Re: [OPE-L] Capital in General

From: michael a. lebowitz (mlebowit@SFU.CA)
Date: Sun Oct 09 2005 - 23:58:26 EDT

Let me just sneak a point in here (after which I'll run back to hide
again) in support of Jerry's points. If Marx has dropped the idea of
capital in general (as distinct from the real existence of capitals
in competition), what else could he mean in Vol. I, Ch. 13 by 'the
general and necessary tendencies of capital must be distinguished
from their forms of appearance' (Marx, Vintage: 1977: 433)?
         michael (L)

At 22:48 09/10/2005, you wrote:
> > What
> > are your arguments for the assumption that "general nature of capital"
> > is the same as "Capital in General"?
> > The two terms sound a little bit similar because of  the word "general",
> > but I suppose this is not your main reason. Probably your main reason is
> > the hint to "competition", which is excluded. What Marx excludes from
> > his presentation in "Capital" is the "competition on the world market"
> > respectivly (in Hannos quotation) the "actual movement of competition",
> > what is also related to the world market as the first sentence makes
> > clear. In both passages Marx didn't exclude  a n y  competition from his
> > presentation, but the "actual competition", which takes place on the
> > world market.
>Hi Michael H:
>I'm happy you joined the conversation.
>The argument that I would make that "capital in general" and the "general
>nature of capital"  are basically synonymous is by considering those
>references in context.
>But, let's not stop there.
>The analysis of  "capital in general" is _also_ synonymous with the
>"general analysis of capital".
>In Vol. 3, Ch. 14,  Section 2 , Marx  writes [re a reduction of wages
>below their value]: " many other things that might be brought in, it
>has nothing to do with the general analysis of capital ["allgemeinen Analyse
>des Kapitals" in the original German, JL], but has its place in an
>account of competition, which is not dealt with in this work" (Penguin
>ed., p. 342).
>Note in this section:
>a) the reference is to the "account of competition" rather than the
>actual competition on the world market.
>b) there is the explicit claim that an account of competition
>is not dealt with in _Capital_.
>c) this subject of a reduction in wages below their value is
>a tendency which is not claimed to be exclusive to the world
>market.  In fact, there is no mention at all of the world market
>in this section.
>d) this same subject has analytical importance: "It is none
>the less one of the most important factors in stemming the
>tendency for the rate of profit to fall."
>How would you interpret the meaning of the "general analysis
>of capital" in this section?
>In solidarity, Jerry

Michael A. Lebowitz
Professor Emeritus
Economics Department
Simon Fraser University
Burnaby, B.C., Canada V5A 1S6

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