[OPE-L:8343] [Andrea Vitale] 'Quaderni di Operai Contro': Marxism as science of workers' liberation]]

From: OPE-L Administrator (ope-admin@ricardo.ecn.wfu.edu)
Date: Wed Jan 15 2003 - 07:54:49 EST

I discovered the following, which was sent on June 25, while cleaning
out some old messages at the ope-admin address.  I was away during the
summer and missed it.  I apologize to Andrea and others for the omission.
Solidarity, Jerry

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re:[OPE-L:7362] [Andrea Vitale]  'Quaderni di Operai Contro':
Marxism as science of workers' liberation]
From: "Andrea Vitale" <a.vitale@tin.it>
Date: Tue, June 25, 2002 4:52 pm
To: <ope-admin@ricardo.ecn.wfu.edu>

Dear Riccardo,

I think that this will be the last email to OPE-L regarding the issue we
were debating about. Unfortunately, I have to recognize that, except
you, none of OPE-L subscribers, who judged and somehow condemned me
before my email, has felt appropriate to reply to my few, although
necessary, clarifications. To admit one's own mistakes is always very
difficult. Nevertheless, I have to thank the moderators of OPE-L for
having given me the chance to reply. I would be very glad to send
additional messages in the case anyone of the subscribers will reply to
one of my emails.

On the other hand, the exchange of ideas with you is always welcome, of

In this letter, I will limit myself in writing few considerations about
your last letter [OPE-L 7362]

First of all, I believe it is not useful in any respect to keep on
discussing about my caustic style against Giussani. This style was
provoked by the offensive and insulting attitude of this guy against me
and the workers of Operai Contro association. In his public letters
against the first issue of the journal "Quaderni di Operai Contro",
Giussani preferred the insults and the calumnies to the theoretical
debate. My character and the nature of the political motivations that
lead us to publish the Quaderni of Operai Contro, constrained us not to
withdraw from the debate as Gerald Levy has suggested in his message
(OPE-L 7143). In this respect, it must be said that, although we replied
him in kind, we made all possible efforts to keep on discussing on

As far as the choice of criticizing Pala and Giussani instead of
academic Marxist is concerned, let me tell you that I don't agree with
your opinion. First of all, I don't attack someone only because he is a
University professor. I know for sure that University professors as
social group are on the side of capitalist. The dominant ideology is
always the ideology of the dominant class. However, this does not
exclude the possibility that a minority of people belonging to this
group of thinkers could be on the side of workers. It is not the more or
less marginal connection with the academic world a good reason to give
up the criticism. The decisive factor which has driven us in criticizing
Pala and Giussani is the fact that they are representatives in Italy of
the Marxist tendency we called Algebraic Marxism. This political trend
was rather active in Italy in the years when the articles published in
Quaderni of Operai Contro were written. Pala started at that time the
publication of the journal "La Contraddizione", while Giussani was the
inspirer of a Marxist discussion group in Milan. The criticism to the
theoretical positions of Pala and Giussani was an attempt to induce
marxist thinkers to change their orientation. We wanted and we still
want to push Marxist thinkers to confront their theoretical positions
with the positions expressed by workers that are struggling to reach
their independence from the other classes. Marxists who refuse to make
this confrontation are representatives of that Marxist separated from
workers which I discussed about in the last letter. A Marxism that wants
only to (badly) interpret the world. Interestingly enough, Giussani has
publicly declared that as far his opinion is concerned there is no
connection between Marx value theory and the workers uprising. Saying
that, he has clearly shown the we were right in criticizing him.

You also mentioned that there are positive contributions given by Pala
and Giussani. I can't exclude that there may be some. However, I believe
that, if they exist, they are of secondary importance. In this respect,
I have to say that I definitely know almost everything they have
published and I don't have met any idea I can completely agree with. I
am sure that here you are not referring to (as Rakesh Bhandari in OPE-L
7156 does) Giussani's writings on the value of labour force, where
Giussani reported very questionable positions. In any case, even if we
assume that these positive contributions really exist, I don't see how
this affects the substance of the criticisms I made against him and
Pala. If you don't agree with that let me know of it. I will glad to
discuss this issue with you.

Andrea Vitale

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