Council aestheticism? Pannekoek, the avant-garde and contemporary art

Sven Lütticken


Focusing on the Marxist theorist Anton Pannekoek, this article left communist im-pulses in 20th and 21st century aesthetic practice. The point of departure is Panne-koek’s theory of revolutionary mass action – centred around the general strike – and its aesthetic as well as political implications and repercussions. The text then proceeds to discuss the workers’ council as the nucleus of socialist self-organization and the avant-garde’s use and indeed fetishization of that concepts, and ends with a more speculative section on the potential contemporary relevance of Panne-koek’s writings on epistemology, the history of science, and evolution.


Marxism; Council communism; Avant-garde

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