“Gramsci’s Plan” is conceived from the outset as a series of books that build on each other chronologically and factually. The series is to be concluded with Gramsci’s “Prison Notebooks” under the question “What should I do?
The project “Gramsci’s Plan” digs deep – guided by the 1300 pages Gramsci wrote in prison. The first volume is dedicated to Kant. Gramsci’s reflections begin historically with the epoch of the Enlightenment, stretching from the Renaissance/Reformation to the French Revolution. The next volume is dedicated to Hegel, as whose disciple Marx called himself throughout his life.
Classical German philosophy is presented according to Gramsci’s notes -integrated into the historical drama in which it emerged. This would be, first of all, only a contribution to the history of philosophy in an exciting package. But the overarching intention of “Gramsci’s Plan” is to bring philosophy out of its academic isolation and back into the public debate. Philosophy is the discussion of our conceptions of our lives and our world.
Gramsci, Prison Notebooks, vol. 6, issue 11, § 12, p. 1375
One must destroy the widespread prejudice that philosophy is something very difficult due to the fact that it is the specific intellectual activity of a certain category of specialized scientists or professional and systematic philosophers. It is therefore necessary to show in advance that all men are ‘philosophers’ by defining the limits and the essential features of this ‘spontaneous philosophy’ which is peculiar to ‘everyone’ …”
Gramsci, Prison Notebooks, vol. 6, issue 10 (part 2), § 44, p. 1335/6
Therefore, it can be said that the historical personality of an individual philosopher is also given by the active relationship between him and the cultural environment that he wants to change, an environment that acts back on the philosopher and, forcing him to continuous self-criticism, acts as a ‘teacher’. Thus it has come about that one of the main demands of the modern intellectual strata in the political field has been that of the so-called ‘freedom of thought and speech (press and assembly)’, for only where there is this political condition does the teacher-pupil relationship in the broadest sense mentioned above materialize, and in fact a new type of philosopher, which can be called ‘democratic philosopher’, is realized ‘historically’, namely the philosopher who is convinced that his personality is not limited to his own physical individual, but is an active social relation of the change of the cultural environment. If the ‘thinker’ is satisfied with his own ‘subjectively’ free, i.e. abstractly free thinking, he challenges ridicule nowadays: for the unity of science and life is an active unity, in which the freedom of thought is realized for the first time, it is a relation of teacher-pupil, philosopher-cultural milieu, in which to work, from which the problems to be necessarily posed and solved are to be taken, that is, it is the relation philosophy-history.