Autorizzazione del Tribunale di Milano n. 391 del 28/06/2002.
Cultura e Filosofia
Università degli Studi di Milano Bicocca
In his book Materia, Arrigo Pacchi stated that the notion of “matter” and the related term “materialism” have different meanings. We particularly stress two of them:
- an ontological-naturalistic meaning: there are things; they are independent of us; they have no “sense”, they are what they are (we are the ones who ascribe limited and partial meanings to them through the intertwining of our practices); they have not been created by some sort of superior intelligence, they developed and continue to do so naturally;
- an ethical-naturalistic meaning: humans (sensitive beings capable of feeling pleasure and pain) have the right to the maximum possible welfare for everyone and in this world. This means that there could be no well-being of a minority to the detriment of the majority, and that no afterlife can reward one for their suffering. What this means has been beautifully expressed by Heine in the following poem:
A new song, a better song,
My friends will be my aim!
We should, right now on earth,
A kingdom of heaven proclaim.
We wish to be happy, here on earth,
The days of need have gone;
The idle belly must not enjoy
What toiling hands have won.
Enough bread grows here on earth,
For all mankind’s nutrition,
Roses too, myrtles, beauty and joy,
And green peas, in addition.
Yes, green peas for everyone,
As soon as they burst their pods.
To the angels and the sparrows,
We leave Heaven and its Gods
These values are worth fighting for, though with no guarantee as to how this fight will end. History has no preordained direction: there are only finite and contingent projects that compete with others. Since 2002 Quaderni Materialisti counts 15 issues.
Università degli Studi di Pavia
Università degli Studi di Napoli "L'Orientale"