Para leer Althusser : de la sobredeterminación al proceso sin sujeto ni fines : la apropiación de Spinoza en la obra de Louis Althusser


De Ípola, Emilio
Romé, Natalia




306 p.


Atribución-NoComercial-SinDerivadas 2.0 Genérica (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)




This thesis aims to analyze the althusserian concept of process without subject or goal. Althusser intends to intervene Hegel's dialectic through the philosophy of Spinoza, since he identifies a number of effects that follows from its incorporation into the Marxist field. Our purpose is to analyze in what ways, to what extent and under what arguments Althusser appropriates the philosophy of Spinoza to operate on the Hegelian dialectic, being the production of the concept of process without a subject or goal the result of this appropriation. This concept, according to the French philosopher, inhabits Hegel's philosophy but to emerge it requires a theoretical demarcation inside his work.

This concept, says Althusser, is the theoretical debt from Marx to Hegel and it is the one which allow thinking a historical process without assigning to it any center and, therefore, any goals. Hence, the work on the Hegelian dialectic through Spinoza has as its aim the production of a concept of process that grasps beyond teleology the temporality that governs the social whole raised by Marx.

In the same vein, Althusser indicates that the concept of temporality that is taken depends on the one with which is thought the determination between the practices that make up the social whole. Thus it is necessary for us to analyze the concept of overdetermination, with which Althusser accounts for that determination relationship. Therefore, we will stop first in this proposal.

This concept involves, according to Althusser, a rejection of the way in which the Hegelian expressive causality is appropriate within Marxism to think the social whole, in particular the humanist and historicist Marxism. This matrix reduces the complexity of social practices by transforming them into the phenomenon of an essence, removing their specificity. Faced with this proposal, Althusser retrieves the Spinozist immanent causality for the sake of thinking this determination relation without suppressing the relative autonomy of each of the instances that make up the social whole, but neither turning absolute their partial externality. Whereupon, the operation on the Hegelian dialectic condensed in the concept of process without a subject finds support in a shift regarding the way in which the German philosopher poses causality.

On the concept of overdetermination, along with the Spinozist immanent causality, gathers together a problem faced by Althusser because he considers the relationship between practices based on a proposal that crosses structuralism. That is, the French philosopher thinks the relationship between the practices that make a social formation supported by the differential ontology that inhabits the theory of sign of Saussure. Such ontology, which reformulated by various thinkers underpins what we will define as structuralist problematic, leads to the problem of the term with double function, a problem inherent to structuralims that Althusser addresses bringing into play the Spinozist immanent causality. So we will affirm that the concept of overdetermination constitutes an intervention in Marxism taking a social formation in terms of structuralist problematic, being this problematic that which summons up the immanent causality because one of the questions that opens. Hence that a detour through structuralism is imposed to us in order to analyze the concept of overdetermination, a concept that will lead us to that of process without a subject or goal, which acts as the object of analysis of this work.

From our research question, that is, to what extent, how, with what scope and what limitations the philosophy of Spinoza was established as a tool to think a social whole devoid of subject and teleology, we will sustain that if Hegel's dialectic is designated as teleological for making the entire contradictory process a development of a starting point that remains equal to itself as it unfolds, Spinoza's substance on this point repeat this condition. We will maintain that the substance remains in itself when it immanently produces an infinity of ways of being. Whereupon, it is both a starting point and a result of its own activity, which concludes in the fact that in the terms proposed by Althusser, it is as teleological as Hegel's Absolute Idea. However, the goal we will draw noting the difficulties encountered by the argument of Althusser will be not dismissing his proposal, but rescuing his own repertoire of reading to accentuate the problems faced by those who have appropriated his philosophical work to establish a dichotomy between Spinoza and Hegel. That is, we will propose to show some of the pitfalls posed by the argument of Althusser, while intended to be used to bluntly oppose the philosophy of Spinoza to the Hegel´s.

Table Of Contents

Introducción: Rodear Althusser
Esa aventura llamada contradicción
“¡Pero Spinoza empezaba por Dios!”
Para leer Althusser
El capital como sujeto

Capítulo I: “Solo hay prácticas en función de sus diferencias”
Althusser y la crítica al humanismo
La crítica al humanismo (re)comenzada
Una totalidad sobredeterminada. El marxismo como nueva problemática
El estructuralismo
El estructuralismo en tanto teoría del signo
Una demarcación en el estructuralismo
¿Es el estructuralismo solo un método de investigación?
El estructuralismo como herramienta heurística. Hacia la construcción de un modelo de modelos.
Algo más que un modelo: del orden del orden a las reglas de la variabilidad posible.
Tras las huellas del estructuralismo.

Capítulo II: “Causa de la estructura”
La sobredeterminación del todo social: la recuperación del índice de eficacia de cada instancia del todo.
La sobredeterminación o causalidad estructural
Una estructura a-dominante
El término a doble función en tanto “problema de todo estructuralismo”.
La instancia-práctica económica como término a doble función.
Una estructura que solo existe en sus efectos

Capítulo III: Acerca de la categoría de proceso sin sujeto ni fines
De la determinación entre prácticas a la historicidad del todo social
La alianza entre el sujeto y los fines. Hacia una-otra dialéctica
El vacío de una distancia tomada
La causa libre
Los atributos de la sustancia
La naturaleza naturada: los modos
El concepto fundamental de toda especulación

Capítulo IV: La crítica de Hegel
La crítica del Comienzo
Sobre la igualdad de los orígenes
Acerca de la contradicción
Hegel versus Hegel
Hegel sive Spinoza



Título obtenido

Doctor de la Universidad de Buenos Aires en Ciencias Sociales

Institución otorgante

Universidad de Buenos Aires. Facultad de Ciencias Sociales

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