Epistemological Break and Subject-Form of Discourse: There is no Pure ‘Scientific Discourse’

  • Michel Pêcheux
Part of the Language, Discourse, Society book series (LDS)


I shall therefore return to the ‘true point of departure’ to find out what the expression ‘ideology is nothing but outside’ means, but still with the aim of advancing as far as possible in the materialist theory of discursive processes. This immediately brings us back to the double reference I pointed out at the beginning: in the operation of the subject-form (and specifically of the subject-form of discourse) as it is realised in the conditions produced by the capitalist mode of production and beneath the general domination of the legal, a double system of reference is distinguishable, to scientific practice and to political practice, with a constant cross-reference between the signifiers of knowledge and those of politics. We shall see how Marxism-Leninism transforms the relationships between these two practices, with the consequences, some of them ‘discursive’, that follow.


Scientific Practice Historical Materialism Class Struggle Political Practice Materialist Objectivity 
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Copyright information

© Harbans Nagpal 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michel Pêcheux

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