Essays in Philosophy, Books 1–3


Empiriomonism is Alexander Bogdanov’s monistic philosophy of being and cognition, which he believed is consistent with both modern science and Marxism. In Books One and Two of Empiriomonism, Bogdanov begins with Ernst Mach’s and Richard Avenarius’s neutral monism – the idea that the ‘physical’ and the ‘psychical’ are two sides of one reality – and explains how human psyches are causally interconnected with the rest of nature. In Book Three, he shows how empiriomonism substantiates the principles of historical materialism more adequately than G. V. Plekhanov’s out-dated materialism. Bogdanov concludes that empiriomonism, although not technically materialist, is nevertheless of the same order as materialist systems and, since it is the ideology of the productive forces of society, it is a Marxist philosophy.

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Biographical Note
David G. Rowley, Ph.D (1982), University of Michigan, is Emeritus Professor , University of Wisconsin-Platteville. He has published research on Alexander Bogdanov and is the translator of Volume 8 of the Bogdanov Library, The Philosophy of Living Experience (Brill, 2016).
Table of contents
Instead of an Introduction
The Autobiography of Alexander Bogdanov
Bogdanov as a Thinker
Editor’s Comments
Text and Translation


I. The Ideal of Cognition (Empiriomonism of the Physical and the Psychical)

II. Life and the Psyche
A. The realm of experiences
B. Psychoenergetics
C. The monist conception of life

III. Universum (Empiriomonism of the Separate and the Continuous)

Conclusion to Book One


IV. The ‘Thing-in-Itself’ from the Perspective of Empiriomonism

V. Psychical Selection (Empiriomonism in the Theory of the Psyche)
A. Foundations of the method
1. The model of psychoenergetics
2. The model of psychical selection
3. The model of association
B. Applications of the method (illustrations)

VI. Two Theories of the Vital-Differential


VII. Preface to Book Three
A. Three materialisms
B. Energetics and empiriocriticism
C. The path of empiriomonism
D. Regarding eclecticism and monism

VIII. Social Selection (Foundations of the Method)

IX. Historical Monism
A. Main lines of development
B. Classes and groups

X. Self-awareness of Philosophy (The Origin of Empiriomonism)

All interested in Russian intellectual history, Russian Marxism in the revolutionary era, the philosophy of historical materialism, and the philosophy of mind.
Index Card