[OPE-L:4663] Re: David Yaffe on Ricardo and Marx

From: paul bullock (paulbullock@ebms-ltd.in2home.co.uk)
Date: Sun Dec 10 2000 - 12:20:46 EST

Dear Paul Z

All I know of this is that NI I Ziber or Sieber (both spellings appear in
variors references to the man),  1844-1888 was an economic 'publicist',
witing for radical liberal  magazines , popularising marx;'s works.  The key
work that he wrote ' David ricardo and Karl Marx in their socio economic
investigations'  st Petersberg 1885, and found also in his CW's 2 vols 1900.
He had translated David Ricardo's works  by 1882  and I believe these
translations contained summaries of Marx's views.  Remember Russian was the
FIRST language into which capital was translated after the German ed. in
1872 and  its success in Russia was great and immediate.  Marx started
studying Russian seriously in 1870, so he was able to follow the  debate
after publication.. (remember the addendum to the second ed of Capital
relating to Danielson's review).

Lenin was born in1870. He did not have (own) a copy of Siebers 'David
Ricardo...' until at least after December 1897 ( when he was in exile at
Shushenskoye). However he uses it approvingly in writing various pieces at
that time... ( and I cannot find reference to any other work of Seibers in
Lenin)  which incidentally might interest some of those involved in the
current discussions here on line. eg  Lenins Characteristics of Economic
Romanticism., and  On the Market Question. Unfortunately I don't have
Russian so can't help... so I can't assess the notion that marx 'followed'
Ricardo . We all know that the questions asked by Ricado were reformulated
by Marx... is this 'following'... I don't really understand your question.
Clearly both Lenin and Marx appreciated Seiber's work , but this doesn't
make either of them a Ricardian. ... perhaps you could tell us what the
meaning of 'followed' was in that context, your question is  very

this leads me to Jerry's question to me about fundamentalism. I use the term
because I think the theory Marx developed stands, and by its nature can
itself be applied to explain the development of capitalism. I did not say
Marx had answered  all the concrete questions facing him... only that he
felt that he had built an approach, and answered so many key questions that
there was quite enough to go on! Fundamentalism... again in my sense
requires  scientific application and development, but when so many academics
in Universities spend so much of their time picking holes in Marx where
there are none, one can either say one is for him, or as Marx said at one
stage,  one isn't ( that sort of) Marxist. In any case ther term orthodox
was thrown at us when we were taking up the Neo Ricardians (actually oftern
Smithians in many regards), so we took it up and said OK... Lenin did the
same of course (although i hasted to add that no comparison is at al
intended!!! ).

Jerry - The 30,000 words I was refering to was the length of   'The Crisis
and the Post war Boom'... did you read it?

Paul Blk

-----Original Message-----
From: Paul Zarembka <zarembka@acsu.buffalo.edu>
To: ope-l@galaxy.csuchico.edu <ope-l@galaxy.csuchico.edu>
Date: 06 December 2000 17:27
Subject: [OPE-L:4622] David Yaffe on Ricardo and Marx

>How do you reconcile the fact that Marx has a high regard for the work of
>N. Sieber (who wrote a book published in Russian in 1871 which Marx read
>and recommended highly; he also wrote articles in the 1870s on Marx's
>theories) even as Sieber explicitly wrote (and Marx read) that Marx was
>following in Ricardo's footsteps?  In other words, if Sieber was wrong,
>why did Marx praise Sieber's work and why didn't Marx correct Sieber?
>Paul Z.
>Paul Zarembka, editor, RESEARCH IN POLITICAL ECONOMY at
>********************** http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/PZarembka
>On 6 Dec 2000, Jerry Levy wrote:
>> The inventor of the velocitometer, David Yaffe, has joined OPE-L.
>> Of course, David Y is known to many on this list for other
accomplishments as
>> well (see below).
>> ...
>> He provides us with the following (controversial?)introduction:
>> ...
>> Yet it was just at that time that many of the fundamental propositions
>> developed by Marx in his critique of political economy were being
>> challenged by a group of people in the CSE. They saw themselves as
>> non-dogmatic and creative 'critics' of Marx and believed they were
>> developing Marx's theoretical insights. We saw them quite differently. We
>> argued that they were not simply 'revising' Marx but rejecting the
>> scientific basis of his work. They represented a 'new' bourgeois school
>> thought - actually an old recurring one - located in the Ricardian
>> tradition of political economy. Their views would inevitably undermine
>> revolutionary conclusions contained in Marx's work. That is why we, as
>> 'orthodox' Marxists (they called us 'fundamentalists') vigorously opposed
>> the neo-Ricardians in all forums of the CSE.

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