Huang, Jifeng

“Concrete Totality” and “Structuralist Totality”. The comparison of Kosik and Althusser’s explanation on the Marx’s Theory of History


Karel Kosik interprets the reality as the “structural, evolving, self-forming whole” by “concrete totality” in his work Dialectics of the concrete, and he bases this standpoint to explain the Marx’s theory of history. So there is a sharply contrast between the Kosik’s explanation on the Marx’s theory of history and the Louis Althusser’s explanation in the perspective of “structuralist totality”. Kosik’s concept of “concrete totality” and his critique of the structuralism hit the crucial shortage of the Althusser’s structuralist view even though Althusser’s point of view on Marx is later than the Kosik’s. Through “concrete totality” Kosik explains his understanding about the man and history, economic base and superstructure, science and the ideology and so on concerning the important problems of Marxist theory of history which is entirely different from the Althusser’s understanding. We find that Kosik’s theory of “concrete totality” effectively dissolves the damage of the structuralism of the Marx’s theory by Althusser.