Facts and Values in Bourgeois Society

by Caleb Roberts

Very roughly the bourgeois industrialised society is one in which men come into relationship, form a community, hence come to agreement and thus to ‘truth’, only in terms of production.  What lies outside this sphere is free, is not a matter of agreement, is ‘subjective’.  The world of hard facts is the world in which the factories are working, wages are being paid, goods are being distributed; this is the area of necessary agreement in the bourgeois society.  Such a society does not require agreement in matters of aesthetics, religion, or ‘private morals’; these belong to the sphere of comment and are relegated first to private judgment and then, as their social irrelevance becomes clearer, to the subjective world of ‘values’. (26)

Herbert McCabe | Law, Love and Language