An Alternative Framework: Gramsci’s “Common Sense”

  • Ian Bruff
Part of the International Political Economy Series book series (IPES)


The task of this chapter is to outline an alternative framework for analysing the role of culture in the trajectories of European varieties of capitalism. This framework utilizes the conceptual apparatus provided by Antonio Gramsci’s discussions of “common sense”, in which the sections of this chapter are anchored. I argue that in all aspects of life common sense is the basis for how humans make sense of the situation they find themselves in. Moreover, political struggle centres on the attempts of each group to render their version of common sense the basis for how humans in that society think and act. Therefore, several versions of common sense — or culture — can coexist at any one time, and it is an open empirical question which version becomes ascendant in the society being studied.


Civil Society Social Group Common Sense Social Force Alternative Framework 
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Copyright information

© Ian Bruff 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ian Bruff
    • 1
  1. 1.Edge Hill UniversityUK

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