Dialectical and Historical Materialism

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Dialectical and Historical Materialism, by Joseph Stalin, is a central text within Soviet political theory.

The work first appeared in 1938, drawing heavily upon both Lenin's philosophical works and the then-new Short Course in the History of the All-Union Communist Party (Bolsheviks). It later became the state doctrine of the Soviet Union.

Outline of the book[edit]

Stalin's writing is divided into three parts, and very systematically presented:

A: outline of the Marxist dialectical method, in contrast to metaphysics

  1. Nature is a unified whole
  2. Nature is in perpetual motion
  3. The development of nature is the transition of quantity into quality
  4. Natural phenomena possess internal contradictions as part of their struggle, and cannot be reformist, but rather revolutionary

B: outline of the Marxist philosophical materialism in contrast to idealism

  1. The world is materialistic in nature
  2. Being is objective reality, thinking is a reflection of matter, contributing ideas back to being.
  3. The knowledge of natural laws is examined by the practice, laws of social development, objective truth, analog biology, socialism is a science

C: Historical materialism

  1. What characterizes "last resort" [Engels] society? The mode of production of material goods and not the geographical environment or the growth of the population.
  2. The "real" party of the proletariat controls the laws of development of production
  3. A schematic picture of the story:

A. Primitive communal / primitive communism

B. Slavery
C. Feudalism
D. Capitalism
E. Socialism (where evolution instead of revolution)

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

References[edit]

This article incorporates information from the revision as of 19 September 2010 of the equivalent article on the German Wikipedia.

External links[edit]

Texts