The term praxis means practice or activity, but its use is intended within Marxism to denote something more than this. For Karl Marx, in the first place it denotes the activity by which human beings distinguish themselves from other creatures, a practice informed by consciousness and purpose. This is in contrast to much philosophy that identifies the distinctiveness of human beings in terms of abstract human reason or consciousness. Secondly, it denotes practical materialism as opposed to passive or abstract materialism. The latter conceives material reality as an object of observation or contemplation, as something essentially passive and separate from thought (which is active). The notion of praxis makes the point that human activity is part of the material world. Thirdly, praxis denies the existence of thought separate from thinking matter, i.e., the premise of idealism. The unit of theory and practice is a rejection of the abstractions of idealism as well as of contemplative materialism. Fourthly, it denotes practical philosophy, both in terms of the practical application of philosophy to reality, and in terms of the resolution of theoretical problems through and in practice. Finally, it denotes the role of human practice in constituting both society and human beings themselves.
   Friedrich Engels, Georgii Plekhanov, Vladimir Ilich Lenin and Josef Stalin all gave attention to the notion of praxis, but conceived it largely in a narrow epistemological sense as a criterion of truth. Mao Zedong in his On Praxis (1937) stressed the unity of theory and action aspect, and Antonio Labriola and Antonio Gramsci both suggested the centrality of praxis in their descriptions of Marxism as the “philosophy of praxis.” Georgii Lukács, Karl Korsch, Herbert Marcuse and the Frankfurt School generally contributed to the development of the theory of praxis, but the term and theory came to be most closely associated with what became known as the Praxis School, composed of a number of Yugoslav Marxist philosophers in the 1950s and 1960s, most notably Gajo Petrovic and Mihailo Markovic.

Historical dictionary of Marxism. . 2014.

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  • praxis — [ praksis ] n. f. • 1934; all. Praxis, la forme existe dès le XVIe en angl., du lat. médiév. praxis; mot gr. « action » ♦ Didact. Activité en vue d un résultat, opposée à la connaissance d une part, à l être d autre part. Le langage en tant que… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Praxis — may refer to:* Praxis (process), the process of putting theoretical knowledge into practice * Praxis (Eastern Orthodoxy), the practice of faith, especially worship * Praxis (journal), a journal of philosophy of the University of Manchester *… …   Wikipedia

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  • Praxis — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Praxis es el proceso por el cual una teoría o lección se convierte en parte de la experiencia vivida. Mientras que una lección es solamente absorbida a nivel intelectual en un aula, las ideas son probadas y… …   Wikipedia Español

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