I am surprised when I talk to the lower economic class, which is the most victimized of the status quo is the one who defends the status quo the most! Such encounters remind me of the terms “the opium of the masses of Karl Marx” and “the hegemony of Antonio Gramsci.” So here I am writing a little note about Gramsci hegemony.
Antonio Gramsci was a great Marxist philosopher, revolutionary, and theorist, and one of the leaders and founders of the Italian Communist Party. Gramsci is one of the theorists and anti-capitalist theorists and conceptualists of the well-known theory and term of hegemony (cultural superiority).
Gramsci was born in 1891 into a lower middle class family in Alsace, Sardinia, Italy. As a child, he sometimes ran away from school to help support his family. He was harassed by his classmates and friends because of the hump on his back, which led him to seek refuge in isolation and to study history and philosophy.
At the age of nine, he left school and started working. He later resumed his studies in linguistics and from that time began to move to Italian socialist circles. In 1916 he became the next organ of the Italian Communist Party in the Avanti newspaper. In the same years, following the victory of the revolution in Russia, Italy also experienced unrest, and the famous Turin uprising erupted with the demand for “peace and bread.”
In 1919, at the Congress of Bologna, Gramsci demanded that the Italian Socialist Party join the Third International founded by Lenin. In March 1920, workers at the Fiat plant in Turin went on a large strike. While supporting the strike, Gramsci strongly criticized the Socialist Party’s position on the matter. In August and September of that year the strike spread, and the Turin factories were occupied by workers, accompanied by the experience of the workers’ councils. Gramsci’s criticism of the Socialist Party intensified until the party eventually split into the Livorno Congress and formed the Italian Communist Party in 1921.
He was imprisoned in 1926 for revolutionary activities and was sentenced by a fascist court to 20 years in prison. On November 8, 1926, Gramsci was arrested and transferred to a prison in Milan. He was sentenced to 24 years and 4 months in prison and transferred to Tori Prison where he was seriously ill. From 1929 he acquired the necessary equipment for work and writing in prison, and from there he began to write works which later became known as Gramsci’s “notebooks” and “prison letters”.
Gramsci’s disease worsened in 1932, but authorities did not allow him to be taken to hospital. In October 1933, as a result of a global struggle, Gramsci was finally transferred to a clinic. The following year he was taken to a hospital in Rome. Gramsci was officially released on April 21, 1937. A week later, on April 27, Antonio Gramsci died at the age of 46 on the same day he was scheduled to return to Sardinia.
Hégémonie is a concept to describe and explain the influence and domination of one social group over another, as the dominant group obtains a degree of satisfaction from the dominated group and by “dominating” “Because of mere force.” Transcendence is a term introduced into political culture by Antonio Gramsci.
It refers to the material and spiritual domination of one class over another, as used in the term “bourgeois domination.” The term emphasizes that the ruling class not only controls society politically and economically, but also pervades its particular way of looking at the world and human beings and social relations in such a way that it becomes “common sense” and those below. They dominate and accept this attitude as part of the “natural order” of the world. In this sense, the struggle for “hegemony” (ie, spiritual leadership) is an important factor in any fundamental change.
Dr. Mohammad Reza Sargolzaei – Psychiatrist
Wikipedia, Taken from Joseph, Jonathan (2002), Hegemony: a realist analysis, New York: Routledge, ISBN 0-415-26836-2.
“Assyrian, Darius”, Political Encyclopedia, 16th edition, Tehran, Morvarid Publications, 2008, page 87
Translated By: Negar Kolkar
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