CHAPTER 3
Moscow, 1930-1931

The philosophy debate had repercussions in virtually every branch of Soviet intellectual life, and the "struggle for Leninism," for the "Leninist principle of party-mindedness," ended up as the highest priority for literature, too. 1 This battle for a "Marxist-Leninist world view" in literature, fought concurrently with the war "on the philosophical front," lasted until the relative pluralism in literary styles of the twenties gave way to what Lukács himself referred to many years later as an "arid naturalism garnished with so-called revolutionary romanticism." 2 Literary theory and criticism likewise degenerated into pointless debates and jejune disputes over the true meaning of an inherently meaningless socialist realism, with everything theoretical that Stalin and his protégés touched turning to mediocrity or worse, and the quality of criticism plummeting to a level matched only by the postwar Zhdanovshchina.


ACCOMMODATION OR AUTONOMY?

Assuming that Lukács was not immune to the Stalin touch, at what stage in the development of his literary theories did the tremendous pressure to bring his ideas into basic conformity with the predominent intellectual trends of Stalinism prove too much for him to withstand? Lukács later answered these questions with his usual insistence that his ideas were actually an unspoken protest against Stalinist habits of thought, 3 but he in fact did not manage to exempt his work from Stalin's encroachment into the realm of philosophy and art; as a matter of fact, much of Lukács' inspiration in these early years came to him directly from the triumphant battles on the "theoretical fronts" of ascendant Stalinism.

Lukács' essays, those written in Moscow in 1930 and 1931,

-24-

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Lukacs and Brecht
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Preface ix
  • Acknowledgnents xvii
  • Part One - Lukács 1
  • Chapter 1 - Introduction 3
  • Chapter 2 - Excursus the Philosophy Debate 15
  • Chapter 3 - Moscow, 1930-1931 24
  • Chapter 4 - Interlude 42
  • Chapter 5 - Berlin, 1931-1933 53
  • Chapter 6 - Lukács' Theory of Fascism, Part I 72
  • Chapter 7 - The ImpasseLukács' Theory of Fascism, Part 2 103
  • Chapter 8 - Lukács in Soviet Exile, 1933-1939 119
  • Chapter 9 - The Dialectic of Reality 156
  • Chapter 10 - Conclusion 176
  • Part - Two Brecht 193
  • Chapter 11 - The Victim 195
  • Chapter 12 - The Apologist 222
  • Chapter 13 - The Dialectician 245
  • Notes 261
  • Bibliography 323
  • Index 333
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