One more thing I’ve learned

In last week’s list of things I have learned from history, I forgot the most important one:

 9. Marx was right: “Man makes his own history, but not under conditions of his own choosing.”

 9a. We still have only a vague and partial understanding of what those conditions might be. It is not only the structural and economic conditions that Marx and others like to emphasize and endlessly disagree about. They are also the conditions of our families, our biological contents, the ideologies and other education we have imbibed and believed, the rituals we have undergone, the drugs, pollutants and other substances we have consumed, those emotions that never go away no matter how much we try to repress them, and those subconscious forces that may amount to little more than the sex drive or may stretch on to infinity. . . . just to name a few.

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Posted on October 18, 2011, in Academic History, My Life and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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