Michel Clouscard

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Michel Clouscard
Born August 6, 1928
Died February 21, 2009
Era 20th-century philosophy
Region Western Philosophy
School Continental philosophy
Western Marxism
Main interests
Politics, economics, sociology, history
Notable ideas
Criticism of libertarian liberalism

Michel Clouscard (French: [kluskaʁ]; August 6, 1928 – February 21, 2009) was a French Marxist philosopher and sociologist.


Clouscard's early life was dominated by athletics. He competed in the 200 meters race at the 1948 London Olympics.

Clouscard's graduate studies in letters and philosophy under the tutelage of Henri Lefebvre culminated with a thesis, The Being and the Code (L'Être et le Code; published 1972), presented to Jean-Paul Sartre, among others, for defense. Clouscard was a professor of sociology at the University of Poitiers from 1975 to 1990. In the early Seventies, Michel Clouscard developed a critique of libertarian liberalism.


According to Clouscard, the "capitalism of seduction" with its libertarian liberal face arises from the very evolution of the capitalist mode of production. It testifies to a qualitative jump of the accumulated quantities which, at a certain moment, reach a libertarian structure of society.

With its libertarian face, liberalism achieves its own self-realization, until the inevitable catastrophe. Clouscard speaks then about neofascism.

Drawing up the inventory of fixtures of the liberal counter-revolution's consequences, Clouscard produced a philosophical work to think and propose the basis of a new social contract and to enable a progressivist re-foundation.


  • Marx exclusively devoted himself to the study of the concentration of possession: capital, because it is the principle of political economy. We will propose the study of the drift of accumulation like the principle of phenomenological knowledge for studying the change of the bourgeoisie of free enterprise into the bourgeoisie of services and functions of the liberal society. Thus we will reveal an enormous unvoiced comment, that of the genealogy of this liberal society.”[1]

  • Neofascism will be the ultimate expression of libertarian social liberalism, of the unit which starts in May 68. Its specificity holds in this formula: All is allowed, but nothing is possible. The permissiveness of abundance, growth, new models of consumption, leaves the place to the interdict of the crisis, the shortage, the absolute depauperation. These two historical components amalgamate in the head, in the spirit, thus creating the subjective conditions of the neofascism. From Cohn-Bendit (libertarian leftist) to Le Pen (French extreme nationalist), the loop is buckled: here comes the time of frustrated revanchists.”[2]

  • “The State was the superstructural authority of capitalist repression. This is why Marx denounces it. But today, with globalisation, the inversion is total. Whereas the state-nation could be the means of oppression of a class by another, it becomes the means of resisting globalisation. It is a dialectical process."[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Critic of Libertarian Liberalism, Paris, Delga, p. 141
  2. ^ Interview in "L'Evadé", n°9, French 141
  3. ^ Critic of Libertarian Liberalism, Paris, Delga, p. 141

External links[edit]