By Jean-Marie Vincent
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The individual is socialised not only by values external to him/her; (s)he responds to a logic of valorisation which is, to be sure, no longer that of market values, but does not exclude inequality vis-a-vis social values, and thus may involve competition to partake of these, hence the relapse into particularism. An isolated individual is always confronted with a hypostasy of the collective and the social. In spite of his very penetrating analyses in History and Class Consciousness and later in the Young Hegel, it must be recognised that Luk~cs neglected certain essential aspects of the Marxian critique of political economy, in particular those pertaining to abstract labour.
My thanks to all of them. -M. V. February 1990 Translator's Note The French edition of Jean-Marie Vincent's book included a subtitle: 'le faire et l'agir' (roughly: 'doing and acting'). These two terms refer to an important theme developed throughout the book, but they admit of no obvious equivalent in English: 'doing' and 'acting' hardly begin to convey the meaning. Now, the Greek terms 'poiesis' and 'praxis', which Jean-Marie Vincent also uses, cover a similar distinction to that between le faire and l'agir.
Habermas admits, of course, that this ideal of communicational transparence is never fully realised, but he sees it as permanently at work in the protagonists of communication, as an aim or a presupposition, even when, for one reason or another, they do not take inspiration from it concretely. Empirical communication is thus measured by the standard of regulative transparency, that is, according to its greater or lesser distance from that standard. The incommunicable (or the finitude of communication) thus has no place in communication or interaction; it is not a presence of the world in language, or precomprehension of that which proposes itself to be spoken; it appears essentially as a limit or pathology and disturbance.
Abstract Labour: A Critique by Jean-Marie Vincent