The Birth Of Cultural Marxism: How The "Frankfurt School" Changed America

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by David Galland via,

The 1950s were a simple, romantic, and golden time in America.

California beaches, suburbia, and style. Atlas Shrugged was published, NASA was formed, and Elvis rocked the nation. Every year from 1950–1959 saw over 4 million babies born. The nation stood atop the world in every field.

It was an era of great economic prosperity in The Land of the Free.


So, what happened to the American traits of confidence, pride, and accountability?

The roots of Western cultural decay are very deep, having first sprouted a century ago. It began with a loose clan of ideologues inside Europe’s communist movement. Today, it is known as the Frankfurt School, and its ideals have perverted American society.

When Outcomes Fail, Just Change the Theory

Before WWI, Marxist theory held that if war broke out in Europe, the working classes would rise up against the bourgeoisie and create a communist revolution.

Well, as is the case with much of Marxist theory, things didn’t go too well. When war broke out in 1914, instead of starting a revolution, the proletariat put on their uniforms and went off to war.

After the war ended, Marxist theorists were left to ask, “What went wrong?”

Two very prominent Marxists thinkers of the day were Antonio Gramsci and Georg Lukács. Each man, on his own, concluded that the working class of Europe had been blinded by the success of Western democracy and capitalism. They reasoned that until both had been destroyed, a communist revolution was not possible.

Gramsci and Lukács were both active in the Communist party, but their lives took very different paths.

Gramsci was jailed by Mussolini in Italy where he died in 1937 due to poor health. 

In 1918, Lukács became minister of culture in Bolshevik Hungary. During this time, Lukács realized that if the family unit and sexual morals were eroded, society could be broken down.

Lukács implemented a policy he titled “cultural terrorism,” which focused on these two objectives. A major part of the policy was to target children’s minds through lectures that encouraged them to deride and reject Christian ethics.

In these lectures, graphic sexual matter was presented to children, and they were taught about loose sexual conduct.

Here again, a Marxist theory had failed to take hold in the real world. The people were outraged at Lukács’ program, and he fled Hungary when Romania invaded in 1919.

The Birth of Cultural Marxism

All was quiet on the Marxist front until 1923 when the cultural terrorist turned up for a “Marxist study week” in Frankfurt, Germany. There, Lukács met a young, wealthy Marxist named Felix Weil.

Until Lukács showed up, classical Marxist theory was based solely on the economic changes needed to overthrow class conflict. Weil was enthused by Lukács’ cultural angle on Marxism.

Weil’s interest led him to fund a new Marxist think tank—the Institute for Social Research. It would later come to be known as simply The Frankfurt School.

In 1930, the school changed course under new director Max Horkheimer. The team began mixing the ideas of Sigmund Freud with those of Marx, and cultural Marxism was born.

In classical Marxism, the workers of the world were oppressed by the ruling classes. The new theory was that everyone in society was psychologically oppressed by the institutions of Western culture. The school concluded that this new focus would need new vanguards to spur the change. The workers were not able to rise up on their own.

As fate would have it, the National Socialists came to power in Germany in 1933. It was a bad time and place to be a Jewish Marxist, as most of the school’s faculty was. So, the school moved to New York City, the bastion of Western culture at the time.

Coming to America

In 1934, the school was reborn at Columbia University. Its members began to exert their ideas on American culture.

It was at Columbia University that the school honed the tool it would use to destroy Western culture: the printed word.

The school published a lot of popular material. The first of these was Critical Theory.

Critical Theory is a play on semantics. The theory was simple: criticize every pillar of Western culture—family, democracy, common law, freedom of speech, and others. The hope was that these pillars would crumble under the pressure.

Next was a book Theodor Adorno co-authored, The Authoritarian Personality. It redefined traditional American views on gender roles and sexual mores as “prejudice.” Adorno compared them to the traditions that led to the rise of fascism in Europe.

Is it just a coincidence that the go-to slur for the politically correct today is “fascist”?

The school pushed its shift away from economics and toward Freud by publishing works on psychological repression.

Their works split society into two main groups: the oppressors and the victims. They argued that history and reality were shaped by those groups who controlled traditional institutions. At the time, that was code for males of European descent.

From there, they argued that the social roles of men and women were due to gender differences defined by the “oppressors.” In other words, gender did not exist in reality but was merely a “social construct.”

A Coalition of Victims

Adorno and Horkheimer returned to Germany when WWII ended. Herbert Marcuse, another member of the school, stayed in America. In 1955, he published Eros and Civilization.

In the book, Marcuse argued that Western culture was inherently repressive because it gave up happiness for social progress.

The book called for “polymorphous perversity,” a concept crafted by Freud. It posed the idea of sexual pleasure outside the traditional norms. Eros and Civilization would become very influential in shaping the sexual revolution of the 1960s.

Marcuse would be the one to answer Horkheimer’s question from the 1930s: Who would replace the working class as the new vanguards of the Marxist revolution?

Marcuse believed that it would be a victim coalition of minorities—blacks, women, and homosexuals.

The social movements of the 1960s—black power, feminism, gay rights, sexual liberation—gave Marcuse a unique vehicle to release cultural Marxist ideas into the mainstream. Railing against all things “establishment,” The Frankfurt School’s ideals caught on like wildfire across American universities.

Marcuse then published Repressive Tolerance in 1965 as the various social movements in America were in full swing. In it, he argued that tolerance of all values and ideas meant the repression of “correct” ideas.

It was here that Marcuse coined the term “liberating tolerance.” It called for tolerance of any ideas coming from the left but intolerance of those from the right. One of the overarching themes of the Frankfurt School was total intolerance for any viewpoint but its own. That is also a basic trait of today’s political-correctness believers.

To quote Max Horkheimer, “Logic is not independent of content.”

Recalling the Words of Winston (Not That One)

The Frankfurt School’s work has had a deep impact on American culture. It has recast the homogenous America of the 1950s into today’s divided, animosity-filled nation.

In turn, this has contributed to the undeniable breakdown of the family unit, as well as identity politics, radical feminism, and racial polarization in America.

It’s hard to decide if today’s culture is more like Orwell’s 1984 or Huxley’s Brave New World.

Never one to buck a populist trend, the political establishment in America has fully embraced the ideas of the Frankfurt School and has pushed them on American society through public miseducation.

Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, the beacons of progressivism, are both disciples of Saul Alinsky, a devoted cultural Marxist.

And so we now live in a hyper-sensitive society in which social memes and feelings have overtaken biological and objective reality as the main determinants of right and wrong.

Political correctness is a war on logic and reason.

To quote Winston, the protagonist in Orwell’s dystopia, “Freedom is the freedom to say that 2+2=4.”

Today, America is not free.

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DeathMerchant's picture

"expelled from NAZI Germany" I think he implied that they were self expelled rather than be fed a forced diet of Zyglon-B

joeyman9's picture

No they left in '33, a full 6 or 7 years before the camps started.

joeyman9's picture

They killed McCarthy when he started saying that the commies weren't only in the State Dept but in the Army and on Wall Street.  He started going after the very center of the conspiracy and they took him out.   Want proof that even Eisenhower was part of it?  Look up operation Keelhaul, a plan the Commies would definately support.

Lucky Leprachaun's picture

Every single one of the Frankfurt School Cutural Marxists was Jewish. The article minces around this central fact. Once you recognize this you can discern the (((same enablers))) in the ensuing years in media, politics and the judiciary.

joeyman9's picture

But what about the jews who weren't in the frankfurt school, are they guilty of promoting commie thought too?????  Or was it just THOSE People?

Dave Whiteman's picture

Some call it communism, I call it Judaism. ... Rabbi Stephen Samuel Wise [1935]

Posa's picture

Yeah... yeah. Family breakdown has a lot more to do with economic breakdown and that has very much to do with the decision by leading Capitalist Oligarchs to replace traditional US industrial capitalism with a debt-based FIRE economy. The latter is an ugly brew supported by an alliance of Green Environmentalists, predatory corporations, and libertarians. Throw in mass drug usage encouraged by narco-banks and yeah, we get a stagnant economy and a demoralized, lumpenized population assaulted by non-stop psy-ops propaganda.

This probably ends in nuclear war, with ongoing- deterioration of national infrastructure and disintegration of the national workforce. It's not pretty ... and I'm glad I was born in the early Fifties and enjoyed that era into the late Sixties when things came apart. So sad.

artichoke's picture

I would have lived it up more in the 80's after college if I had known that rather than being a temporary aberration, the nonsense would just grow exponentially.

LibertarianMenace's picture

So, if non-gentile then agitation. The trouble for them is, is that this state of affairs is increasingly a bijection: if agitation, then it's almost exclusively non-gentiles instigating it. Hence, agitation if and only if non-gentiles. That's a precarious position for them. No concealment lasts forever.

Posa's picture

BTW. Galland omits a huge piece of this story: the Rockefeller Financed Radio Research. Project. Adorno was a key part of this. Modern "soaps", the War of the Worlds hoax... and other mass media- manipulaion techneques were studied and codified into practice. Frank Stanton (later President of CBS) was also a big part of the Project.

Franfurt was one R&D arm of the US based international oligarchy. Old-line reactionaries (like the Nazis) and later the Reagan-type GOP steered clear of overt underwriting of the Frankfurt School, even as they assimilated their techniques and methods. For ideologocal reasons, the roots of modern mass psychological warfare against domestic populations  has obscured the roots of research and theory emenating from Frankfurt. BTW. Franfurt types led by Marcuse created the New Left to destroy the detritus of the Old Left (what remained of 30s militancy) .. nothing destroys class solidarity better than identity politics... and that's why the inner Oligarchy of Rockefeller dimensions underwote the Frankfurthers (along with, of course the Vienna School aka... "Libertarians). But that's another story,

frankly scarlet's picture

So the neo-liberals, derailed in their quest in the 'New Deal' era, adopted these principles to their own ends as just as destructive and the Commies had hoped, while the proles, heads down trying to make ends meet under the bankers debt money system, toiled away unaware of all these types of societal machinations aimed at the distabilization of human attributes like caring and empathy.

Dan'l's picture

Jews are at the root of the destruction of America and George Schwartz (Soros) is the paymaster destroying America with his many leftists goons assisting. How much longer will America take it?

crzyhun's picture

Read "The Devil's Pleasure Paradise", Michael Walsh for the full story on FS impact on the US culture. 

christopherbalz's picture

Ah yes, "the homogenous America of the 1950s" - the author must mean the one filled with rampant imposed segregation, lynchings, and such?  The Frankfurt School sought to extend the main part of Marx's thought, which said that cultural beliefs and traditions are mainly the product of their historical context instead of other factors.  They rightly rejected the rest.  The author should read the Frankfurt School books, or re-read them, because he obviously has no clue about them.

LibertarianMenace's picture

If I recall correctly, marxists have no morals, only 'politics'. Ah yes, let's just leave the door open for 'anything goes'. Let's not then be shocked by what the cat drags in. It certainly won't resemble any historical experience worthy of the term 'culture'. But then that's the revolutionary obective: create sufficient chaos so other, more conventional interests can seize power. New boss same as the old boss. marxists are so full of shit, and themselves.

artichoke's picture

Lynchings and segregation both?  If there was segregation, I would logically expect lynchings to be by same-race perpetrators.

But no, blame whitey.

newworldorder's picture

You do not see the 'directional march of truth" in this article? 

You do not see the names in the article, their influence on the great fortunes of men of business and the perpetual foundations they created to fund these causes.

Every cultural norm in the US  that needed change, has been changed. There is no need for the destruction of the United States. If that happens, - where will all the malcontes go that is better than the United States? Where are those places?

Golden Showers's picture

Thank you for getting the word out on the Frankfurt School. Lot's of people don't know thier life experiences have been shaped by this institution. Say all you want, but just look at Berlin before Hitler. It was a cesspool. Now the United States is worse than Berlin ever was thanks to this super-group of el-itest scumbags who destroy culture under the mantle of higher education.

This is a major issue because most people don't know that what they think they know was fed to them by these "Jewish" scumbags. CF also the foundation of the University of Chicago by Rockefeller, the "new Historians" the destruction of public transportation, the coining of the term "fossil fuel", the dismanteling of homeopathy and it's replacement with allopathy and many other fun facts.

Julius Caesar was murdered by his own friends in public, people, because of what a tyrant he had become. Get to know a bit of history because it will blow your hair back. Frankfurt School and Cecil Rhodes are worth examination. Also read title 26 at cornell law website. Have a nice day, bitchez.

sam site's picture

Communism, socialism, collectivism was created by globalists to confuse and divide the masses into conflict.  In fact the Rothschilds hired Nietsche and Marx to create opposing extreme philosophies to promote this confused, irrational, bullsh*t paradigm.

The 1917 Bolshevik Russian revolution was created and funded by Wall St globalists and made to look like a populist revolution.

Collectivism is all Bullsh*t to manipulate, divide and conquer the people by our hidden globalist controllers.





Boygoy's picture

Time to read "The Culture of Critique" if you haven't already.