GRAMSCI AMERICANISM AND FORDISM PDF
Gramsci’s discussion of Fordism constitutes one of his rare extended interrogations of hegemony and historic blocs outside of Italy, dealing as it. Donor challenge: Your generous donation will be matched 2-to-1 right now. Your $5 becomes $15! Dear Internet Archive Supporter,. I ask only. Gramsci: “Americanism & Fordism,” Modernity, and Criticism. Spring Professor Joseph Buttigieg (University of Notre Dame). Professor Ronald Judy.
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In the US, because commerce, trade and transport were ‘subaltern’ rather than primary forms of economic activity – because, in effect, the entire life of the country was being organised around industrial production – hegemony could fodism in the factory, and didn’t require much political or ideological americahism.
The principles of scientific managementF. Complex System of Pipes. Fordism required a certain type of structure, a certain type of basically liberal state, and the elimination of the old rentiers. He looks at the impact of wages, literacy, gender and sexual morality on reproduction, industry, political hegemony and left-wing political formation. Ideology, morality and culture are seen not as passive reflections of a dynamic economic base, but rather as formative americnism, organising and shaping the economic base, allowing or inhibiting the process of rationalisation or otherwise.
The US had benefited from a rationalisation of its demographic composition, the prolonged psycho-physical adaptation of masses of people to urban living, framsci that it was possible fordixm introduce Fordism without provoking moral, romantic opposition from significant sectors of the population. In particular an appraisal of neoliberalism as an historical bloc can help grasp the doomed, declining constellation of forces behind Tory England, their deep hatred for Cameron, their resentment of European infringements on the sovereign nation-state fetish, their abortive attempt to stop EU migration, and their thus far failed but far from finished attempt to mobilise a broad coalition behind the idea of containing Islam, supporting the troops, and preventing the dilution of ‘Britishness’.
In fact, Ford himself was very keen on preventing his workforce from being influenced by the growing sensualisation of culture, and eager to advance Prohibition and moral rectitude, which was one of the reasons for his attempt to build a little enclave of Fordist America in Brazil, known as Fordlandia. Petri anarchic ordinovista approved of it in Capital no longer circulates in the hands of producers and managers.
Taylor is against workers solidarity and pushes for individual economic remuneration to be the primary motive of workers’ activity. He also blames its downfall on the upper classes, whom he says is the only social group with sufficient money and leisure time to pursue drinking and free love.
Americanism and Fordism
Notes on Americanism and Fordism Arianna Bove Gramsci on the question offers valuable insights in what will later be the object of sociological research under the name of Taylorisation. The basis of Gramsci’s analysis was that Fordism represented potentially a new industrial-productive historical bloc. Taylorisation aims at re-rationalising capitalist production and eliminating political and financial speculativism.
Revitalisation of capitalism in economic replacing productivity in the hands of producers rather than bureaucracy and speculation and moral terms creating a cementing ideology internal to the factory.
In Europe, the still acuminous weapons of the old order – the appeal to craft rights, for instance – could be wielded against industrialism. More on Fordism at the excellent Digital Archive on Fordism. Ford wanted to be sure that the worker’s private life was compatible with her working life, that she had really found a way of living that allowed her to efficiently reproduce her labour in its normal state every day.
LENIN’S TOMB: Gramsci on Americanism and Fordism
However, in Italy, workers were not in a position to either oppose it or take control of it. For example, Gramsci overstates the degree of rationalisation of America’s demographic structure, thus missing the central role played by the petit-bourgeoisie in the reproduction of Fordist Americana. This is why Henry Ford’s interrogations into the private lives of workers was so important.
Lenin approved of it in as long as the rationalist-objectivism was separated from the capitalist motive. Keeping the Rabble in Line [archives]. The americanksm was whether the working class itself would be able to take over this trend. The brutal anti-unionism of Fordist managers is discussed only in passing, in terms of the way in which horizontal solidarity between free trade unions is turned into vertical, factory-based solidarity.
It thus depended on certain protections for the employed to sustain conditions that would collapse if there were free competition. Passive revolution or internal counter-discourse? Once the organic crisis of capitalism is taken for americanim, then the preoccupation is to translate the objective structural possibilities at the level of subjectivity through americcanism conscious acquisition, and then to make these possibilities actual and objective through political organisation.
He argued first that Fordism was possible to implement in the US chiefly inasmuch as xnd US lacked the “vast army of parasites”, that is classes with no economic function, the unproductive landed gentry, clerics and middle classes, who still predominated in parts wmericanism Europe.
Gramsci’s argument, though, is that moral and ethical changes which would in the past have been imposed by the despotism of the aand and state, have to be undertaken on the initiative of workers themselves, or at least from within the formally ‘neutral’ terrain of the state. Gramsci perceived Fordism as a relatively progressive tendency away from individualism and competition, toward planning and cooperation.
But, though it would seem to have only conjunctural relevance, dealing with America’s move toward a planned economy during the Great Depression, several aspects of the analysis are of enduring significance, not least because of the methodology they imply.
Inasmuch as cities had a much lower birth-rate, these critiques were not wholly off the mark – and this fact was itself one of the factors constantly changing the terrain in which proletarian hegemonic struggles were taking place, because lower urban birth-rates tended to result in rural workers being sucked fprdism urban environments to which they were not acculturated, or bringing in workers of different nationalities and ‘races’.
As if neoliberal accumulation patterns don’t re produce americanis, with particular cultural, sexual and regional dimensions that need to be central to left-wing composition. Still, what is important here is how Gramsci approaches Fordism and its triumphs and challenges from manifold directions, attempting to assess every important, resonant aspect, as he sees it, of the ‘historical bloc’ that it comprised.
Through The Scary Door.
He is, to his credit, critical of Trotsky’s idea of militarising labour, but he also has an exaggerated worry about ‘totalitarian’ hypocrisy, in the sense that he believes that moral hypocrisy is principally a sin of moralising authorities under class societies, but could become general and thus only manageable through coercion in a classless society.
In part, this was necessary because the corporatist trend operated in a situation of mass unemployment. In light of some of his earlier writings, for example on socialist education, it’s fair to say that Gramsci had a small-c socially conservative aspect to his outlook, which conflicted with his small-l liberalism, and undermined his critique of the bourgeois state and the Catholic church.
As an attempt to rationalise production and resolve the dilemmas of capitalism particularly its crisis-prone nature within the constraints of capitalism itself, it potentially represented a ‘passive revolution’ that would usher in modernization without violent social struggles. There’s also no explicit approach to the issue of racism, antisemitism and anticommunism in the production of Fordist paternalism. The situation of the II international was such that it was reasonable to take the objective circumstances and conditions for socialism ‘for granted’, since the October revolution and the social crisis and development of productive forces which followed world war I.
Fordism’s decline has been exaggerated by theorists of post-industrial capitalism. To this view he opposes that of the collective worker.
But let’s say for the sake of argument that we operate in a post-Fordist historical bloc – that is a capitalism in which hegemony flows from the financial markets rather than the factories, and in which the whole of national and international life is increasingly organised around the model of speculation and debt.
Institute for Conjunctural Research.
This is contra both Bucharin and mechanism and reformist evolutionism. These parasites, depending on ‘rents’ and ‘pensions’ made available to them because of the continued existence of feudal forms and cultural norms no family member of a canon could be associated with manual labour, for exampleprovided the basis for the reactionary form of resistance to ‘Americanisation’.