Re: [OPE-L] the third nation

From: glevy@PRATT.EDU
Date: Fri Feb 09 2007 - 10:08:13 EST

Hi Howard:

It was very common for Marx, particularly in the _Grundrisse_, to indicate
at the *end* of a section what needs to be developed further (a very
Hegelian form of exposition). The section in question is "Capital coming
out of the production process becomes money again" which *ends* with the
paragraph which *begins* "Before we go any further, just one remark".
This remark, I believe, is indeed a reference to what he planned to
"return later" to.  He didn't return later to it in the _Grundrisse_, did
he?  That's because I believe that the appropriate context for the fuller
development of his point was the world market.  Recall that, whatever you
think in terms of whether he wanted or did not want to complete the 6
books in the 6-book-plan later in his life, there is no question that at
the time he wrote the _Grundrisse_ it was part of his design to eventually
write books on foreign trade and the world market ond crisis (Books 5&6).

btw, did you know that Ilyenkov referred to the passage in question?
He dealt more, I think, with the issue you are trying to get at.
Check it out.

In solidarity, Jerry

The Problem of the General in Dialectics

(2) If we are concerned with defining capital in general, then, as Marx
specially remarked, we must take the following point of principle into
account, which has 'more of a logical than an economic character'. '...
Capital in general, as distinct from the particular real capitals, is
itself a real existence. This is recognised by ordinary economics, even if
it is not understood, and forms a very important moment of its doctrine of
equilibrations, etc. for example, capital in this general form, although
belonging to individual capitalists, in its elemental form as capital,
forms the capital which accumulates in the banks or is distributed through
them, and, as Ricardo says, so admirably distributes itself in accordance
with the needs of production. Likewise, through loans, etc., it forms a
level between the different countries. If it is therefore e.g. a law of
capital in general that, in order to realise itself, it must posit itself
doubly, and must realise itself in this double form, then e.g. the capital
of a particular nation which represents capital par excellence in
antithesis to another will have to lend itself out to a third nation in
order to be able to realise it-self. This double positing, this relating
to self as to an alien, becomes damn real in this case. While the general
is therefore on the one hand only a mental (gedachte) mark of distinction
(differentia specifica), it is at the same time a particular real form
alongside the form of the particular and individual.' It is 'the same also
in algebra,' Marx continued. 'For example, a, b, c, are numbers as such;
in general; but then again they are whole numbers as opposed to a/b, b/c,
c/b, c/a, b/a, etc., which latter, however, presuppose the former as their
general elements'.
(follow url and see rest of Ilyenkov for context, JL)

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