[OPE-L:6064] Guglielmo Carchedi's _For Another Europe_

From: Gerald_A_Levy (Gerald_A_Levy@email.msn.com)
Date: Sat Oct 13 2001 - 18:10:04 EDT

Former listmember Mino Carchedi has published a new book entitled:

   ECONOMIC INTEGRATION, London and New York, Verso, 2001
   ISBN 1-85984-610-6 (hbk) - US$70 
   ISBN 1-85984-319-0 (pbk) - US$22

I don't recall anyone on OPE-L mentioning this book before so I'll
provide a few details (and suggestive remarks and questions, of

The book is divided into 9 sections:

1. History, Institutions and Enlargements

(a presentation of 'three perspectives on European integration'
and an explanation of the institutions of and decision-making
within the European Union.)

2. The Ideology of Economic Integration

(primarily a critique of mainstream neo-neoclassical perspectives
on trade -- including short critiques of the Ricardian theory of
comparative advantage and Heckscher-Ohlin theory -- and 'the
fallacies of equilibrium'.  There is no attempt to relate the
non-equilibrium perspective in this book to that explained
elsewhere by those sharing the temporal-single-system
interpretation [TSSI] of Marx. Indeed, a person who read this
book could very well ask "What is TSS?" [or "What is "TSSI?]
since it is nowhere mentioned [that I could see].  The only
TSS authors cited in the "Bibliography" are Alan F and Paolo
G. The simplest explanation for this would appear to be the
intended purpose of this book and its intended audience: it is
intended to be widely read -- i.e. a 'popular' book -- and have a
direct impact on the ongoing debates in Europe on this subject.
I would say that the 'level' of the book might be appropriate also
for an undergraduate college class for courses for which this subject 
would be relevant and topical [as presumably it is in Europe now]).

3. A Value Theory of European Economic Integration

(this is the section of Carchedi's book that listmembers might find
of the greatest interest.  There is even a sub-section (3.3.2) 
entitled "A Value Theory of Exchange Rates". Alas, that section
is less than 5 pages long and I believe is rather vague on the "hows
and whys".   I think that readers might also ask why there is no
critique here [except an implied critique] of  surplus approach
perspectives [especially since there is a strong resemblance to the
critique of marginalist perspectives on trade theory presented in the
preceding chapter to the writings on that subject by Steedman and 
Metcalfe in the 1980's. There is, curiously, no mention of Steedman
in this book but there is of Metcalfe since he along with D. Young
wrote an article on 'Competition Policy" in a 1994 Artis and Lee
ed. book on _The Economics of the European Union_]).

4. The Economic and Monetary Union

(including a contrast of the "Old and New Imperialism".)

5. The Geo-politics of the Euro

(listmembers, given our ongoing discussion of the Middle East,
might find the sections on "Dollarization and Seigniorage" and
"Dollarization and Social Classes" to be relevant.)

6. Trade, Development and Wars

(good historical section on the EU and world trade going back to
the creation of GATT.  Activists in the anti-globalization
movement would find much of interest in this chapter and
elsewhere in this book.)

7. The Common Agricultural Policy

(Another primarily historical chapter. This topic is presented in
reference to the 'appropriation of value'.  A major part of this
section also concerns the environment and the Greens --
obviously important political subjects in Europe now.)

8. Social Policies

9. Epilogue




A little over 300 pages long. One can order a copy at:


* Have others on the list read this book? Comments?
I would be particularly interested in any comments that
you have on Section 3 of this book (the main theoretical

* Are there any reviews of the book yet?

* What other Marxists have written on this subject recently?

In solidarity, Jerry

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