Norman Geras’s Contribution to Marxism

Norman Geras’s Contribution to Marxism

Convenors: David Bates, Mark Cowling, Paul Wetherly (

Norman Geras (1943-2013) was a leading scholar of Marx and of Marxism. He was also an important Marxist thinker in his own right. He was well known for the way in which he approached his subjects with analytical rigour and a clarity of prose quite unusual in the arena of political philosophy. Geras’ intellectual output was wide-ranging. Indeed, in the later part of his career, he moved away from expressly Marxist concerns, to explore key moral questions. Geras’s work on Holocaust studies led to further important conceptual work exploring crimes against humanity. In the broad sense Geras’ contribution has been assessed in   Stephen de Wijze and Eve Garrard’s (eds) (2012) Thinking Towards Humanity, Manchester University Press.

This panel – and its output – will complement de Wijze and Garrard’s text. The focus will be explicitly on Geras’s contribution to Marx and Marxism scholarship, and engagements with his work from a Marxist perspective. Key themes will include Geras’s  critique of Marx on justice, his analysis of Marx’s theory of commodity fetishism; his assessment of Marx’s theory of human nature, his analysis of Rosa  Luxemburg, and Louis Althusser, his critique of post-Marxism, and his contribution to the development of theories of socialist democracy. Attention will also be given to Geras’ assessment of the work of G.A. Cohen, set out in a paper given to the Manchester Workshops in Political Theory in 2012 – the title of which was:   ‘Staying home: G.A. Cohen and the motivational basis of socialism’.


3 thoughts on “Norman Geras’s Contribution to Marxism

  1. I am Satoshi Matsui, a professor of Senshu University in Japan. My main interest is normative theory of socialism and analytical Marxist philosophy. I authored a book, A Normative Theory of Liberalism and Socialism in 2012, and translated G. Cohen’s Self-Ownership, Freedom, and Equality into Japanese in 2005.

    I saw a call for papers of MANCEPT Workshops — Norman Geras’s Contribution to Marxism, which will be held at Univ. of Manchester, on Sep. 8-10. I wrote a paper “Marxism and Justice”, the summary of which is attached. I would like to submit a paper and attend the workshop.

    Although I am not a member of Association for Political Thought, can I attend? And I have not register for the workshop at present. If you accept my application, I would like to register.

    • Hi Satoshi,

      Thanks for your comment. Please contact the workshop convenors directly, using the contact information above. We (the conference organisers who look after this website) are not responsible for accepting/rejecting particular paper applications.

      Kind regards,

      • Dear Stephanie,

        Thank you for your kind reply and suggestion. I could contact the convenor Prof. Wetherly and will be able to attend the workshop.

        Best regards,

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