Contingency and necessity in Evald Ilyenkov’s communist cosmology
AbstractThe article argues for contemporary relevance of "Cosmology of the Spirit" by the outstanding Soviet philosopher Evald Ilyenkov, and explores its historical and intellectual contexts. This short treatise was written in the first half of the 1950s, but only published posthumously in the 1980s as it was too heretical to be published in the author’s lifetime. The text was heretical because of its enormous speculative drive. Addressing the physicist idea of the “entropic death of the universe” and using a combination of materialist dialectics and Spinoza’s concept of attribute, Ilyenkov claimed that thought is a necessary attribute of matter as it is able to prevent the terminal entropy of the universe. The paper uses the ideas of Ilyenkov’s cosmology in order to critically address contemporary currents of “speculative” philosophy.
CitationPenzin, A. (2018) Contingency and necessity in Evald Ilyenkov’s communist cosmology, e-flux, 88, Article No 174178
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