Herbert Marcuse (1898-1979) was a philosopher, sociologist, and political theorist. He studied at the University of Berlin and the University of Freiburg, and became a crucial figure at the Frankfurt Institute for Social Research, and of the Frankfurt School of social theory. He was forced to leave Germany in 1933, eventually settling in the United States, where he would spend much of his life and taught at many of the country's greatest schools and universities. A Hegelian-Freudian-Marxist, Marcuse highlighted the cultural forms of repression and the role of technology and the expansion of the production of consumer goods in the maintenance of the stability of capitalism. His classic studies of capitalist society were important influences on the New Left of the 1960s and 1970s and his libertarian socialism remains an important intellectual resource. Philosophical speculation seldom attracts headlines, let alone threats of death. Yet such was the fate that overtook Herbert Marcuse in the late 1960s, when he was catapulted into international controversy as a prophet of the revolutionary student movement. Among his major writings are Reason and Revolution, One-Dimensional Man, and Eros and Civilization.
"Brilliant and penetrating ... the most important work which has opened up an understanding of Marx's humanism." -- Erich Fromm"A guiding figure to many social activists" - The New York Times"Marcuse brought a forceful clarity to the leftist table; a classical Marxism willing to confront new realities." - The Natio"Written with a remarkable lucidity so that it will also be useful to understandable to students who are not versed in Hegelian philosophy and terminology" - Hans Kohn, The Annal of the American Academy"A Marxian philosopher who became a hero to the student radicals of the 1960s because of his view that modern society has enslaved mankind" - The Washington Post"Marcuse's optimism, that the alienating effect of commodification could be overcome, greatly influenced the 1960s counterculture" - The Guardian"Marcuse's perspective on revolution is useful in assessing the insurrections of the contemporary era as it provides normative visions of a goal of total social transformation aiming at social justice and emancipation." - Douglas Kellner, author of Critical Theory, Marxism, and Modernity"We fell in love with Marcuse's mind, his method, his scholarship. We read everything he wrote... His book on Hegel and Marx, Reason and Revolution, was high on our list because we wanted to understand the intellectual origins of revolutionary Marxism." - Dan La Botz, author of A Troublemakers' Handbook: How to Fight Back Where You Work and Win!"In my books, I have tried to make a critique of society -- and not only of capitalist society -- in terms that avoid all ideology, even the socialist ideology. I have tried to show that contemporary society is a repressive society in all its aspects, that even the comfort, the prosperity, the alleged political and moral freedom, are utilised for oppressive ends."--Herbert Marcuse, The New York Times Magazine