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The Historical Forms of Materialism and the Philosophical Domain of Historical Materialism

Social Sciences in China

Vol. 38, No. 2, 2017

 

The Historical Forms of Materialism and the Philosophical Domain of Historical Materialism

(Abstract)

 

Yang Geng

 

Natural materialism, humanistic materialism and historical materialism are the three historical forms of materialism. The “material” in historical materialism is a social thing which is “perceptible and imperceptible by the senses” and connotes social relations; and the “history” in historical materialism is the realm in which contradictions between man and nature and between man and society are able to unfold, so historical materialism is “actually a critical view of the world” that inherently contains dialectics in a “rational form.” The formulation of historical materialism opened a new path for the development of materialism and even philosophy as a whole. In the course of its critique of capitalist society, which unfolds with capital as a core category, historical materialism sublates abstract existence and discovers real social existence, thus putting an end to metaphysics, which is grounded in abstract ontology.

 

Keywords: historical materialism, dialectical materialism, practice, ontology, metaphysics