If Marx's opus Capital provided the foundational account of theforces of production in all of their objective, machine formats, what happens when the concepts ofpolitical economy are applied not to dead labor, but to its living counterpart, the human subject?The result is Alexander Kluge and Oskar Negt's History and Obstinacy, agroundbreaking archaeology of the labor power that has been cultivated in the human body over thelast two thousand years. Supplementing classical political economy with the insights of fieldsranging from psychoanalysis and phenomenology to evolutionary anthropology and systems theory,History and Obstinacy reaches down into the deepest strata of unconsciousthought, genetic memory, and cellular life to examine the complex ecology of expropriation andresistance.
First published in German 1981, and never before translated intoEnglish, this epochal collaboration between Kluge and Negt has now been edited, expanded, andupdated by the authors in response to global developments of the last decade to create an entirelynew analysis of "the capitalism within us."
Alexander Kluge is an author and filmmaker, known for launching the New German Cinema in the early 1960s. Oskar Negt is Professor of Sociology at the Universitat Hannover. Early in his career, he was a student of Theodor Adorno and assistant to Jurgen Habermas. Devin Fore is Associate Professor of German at Princeton University, author of Realism after Modernism (MIT Press), and an editor of the journal October.