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Karl Marx: Selected Writings

Edited by David McLellan

Marx, K. (2000). Karl Marx: Selected Writings. Oxford University Press.


Oxford University Press, 2000. 704 pages.

6 33
52

p.509
metempsychosis »
the supposed transmigration at death of the sou...
p.492
usufruct »
(noun) the legal right of using and enjoying th...
p.479
interstice »
(noun) an intervening space
p.454
tocsin »
an alarm bell or signal (from Old French)
p.405
aliquot »
(adjective) contained an exact number of times ...
p.554
the supreme ideal of capitalist production
The supreme ideal of capitalist production is—a...
p.548
the domination of the thing over man
The domination of the capitalist over the worke...
p.527
the limit of capitalist production
At any rate, it is but a requirement of the cap...
p.522
in letters of blood and fire
The immediate producer, the labourer, could onl...
p.518
the industrial reserve army
The industrial reserve army, during the periods...

3

The Early Writings 1837–1844

  • these show "Marx before Marxism" as such but still develop historical materialism
  • quotes Engels: mix of "German idealist philosophy, French political theory, and English classical economics"
  • on Hegel as a conservative thinker whose philosophy contained the seeds for more radical possibilities (through the dialectic), which the Young Hegelians (centred around Bruno Bauer) seized on
  • after Bruno Bauer was fired, Marx left academia and started writing for Rheinische Zeitung, which helped cement his views on economics etc
  • October 1843: moved to Paris
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3

The Early Writings 1837–1844

  • these show "Marx before Marxism" as such but still develop historical materialism
  • quotes Engels: mix of "German idealist philosophy, French political theory, and English classical economics"
  • on Hegel as a conservative thinker whose philosophy contained the seeds for more radical possibilities (through the dialectic), which the Young Hegelians (centred around Bruno Bauer) seized on
  • after Bruno Bauer was fired, Marx left academia and started writing for Rheinische Zeitung, which helped cement his views on economics etc
  • October 1843: moved to Paris
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124
0 / 0
145
0 / 0
209

15. Letter to Annenkov

explaining the differences between Proudhon's method in System of Economic Contradictions and his own (December 1846)

0 / 0
209

Letter to Annenkov

explaining the differences between Proudhon's method in System of Economic Contradictions and his own (December 1846)

0 / 0
273

19. Wage-Labour and Capital

supply and demand 101 basically

  • machines are not intrinsically capital but are only so within the context of certain relations (of production)
  • explains inflation without using that word: diff between real wages (rel to commodity prices) and nominal wages
  • "net profit always consists only of the amount by which, on the whole, accumulated labour has been increased by direct labour" (p287)
  • underselling competitors to drive them out (through either accepting smaller profit margins in the short term, or by investing in productive advantages, though the latter is also short-term) -> constantly driven by competition to reinvest in prod: "This law is none other than that which, within the fluctuations of trade periods, necessarily levels out the price of a commodity to its cost of production." (p290)
  • as div of labour increases, work becomes more robotic, and the worker becomes more like a machine
0 / 5
273

Wage-Labour and Capital

supply and demand 101 basically

  • machines are not intrinsically capital but are only so within the context of certain relations (of production)
  • explains inflation without using that word: diff between real wages (rel to commodity prices) and nominal wages
  • "net profit always consists only of the amount by which, on the whole, accumulated labour has been increased by direct labour" (p287)
  • underselling competitors to drive them out (through either accepting smaller profit margins in the short term, or by investing in productive advantages, though the latter is also short-term) -> constantly driven by competition to reinvest in prod: "This law is none other than that which, within the fluctuations of trade periods, necessarily levels out the price of a commodity to its cost of production." (p290)
  • as div of labour increases, work becomes more robotic, and the worker becomes more like a machine
0 / 5
326

24. Speech to the Central Committee of the Communist League

basically he's saying they should wait cus the productive forces aren't there yet

Our party can only gain power when the situation allows it to put its own measures into practice. Louis Blanc is the best instance of what happens when you come to power prematurely. (p327)

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326

Speech to the Central Committee of the Communist League

basically he's saying they should wait cus the productive forces aren't there yet

Our party can only gain power when the situation allows it to put its own measures into practice. Louis Blanc is the best instance of what happens when you come to power prematurely. (p327)

0 / 1
379

29. Grundrisse

  • written 1857-8 and unpublished until 1941
  • broader in terms of topics covered than Capital, but less coherent
  • he contrasts his approach (more structural, historical, relational) to the isolated hunter/fisher approach of Smith or Ricardo
  • connection between war and economic phenomena being developed as a result (wage-labour, machinery)
  • fragment on machines from #Accelerate
1 / 7
379

Grundrisse

  • written 1857-8 and unpublished until 1941
  • broader in terms of topics covered than Capital, but less coherent
  • he contrasts his approach (more structural, historical, relational) to the isolated hunter/fisher approach of Smith or Ricardo
  • connection between war and economic phenomena being developed as a result (wage-labour, machinery)
  • fragment on machines from #Accelerate
1 / 7
424

30. Preface to A Critique of Political Economy

a summary from pages p425-426:

[...] In the social production of their life, men enter into definite relations that are indispensable and independent of their will, relations of production which correspond to a definite stage of development of their material productive forces. The sum total of these relations of production constitutes the economic structure of society, the real foundation, on which rises a legal and political superstructure and to which correspond definite forms of social consciousness. The mode of production of material life conditions the social, political, and intellectual life process in general. It is not the consciousness of men that determines their being, but, on the contrary, their social being that determines their consciousness. At a certain stage of their development, the material productive forces of society come in conflict with the existing relations of production, or—what is but a legal expression for the same thing—with the property relations within which they have been at work hitherto. From forms of development of the productive forces these relations turn into their fetters. Then begins an epoch of social revolution. With the change of the economic foundations the entire immense superstructure is more or less rapidly transformed. [...] No social order ever perishes before all the productive forces for which there is room in it have developed; and new, higher relations of production never appear before the material conditions of their existence have matured in the womb of the old society itself. [...]

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424

Preface to A Critique of Political Economy

a summary from pages p425-426:

[...] In the social production of their life, men enter into definite relations that are indispensable and independent of their will, relations of production which correspond to a definite stage of development of their material productive forces. The sum total of these relations of production constitutes the economic structure of society, the real foundation, on which rises a legal and political superstructure and to which correspond definite forms of social consciousness. The mode of production of material life conditions the social, political, and intellectual life process in general. It is not the consciousness of men that determines their being, but, on the contrary, their social being that determines their consciousness. At a certain stage of their development, the material productive forces of society come in conflict with the existing relations of production, or—what is but a legal expression for the same thing—with the property relations within which they have been at work hitherto. From forms of development of the productive forces these relations turn into their fetters. Then begins an epoch of social revolution. With the change of the economic foundations the entire immense superstructure is more or less rapidly transformed. [...] No social order ever perishes before all the productive forces for which there is room in it have developed; and new, higher relations of production never appear before the material conditions of their existence have matured in the womb of the old society itself. [...]

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452

32. Capital

selected excerpts from volume 1 and 3

from the intro: "Modern economists have tended to discuss the functioning of the capitalist system as given and concentrate particularly on prices, whereas Marx wished to examine the mode of production which gave rise to the capitalist system and which would, he believed, bring about its own destruction."

Volume 1

  • LTV for commodities: use-values and exchange-values (the linen and coat thing)
  • commodity fetishism
  • CMC and MCM
  • labour-power as a commodity
  • cotton and yarn scenario for understanding surplus value extraction
  • value-composition of capital (technical and organic)
  • surplus populations (disposable industrial reserve army)
  • primitive accumulation: "the historical process of divorcing the producer from the means of production" (p522)

Volume 3

  • tendency for the rate of profit to fall
  • differential rent
  • surplus value is converted into profit through sphere of circulation as well as production
  • class constitution (wage-labourers, capitalists, landlords)
4 / 9
452

Capital

selected excerpts from volume 1 and 3

from the intro: "Modern economists have tended to discuss the functioning of the capitalist system as given and concentrate particularly on prices, whereas Marx wished to examine the mode of production which gave rise to the capitalist system and which would, he believed, bring about its own destruction."

Volume 1

  • LTV for commodities: use-values and exchange-values (the linen and coat thing)
  • commodity fetishism
  • CMC and MCM
  • labour-power as a commodity
  • cotton and yarn scenario for understanding surplus value extraction
  • value-composition of capital (technical and organic)
  • surplus populations (disposable industrial reserve army)
  • primitive accumulation: "the historical process of divorcing the producer from the means of production" (p522)

Volume 3

  • tendency for the rate of profit to fall
  • differential rent
  • surplus value is converted into profit through sphere of circulation as well as production
  • class constitution (wage-labourers, capitalists, landlords)
4 / 9
547

33. Results of the Immediate Process of Production

originally from Capital but not included in the first published version?

  • the relationship between wage-labour and capital
  • capitalism as a stage toward socialism (socialised labour within a factory)
  • defining "productive workers" (kinda tautological tbh)
  • relationship between capitalist and labourer continually reproduced
0 / 2
547

Results of the Immediate Process of Production

originally from Capital but not included in the first published version?

  • the relationship between wage-labour and capital
  • capitalism as a stage toward socialism (socialised labour within a factory)
  • defining "productive workers" (kinda tautological tbh)
  • relationship between capitalist and labourer continually reproduced
0 / 2
583
0 / 0
610

40. Critique of the Gotha Programme

  • on the state: "what transformation will the state undergo in communist society?" (p611)
  • ridiculing what he sees as bourgeois demands of the state: "universal suffrage, direct legislation, popular rights, a people’s militia, etc" (p611)
  • criticising the demand for a "fair distribution" cus it's a very subjective term (the present conditions could be seen as "fair")
0 / 1
610

Critique of the Gotha Programme

  • on the state: "what transformation will the state undergo in communist society?" (p611)
  • ridiculing what he sees as bourgeois demands of the state: "universal suffrage, direct legislation, popular rights, a people’s militia, etc" (p611)
  • criticising the demand for a "fair distribution" cus it's a very subjective term (the present conditions could be seen as "fair")
0 / 1
620
0 / 0