Repressive Tolerance: Left Good, Right Bad, What Could Go Wrong?

The New Discourses Podcast with James Lindsay, Episode 19

Repressive Tolerance Series, Part 3 of 4

In this third part of James Lindsay’s lecture series on Herbert Marcuse’s “Repressive Tolerance,” we see how the essay takes a particularly dark turn. Having set up the framing of the essay in the first part and explaining the condition of the “administered society” in the second, Marcuse now turns to answering the question of what a Repressive Tolerance should look like, including what it must suppress and what it must tolerate, including the sorts of violence and extralegal behaviors it must tolerate. The statement, which we arrive at near the end of this part, is simple, in Marcuse’s own words: “Liberating tolerance, then, would mean intolerance against movements from the Right and toleration of movements from the Left.” In this part of the lecture series, Lindsay walks the listener through the darker part of Marcuse’s argument to show how he arrives at this blatantly biased and ridiculous conclusion that has set the stage for the totalitarianism we see today in Wokeness and from Big Tech.

For those who haven’t yet heard it, listen to Part 1 here and Part 2 here so you can understand the context for this part of the series.


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