Post-Marxism is a trend in political philosophy and social theory which deconstructs Karl Marx's writings and Marxism proper, bypassing orthodox Marxism. The term post-Marxism first appeared in Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe's theoretical work Hegemony and Socialist Strategy. It can be said that post-Marxism as a political theory was developed at the University of Essex by Laclau and Mouffe. Philosophically, post-Marxism counters derivationism and essentialism (for example, it does not see economy as a foundation of politics and the state as an instrument that functions unambiguously and autonomously on behalf of the interests of a given class).[1] Recent overviews of post-Marxism are provided by Ernesto Screpanti,[2] Göran Therborn[3] and Gregory Meyerson.[4]


Post-Marxism dates from the late 1960s and several trends and events of that period influenced its development. The weakness of the Soviet Union paradigm became evident and Marxism faced a lack since the Second International. This happened concurrently with the occurrence internationally of the student riots of 1968, the rise of Maoist theory and the proliferation of commercial television which covered in its broadcasts the Vietnam War. Subsequently, Laclau and Mouffe address the proliferation of "new subject positions" by locating their analysis on a post-Marxist non-essentialist framework.

Important post-Marxists

See also


  1. Mclean, Ian; Mcmillan, Alistair (2003) The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Politics (Article: State). Oxford University Press.
  2. "The Postmodern Crisis in Economics and the Revolution against Modernism", “Rethinking Marxism”, 2000
  3. Therborn, Göran (2008). From Marxism to Post-Marxism. London: Verso. 208 pp.
  4. Meyerson, Gregory (2009). Post-Marxism as Compromise Formation.
  5. Torme, Simon; Townshend, Jules (2006). Key Thinkers from Critical Theory to Post-Marxism. London: Sage Publications. pp 13–37.


  • Galfarsoro, Imanol (2012). "(Post)Marxismoa, kultura eta eragiletasuna: Ibilbide historiko labur bat". In Alaitz Aizpuru(koord.). Euskal Herriko pentsamenduaren gida. Bilbo: UEU. ISBN 978-84-8438-435-9.
  • Tormey, Simon; Townshend, Jules (2006) Key Thinkers from Critical Theory to Post-Marxism. Pine Forge Press.
  • Sim, Stuart (2002). Post-Marxism: An Intellectual History, Routledge.
  • Shenfield, Stephen (2008). Vladislav Bugera: Portrait of a Post-Marxist Thinker.
  • el-Ojeili, Chamsy (June 2001). Post-Marxism with Substance: Castoriadis and the Autonomy Project. In New Political Science. 32:2. pp. 225–239.
  • el-Ojeili Chamsy (2011) After post-socialism: Social theory, utopia and the work of castoriadis in a global age. Antepodium: Online Journal of World Affairs. pp. 1–16.

Further reading

  • Jean Baudrillard, The Mirror of Production, 1973
  • Ernesto Laclau, Politics and Ideology in Marxist Theory: Capitalism, Fascism, Populism, 1977
  • Jean Baudrillard, For a Critique of the Political Economy of the Sign, 1981
  • Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe, Hegemony and Socialist Strategy: Towards a Radical Democratic Politics, 1985
  • Slavoj Zizek, The Sublime Object of Ideology, 1989
  • Fredric Jameson, Postmodernism, or, the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism, 1991
  • Jacques Derrida, Specters of Marx, 1993
  • Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri, Empire, 2000
  • Judith Butler, Ernesto Laclau and Slavoj Zizek, Contingency, Hegemony, Universality: Contemporary Dialogues on the Left, 2000
  • Göran Therborn, From Marxism to Post-Marxism?, 2010
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