The Spell of Capital

edited by Johan F. Hartle and Samir Gandesha
Amsterdam University Press, 2017
eISBN: 978-90-485-2705-2, Cloth: 978-90-8964-851-8

This book explores the tradition, impact, and contemporary relevance of two key ideas from Western Marxism: Georg Lukács's concept of reification, in which social aspects of humanity are viewed in objectified terms, and Guy Debord's concept of the spectacle, where the world is packaged and presented to consumers in uniquely mediated ways. Bringing the original, yet now often forgotten, theoretical contexts for these terms back to the fore, Johan Hartle and Samir Gandesha offer a new look at the importance of Western Marxism from its early days to the present moment-and reveal why Marxist cultural critique must continue to play a vital role in any serious sociological analysis of contemporary society.

Samir Gandesha is associate professor and director of the Institute for the Humanities at Simon Fraser University. Johan Hartle is assistant professor of the philosophy of art and culture at the University of Amsterdam and adjunct professor of aesthetics at the China Academy of Art.

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