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Post-Marxism is a trend in political philosophy and social theory which deconstructs Karl Marx's writings and Marxism proper, bypassing orthodox Marxism. The term post-Marxism first appeared in Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe's theoretical work Hegemony and Socialist Strategy. It can be said that post-Marxism as a political theory was developed at the University of Essex by Laclau and Mouffe. Philosophically, post-Marxism counters derivationism and essentialism (for example, it does not see economy as a foundation of politics and the state as an instrument that functions unambiguously and autonomously on behalf of the interests of a given class). Recent overviews of post-Marxism are provided by Ernesto Screpanti, Göran Therborn and Gregory Meyerson.
Post-Marxism dates from the late 1960s and several trends and events of that period influenced its development. The weakness of the Soviet Union paradigm became evident and Marxism faced a lack since the Second International. This happened concurrently with the occurrence internationally of the student riots of 1968, the rise of Maoist theory and the proliferation of commercial television which covered in its broadcasts the Vietnam War. Subsequently, Laclau and Mouffe address the proliferation of "new subject positions" by locating their analysis on a post-Marxist non-essentialist framework.