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Beginning to See the LightSex, Hope, and Rock-and-Roll$
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Ellen Willis

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780816680788

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816680788.001.0001

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Herbert Marcuse, 1898–1979

Herbert Marcuse, 1898–1979

(p.141) Herbert Marcuse, 1898–1979
Beginning to See the Light

Ellen Willis

University of Minnesota Press

This chapter presents the author’s thoughts about Herbert Marcuse. Marcuse had a monolithically bleak view of advanced capitalism and his contempt for American workers’ enjoyment of their material gains was hardly distinguishable from other conservative critics of mass culture. However, the author agrees with his contention that the modern capitalist state has immense resources for social control, that it operates as much by manipulation as by direct coercion. She also agrees with his thinking that the American ruling class uses liberalism as one of its many weapons, trying whenever it can to pass off the appearance of freedom as the reality.

Keywords:   Herbert Marcuse, mass culture, capitalism, liberals, capital state, social control

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