The Economic Interpretation of History

The Economic Interpretation of History

The Economic Interpretation of History

The Economic Interpretation of History

Excerpt

Though it may seem like gilding the lily, I shall try to follow Profesor Sés's wishes and point out as clearly as possible in an introduction what seem to be the main differences in background and ideas betwen the American and Continental European readers of a book on this subject. To begin with, some of the Marxian terminology in use in France has never become current in the United States. Even the French title of this book (Matérialisme historique et interpretation économique de l'histoire) sounds clumsy in English if literally translated. Back of the economic interpretation lies a philosophy which we awkwardly designate as the "materialistic conception of history," generally called "historical materialism" on the Continent of Europe. This expression is not common in English, though it has been used, for example as the title of small volume of critical essays by Benedetto Croce, and that of a long communist apology the Bukharin. This slight hitch in translating the title is evidently not the only case of the kind encountered in the book. The background of ideas, experience and social structure common to author and public in . . .

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