Updating Marx’s Concept of Alternatives

  • Peter Ludes Jacobs University Bremen
Keywords: Alternatives, Classless Society, (De-) Civilizing Processes, Means of Orientation and Communication, Unplanned Processes, Intergenerational Long-term Goals, Multiple Modernizations, Inequality, Sustainability, Human Development, Inclusive Knowledge Societ


The analysis of Marx’s works will be prepared by outlining a more encompassing research project of intergenerational dialogues, in section 1. Section 2 will review Marx’s concept of an alternative, classless society, which was based, e.g., in the projection of rational planning within companies to a national economy - to be revised and updated. Section 3 will discuss how more realistic long-term intergenerational means of orientation and communication of alternatives can emerge. This diagnosis will imply two exemplary and complementary forces calling for alternatives, namely “the perceived risks facing humanity” (Beck) and the enhancement of human rights as global challenges requiring global institutions.

Author Biography

Peter Ludes, Jacobs University Bremen
http://www.keyvisuals.org http://www.nachrichtenaufklaerung.de Peter Ludes is Professor of Mass Communication/Integrated Social Sciences at Jacobs University Bremen, Germany. In 1997, he founded a German initiative on news enlightenment. He was Vice Head of the special collaborative research program “Screen Media” at Siegen University (1995-2000), member of the core group and head of team 3 of the European Science FoundationÄs program Changing Media – Changing Europe (until December 2004); co-chair of the Research Network ";Mass Media and Communication"; of the European Sociological Association (2008-2011). Peter is speaker of an international group of researchers on Key Visuals (since 2003), see: www.keyvisuals.org. From 2008 to 2011 he has headed, together with the computer scientist Otthein Herzog, a DFG-sponsored project on the automatic detection and classification of persons as Key Visual candidates. Peter Ludes' research fields are: Integrated Social Sciences; Theories of Multiple Modernizations, Globalizations and De-/Civilizing Processes; Sociology of Alternatives; Mass and Network Communication; Global Visual Communication and Critical Visual Analyses; eHumanities. Selected publications: 1. The Concept of a Classless Society in the Work of Marx. (Der Begriff der klassenlosen Gesellschaft bei Marx), Frankfurt and New York: Campus, 1979. 253 Pages. 2. Three Modern Sociological Theories: ";Alternatives"; as a Means of Orientation. (Drei moderne soziologische Theorien. Zur Entwicklung des Orientierungsmittels Alternativen), Göttingen: Schwartz, 1989. 440 Pages. 3. Theories of Culture as Intermedia Plays. (Kulturtheorien als Intermediaspiele), Essen: Blaue Eule, 1989. 137 Pages. 4. Social Sciences as Arts. Original Contributions by Karl Mannheim, Norbert Elias, Kurt H. Wolff, and Agnes Heller (Sozialwissenschaften als Kunst. Originalbeiträge von Karl Mannheim, Norbert Elias, Kurt H. Wolff und Agnes Heller), Konstanz: UVK, 1997. 280 Pages. 5. Multimedia and Multimodernity: Key Visuals. With an Introduction from Wolfgang Langenbucher (Multimedia und Multi-Moderne: Schlüsselbilder. Mit einer Einleitung von Wolfgang Langenbucher). Book: TV News and World Wide Web – Media Civilization in the European Monetary Union (Fernsehnachrichten und World Wide Web – Medienzivilisierung in der Europäischen Währungsunion). 326 Pages. CD-ROM: Schlüsselbilder: Wissenschaft, Politiker und einfache Leute, Wirtschaft, Militär und Medien. Pressefotos, Spielfilme, Fernsehnachrichtensendungen und Informationsangebote im World Wide Web. Wiesbaden: Westdeutscher Verlag, 2001. 6. (Editor), Visual Hegemonies: An Outline = Volume 1 of The World Language of Key Visuals. Computer Sciences, Humanities, Social Sciences, edited by Peter Ludes and Otthein Herzog Münster, Berlin, Hamburg, London, Wien: LIT, 2005. 145 Pages (Translation into Portuguese by Leonardo Boccia, with an Introduction by Paulo César Alves, “Hegemonias Visuais – Uma Introdução”, Salvador Bahia: Hexis 2007, 154 Pages. Translation into Chinese by Zhimin Liu, with an Introduction by Stefan Kramer, Beijing: China Radio and Television Press 2008). 7. (Editor) Convergence and Fragmentation: Media Technology and the Information Society = Volume 5 of “Changing Media, Changing Europe Series” (edited by Ib Bondebjerg and Peter Golding). Bristol: Intellect 2008, 256 pages. 8. (with Stefan Kramer, eds.) Networks of Culture = Volume 2 of “The World Language of Key Visuals” (edited by Peter Ludes and Otthein Herzog). Munster: Lit 2010, 260 pages. 9. (Editor) Algorithms of Power – Key Invisibles = Volume 3 of “The World Language of Key Visuals” (edited by Peter Ludes and Otthein Herzog). Munster: Lit 2011, 244 pages. 10. Elements of International Media Studies: An Introduction to Innovative Concepts (Elemente internationaler Medienwissenschaften: Eine Einführung in innovative Konzepte). Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften 2011, 193 pages.
Marx is Back-The Importance of Marxist Theory and Research for Critical Comm. Studies Today, ed C. Fuchs & Vincent Mosco