How to Philosophize with a Hammer and Sickle: Nietzsche and Marx for the 21st-Century Left by Jonas Čeika
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
It’s my will to pick up this book for the people.
Jonas Ceika’s How to Philosophize with a Hammer and Sickle is a brief insight into the compatibilities between the thoughts of Marx and Nietzche. He uses these insights to point out how anemic modern left/Marxian thought is and how a new movement and human freedom can arise.
Back when I started taking an interest in philosophy, there were very few Youtube channels dedicated to discussing the field. If you count The School of Life as a philosophy channel… But that changed fairly quickly and many good (and bad, some just really terrible) channels emerged to tickle my brain between books.
Cuck Philosophy caught my attention thanks to Ceika’s rebuttal videos addressing common misconceptions of postmodernism. So when this book was announced on the channel, I was interested in giving it a read.
This was a particularly interesting take on Marx and Nietzsche. Having recently read a little from Rosa Luxemburg, I think the argument that Marx’s revolutionary ideas and intentions have been watered down by more modern
lapdogs of the bourgeoisie leftists is fair. Combining the “will to power” and Marx is also an interesting idea. And as Ceika alludes to in his summary, this is also the way a lot of current social movements are operating.
As a result, this was a thought-provoking book. But I feel I need to read more Nietzsche and Marx and then revisit this text.
This review is also quite good and has a great overview.
Some of my favourite philosophy Youtube channels:
Jonas’ CCK Philosophy (obviously)
Then and Now
Early Philosophy Tube (later stuff is good too, but early stuff is more directly philosophy)
Gregory B Sadler
There are others who utilise philosophy in their content that I enjoy, but it isn’t their primary focus so they’re on a different list. A list you may never see. Mu-ha-ha-ha-ha.
Comments while reading:
“Science is owned by capital.”
The idea that science can only be done by those whose needs are met, and that the production of that science has solved the needs of others who don’t have their needs met is a great insight.
Slave morality and the power/class divide. The idea of immutable morality being about maintaining power is interesting. We’re told theft is a moral value but is it? Do we condemn the morality of Jeff Bezos for creating abominable conditions in his factories (and launching PR campaigns to pretend it isn’t happening)? But those conditions create the poor who can only meet their needs through a supposedly immoral act. So is morality just a way to punish the poor and keep them in line?
The second philosophy course I did had a section on Marx that I’m reminded of here. He was very much of the materialist and humanist school of thought. But he was also a fan of a philosophy of doing rather than just thinking. Good to see that covered here.