Antonio Gramsci’s Prison Notebooks are today acknowledged as a classic of the human and social sciences in the twentieth century. The influence of his thought in numerous fields of scholarship is only exceeded by the diverse interpretations and readings to which it has been subjected, resulting in often contradictory ‘images of Gramsci‘. This book draws on the rich recent season of Gramscian philological studies in order to argue that the true significance of Gramsci’s thought consists in its distinctive position in the development of the Marxist tradition. Providing a detailed reconsideration of Gramsci’s theory of the state and concept of philosophy, The ‘Gramscian moment‘ argues for the urgent necessity of taking up the challenge of developing a ‘philosophy of praxis‘ as a vital element in the contemporary revitalisation of Marxism.
Thomas’s exhaustive research and his complete reading of the Prison Notebooks allow him to show us how Gramsci was developing and reworking his concepts through his years in prisons. This also allows Thomas to convincingly challenge commonly held notions that Gramsci’s Prison Notebooks are overly fragmented and overly hampered by his physical condition and prison censors. Although not ignoring the constraints under which Gramsci worked, Thomas presents us with a relatively advanced and comprehensive philosophical research project under the banner of a philosophy of praxis, which for Thomas was not a euphemism but rather marked the new path on which Gramsci was resituating Marxist political philosophy beyond deterministic and positivistic tendencies emerging at the time.