Art, Literature and Culture from a Marxist Perspective by Tony McKenna

By Tony McKenna

Art, Literature and tradition from a Marxist Perspective offers a trip via the most salient and abiding cases of paintings, literature, television sequence and picture. The research levels from extra classical works corresponding to the work of Van Gogh or the writing of Balzac and Brontë, throughout to these at the innovative of latest tradition together with HBO's Breaking Bad, Game of Thrones, Harry Potter, The starvation Games, The strolling Dead and the tune of Tupac Shakur.

The writer demonstrates, with a lucid and literary kind, how those works may be able to weave right into a delusion cloth the basic types of the ancient realities during which we're enmeshed. McKenna exhibits how each one is stamped with that ancient necessity.

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This, of course, might seem like a minor detail to iron out, but McNally’s inaccuracy on the point does have its consequences. Because he argues that the early template – the productionist template – has been abnegated, he then assumes that the aesthetic possibilities of exposing ‘the hidden world of labour and the disparities of class’ are also lost. 7 Unfortunately, this rings a double confusion. The modern-day zombie archetype has absorbed the element of ‘production’ into its aesthetic remit – it was never lost.

3 The Walking Dead: The Archetype of the Zombie in the Modern Epoch Based on a comic book of the same name, The Walking Dead is a TV series which depicts the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse, in which a group of survivors try to navigate the remnants of a ravaged world. Led by police officer Rick Grimes, they band together for protection against the threat of the ‘walkers’: the undead creatures perpetually trudging across the broken landscape, looking for survivors to gorge on and ‘turn’ – that is, transform into fellow zombies.

The strength of the film lies in its ability to illustrate, through its sci-fi aesthetic, how the parasitic basis of capital depends on the class appropriation of a concrete content. Although the film describes this appropriation in crude terms – as little more than collective theft, by depicting labour time as social substance, it nevertheless offers a concrete premise at the level of social being which comes to inform the nature of the individual exploiter – over and above the personal peccadilloes and subjectivities ascribed to his or her character by the writer.

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