Hegel and Marx in Finland: A Philosophical Parody

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Abstract: This paper starts from the story of Hegel and Marx in Finland during the troubled years in the 1970s when I was starting my academic career. That was the heyday of their influence; I mean they were taken seriously. The society was changing and we needed new heroes for revolutionary purposes. In one sense, this is an autobiographical essay. At the same time, I want to develop a kind of philosophical parody: how would the things look like in Finland today if we looked at them in the language and methodology of those far-away less than halcyon days. I have handpicked some trouble spots of the Finnish life and society for a critical look à la Marx and Hegel, at the same time not forgetting Lenin, who used to look to so many Finns so lovable a figure. To preserve at least an air of decency around this paper I have not mentioned Stalin, although the Finnish communists at that time, I mean in 1970s, were unabashed Stalinists most of them. I first pay close attention to the Lutheran Church and then to the bad faith and false consciousness, paid sex, the welfare society based on needs, alcohol policy, the fate of the weakest link in society, and the devaluation of an individual and emphasis on community in medical care, euthanasia, and social policy. I also discuss Finnish folk ethics.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFinnish-German Yearbook of Political Economy, vol. 1
EditorsManfred Holler
Number of pages24
Place of PublicationMünchen
PublisherVerlag Holler
Publication dateDec 2017
ISBN (Print)978-3-88278-305-6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2017
MoE publication typeA3 Book chapter

Fields of Science

  • 611 Philosophy
  • Marxism in Finland, Hegel, Snellman,, Finnish folk-ethics

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