Excellent Elias sur culture et politique

And how is it done? Only ever through social historicisation. The values, the “we-image” (125) of the rising middle class of the 18th century, with its German specificity : “culture” as non-political but even anti-political, if political in the context means the classes of absolutistic courts or authoritarian princes. In Germany the special situation, of “culture” opposing both “politics” and “civilization” (as le grand monde). History therefore class, class therefore history. (With the proviso noted earlier : that class (economics) doesn’t cover all, viz military values of student duelling societies long after the end of the Reich.

”The dividing line between ‘culture’ and ‘politics’ and the antagonistic undertones of history written as ‘history of culture’ and as ‘political history’ in the 18th and 19th century”.

Values of the middle class concept, culture : “religion, science, architecture, philosophy and poetry”, but also “Kultergeschichte” vs “political history” (and in this context, short lived, universal, human history and progress), “progress of human morality, as can be observed in the customs and conduct of ordinary people” (126). Sociology of this : “that politics and affairs of the state represented the area of their humiliation and lack of freedom, while culture represented the sphere of their freedom and their pride”. Stretches therefore to : “ the ‘great world’… were full of conceit and pretence, without truthful and genuine feelings” (cf sentiment chez Fichte), vs valeurs aristocratiques du ‘grand monde’ : politeness, good manners, caution / expression of spontaneous feeling, emotional restraint and diplomatic strategy, tact.”

Il y a aussi l’acte politique, ou social, qui est celui de la bourgeoisie émergente : l’autonomisation de la sphère culturelle, précisément, comme sphère opppositionnelle, critique, ou au moins de retraite. Effet d’une lutte. Quel romantisme, ici ? Par rapport à quelle politique révolutionnaire, ou démocratisante ?

 

D’où : sociologie de l’idéalisme. Et du travail du sens, par rapport au travail du pouvoir.


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