While I write the next part of my bourse, let me respond quickly to a question that several of you have posed. Mannheim was deeply troubled by the sceptical implications of his analysis, especially as it unfolded beyond these preliminary stages [I shall get to that in the next Part.] He advanced a "solution" to the problem, but, as we shall see, it is almost a cry of desperation, and coming as it does after his extraordinarily powerful analysis of ideological critique, does not seem [at least to me] to be successful. I have been struggling for most of my life with the apparently relativistic implications of the work of people like Mannheim. Marx understood the problem very well, which is one of the reasons why he eschewed moralising and claimed merely to be identifying what he called "the laws of motion of capitalist society." Marx did not argue for socialism. He claimed simply to be able to show that socialism would emerge from the womb of capitalism. I engaged [pessimistically] with that claim in my essay, the Future of Socialism.
I eventually came to the conclusion that one must make a life choice. One must answer the question posed by the old union song, "Which side are you on?" Or, as I like to put it, Whom do you choose in life as your comrades, with whom do you make common cause? That is a question whose answer cannot emerge from a value-neutral theoretical analysis, but only from an existential choice.