Quotes from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society

Herbert Marcuse ·  320 pages

Rating: (4.4K votes)


“If the worker and his boss enjoy the same television program and visit the same resort places, if the typist is as attractively made up as the daughter of her employer, if the Negro owns a Cadillac, if they all read the same newspaper, then this assimilation indicates not the disappearance of classes, but the extent to which the needs and satisfactions that serve the preservation of the Establishment are shared by the underlying population.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“By virtue of the way it has organized its technological base, contemporary industrial society tends to be totalitarian. For "totalitarian" is not only a terroristic political coordination of society, but also a non-terroristic economic-technical coordination which operates through the manipulation of needs by vested interests.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“One-dimensional thought is systematically promoted by the makers of politics and their purveyors of mass information. Their universe of discourse is populated by self-validating hypotheses which, incessantly and monopolistically repeated, become hyponotic definitions of dictations.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“الحرية الإنسانية لا تقاس تبعاً للإختيار المتاح للفرد، وإنما العامل الحاسم والوحيد في تحديدها هو ما يستطيع الفرد اختياره وما يختاره”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“Remembrance of the past may give rise to dangerous insights, and the established society seems to be apprehensive of the subversive contents of memory.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society



“Free election of masters does not abolish the masters or the slaves. Free”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“Technology serves to institute new, more effective, and more pleasant forms of social control and social cohesion. The totalitarian tendency of these controls seems to assert itself in still another sense—by spreading to the less developed and even to the pre-industrial areas of the world, and by creating similarities in the development of capitalism and communism.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“Political freedom would mean liberation of the individuals from politics over which they have no effective control. Similarly,”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“Le persone si riconoscono nelle loro merci; trovano la loro anima nella loro automobile, nel giradischi ad alta fedeltà, nella casa a due piani, nell'attrezzatura della cucina. Lo stesso meccanismo che lega l'individuo alla sua società è mutato, e il controllo sociale è radicato nei nuovi bisogni che esso ha prodotto.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“Our society distinguishes itself by conquering the centrifugal social forces with Technology rather than Terror, on the dual basis of an overwhelming efficiency and an increasing standard of living.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society



“We may distinguish both true and false needs. “False” are those which are superimposed upon the individual by particular social interests in his repression: the needs which perpetuate toil, aggressiveness, misery, and injustice. Their satisfaction might be most gratifying to the individual, but this happiness is not a condition which has to be maintained and protected if it serves to arrest the development of the ability (his own and others) to recognize the disease of the whole and grasp the chances of curing the disease. The result then is euphoria in unhappiness. Most of the prevailing needs to relax, to have fun, to behave and consume in accordance with the advertisements, to love and hate what others love and hate, belong to this category of false needs.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“The distinguishing feature of advanced industrial society is its effective suffocation of those needs which demand liberation—liberation also from that which is tolerable and rewarding and comfortable—while it sustains and absolves the destructive power and repressive function of the affluent society. Here, the social controls exact the overwhelming need for the production and consumption of waste; the need for stupefying work where it is no longer a real necessity; the need for modes of relaxation which soothe and prolong this stupefication; the need for maintaining such deceptive liberties as free competition at administered prices, a free press which censors itself, free choice between brands and gadgets.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“[…] en esta totalidad apenas es ya posible la distinción conceptual entre los negocios y la política, el beneficio y el prestigio, las necesidades y la publicidad. Se exporta un “modo de vida”, o se exporta a sí mismo en la dinámica de la totalidad. Con el capital, los ordenadores y el saber-vivir, llegan los restantes “valores”: relaciones libidinosas con la mercancía, con los artefactos motorizados agresivos, con la estética falsa del supermercado.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“For Marcuse, the distinguishing features of a human being are free and creative subjectivity. If in one’s economic and social life one is administered by a technical labor apparatus and conforms to dominant social norms, one is losing one’s potentialities of self-determination and individuality. Alienated from the powers of being-a-self, one-dimensional man thus becomes an object of administration and conformity.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“For “totalitarian” is not only a terroristic political coordination of society, but also a nonterroristic economic-technical coordination which operates through the manipulation of needs by vested interests. It”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society



“The range of choice open to the individual is not the decisive factor in determining the degree of human freedom, but what can be chosen and what is chosen by the individual. The”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“His argument is that the system’s much lauded economic, political, and social freedoms, formerly a source of social progress, lose their progressive function and become subtle instruments of domination which serve to keep individuals in bondage to the system that they strengthen and perpetuate. For example, economic freedom to sell one’s labor power in order to compete on the labor market submits the individual to the slavery of an irrational economic system; political freedom to vote for generally indistinguishable representatives of the same system is but a delusive ratification of a nondemocratic political system; intellectual freedom of expression is ineffectual when the media either co-opt and defuse, or distort and suppress, oppositional ideas, and when the image-makers shape public opinion so that it is hostile or immune to oppositional thought and action. Marcuse”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“Νά οργανώνεσαι για τήν ειρήνη δεν είναι τό ϊδιο μέ τό νά οργανώνεσαι γιά πόλεμο. Οί θεσμοί πού χρειάζονται στήν πάλη γιά τήν ύπαρξη δεν μπορούν νά χρησιμεύσουν και γιά τήν ειρήνευση της ύπαρξης. Ή ζωή - σκοπός εΐναι μιά έννοια ποιοτικά διαφορετική από τήν έννοια ζωή - μέσο.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“For "totalitarian" is not only a terroristic political coordination of society, but also a non-terroristic economic-technical coordination which operates through the manipulation of needs by vested interests.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society


“C'è qualcosa di più nel nome astratto (bellezza, libertà) rispetto alle qualità (bello, libero) attribuite a persone, cose o condizioni particolari. L'universale sostantivo allude a qualità che sorpassano ogni esperienza particolare ma persistono nella mente, non come una finzione della immaginazione e neppure come possibilità più logiche, bensì come il materiale di cui consiste il nostro mondo.”
― Herbert Marcuse, quote from One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society



About the author

Herbert Marcuse
Born place: in Berlin, Germany
Born date July 19, 1898
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