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再用语言的观点看马克思的政治理论
送交者: 俞先生 2018年05月16日17:03:38 于 [教育学术] 发送悄悄话

我在创立我自己的理论过程中,也经常比较大家比较熟悉的马克思的理论。所以,我在我写的一本书Language and State: An Inquiry into the Progress of Civilization, Revised Edition的后记部分加上一段本人的说法与马克思的政治理论的比较,也算是对其错误理论的批判。如果感兴趣,能读懂英文的网友可看。本人的英文不太好,但中国人应该能懂。


Epilogue

 

This monograph postulates that humans speak and write a language, extending the distance of, and expand the scope of, their communication, culminating in the dissolution of the tribes of the primitive society and the birth of the states of the civilized society. It postulates that a tribe is a small living community formed because of kinship while a state is a large living community mainly formed because of language. As humans use language, they develop and utilize various media in support of their linguistic communication performed to help men associate together. They finally form their state and dissolve their tribes. Then a change takes place in the organization of human community. In a tribe, men tend to interact with one another face-to-face. As men are not large in number within each tribe, their direct mutual interaction is the method of forming their society. If we say that blood relationship is an inborn relationship between one and another in a tribe, such blood relationship represents immediacy between one and another. People form their tribe without the consciousness of the unity of the tribe. As Charles Roberts Aldrich wrote, “Among primitives, it is to be remembered, the unity of the group is primarily and almost exclusively an unconscious value, just as the herd-unity is a concern of unconscious animals.”1 Yet, after humans expand their community in linguistic communication, it is often impossible for people to perform face-to-face interaction. Self-organization of human society fails with all being unable to communicate with all even though men use language. Then the society expanded in linguistic communication needs to be organized by a powerful man who can issue orders and have men carry out such orders in the organization of the society. The consciousness of the unity of the society is required. Then people promote their collective consciousness, the common memory of the community, and the common idea of people, etc. The state is born.

      In other words, by postulating that language underlies the formation of the state and the dissolution of the tribe, this monograph is intended to elucidate the operation of three juxtaposing communities—political community, economic community and cultural community—in the building of a theory of the formation, growth and future of the state. It does not intend to differentiate these three communities in order to identify one as a base and other two as superstructures. It treats these three communities equally because it holds that language is a base of all such three entities. It does not intend to adopt the theoretical mode of mutual interaction between base and superstructure initially ideated and conceptualized by Karl Marx when he constructed his social theory. This is because the author believes that setting the role of language in the formation of the state as a premise, one inevitably needs to view politics, economy and culture equally. If one does not set this premise while studying the building of the state, he is apt to find out whether politics determines economy or culture or economy determines politics or culture or culture determines politics or economy. This is because they determine each other mutually. The method of study of relationship between base and superstructure ideated and conceptualized by Marx falls into the trap of circular argument. For example, in Marxist theory, human society consists of two parts: the base and the superstructure, used as metaphors. The base comprises the forces and relations of production, which include employer—employee relation, while others such as legal and political institutions, ideology, culture, ritual and government constitute the superstructure. As it considers culture to be part of the superstructure, it holds that the base determines the superstructure if in the last instance. Marx wrote in the following in his work, A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy, in 1859 that:

 

In the social production which men carry on they enter into definite relations that are indispensable and independent of their will; these relations of production correspond to a definite stage of development of their material powers of production. The sum total of these relations of production constitutes the economic structure of society—the real foundation, on which rise legal and political superstructures and to which correspond definite forms of social consciousness. The mode of production in material life determines the general character of the social, political, and spiritual processes of life. It is not the consciousness of men that determines their existence, but, on the contrary, their social existence determines their consciousness. At a certain stage of their development, the material forces of production in society come into conflict with the existing relations of production, or—what is but a legal expression for the same thing—with the property relations within which they had been at work before. From the forms of development of the forces of production these relations turn into their fetters. Then comes the period of social revolution. With the change of the economic foundation the entire immense superstructure is more or less rapidly transformed. In considering such transformation the distinction should always be made between the material transformation of the economic condition of production which can be determined with the precision of natural science, and the legal, political, religious, aesthetic, or philosophic—in short ideological forms in which men become conscious of this conflict and fight it out. Just as our opinion of an individual is not based on what he thinks of himself, so can we not judge of such a period of transformation by its own consciousness; on the contrary, this consciousness must rather be explained from the contradictions of material life, from the existing conflict between the social forces of production and the relation of production.2

 

Marx clearly pointed out his view about the relationship between the base and the superstructure. According to him, men’s social existence determines their consciousness. Yet one can also argue that men’s social consciousness determines their existence. Men sometimes design their society according to their idea. According to him, forces and relations of production condition the construction of the superstructure. Yet one may also argue that, in some sense, the superstructure can determine the forces and relations of production. Men sometimes reform their relations of production in order to facilitate the development of productive forces. There is a reciprocal relationship between the base and the superstructure. I believe that such argument can become circular. Circular argument can shed light on nothing. If we argue about the formation of the state from the perspective of language, we can find out the relation between language and media. As language serves as a basis for the development of media and the development of media is the course of the growth of the state, language determines the formation of the state. Language underlies the birth of civilized society. Therefore, language underlies all constructs in the state. This monograph tries to prove this point of view. Then, considering language to be a base for all forms of societal organization, I present my argument concerning the formation of political, economic and cultural communities as follows.

      First of all, concerning the formation of the political community, I argue that people originally live in the tribe. The tribe is a self-organized human community. Kinship is the basic element in the formation of the tribe. After humans commence to use language, they extend the distance of linguistic communication and expand the scope of linguistic communication gradually. They enlarge the scale of their community. Then along with an increase in population, kinship attenuates. Then language plays a role in the formation of civilized society. Then, all need to speak and write the same language in order to form the state. Then there appears an interaction between language and medium. As men need to perform linguistic communication on a large scale, they need a medium. They cannot communicate with one another directly so as to discuss the matter of the organization of the state in a very large community—the state. Then a small number of people discuss the matter of the organization of the state because it is easier for a small number of people to communicate with one another than for a large number of people to communicate with one another. A handful of people seek power in control of the state. They may get power without consent from ordinary people. They seek their own interest. But as they also need to provide minimum public service in order to keep power, and perhaps need to seek ruling legitimacy, they can also be deemed as a medium in the organization of the state. They seek their own special interest while they seek power. Yet such special interest can also serves as a medium. Without this medium, they may not seek state power. Thus, throughout human civilization history, it is always a small number of people that organize the government and then organize the state.  There are several different ways of the organization of the government and the state.

      Firstly, a horde of people who found a military group or an armed gang, establish a regime through conquest. Then they build the state. The people who are dispersed are unable to get together to directly organize themselves. Thus it is always the fact that a small number of people govern a large number of people. Therefore, in pre-modern times people always used this method to organize the state. They built slave-earning states or feudal states. Thus the rulers of the states were often the military chiefs. As Herbert Spencer wrote, in Egypt in the early ages the offices of king and general were inseparable. Assyrian sculptures and inscriptions represent the despotic ruler as also the conquering soldier; as do the records of the Hebrews. Civil leadership and military headship were united among the Homeric Greeks; and in primitive Rome “the general was ordinarily the king himself.”3 In modern times we sometimes see that a group of soldiers control the regime, administering the state in the developing world. This case often occurs in the background that the people are divided over the development of economy and society, having no unified will within the state. Yet the military group, in control of force, is able to keep the unity of the state because there is a consensus within the military group; people within the military group perform frequent linguistic communication to plan concerted action. People within the military group are closer to each other than others outside the military group. The military group organizes a cohort of men with internal strict discipline. The military group serves as a medium in support of the building of the state because it is much more efficiently organized. This is the reason that in the second half of the twentieth century the military instead of civilians often controlled the government of a country in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Even though the people of such a country hoped to see the quick development of economy and society in their countries, it was the military that organized the state.  This is the reason that in the second half of the twentieth century military dictatorship often characterized the building of the state in Africa, Asia and Latin America.[SS1]  This case shows that sometimes the organization of the state depends on the role played by the military organization.

       Secondly, religious organizations sometimes play a part in the organization of the society. In Europe, the Christian church is, in some sense, a principal organizer of the society. In West Asia and North  Africa, the Islamic temple is sometimes the most principal organizer of the society. Religious organizations endeavor to disseminate beliefs in various processes of linguistic communication. People who have been converted to a religion often take part in the activities organized by religious organizations. They unite because religious believers performed mutual linguistic communication more frequently than other types of people. Then their unity can create a condition for the formation of a state when the religious organization participates in the building of the state directly under the condition that some people found a state in the name of religion. For example, people get to know each other because they are the same churchgoers. They talk with each other in the church. They feel that they are brothers and sisters. They then unite in hearts. In this sense, religious organization is a medium which supports people’s linguistic communication and interaction. In the state in which people widely believe in religion, a religious organization organizes the society.  Then, a religious organization able to organize the society sometimes contributes to the building of the state because the state is built over the society.  Sometimes, a religious organization is even part of the political organization which plays a direct role in the formation of the state when the leader of the religious organization is just the leader of the state. This leader builds the religious organization and the state at the same time. Therefore, as Spencer wrote, “Babylonian records harmonize with Hebrew traditions in telling us of priest-kings. In Lydia it was the same: Croesus was king and priest. In Sparta, too, the kings, while military chiefs, were also high priests; and a trace of the like original relation existed in Rome.”4 In the history of some nations, the head of a religious organization even emerged as the founder of the state. Abraham was a prophet, but he was also the tribal chief of Bedouin. Moses was a prophet, but he was also the head of the Hebrew nation. Muhammad was a prophet, but he was also the builder of the Arab nation. If some famous priests are the organizers of the society, they may also contribute to the building of nation-state in some other way, too. They may help spread national consciousness while they preach their religious tenets. In modern times priests may still play a role is societal organization. The religious thought disseminated by them may become part of national culture. They, as a result, may play a direct or indirect role in the building of the state.

      Thirdly, in modern times, people establish the civilian and secular government. Then political parties almost invariably come in to play a role sometimes played by a military group or a religious organization in the past in the formation of the state. As people often hold different views about the governance of the state and the management of public affairs, politicians establish political parties to represent them. Then, political parties present their political proposals. Analyzing this situation concerning political parties from the perspective of language, I argue that people joining political parties perform more frequent linguistic communication with one another as they hold meetings and circulate documents. All have a unified will and obey the command of the leaders. These political parties may build their own armies in order to promote their proposals with force. Once these political parties seize the power of the state, they will play a principal role in the building of the state. For example, Bolshevik, a Leninist political party, built Soviet Russia in the twentieth century this way. Later on, some communist parties in Eastern Europe and East Asia built their states, following Bolshevik. The people are always in disunity and divided. People who join the political party are in unity. As a result, those who join the political party play a special role in the building of the state. In the democratic states of the West, the formation of the government also depends on the role played by political parties. The role played by political parties cannot be replaced. As the people consist of countless individuals, it is difficult for those people to perform frequent and regular linguistic communication across the state. Then linguistic communication performed by a portion of people substitutes for the linguistic communication performed by all. The emergence of political parties represents this trend, showing that political parties become the media utilized by all in the building of the state.

      Fourthly, the state always needs administration. Those who administer the state are the minority and those who are subject to the administration of the state are the majority. Those who administer the state are usually affiliated with an organization, needing coordination performed by a certain organization. Those who are administered do not necessarily need to be organized because they do not need frequent communication among them.  Organization is a crucial medium of linguistic communication required by the practice of the state administration. Interaction between the ruler and the ruled in history reflects this situation. When the ruled are unwilling to submit to the rule of the ruler, they will strengthen their mutual communication in order to make a collaborative effort to fight against the rule of the ruler. People involved in uprising or revolution found their own organizations, including military, religious and political organizations. Then it follows that they take the responsibility of organizing the state after they successfully overthrow the rule of the ruler. That means that people need to perform communication with one another in order to organize themselves and to build the state. With people dispersed everywhere being prevented from communicating with one another easily, organizers play a role as a medium. Without such organizers playing a role as a medium, people will be unable to form the state. And the rise and fall of those military, religious and political organizations dictate the vicissitude and replacement of the state.

      That is, government is an organization. Within the government, people perform frequent communication. People hold meetings and circulate documents within the government regularly. Some people issue instructions while others report their work. People within the government perform linguistic communication with one another more frequently than people outside the government. As a result, the government has the capacity of managing public affairs. The government can make sure the implementation of a certain law or policy. For example, the government is able to keep public order. By contrast, ordinary people do not have this capacity. The government can organize the society. The government becomes a medium of self-organization of the people.

      If we say that while people form a political community, they need someone to take charge of the organization of the society, we should also hold that while people form an economic community, they usually do not need someone to take charge of the building of the economic community. People interact with each other in the cooperation of production randomly without any organizer that organizes the whole society. In the outset, humans cooperate in production by way of the division of labor in the tribe. Male and female or old and young may cooperate through the division of labor in production. After humans commence to use language, humans build a large community. As kinship attenuates gradually, people begin to cooperate through the division of labor on a large scale. As many people participate in the cooperation of production through the division of labor, men’s skills of production get diversified. Skills of production become professionalized. People begin to perform the exchange of commodities as a new constant practice. While they perform the exchange of commodities, they need to perform linguistic communication as required. For example, when people perform the exchange of commodities, they need to make a deal at a price. They are required to agree to a certain price. The relation of linguistic communication becomes men’s social relation. This is because every man who has a specific skill of production offers a surplus value. If his skill of production cannot be used as the social forces of production, the surplus value contained by his skill will be wasted. If such a skill is used by another man through the exchange of the market, this skill will provide an extra value. As a result, man’s surplus value dictates the social nature of men. Men tend to associate together. Language underlies the whole process of this evolution. As men can use language, they can perform the exchange of commodities. In order to perform the exchange of commodities, they tend to expand the scope of the exchange of commodities. Multitudinous people enter the market for the exchange of commodities. Along with the passage of time, people build their market. By building their market, people also gradually form their villages, towns and even cities. This spells the formation of an economic community over a historical period of time.

       In pre-modern times, the underdevelopment of the exchange of commodities was partly due to the restriction of the scope of linguistic communication. At that time, plunder was the chief form of the distribution of the wealth within the society with land being the chief property. Thus, feudal lords chiefly engaged in the plunder of land. They feoffed land to their vassals, who then leased land to peasants, forging personal bondage, a basis of the formation of the feudal system with nobility as a whole exploiting peasants.  Each feudal lord usually resided in a castle on the top of a mountain or hill. Each estate there was self-sufficient. Each region was also economically independent.  As described by Spencer, in France at the end of the ninth century, the distribution of commodities was arrested. Everyone made for himself or had made for himself by his people many things including cloths and arms. The same man was at once butcher, baker, shepherd, weaver, etc. in the estates of rural area. In the Middle Ages the castles made almost all the articles used in them, particularly cloths, which were spun, woven and prepared by women even of the highest rank.5 Later, nascent commodity market flourished in the place where there were roads or rivers for communication or transportation.  For example, people tended to perform the exchange of commodities by the roads at the foot of a hill or at the place of the meeting of several rivers, resulting in an increase in the population of the area adjacent to main roads or rivers. They build markets there. Then they build towns and cities. As language underlies the exchange of commodities, the formation of markets and the formation of towns and cities, there appears the interaction between language and commodities, between language and markets and between language and towns and cities. Commodities, markets, towns and cities are all media. In other words, as people need commodities, enter markets and reside in towns and cities, they perform linguistic communication with each other actively. Then, people with special skills of making commodities or offering services congregate in towns and cities, supplying their goods and services and consumers cluster in towns and cities, getting commodities and services there because towns and cities facilitating linguistic communication facilitate them to provide and get commodities and services. In late medieval times, blacksmiths, coppersmiths, carpenters, masons, bakers, brewers, butchers, tailors, shoemakers, innkeepers, shopkeepers, porters and cart drivers among others already clustered in towns and cities.  In early modern times, entrepreneurs founded and operated factories in towns and cities where there was usually an abundance of the supply of labor. Along with the development of commerce, investment, and trade, businessmen engaged in all domains of production and service in towns and cities.

      Transportation system is also a medium in the formation of economic community. If humans did not use language, they would only perform communication with the display of their behavior such as waving their hands. In this case, in need of communication performed on a small scale only, humans would not develop transportation. [SS2] Speaking and writing a language, people interact with one another on a large scale, resulting in the fact that they sometimes need to travel from one place to another, leading to the development of transportation.  For example, sometimes men perform long distance trade beyond the frontier of a region. The development of transportation extends the distance of linguistic communication. Conversely speaking, people perform communication on a large scale with language. People who are not interlinked to one another by kinship perform linguistic communication. Strangers from different regions become interested in meeting and performing communication with one another. As a result, people develop transportation.  In France in the eighteenth century people constructed a network of roads radiating from Paris, the capital, to all other regions within the country as noted earlier in the monograph. An improvement of transportation system connected to all big cities enhanced the efficiency of the administration of the central government and resulted in the formation of a network of local governments under the control of the central government, making the feudal kingdom gradually evolve to be a nation-state. Men also excavate canals, developing marine shipping industry. They build highways and railways and develop air lines.

       Men also develop communication. In ancient times, communication was performed within the administrative system. For example, a large communication system was built within the administrative system of the Roman Empire when post roads and post stations were built and papyrus was used as writing material as mentioned earlier. In ancient China, likewise, post roads and post stations were also set up by the authorities for the internal communication within the administrative system in the building of the Chinese Empire. In modern times communication service is offered to businessmen and ordinary people as well. Postal service emerges, being followed by the provision of the services of telegraph, telephone as well as radio broadcast and television broadcast.

     I believe that there is an interaction between language and media, considering the development of market, transportation and communication. Market, transportation and communication system serve as media in support of linguistic communication. As accentuated by Adam Smith, people usually go to the market to perform the exchange of commodities. We can further believe that people perform human chain linguistic communication on market as the information of price is spread through the market. Market is a medium. Then other information may be disseminated through market. For example, newspapers are distributed and sold through various markets. Inspired by Marshall McLuhan, I also believe that the wheels of automobiles and trains are the extension of men’s legs and radio broadcast as well as television broadcast are the extension of men’s mouths, ears and eyes. All of them are the media of language. Without the invention of language, humans would still merely display their behavior for communication. Performing short distance communication characterized by face-to-face contact only, they would be unable to exchange products, technologies and thoughts widely; they would not be interested in the development of a whole system of transportation or communication, including the vehicles and facilities of transportation and the facilities of communication; they would not build a society of strangers; and they would not build the state.

      In summary, language represents the mode of people’s mutual interaction. The course of the development of human society is the course of ameliorating linguistic communication conditions. The recipe is developing the media of linguistic communication. The course of the development of all media is the course of the formation of the state.

       Men also build their cultural community. While men build their society, they need to communicate with each other. When they communicate with each other, they are tempted to disseminate information of high value. If they disseminate certain information of high value, certain forms of linguistic communication may become part of culture. Therefore, I argue that culture is a collection of the forms of linguistic communication performed by people to disseminate information of high value in the society. There are, primarily, three circumstances concerning the adoption of various forms of linguistic communication performed to disseminate the information of high value.

       Firstly, while men perform linguistic communication, they perform the exchange of feelings. When they perform the exchange of feelings, they tend to adopt the aesthetic forms of expression. When they adopt the aesthetic forms of expression in linguistic communication, they often describe and depict some characters of nature on the basis of their impression about nature. Nature functions as a medium in support of linguistic communication performed for the purpose of the exchange of feelings. As the aesthetic forms of expression are attractive to many people, they offer an aesthetic value. As compared to ordinary linguistic communication, the related linguistic communication with an aesthetic value is of high value. While people form a small society in the local area, the writers and artists of the society may perform linguistic communication with an aesthetic value. Yet as their skills are sometimes not up to the professional level, they perform linguistic communication with their works within the small society only. While people form a large society beyond the frontier of the local area, the writers and artists may perform linguistic communication with an aesthetic value. Yet as their skills may reach the professional level, they perform linguistic communication in the large society. In other words, literary or artistic works which are quintessential because they reach a very high level or the zenith of aesthetic value are usually spread widely. They become famous far and near. Poems, essays, novels, songs, pieces of music, sculptures, drawings and paintings, dramas, dances, and others of high level draw multitudinous people. Then they serve as media in support of linguistic communication when certain information is disseminated among the people. Culture spells the strengthening of linguistic communication performed by all with all within the community. People who share the same culture are likely to get close to each other. It is easy for them to understand each other. They share the same identity of a group of people. They tend to unite.

       Secondly, while men perform linguistic communication, they sometimes disseminate information which is systematic, complicated and unique knowledge. Such knowledge is a medium when people perform linguistic communication to disseminate such knowledge. That means that while people seek knowledge, they perform linguistic communication. Conversely speaking, if people do not seek certain knowledge, they may not perform such linguistic communication. If knowledge is systematic, complicated and unique, this knowledge is rare. As it is rare, it is needed by many people. Then related linguistic communication of disseminating such knowledge is performed on a large scale. Specifically, if people disseminate ordinary knowledge such as common sense, they usually perform linguistic communication on a small scale. People often get common sense by themselves in their social practice. People get the same or analogous common sense in different places. Therefore, common sense usually does not spread widely through long distance linguistic communication performed by people directly throughout the society. If people disseminate knowledge which is neither systematic nor complicated nor unique, they may not perform linguistic communication on a large scale. The related information is of low value. Yet if people disseminate the information which constitutes knowledge which is systematic, complicated and unique, such knowledge is spread widely. The forms of linguistic communication performed to disseminate such knowledge become part of culture. Such forms of linguistic communication include history, philosophy, other social sciences and natural sciences.  Usually the richest knowledge has the highest value. Such knowledge is disseminated most widely because it is the rarest. It is most unlikely to be produced everywhere. Therefore, the related linguistic communication performed to disseminate such knowledge is performed on the largest scale. Then, people who get such knowledge tend to build the same knowledge structure. Knowledge stored by building this knowledge structure underlies the establishment of their cultural relations. They, as a result, often see eye to eye on the building of their community. They tend to unite.

      Thirdly, while people perform linguistic communication, they also disseminate idea. If an idea is trivial because this idea is come up with by an individual person for his own life or work, this is only a personal idea. It will not be disseminated widely. Yet if this idea is comprehensive, profound and just, it will be needed by society. As such an idea is often merely created by a very small number of thinkers, such an idea is disseminated by a very small number of people to a very large number of people—the masses. Such an idea actually functions as a medium in the generation and facilitation of the related linguistic communication performed to spread such an idea. In other words, if an idea is simple and trivial only fur the purpose of personal life, this idea may not concern the matter of social justice. This idea can be come up with by any individual. This idea cannot be spread widely. If an idea is profound and important, it may concern social justice. This idea may be spread widely. This idea may become part of culture. Philosophy, religion, ethics and law are the related forms of culture. These forms of culture rely on various processes of such linguistic communication. These forms of culture that carry such an idea constitute an important basis of culture. These forms of culture may also sometimes be presented with aesthetic forms of expression. Such an idea may often be a pillar which underpins the building of a just social or political system. As philosophers, theologians or clergy, ethicists and jurists disseminate a related idea, we can regard them as the ones disseminating the same on behalf of all within the society. They play a role in the organization of cultural community. All those who embrace the related idea will support each other and unite. All will support the organization of a government in the principle endorsed by the related idea embraced by all.

       Considering these three juxtaposing communities, namely the political community, the economic community and the cultural community, I believe that they determine each other. No community shall be deemed as superstructure. If there is a change in the economic community, there should also be a change in the cultural community. Then there should be a change in the political community. In view of social progress conceptualized by Marx, I believe that a progress in the social forces of production will result in a change in the idea produced by the cultural community and then the cultural community will guide the adjustment of the relations of production by the political community. The cultural community is separate just like the political community and the economic community. Cultural community and political community should not be placed in the same category as parts of superstructure because intellectuals who build the cultural community are distinct from politicians who build the political community. Intellectuals perform social linguistic communication while politicians perform political linguistic communication. Social linguistic communication is long distance linguistic communication while political linguistic communication is short distance linguistic communication. Intellectuals stand aloof from the conflict of interest arising in the exercise of state power while politicians tend to be involved in the conflict of interest. As intellectuals communicate with the public, they tend to disseminate the just idea because the public always needs the just idea. As intellectuals do not hold power, they do not seek their own narrow interest. They are the conscience of the society. They generate a spirit which guides the operation of the state in the principle of justice.

       Then I argue that it is crucial for the cultural community to guide the operation of the political community. If we say that the relations of production must fit in with the development of the social forces of production, the impediment of the conservative relations of production to the development of the social forces of production may not lead to the outbreak of a social revolution. According to the experience of the Chinese history of about two thousand years prior to the end of the nineteenth century, without a role played by the cultural community in the progress of society, the impediment of the conservative relations of production to the development of social forces of production will not lead to the outbreak of any social revolution. In the Chinese history prior to the end of the nineteenth century, the impediment of the conservative relations of production to the development of the social forces of production lead to the outbreak of peasants’ uprising or revolt from time to time. As intellectuals or men of letter were normally recruited by the regime of the empire through imperial examination and mainstream thought was controlled by the regime, no new idea played any role in the change of the society. There was an alliance between the political community and the cultural community. Therefore there had been no revolution in the Chinese pre-modern history. History stagnated in China for a great many years. The reason that new ideas played a role in the change of the society in Europe in early modern times is that a large batch of independent intellectuals emerged at that time. They formed a separate cultural community. As the authorities of the state such as France, for example, were despotic before the arrival of modern times, they refused to conduct adjustment in the governance of the state as requested by the cultural community. Then a social revolution broke out. Such a revolution pushes forward the progress of history. A social revolution actually means that the cultural community commences to guide the organization and operation of the state because only the cultural community can guarantee justice ultimately. If we assume that only the cultural community can truly guarantee justice, it should not make any alliance with the political community. Specifically, political power and thought should never build any alliance. If there is such an alliance, the political power will especially protect a certain thought and a certain thought will especially serve the need of the political power. In order to protect this thought, the political power is tempted to suppress the dissemination of any other thoughts which enter into rivalry with that thought. Then it follows that the free competition of various different thoughts are suppressed with force. Without the free competition of different thoughts, correct thoughts will not prevail. There is no freedom of thought. As there is no freedom of thought, there is usually no freedom of speech. As there is no freedom of speech, all other forms of freedom will be spurious. Then people will not see the possibility of realizing justice in the state. Under these circumstances, that certain thought that is usually single-faceted or biased relentlessly prevails over all other thoughts including some reasonable thoughts, and the political power invariably seeks the interest of a portion of people only. Then many people feel hopelessness. Then everything is over. Therefore, we see that in a certain period of time in the modern history of Germany or Russia or China a state leader sometimes adopts his own thought as the ideology of guiding the organization and operation of the state. He sometimes lets the constitution of the state or any other state document state that his thought is the ideology of guiding all the work of the building of the state. He controls both state power and the thought of the citizens. He establishes an alliance between power and thought. This alliance is the root cause of the generation of all kinds of totalitarianism. So the thought of guiding the organization and operation of the state ought to be offered by free thinkers instead of a politician who holds power. People should build no permanent alliance between the political power and a certain thought. In this case, thought provided by the cultural community should be independent. The cultural community should be separate.

        In the meantime the political community should not build any alliance with the economic community. Particularly, the authorities should not be the exclusive representative of any social group or any social class because an alliance between the political community and the economic community is always built this way. As all social groups or social classes constitute the people who form the state, the authorities need to be neutral toward all social groups or social classes and refrain from oppressing any social group or social class.  This is because if the authorities support any social group or social class, other social groups or social classes will be oppressed. Then the common interest of all will disappear. The authorities are required to accommodate the interest of all within the state. In the meantime the political community should not control the economic community totally. Private property ownership should be generally accepted.

       On the other hand, the economic community ought to be allowed to seek support from the cultural community. The interest of a certain social group or a certain social class can be reflected by some cultural intellectuals in the cultural community, provided that all cultural intellectuals are allowed to present their arguments freely, making all arguments subject to the scrutiny of reason or the public. In the meantime, the economic community should also be separated from the cultural community. The reason is that the operation of the cultural community should be immune from the influence of money. The support given to the economic community by the cultural community then ensure the realization of justice because the cultural community tends to be just for the reason we discussed earlier in this manuscript. That is, opinions given by the cultural community concerning the operation of the economic community are in line with the principle of justice.

     Then I argue that in order to let the cultural community function separately, to let the political community function correctly and to let the economic community function properly in order to guard against totalitarianism, the political community, the economic community and the cultural community should be separated from one another. There should be an arrangement of system. What is such arrangement of system? My view is that what is important is that parliament consists of three houses which represent the political community, the economic community and the cultural community respectively to the effect that three communities check, and properly cooperate with, one another. In the meantime, arbitration by a third party should be adopted in each community in order to ensure the separation of the political community, the economic community and the cultural community. That is, in the economic community, men make law. Law means arbitration by a third party. If people are involved in a dispute about the distribution of interest, they depend on judgment made by a judge. In the political community, men hold election in order to ensure justice. Though citizens hold different opinions on the governance of the state, the opinion of the majority will prevail. Prior to the beginning of election, nobody is certain that his opinion will be part of the opinion of the majority. Neither those citizens who finally constitute majority nor those citizens who finally constitute minority can decide on the result of election as if an invisible man rules a dispute. In the cultural community, men insist on the freedom of speech. While citizens can make their speeches freely, they present various opinions. If they argue about an issue, all resort to reason because when they argue in the public, the public expect them to demonstrate reason. The public functions as a third party which judges which opinion is reasonable. In this case, reasonable idea will prevail. As all the communities are under the governance of arbitration by a third party, the cultural community will guide the operation of the political community and the political community will set up a system to regularize the economic community and the economic community will let the cultural community to reflect its will. This is because as men can use language, they can make a promise. As they can make a promise, they can make a contract. As they can make a contract, they can formulate a rule to adopt arbitration by a third party. Then men can let these three communities interact with one another so as to adjust the relations of production to suit the development of the social forces of production. As language presets the whole process of the progress of human civilization, language serves as a basis for the design and implementation of various language solutions in the operation of these three juxtaposing communities. Language underlies the operation of all these communities. All these communities are actually media in support of the operation of linguistic communication performed by people with themselves. They form the state. The state is a mixture of media developed and used as required by linguistic communication performed by people for their mutual interaction and self-organization. Therefore, the state will never wither away so long as people use language for communication because the state is just a comprehensive medium created for the need of linguistic communication performed by all with all. Therefore, the state will be the destination of human journey of their progress of civilization. By writing the “progress of civilization,” I mean a process in which the level of the development of social forces of production is enhanced, the organization of human community is rationalized step by step, and more and more spiritual goods are produced for the guidance of the operation of the state. If there are contradictions in the operation of the state, they will be eased and solved by people by adopting various language solutions because language underlies all the aspects of the organization of the state. People will build a harmonious community within the state. The state is the product of men’s self-organization on the basis of cooperation in the era of civilization created in various processes of linguistic communication.  People do not build their state in violence. If a state happens to be organized or re-organized as a result of violent conflict, the building of the state finally needs to be accomplished in various processes of linguistic communication. Violence leads to sabotage while linguistic communication means cooperation and construction. People build their state because of language. People will find rationality in the organization and operation of the state with various language solutions because language is responsible for the construction of a harmonious community. For example, people seek freedom. All forms of freedom hinge on the freedom of speech. The freedom of speech is a language solution. People seek democracy. The core of democracy is free election. Election is a language solution. People seek the rule of law instead of the rule of man. In comparison to the rule of man, the rule of law is a language solution.

      As such, the outcome of the study of correlation between language and state shows that a state is an achievement made by humans in multiple aspects which are all in relation to language. Scholars who study the theory of the state often tend to study the mode of production, social attributes and political system of the state. For example, if political economists or political scientists study the growth of the state, they often stress correlation between the growth of the forces of production and a change in the relations of production or the development of the society or mutual interaction between the society and the state. While they study human economic activities, they also often study human social and political activities. Particularly political economists tend to study interrelationship between politics and economy. Some political philosophers are also interested in the study of how a scheme can be formulated in the process of politics in order to distribute interest fairly in the state. The study of correlation between language and the state may provide us with another view. This view is that looking at this research topic at another angle, we may find that the extension of the distance of linguistic communication leads to the growth of the state. It is the extension  of the distance of linguistic communication that creates a humanistic condition for the formation of the state, for the governance of the state and for the generation of state spirit. The new academic view presented in this manuscript differs from the traditional views at least in the respect that it tries to interpret how people unite to form a state. Unlike the traditional views of political economy which stress the struggle of social classes in the growth of the state, in particular, the view of linguistic communication highlights the role played by language in the formation of common interest of all those who form the state. Therefore, it, particularly, differs from the Marxist view which insists that the birth of the state proves that class contradictions are irreconcilable and hence the state is an instrument for the rule of one class by another. My view is that though there may be occasional conflicts arising between the ruler and the ruled within the state, the state is normally formed on the basis of the formation of common interest of those who form the state. Firstly, any state is built on the basis of an economic system in which cooperation through the exchange of commodities is required. If some scholars argue that one class may exploit another, my interpretation is that this is due to the nature of humans. If a conflict between two social classes is likely to arise, the state may take some measures to prevent such conflict from arising. Secondly, people jointly own a large piece of land on which they build their large community and possess those natural resources attached to this piece of land such as land, water, and mineral resources, etc. There is some common interest naturally formed because people reside on the same territory. Thirdly, people usually belong to a nation and hence they have some common interest in relation to the survival of the nation. Fourthly, people unite with one another in a homogeneous cultural community. Certain common interest is formed  because people share the same culture. These are substantial conditions for the formation of a state.  Class contradictions that arise from time to time cannot be regarded as part of the formation of the state.  That means that upon the formation of the common interest of people, people form a nation, perform economic cooperation, jointly possess the natural resources of the land, and create their own culture. Thus people form their state. Even the establishment of the regime performed by one class may not rule out the condition for the formation of common interest. For example, after the establishment of the regime, the power holder may seek ruling legitimacy. Seeking ruling legitimacy requires the ruler to consider and take care of  the interest of the ruled, leading to the formation of common interest of all. Thus the formation of the state cannot be simply equated with the establishment of the rule of the state. If we assume that the formation of the state is the result of a long process of evolution from the primitive society to the civilized society, we should see that the formation of the state is due to the formation of people’s common interest in the long run. If people accept this view, they will also accept the view that democracy is the natural government form. As the state is formed due to the formation of common interest, all political parties tend to represent the interest of the people despite that their policy proposals may differ. They may represent different portions of the people, but people will not believe that a certain party absolutely represents the ruling class. On the contrary, if people assume that the state is formed because one class rules the other, the power holder may not accept democracy because the power holder may think that democracy will allow for the class ruled to take power from the hands of the ruling class. Some despotic states in the world today are oblivious to the practice of democracy. One crucial reason is that the power holders of those states believe that the state is the machine used for the rule of one class by another. Therefore, assuming that democracy is an ideal system, we should believe, according to the logic, that the formation of the state is primarily based on the formation of common interest of those forming the state.

      Then I try to interpret the formation of the state at the angle of linguistic communication. Three viewpoints are mainly presented as follows.

       Firstly, using language in communication, people develop or utilize various media to enhance the effectiveness of linguistic communication on a large scale. Without medium, people will be unable to perform any communication following the growth of their community. The development or utilization of various media is, thus, actually a course of the growth of the state. In this aspect we can believe that written language is the medium of spoken language. Spoken language often functions on a comparatively small scale while written language often functions on a comparatively large scale. In the primitive society, a tribe which grows large in population usually breaks up into several different tribes because the scale of the community usually remains limited. The reason is that people only use spoken language in communication.  After the invention of script, people form a large community, culminating in the formation of the state. In the meantime, as written communication relies on various materials as media, the adoption of stone, clay, metal objects, animal bones, ivory, silk, parchment, papyrus, wood, bamboo slip and paper as media in communication becomes part of the building of the state. The growth of villages, towns and cities is also required by linguistic communication. They are media. As now people can use language for communication, they tend to reside close to one another to facilitate linguistic communication performed with one another to perform the exchange of commodities, to spread cultural ideas, to perform the exchange of feelings and to share the common memory of the community.  The rise of cities is, particularly, part of the rise of nation-states in modern times. In addition, as people can perform linguistic communication on a large scale, they develop transportation system and communication system, resulting in the development of more related media such as motor vehicle and telephone. Organizations are also media. Whenever some people set up an organization, they intend to strengthen mutual communication. They hold meetings and circulate documents within the organization. They unite and pursue the common cause. These organizations may be military, religious or political organizations. Thus, in ancient times a military group may conquer an area and found a state. In pre-modern times, a religious organization may play a prominent role in support of the formation of a state. Therefore, sometimes people forming a state believe in the same religion. In modern times, a political party is also an organizer of the state. Political parties organize the government in charge of the governance of the state. Ordinary people may not be able to communicate with one another on a large scale. So they are unable to take initiative to form a state. So the state is often built as a result of the initiative of a cohort of people. Assuming that the state is a comparatively large organization, a military group or a religious organization or a political party is a comparatively small organization. People rely on a small organization to organize a large organization. A small organization is a medium used by people to form a large organization. As people use language in communication, consciousness gained by people also functions as a medium. Men may have national, historical, social or political consciousness. When people have the same consciousness, they understand each other. They feel close to each other. They strengthen their mutual linguistic communication and unite. Then they tend to form a state. In short, political economists, sociologists and others may emphasize the development of productive forces and the growth of population in the growth of the state. This treatise accentuates the role played by language in the formation and growth of the state.

      Secondly, studying how political order is formed and how a sort of government form is selected, political scientists often focus on interaction between the power holder and the masses. For example, when scholars study democracy, they pay attention to the design of political system. They sometimes probe the social roots of democracy. They sometimes compare the political systems of different states. Particularly when political philosophers study the formation of the state, they sometimes study whether a state is formed due to initial conquest or the making of social contract or for any other reason. Then they try to find out why a certain political system is formed. This treatise studies the formation of political system at the angle of linguistic communication. Studying correlation between language and state governance, this treatise proves that the power holder and the masses interact with each other in linguistic communication, resulting in the building of the state in the process of linguistic communication. State governance depends on various solutions of language. Specifically speaking, as people are able to use language, they can make agreements, express opinions and make rules for the purpose of organizing the state. They can solve their disputes in the management of public affairs with language. They can establish order and maintain peace with language. The mode of state governance is dictated by linguistic communication performed by people. The mode of state governance varies with the varying distance of linguistic communication performed to find out common value, to formulate a principle of operating the state, to express opinions on state governance state-wide, and to find out a way for efficient state governance. Various solutions of language are offered. These solutions of language include appellations, constitution, election, representation and those forms used to issue administrative order, to make law and to award judicial judgment. Without these solutions of language the state may not be formed or the state formed may not be maintained. To put it another way, traditional political science pays attention to action taken to build the political system. But the role of linguistic communication in the establishment of the political system is generally overlooked. This treatise is intended to provide a supplement.

      Thirdly,  studying how justice is realized in the state, political philosophers often study the origin of the state. Studying the origin of the state, they often study interrelationship between the ruler and the ruled. Studying interrelationship between the ruler and the ruled, they pay attention to the distribution of economic interests. They focus on the fair distribution of economic interests and study the polity in view of the realization of justice. In this aspect they may also study political power granted to the power holder and political and social rights granted to the citizens. This treatise is different. Studying correlation between language and the state, this treatise especially shows that the realization of justice is based on the creation of various forms of civilization. The creation of various forms of civilization is further based on the extension of the distance  of linguistic communication as well as the enhancement of the effectiveness of linguistic communication. This is because if people communicate with each other face-to-face on a small scale only, they will not always chronicle history, come up with philosophy, create literature and art, spread religion and make law. Conversely speaking, with communication performed by all with all realized because of the realization of effective linguistic communication across the state, it becomes meaningful for people to create those forms of civilization because their act under these circumstances finally becomes cost-effective. In other words, with all communicating with all over a long period of time and on a large scale by using language, the values of those forms of civilization increase significantly because more people who gather in this community which grows large can get benefits from them. In the meantime as those who create those forms of civilization are not involved in the conflict of interest which only occurs in the domain where state power is exercised, spirit built by way of those forms of civilization  finally ensures the realization of  justice. To put it another way, justice may be realized in a procedure made by people, but this is not enough. The justice of the whole state depends on the progress of civilization because any procedure is made amid the progress of civilization. We are always under the influence of civilization. Those who create civilization are not involved in the conflict of interest. Thus language is not only a means of communication for social intercourse, but also a form used for the purpose of realizing justice. If the development of productive forces can create a condition for social progress, and if a political solution can be used to realize justice in the distribution of interest in economic life, long distance  linguistic communication may also be an important condition for the realization of justice. While some scholars traditionally hold that the realization of justice depends on a good political system or social system, the study of correlation between language and state indicates that the realization of justice ultimately depends on a spirit. This spirit stems from the creation of various forms of civilization, which subsist in a process of linguistic communication.

      In summary, the main idea of this treatise is that linguistic communication is a linchpin  for the formation of the state, for the governance of the state and for the generation of the spirit of the state. Assuming that state is a form of human community that grows in a long process after the dissolution of tribes, the evolution of human community from tribe to state is ultimately conditioned by  linguistic communication. Without the interpretation of linguistic communication, no complete interpretation about the origin, growth and future of the state can be made because language presets the construction of the state. While people speak and write a language, they create multifarious media. Interaction between language and various media underlies the organization of the state. Materials used as media for written communication enlarge the scale of the community, laying the ground work for the formation of the state. In the meantime, cities, transportation vehicles and other conditions, various organizations of humans, consciousness of various kinds such as national consciousness or historical consciousness all play a role as a medium in support of the organization of the state. The state itself is also a mixture of various media. Mutual interaction between men and their language ultimately dictates how humans build, organize and optimize or rationalize their state. If we believe that the existing principle of organizing the state is not quintessential and many aspects of the building of the state need improvement—particularly, the rule of law needs to be strengthened; democracy needs to be consolidated while the efficiency of state government is enhanced; the construction of the spirit of the state needs to be designed and carried out—the realization of those objectives depends on a wide range of language solutions. People usually think that linguistic communication performed by people in various fashions is the method of human communication in the formation of the society. This monograph intends to explain the role of language in the construction of the state because the author of this manuscript firmly believes that the structure of the related linguistic communication performed by men in their state is also the structure of that very state. The secret of understanding the origin, growth and the future of the state is having an insight into how humans interact with their language and how that language interacts with media created or developed and utilized by humans and how those media function to support all the processes of the building of the state. While some political theories try to interpret the origin and growth of the state by elucidating the necessity of establishing the system of private property ownership and the procedure of distributing economic interest fairly among all or the role of spirit of humans in the building of the state, this manuscript is especially aimed at interpreting the origin and growth of the state at the angle of language so as to interpret both the dissolution of the tribes of the primitive society and the formation of the states of the civilized society. The secret is the extension of the distance of linguistic communication and the expansion of the scope of linguistic communication. A change in quantity leads to a change in quality. By adopting this approach, this manuscript tries, from the beginning to the end, to interpret how the evolution of the structure of linguistic communication in history results in the formation and growth of the state. If we assume that any state theory created by predecessors including political philosophers still remains incomplete and incomprehensive, the interpretation of the origin and growth of the state from the perspective of language may be a hope of changing this situation. As humans interact with each other almost always by way of speaking and writing in the state, gradually inventing, designing and adopting various language solutions in the building of their state, the special methods of linguistic communication enable humans to diminish violent conflict among them and rationalize their ways of interaction and organization. In this sense, this treatise may provide an alternative theory of the building of the state from a new perspective. I hope that political scientists or political philosophers can have a look at this theory. I hope that they can help me promote this theory if they believe that this theory is interesting, tenable and convincing. Deepening the understanding of the civilized society, including the state, and hence gaining the acumen in ameliorating such a society, is the linchpin for the progress of human civilization. If a new theory is disseminated, the dissemination of this theory may also help political scientists and political philosophers to invent their own theories, providing more solutions for the building of our civilized society and keep on making such a society better and better. I hope that this theory is helpful to them. Of course, if any scholar does not agree to my interpretation of the origin and growth of the state, critique is also welcome. Thank all readers!

 

 

Notes

 

        1.  Charles Roberts Aldrich, The Primitive Mind and Modern Civilization (New York: Harcourt, Brace And Company, 1931), 97-98.

        2.  See: Howard Selsam and Harry Martel (ed.), Reader in Marxist Philosophy: from the Writing of Marx, Engels, and Lenin (New York: International Publishers Co., 1963), 186-187.

        3.  Herbert Spencer, Principles of Sociology, edited by Stanislav Andreski (Hamden, Connecticut: Anchon Books, 1969), 269.

        4.   Ibid., 121.

        5.   Ibid., 655.

 

 

 

 

 


 [SS1]Too simplistic of an explanation. Others argue that capitalist development made its way to these nation states after the coups.

 [SS2]You can remove this.


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