Marx’s “Theses on Feuerbach” #5
“Feuerbach, not satisfied with abstract thinking, wants sensuous contemplation; but he does not conceive sensuousness as practical, human-sensuous activity.”
In this brief thesis, Marx broadens the specific formulation of his 4th critique. Just as in the former, Marx begins with the recognition of Feuerbach’s movement beyond the logo-centrism of German idealism, particularly as proposed by Hegel. While in Hegel we find a movement driven towards the achievement of an ultimate objective knowledge, “absolute knowing,” Feruerbach remains critical of this abstraction from concrete reality, instead arguing for an emphasis upon sensuous contemplation.
Yet, once again, Marx turns Feuerbach’s critique upon himself, arguing that it is insufficient to merely overturn abstract thinking in favor of sensuous thinking (contemplation). Instead, and more radically, the very philosophical priority of “thinking” itself must be question. Marx therefore proposes as a radical alternative, not an alternate contemplation, but the fully un-objectified reality of praxis: sensuous, human, subjective activity.