In the essay “Repressive Tolerance” (), the Germanborn American critical theorist Herbert Marcuse () of the Franklin School of political theorists . When Herbert Marcuse’s essay entitled “Repressive tolerance” was Keywords: Repressive Tolerance; Herbert Marcuse; Social Organisation of Knowledge. Herbert Marcuse’s resonant and insightful words: “In the contemporary period, the democratic argument for abstract tolerance tends to be.

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The traditional criterion of clear and present danger seems no longer adequate to a stage where the whole society is in the situation of the theater audience when somebody cries: Given this situation, I suggested in ‘Repressive Tolerance’ the practice of discriminating tolerance in an inverse direction, as a means of shifting the balance between Right and Left by restraining the liberty of the Right, thus counteracting the pervasive inequality of freedom unequal opportunity of access to the means of democratic persuasion and strengthening the oppressed against the oppressed.

The McCall Publishing Company, Those who stand against the established system are a priori at a disadvantage, which is not removed by the toleration of their ideas, speeches, and newspapers. More than ever, the proposition holds true that progress in freedom demands progress in the consciousness of freedom.

Therefore, all contesting opinions amrcuse be submitted to ‘the people’ for its deliberation and choice. In its very structure this majority is ‘closed’, petrified; it repels a priori any change other than changes within the system. I shall presently discuss the question as to who is to decide on the distinction between liberating and repressive, human and inhuman teachings and practices; I have already suggested that this distinction is not a matter of value-preference but of rational criteria.

This majority is firmly grounded in the increasing satisfaction of needs, and technological and -mental co-ordination, which testify to the general helplessness of radical groups in a well-functioning social system. It is of two kinds:. University of Toronto Press, The book includes a foreword jointly written by its authors, [1] and three other contributions, “Beyond Tolerance” by Robert Paul Wolff, [2] “Tolerance and the Scientific Outlook” by Barrington Moore Jr.

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A Critique of Criticisms. For if ‘education’ is more and other than training, learning, preparing for the existing society, it means not only enabling man to know and understand the facts which make up reality but also to know and understand tolerancw factors that establish the facts so that he can change their inhuman reality. This page book was originally published in ; the edition below includes Herbert’s ‘Postscript.

Repressive Tolerance |

And this contradiction is not simply stipulated, is not simply the product of confused thinking or fantasy, but is the logical development of the given, the existing world.

Is the case of India an exception? Conversely, what is reptessive and practiced as tolerance today, is in many of its most effective manifestations serving the cause of oppression. The conclusion reached is that the realization of the objective of tolerance would call for intolerance toward prevailing policies, attitudes, opinions, and the extension marcuuse tolerance to policies, attitudes, and opinions which are outlawed or suppressed.

A Critique of Pure Tolerance – Wikipedia

He credited Marcuse with being open in his advocacy of intolerance, but accused Wolff of being incapable of distinguishing “facts from theory” in his criticisms of tolerance and pluralist democracy.

The conditions under which tolerance can again become a liberating and humanizing force have still to be created.

This process involves at each stage to use the ridiculed terms which here reveal their succinct concreteness the negation of the negation, mediation of herhert immediate, and identity is no more and no less than this process. Herbbert altered social structure tends to weaken the effectiveness of tolerance toward dissenting and oppositional movements and to strengthen conservative and reactionary forces. To tolerate propaganda for inhumanity vitiates the goals not only of liberalism but of every progressive political philosophy.

Value hierarchies in philosophical arguments.

Such discrimination would also be applied to movements opposing the extension of social legislation to the poor, weak, disabled. Experts in Web Hosting.


This means that previously repressice, value-free, formal aspects of learning and teaching now become, on their own grounds and in their own right, political: But in a democracy with totalitarian organization, objectivity may fulfill a very different function, namely, to foster a mental attitude which tends to obliterate the difference between true toleranfe false, information and indoctrination, right and wrong.

Moreover, the restoration of freedom of thought may necessitate new and rigid restrictions on teachings and practices in the educational institutions which, by their very methods and concepts, serve to enclose marcusee mind within the established universe of discourse and behavior–thereby precluding a priori a rational evaluation of the alternatives.

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Or better since ‘justification’ marcusw a moral connotationis there historical evidence to the effect that the social origin and impetus of violence from among the ruled or the ruling classes, the have or the have-nots, the Left or the Right is in a demonstratable relation to progress as defined above? And such universal tolerance is possible only when no real or alleged enemy requires in the national interest the education and training of people in military violence and destruction.

Repressive Tolerance

This rupture–prerequisite and token of all freedom of thought and of speech–cannot be accomplished within msrcuse established framework of abstract tolerance and spurious objectivity because these are precisely the factors which precondition the mind against the rupture. They note that they have different perspectives on philosophywith Wolff accepting, and Marcuse opposing, the approach of analytic philosophyand Moore being critical of philosophy in general.

Psychoanalysis, Politics, and Utopia. Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society.