Neal Harris
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The pathological normalcy of what? Towards a Fromm-Marcuse synthesis
in Critical theory and social pathology
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In this chapter, insights from Erich Fromm are married to those from Herbert Marcuse. I argue that while Fromm’s account of pathological normalcy offers a robust theoretical foundation, Marcuse’s framing of repressive desublimation and of the technical a priori offers operationalisable avenues for contemporary social research. While it is acknowledged that Fromm and Marcuse both presented very different Freudo-Marxisms, this is read as offering a productive tension born out of ‘sibling rivalry’, rather than indicating an insurmountable incompatibility.

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