with “value that would not exist otherwise.”nBecause “bestowal generates annew society by the sheer force of emotionalnattachment,” it undermines establishedn”conventions” and is “alwaysna threat to the status quo.” The loftynimagination of a Shelley, for instance,nmust not be restrained by “taboosnabout divorce or extramarital experimentation.”nDefining love as an “imaginative artifact,”nhowever, creates irreconcilablencontradictions. Confronted by the Marquisnde Sade’s idealization of brutalnself-assertion in sex, how does Singernrespond? He will not quote Scripture.nTradition and history he finds suggestive,nbut he denies them ontologicalnroots: “In itself human experience is anflux of largely chaotic and sporadicnadventures.” What’s left for a philosophernat one of America’s leading universities?nNothing but personal preference:nhe opposes de Sade with only “mynown moral orientation, and my ownnintuitive sense of what is real and importantnin human nature.” Such baldnsubjectivism is disconcerting, but evennmore troubling is Singer’s cheerful acquiescencenin the collapse of all thenstandards previously guiding love. “Ournown age is one in which previous idealizationsnlinger without being meaningfulnas once they were. A long traditionnmay be coming to an end.” And sonfrom the bathhouses of San Francisco tonthe porn shops of Brooklyn to the philosophyndepartments of Massachusetts,n”love” now means whatever the imaginativensay it means. (B)C) ccnAn UncriticalnMixturenby Edward S. ShapironFoundations of the Frankfurt Schoolnof Social Research; Edited by JudithnMarcus and Zoltan Tar; TransactionnBooks; New Brunswick, NJ.nFrom its inception in 1923 as the histitutenof Social Research until the deathnof Theodor Adorno in 1969, the FrankfurtnSchool was at the forefront of thendebate over the meaning of Marxism.nIts leading members included the psychologistnErich Fromm, the sociologistsnAdorno and Max Horkheimer, the philosophernHerbert Marcuse, the politicalnscientist Franz Neumann, and LeonLowenthal, the student of popular culturenand mass media. With Hitler’s risento power, the school moved to NewnYork in the 1930’s, returning to Frank­nfurt two decades later. Its most famousnpublication during its American staynwas The Authoritarian Personalityn(1950) which, among other things,nclaimed that an incipient fascist mentalitynexisted in the United States, similarnto what the Frankfurt intellectualsnhad seen in Germany—an argumentnmore significant for what it says aboutnthe Frankfurt School’s assumptionsnthan for what it says about Americannpolitics and society. Its American interludentook place at the same time thatnthe Frankfurt intellectuals repudiatednorthodox Marxism, became deeply pessimisticnregarding Western civilization,nattempted to formulate a theory of fascism,nand became concerned with suchnnon-Marxist themes as the critique ofnbureaucratization and of mass culture.nThe major effort of the FrankfurtnSchool was that of elaborating “a criticalntheory” of society. Critical theorynmeant both a criHque of all those ideologies,nincluding Bolshevism, which distortednreality and legitimized socialndomination, as well as an explanationnof the transformation of society, of thennature of culture, and of the relationnbetween the individual and society.nPremised upon an extreme cultural elitismn(expressed in an admiration fornavant-garde art and music), critical theoryntook as its most ambitious aim thenrevision of classical Marxism, whichnhad falsely predicted revolution in thenWest and had failed to account for suchnmodern phenomena as fascism, Stalinism,nbureaucracy, regimentation,nmechanization, impersonality, culturalnstandardization, and totalitarianism.nThe Frankfurt thinkers sought not tonreject but to revitalize Marxism by makingnuse of Weberian sociology, Freudiannpsychoanalytic theory (as in ThenAuthoritarian Personality), and thenanalysis of popular culture. They particularlynopposed the determinism ofn”historical materialism,” asserting thatnthe importance of subjective experiencenin social development had been recognizednby Marx himself In its refusal tonsee economic and social developmentsnas autonomous and predetermined, thennew critical theory sought to reconcilensocialism and liberty through analysisnof how ideologies influence perceptionsnof reality. This approach entailed anrejection of Leninism and of all sexualnand psychological repression, and annemphasis instead on the emancipationnof the individual. Because of his extollingnof personal spontaneity and sexualngratification, Herbert Marcuse evennbecame one of the gurus of the “NewnLeft” of the 1960’s. But judging fromnthe Marcus-Tar collection of articles onnnnthe Frankfurt School, it has required anfaith greater than that of Jerry Falwell toncontinue believing in what LeszeknKolakowski, the eminent modern historiannof Marxist thought, has called “thengreatest fantasy of our century.” Containingnessays by a diverse group ofnconservatives, liberals, and neo-nMarxists, the Marcus-Tar volume is thenmost comprehensive anthology on thenhistory, philosophy, aesthetics, politics,nsociology, and economics of the FrankfurtnSchool. Almost all of the 25 authors,nwhich include Karl Popper andnPaul Lazarsfeld, agree that the attemptnto formulate a “critical theory” wasnunsuccessful. By the 1960’s, Adorno, etnal., were even under severe attack fromnyoung German radicals, precisely thatngroup which one would have assumednwould be the most hospitable audience.nTo an outsider, the failure of the FrankfurtnSchool was virtually predetermined,nsince Marxism and Germannphilosophical idealism, Marx andnFreud, and socialism and individualismnconstitute three oil-and-water pairs, ccnEdward S. Shapiro is professor ofnhistory at Seton Hall University.nPlaying PointlessnGamesnby Eugene EnglandnRichard A. Lanham: Literacy and thenSurvival of Humanism; Yale UniversitynPress; New Haven, CT.nLanham is certainly ambitious enough.nHe proposes to resolve “three overlappingnperplexities”:na literacy crisis so widespread itnhas shaken our nationalnself-esteem as an educatedndemocracy; a school and collegencurriculum that no longernknows what subjects should benstudied or when; and anhumanism so directionless,nunreasoned, and sentimentalnthat it seems almost to quest fornSenator Proxmire’s GoldennFleece.nLanham’s solutions, however, requirenthat we give up the Judeo-Christiann(and Platonic) view of man—as havingna preexistent or God-given “self,” withnits own intrinsic drive to purposefulnbehavior—and accept in its placen”Post-Darwinian Humanism.” That isnLanham’s term for a scientistic view ofnman who uses language—especially innOCTOBER 1985127n