Re: (OPE-L) The last years of Karl Marx

From: Michael Eldred (artefact@T-ONLINE.DE)
Date: Thu May 01 2003 - 06:15:14 EDT

Cologne 01-May-2003 Tag der Arbeit (so I'm working)


This is an aside.

The most enjoyable and warmly personal biographical book on Marx and Engles I've
read is the collection of contemporary documents (mainly letters written by
Marx, Engels, their friends and enemies) put together by Hans Magnus
Enzensberger "Gespraeche mit Marx und Engels" (Conversations with Marx and
Engels) 2 volumes, Insel Taschenbuch, Frankfurt/M.1973.  The ordering of events
is chronological, from 1823 (memoir Eleanor Marx-Aveling "My aunts often told me
that Moor* was a terrible tyrant...") to the death of Engels in 1895 (letter
from August Bebel to Wilhelm Liebknecht).

* "Mohr" (Moor) was Marx's nickname -- due to his dark complexion. Friends later
called him Kalle.

_-_-_-_-_-_-_-  artefact text and translation _-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_
_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_- made by art  _-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_ _-_
_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_ Dr Michael Eldred -_-_-

gerald_a_levy schrieb  Mon, 28 Apr 2003 09:32:40 -0400:

> Paul B wrote on April 28:
> > If I remember well enough Marx made a comment during this later
> > time that he had 'finished with all that ***  ' when refering to the
> > studies of Capital,  meaning that he had solved the basic problems.
> Which letter are you referring to?
> In any event, that doesn't mean that he viewed _Capital_  (I mean the
> 3 volumes) as "complete".   As far as I  know,  he believed that _only_
> Volume One  was complete (indeed, given his comments about how he
> viewed his writings as an "artistic whole",  it should be evident that he
> viewed the drafts for what became Volumes 2 and Volume 3 as _not_
> ready for publication and  therefore _not_ complete).  And,  it certainly
> doesn't mean that he believed that he had finished with  the subjects of
> competition, landed property, wage-labor, the state, foreign trade, and
> world market and crisis.   Indeed, one might claim that his research on
> peasant communes in Russia served not only a political purpose in terms
> of  furthering connections with Russian revolutionaries  but could also have
> constituted part of his research for Book 2 on "Landed Property".  Of
> course, we will never know for sure. All we can ask is: have  "the basic
> problems" have _really_ been solved?
> > His studies of the Turkish material on Rent, his learning of Turkish eg,
> > doesn't indicate  a search for an easier task to me! Remember the 'cubic
> > metres' of material on the topic found by Engels after Marx's death...marx
> > wanted to trace back the  historical origin of rent  as a 'turkish' form.
> Marx had a tendency to get carried away with his studies -- a fate common
> for many intellectuals.  As a consequence, many of his projects expanded
> both in terms of the time required for research and writing and in terms of
> the length of the final product (or draft).   It should not be surprising
> that near the end of his life he attempted to learn more about 'new'
> subjects for him. This is, after all, one of the marks of a creative and
> active mind -- and there is every reason to believe that his mind was
> both creative and active until the end.   He understood that learning, after
> all, is a life-long process and is never complete.
> In solidarity, Jerry

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