The Pitfalls of Psychologism
AbstractI was pleased to see Robert Heilbroner's review of Eli Sagan's At the Dawn of Tyranny in the September issue of MR. Sagan's book is an important one, which raises many key issues about what may be broadly considered the subjective side of domination—issues which rarely get the attention they deserve from socialists. But these are difficult issues as well; and it is precisely because of that difficulty that I would have hoped for a more thorough treatment than Heilbroner's. As his review stands, it gives the impression of uncritically accepting certain very problematic assumptions made by Sagan. While I cannot here do justice to these matters—or to the overall scope of Sagan's work—I would like to suggest a few of the problems Heilbroner did not engage.
This article can also be found at the Monthly Review website, where most recent articles are published in full.