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Extra info for Anton Pannekoek and the Socialism of Workers’ Self Emancipation, 1873-1960

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Such a narrow conception of materialism, he argued, wholly misunderstands the nature of the problem. It fails to take into consideration the fact that parts of the world do not exist separately, but only as interconnected parts of the whole. Matter in the sense of tangible material does not possess the slightest preferential right to be considered more important and more distinct than any other phenomena of nature. To isolate one part of the universe and make it the basis of all other parts, Dietzgen felt, was to ascribe an independent existence to what is essen­ tially an abstraction.

It is their own life experiences which represent the study form which gives them certain convictions. ' 5 1 From the standpoint of its cognitive possibilities in the realm of daily life, Marxism represented a 'revolution in science' for which it would take at least a generation to fully comprehend. 52 Pannekoek's most sustained effort to apply his conception of science and Marxism can be found in his treatment of the question of Darwinism. Few q uestions had more centrality to the ideology of the Second International than that of the relationship between Marxism and Darwinism.

This gap in Marxian theory, Pannekoek felt, coupled with the tradi- * Although the word 'geistig' might best translate as ' mental', Pannekoek in h i s own English writings specifically chose the term 'spiritua l ' . By spiritual, h e meant a combination of subjective, menta l , in tellectual, psychological, and moral qualities. PANNEKOEK ' S METHO DO LOGY 17 tional influence exercised b y bourgeois thought, was one of the main reasons for the erroneous understanding of Marxism by anti-Marxists and revision­ ists alike.

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