Labor and Interaction

In this highly influential essay, Habermas embarks on a fundamental critic of the theoretical orientation of the first generation of the Frankfurt School, especially the later works of Horkheimer, Adorno and Marcuse, and their orientation towards the Marxian notion of labour. He falls back on the Jena Lectures of Hegel and re-introduces the concept of interaction. While in the Marxian view, labour, the single model of social action, is a relation between object and subject, interaction refers to communication between subjects. A reformulated critical theory capable of normative analysis of contemporary society, Habermas argues, shall account for both.

Released: Replika 68, 17–35.
János Weiss