Re: [OPE] Marx on international relations

Date: Thu May 22 2008 - 05:28:25 EDT

 Paul C,

sorry the delay. Engels did not express this idea explicitly himself. it was R. Luxemburg who put this idea for the first time explicitly. But logic behind Engels's argument is clear. As long as international relations are based on exchange and mutuality there cannot be internationalism.

I agree with your second assertion to some extend. But bourgeoisie is never internationalist though it my have trade internationally. This is the argument of Marx and Engels as put forward against Kantian "philosophical draft" perpetual peace. I agree with you that parties that feel attached to working classes should establish an new international. 




-----Original Message-----
From: Paul Cockshott <>
To: Outline on Political Economy mailing list <>
Sent: Wed, 14 May 2008 10:25
Subject: RE: [OPE] Marx on international relations


the worry about a European republic competing with the USA is certainly a valid 
one today. Did
Engels actually express this worry in the 19th century.

The more general point I was making though, is that whilst when Engels was 
writing, the
working class movement was more practically internationalist than the european 
it is hard to see that being the case now. The working class parties, to the 
extent that
they still exist, are exclusively national.

Paul Cockshott
Dept of Computing Science
University of Glasgow
+44 141 330 1629

-----Original Message-----
From: on behalf of
Sent: Tue 5/13/2008 9:26 PM
Subject: Re: [OPE] Marx on international relations

 Paul C,

Engels hesitation to support the project of European Republic concerns the fact 
that this republic is going to compete against USA and other major countries. 
Engels is looking for an internationalist solution.



-----Original Message-----
From: Paul Cockshott <>
To: Outline on Political Economy mailing list <>
Sent: Tue, 6 May 2008 10:06
Subject: RE: [OPE] Marx on international relations

That seemed plausible until the breakup of
the Commintern.

Comminform was much more limited, and
since then the European bourgeoisie have made more progress at union than the
workers of Europe. We do not even have a single
European workers party to contest the EU elections.



From: [] On Behalf 

Sent: 05 May 2008 09:46


Subject: Fwd: [OPE] Marx on
international relations








Sent: Mon, 5 May 2008 10:00

Subject: Re: [OPE] Marx on international relations

Hi Jerry,

Many thanks or the references and thoughts. I found some useful material in
Marx's and Engels' papers and speeches on free trade, fraternisation of nations
and so on. The starting point to think about these issues are Kant's Perpetual
Peace and Metaphysics of Ethics, and Adam Smith' works and Adam Ferguson's
essay on civil society.These works give a good understanding of what Hegel,
Marx and Engels have to say about international relations and international
political economy. I have already produced a long paper on this in Turkish and
hoping to prepare also an English version soon. 

I found this passage from "The Festival of Nations in London" 
very interesting because it criticises three cocnepts at the same time which
come down to us from Kant, Smith, and Saint-Simon. If one works out the
background of this passage and justification that is followed in later works of
Marx and Engels then it helps a lot to understand in many ways our world how it
is and how and in what ways it may become:

"Finally, fraternisation between nations has today, more
than ever a purely social significance. The fantasies about a European Republic,
perpetual peace under political organisation, have become just as ridiculous as
the phrases about uniting the nations under the aegis of universal free trade,
and while all such chimerical sentimentalities become completely irrelevant,
the proletarians of all nations, without too much ceremony, are already really 
beginning to fraternise under the banner of
communist democracy. And the proletarians are the only ones who are really able
to do this; for the bourgeoisie in each country has its own special interests,
and since these interests are the most important to it, it can never transcend
nationality; and the few theoreticians achieve nothing with all their fine
"principles" because they simply allow these contradictory interests - like
everything else - to continue to exist and can do nothing but talk. But the
proletarians in all countries have one and the same interest, one and the same
enemy, and one and the same struggle. The great mass of proletarians are, by
their very nature, free from national prejudices and their whole disposition
and movement is essentially humanitarian, anti-nationalist. Only the
proletarians can destroy nationality, only the awakening proletariat can bring
about fraternisation between the different nations."

By the way: on this occasion I found out that the claim that Engels developed a
theory of "non-historic-nations" is nonsense. Engels nowhere uses
such a term. Michael Lwy and so on who made such claims never refer to Engels.
They all take it for grated that Engels used this term and put forward such a
claim. Anyway this seems to be a myth.







From: Gerald Levy <>


Sent: Thu, 24 Apr 2008 11:18

Subject: Re: [OPE] Marx on international relations

Hi Dogan:


You could also read the following - and communicate

its author about its contents:



The same author has written a related paper on globalization

and - according to a web site - there is a "Work in

called "Towards a Marxian Theory of World Money".


In solidarity, Jerry


ope mailing list

AOL's new homepage has launched. Take a tour now. 

width="100%" align=center>

AOL's new homepage has launched. Take a tour now. 


ope mailing list


AOL's new homepage has launched. Take a tour at 


ope mailing list


AOL's new homepage has launched. Take a tour at now.

ope mailing list

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Sat May 31 2008 - 00:00:04 EDT