Critique of Everyday Life, Vol. 3
From Modernity to Modernism (Towards a Metaphilosophy of Daily Life)
by Henri Lefebvre Translated by Gregory Elliott Preface by Michel Trebitsch
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179 pages / March 2006 / 9781859845905

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384 pages / February 2008 / 9781844671922

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Explores the crisis of modernity and the decisive assertion of technological modernism.
The Critique of Everyday Life is perhaps the richest, most prescient work by one of the twentieth century's greatest philosophers. A historian and sociologist, Lefebvre developed his ideas over seven decades through intellectual confrontation with figures as diverse as Bergson, Breton, Sartre, Debord and Althusser.

Written at the birth of postwar consumerism, though only now translated into English, the Critique is a book of enormous range and subtlety. Lefebvre takes as his starting point and guide the "trivial" details of quotidian experience: an experience colonized by the commodity, shadowed by inauthenticity, yet which remains the only source of resistance and change. Whether he is exploring the commercialization of sex or the disappearance of rural festivities, analyzing Hegel or Charlie Chaplin, Lefebvre always returns to the ubiquity of alienation, the necessity of revolt. This is an enduringly radical text, untimely today only in its intransigence and optimism.

This third volume of the Critique of Everyday Life completes Lefebvre's monumental project. It seeks to shed light on changes inscribed within everyday life, and at the same time to reveal certain virtualities of the everyday, taking into account the crisis of modernity but also the decisive assertion of technological modernism.


“A savage critique of consumerist society.”

“One of the great French intellectual activists of the twentieth century.”

“The last great classical philosopher.”

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