ID501 CRITICAL EVERYDAY LIFE SOCIOLOGIESProblematizing the Everyday Michael E. Gardiner Selma Kadiroğlu 1561729
Overview Karl Marx: ‘the religion of everyday life’ Georgy Simmel: the technology of metropolitan lifeGeorg Lukács: the ‘riddle of the commodity-structure’Walter Benjamin: the ‘dream-houses of the collective’ Conclusion
Karl Marx: ‘the religion of everyday life’• The fundamental ambivalence regarding everyday life, in his writings• Warns to grasp actual social practices and relationships which are located in daily lifeThe phenomenon of ideology deflects attention away from the realities of concrete social life ghostly abstractions and idealizationsThe real socio-economic conflicts and contradictions were solved in a fantastical andimaginary level.
the Camera Obscura ‘The fetishism of commodities and the secret thereof’ (Vol 1-Capital) Personal worthCapitalism cash nexus mediates all activities, Exchange value interactions, trumps other (more qualitative sociocultural values and interests )
fanciful abstractions Attention fetishes, hobby horsesTrue nature of social life (under capitalism)Cure: *reject the supposed autonomy of ideologic systems, *replace by empirical socio-historical research into the production andreproduction of human life within particular circumstances(study of actuality)
Georgy Simmel: the technology of metropolitan lifean innovative phenomenology of culture *grasp how the diverse practices, spaces and objects in an urbanized everyday life manifested latent significances.the study of the everyday the microscopic analysis of cells social cells interact with each other continuously this fleeting or enduring interactions make up day-to-day city lifeunderstand the very ‘everydayness’ of mundane social existence,not only to see in theobjects and passing moments of daily life a sign of something ‘deeper’ or ‘fundamental’.Tragedy of culture:Grasp his distinction between objective and subjective culture.
Tragedy of culturedistinction between objective culture and subjective culture consist of the objects that people the capacity of individuals to produce in the realms of produce,absorb and control the science,art , etc. elements of objective cultureWhen? the growth of objective culture the growth of subjective culture.an increasing division of labor forcesindividuals to specialize.The consequence of this growth and specialization is that individuals are unable to grasp thetotality of objective culture and are unable to control it.
*frees up repressed human potentialsModernity *encourages a broader and cosmopolitan look *breaks down the stultifying prejudices & blind spots inherited from traditional societies * a kind of individual projectEveryday life * a work of art constituting an end to itself * accomplished through the refinement of individual tastes & dispositions sypmtomatic of the general aestheticization of daily existence under modernity
Lukács: the ‘riddle of the commodity-structure’capitalizm soulness, mechanical civillization in the place of an organic andintegrated premodern communityThe Messianic impulse (Löwy) ; restoration a hearful yearning for a lost Edenic paradise or ‘Golden Age’ utopia the desire to reestablish this paradisiacal condition at some futureCapitalism: *a totalizing structure in which the logic of commodity production seeped intoall areas of daily existence *no reformed, but destroyed branch and replaced by socialism
reification and alienation derived from *commodity fetishism(Marx) *tragedy of culture(Simmel) necessary, immediate reality of every person living in capitalis societyTo liberate:Proletariat should challenge this metaphysical activity by developping a revolutionary classconsciousness and confronting the ossified structures of bourgeois power.Daily life of modernity was so debased that; redemption would only possible by superseding the everyday completely through a leap into completely different kind of community or a return to what is essentially a romanticized, pastoral and pre-capitalist society
undialectical and ahistorical:• defining capitalism as a form of spiritual and social decay rather than as a contradictory social formation within bothdestructive and liberative forces,• maintain the belief that history would culminate to reconcile subject and object.
Walter Benjamin: the ‘dream-houses of the collective’• To understand everydayconfront the status of objects in our experience as commoditieshow their effects are registered in human consciousness, social behaviour and cultural formsRedemption: it was the eveyday world itself The force of prosaic The counter authencity of the texture and rhythm of our daily lives and decisions What is repressed in modernity The myriad of minute Careful adjustments that we are ready to offer in the interests of a habitable world
Everyday: not lacking completely in emancipatory possibilitiesThe minutiae of daily life gesturesThe very banality of which is worth savouring practices symbolsEx: boredom modern refusal to compulsion to consume passively an expression of non-alienated experiencesource of experience lies in the totality of experience myriad passions epiphanies the systematic continuum irrationalities all such elements contributed to the raw material of our daily lives.
Benjamin vs Simmel• Both tried to create a new kind of philosophically informed cultural criticsm that took as its objects the commonplace things and practices of present-day life.• The exploration of everyday must occur on two different levels:1. in terms of material culture and the built environment2. how this urban setting impacts on human psychology,bodies and social interactions bombard developContinuous rush human sensory apparatus a blasé attitudeTumult of life (in capitalist metropolis)• Benjamin focus on more: how capitalist industrialization and routinization effectively reengineers the human pshche and corporeal habitus.People’s actions in their working and everyday lives become automized, more and more massified. interchangeable, isolated from each other
Result of reification and alienation; stereotypical everyday consciousness and manner of bodily deportmentcharacterized by habituated ‘distraction’Distraction;• prevent people from the continual shocks and traumas of modernity ,• allow to roll with the punches of rapid social changes(disorienting and anomic)These adaptations have high cost; the collective rituals and traditions that bound premodern societies together, and transmitted, shared life narratives are effectively lost, only cash nexus is left.
*not regard the everyday as a backdrop for ostensibly more important social institutions and activitiesMarx Benjamin *see the everyday as a crucial site of ideological contestation and the formation of mass consciousness Simmel
The locus of counter- ideological insights habitualized or The locus oftaken-for-granted emancipatory behaviours and tendencies attitudes The Everyday
Marx Simmel formulate the theories ofalienation&commodity fetishism seek to grasp modernity& focus on how these related to as a distinct socio- capitalist economic process cultural formation that transformed daily life and engendered a wide range of new affective, behavioural and sensory effects
Benjamin ( more dialectical) The objects, images and practices of modernOnly hope is in the everyday life as a crucialMessiniac figure of repository of collective Lenin and the dreams and wishes of dynamo of world humankind for a free and communism egalitarian society Michael Billig Commodities have more transcendental qualities in postmodern society than the laissez-faire capitalism, once freed from the necessity of appearing Marxist, these ideas may be valuable to understand the everyday life.