Aspects of Sociology – Ideology

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“Political liberalism in its late period with its concept of freedom of opinion, which in any case possesses a certain affinity to relativism, insofar as everyone is to be allowed to think what he wishes, because they are only thinking what is most favorable to their interest and self assertion, regardless of its truth–this liberalism was by no means secure against such perversions of the concept of ideology. And this proves once again that totalitarian rule was not imposed on mankind from without by a few desperados, that it was by no means a traffic accident on the superhighway of progress, but that there were the destructive forces in the midst of our culture which were growing to ripeness.”

Pp. 194–195 in Frankfurt Institute for Social Research. 1973. Aspects of Sociology. Translated by J. Viertel. Boston: Beacon Press.

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  1. Yes, this gets to the heart of the problem of liberalism, which has now reached the point of its obsolescence in the era of Addiction by Design and presidents who were formerly successful reality tv show hosts. In light of the Adorno quote cited in this article and analyses such as DeTocqueville’s Democracy In America and in Federalist Papers No. 10, one sees that Alcuin was indeed prescient in his reservations about the concept of democracy, bound up as it is with the ideology of political liberalism and the ideology of Capital. But Marxism, even Adorno’s Post-Marxism, partakes of many of the same deficiencies. The only way out then is something that I call the anarcho-psychological critique, which I am exploring on my blog In the Balance, at


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