Neal Harris
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On the battle for critical theory
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In this chapter, I lay bare the fault lines within contemporary critical theory. That critical theory once offered a powerful and distinctive approach to social research is established, yet such diagnostic potency has been ‘domesticated’. The problems brought about by the recent foundational change in the research programme’s social-theoretical foundations are introduced, with Axel Honneth’s form of ‘recognition theory’ identified as a primary culprit. The possibility of an alternative social-theoretical foundation for critical theory is foregrounded, built upon a marriage of the work of Erich Fromm and Herbert Marcuse.

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