theory.
Karl Marx: Capital, particularly vol. i. Kautsky: Introduction (in German) to Salvioli's Le Capitalisme dans le monde antique. Lenin: State and Revolution. Friedrich Engels: The Origin of the Family, Private Property, and the State. Alexandrov: State, Bureaucracy, Absolutism (in Russian). Korsak: The Society of Law and the Society of Labor, in Outlines of the Realistic World-Conception (in Russian). Kautsky: Ethics and the Materialistic Conception of History. Kautsky: Foundations of Christianity (New York, International Publishers, 1925). Stepanov's essays on religion (in Russian). Pokrovsky: Geschichte den russischen Kultur. Friedrich Engels: Über den historischen Materialismus. Plekhanov's essays on art; the studies (in Russian) of A. V. Lunacharsky, P. S. Kohan, V. M. Fritsche. K. Bucher: Arbeit und Rhythmus. B. Odenbreit: Die vergleichende Wirtschaftstheorie bei Karl Marx (a good compilation. of quotations from Marx on the types of societies). A. Bogdanov: Short Outline of Ideological Science (in Russian). Cunow: Ursprung den Religion. Cunow: Die Marxsche Geschichts-, Gesellschafts- and Staatstheorie (vol. i and ii).
1)Die Technik des Altertums, Voigtlanders Verlag, Leipzig, 1919, p.206.
2)Der Kapitalismus im Altertum, p.101.
3)Gustave Glotz: Le travail dans la Grèce ancienne, Paris, Felix Alcan, 1920, pp.265-276; Paul Louis: Le travail duns le monde romain, Paris, 1912, pp.234-244.
4)Glotz, op. cit., p.275.
5)Salvioli, op. cit., p.131.
6)Rudolf Meerwarth: Einleitung in die Wirtschaftsstatistik, Jena, Gustav Fischer, 1920, pp.43- 44.
7)Artisans working with iron.
8)Die Neue Zeit, vol. 39, part i, p.420.
9)Readers who are displeased with the "theory of equilibrium" should note this terminology.
10)G. Plekhanov: On the Materialistic Interpretation of History, in A Criticism of Our Critics (in Russian), p.324.
11)An abbreviation for Organisation Escherich - TRANSLATOR.
12)The names of leaders in Russian Cossack and peasant revolutions against the Muscovite Tsars in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries, respectively. The name of Stenka (diminutive of Stepan) Razin is particularly popular in Russian folk poetry as that of a national liberator or robber chief. - TRANSLATOR.
13)Ernst Mach: Erkenntnis und Irrtum ("Knowledge and Error"), Leipzig, 1915, p.82.
14)See Karl Kautsky: Foundations of Christianity (New York International Publishers, 1925), pp.179-181, for a detailed parallel in the later Roman society. - TRANSLATOR.
15)Wipper: Observations on the Theory of Historical Knowledge (in Russian), p.46.
16)Turayev, op. cit., p.112.
17)From Greek Soter, "Redeemer." Max Weber is speaking of the cases in which we find a complete religious and political system of ideas based on "world-redemption" or "world-salvation", the elimination of all social evils, the kingdom of God on earth. These aspirations of the oppressed classes assumed the form of "soteriology", i.e., the doctrine of redemption and the "promised land". N. B.
18)Max Weber, op. cit., Die asiatische Sekte and Heilandsreligiasität, p.364.
19)This monograph is a criticism of the program adopted at the Congress of the German Social-Democracy at Goths in 1875. - TRANSLATOR.
20)Kothe-Prohazka: Abriss der allgemeinen Musikgeschichte, Leipzig, 1919, p.4.
21)Zu Märten: Historisch-materialistisches über Wesen and Veränderung der Künste, published by Jugend-Internahonale, Berlin, p.18.
23)Arbeit and Rhythmus, Leipzig, 1919, p.454.
24)Fritz Burger: Weltanschauungsprobleme und Lebenssysteme in der Kunst der Vergangenheit, p.23.
25)Wilhelm Hausenstein, Die Kunst and die Gesellschaft, München, Verlag Piper, p.32.
26)H. Taine: Philosophie de l'art, Paris, 1909, vol. i, p.55
28)Ursprung der Sprache, Mainz, 1877, p.31. The italics are ours. N.B.
29)Les fonctions mentales dans les sociétés inférieures, Paris, 1910.
30)A. Pogodin correctly points out that "mystical" is hardly the proper word.
31)op. cit., p.49.
32)This romantic love of death during the decay of Roman society will be found exhaustively treated in Kautsky: Foundations of Christianity, d Study in Christian Origins, New York, International Publishers, 1925, pp.114-128. TRANSLATOR.]
33)Kautsky, ibid., pp.128-141; 167-177; 383-387: TRANSLATOR.]
34)S. Melgunov: Russian Religious-Social Movements in the Seventeenth Century, in the Source-Book for Modern. History, vol. i, p.619 (in Russian).]
35)Friedrich Engels: Feuerbach, translated by Austin Lewis, Chicago, 1906, p.117.
36)Emil Durkheim: De la division du travail social, Paris, 1893, p.2.
37)Ludwig Feuerbach translated by Austin Lewis, Chicago, 1906, p.119.
38)Ernst Mach: Die Mechanik in ihrer Entwicklung, Leipzig, 1921, 8th ed., p.6; italics are ours. - N. B.
39)N. Beltov: On the Materialistic Conception of History, in Criticism of our Critics (in Russian), p.313.
40)See what Simmel has to say on Lebensstil in his Philosophie des Geldes, p.480.
41)Marx: Capital, vol. ii, pp.12, 13.
42)Karl Marbe: Die Gleichförmigkeit in der Welt, Untersuchungen sur Philosophie und positiven Wissenschaft, München, 1916, p.86.
43)Capital, vol. i, Chicago, 1915, pp.88, 89.
44)Marx: Capital, vol. i, p.405.
45)Sombart: Der Bourgeois, p.6.
46)Marx: Theorien über den Mehrwert, Stuttgart, 1910, vol. i, p.424.
47)N. P. Silvansky: Feudalism in Ancient Russia, St. Petersburg, 1907 (in Russian), p.45.
48)The author is speaking of feudalism in Western Europe. N. B.
49)L. P. Karsavin: The Civilization of the Middle Ages, Petrograd, 1918 (in Russian), p.99.
50)Marx, Capital, vol. i, Chicago, 1915, p.163, footnote.
51)Capital, vol. i, pp.148, 149.
52)Capital, vol. i, p.364.
53)Capital, vol. i, p.83.