Re: [OPE] Question to Marxologists: Mode of production

From: John Milios (
Date: Sat Aug 23 2008 - 14:29:04 EDT

Hi Dave,

In the Preface to the 1st German Editition of Vol. 1, Marx declares
that his main object of analysis is not a capitalist country etc. but
the CMP:

'In this work I have to examine the capitalist mode of production, and
the conditions of production and exchange corresponding to that mode.
Up to the present time, their classic ground is England. That is the
reason why England is used as the chief illustration in the
development of my theoretical ideas. If, however, the German reader
shrugs his shoulders at the condition of the English industrial and
agricultural laborers, or in optimist fashion comforts himself with
the thought that in Germany things are not nearly so bad; I must
plainly tell him, "De te fabula narratur!"'

So we may say that the CMP refers to the causalities inherent in
(every) capitalist system of class power and class exploitation, which
Marx studies in CAPITAL. In Vol.1, Ch. 1 he writes: 'The mode of
production in which the product takes the form of a commodity, or is
produced directly for exchange, is the most general and most embryonic
form of bourgeois production'. There are many formulations in this
direction in CAPITAL, which become more and more concrete as the
analysis advaces from commodity circulation (as the outer husk of
capitalist production) to the circulation of money as capital
(M-C-M'), to credit etc.

In solidarity,


On Sat, Aug 23, 2008 at 3:33 PM, Dave Zachariah <> wrote:
> I have a question to the Marxologists on the list: Do you have some
> quotes where Marx or Engels try to define "mode of production"?
> I use it as explicitly defined in the writings of Robert Brenner, Paul
> Cockshott and Allin Cottrell: the specific mode in which the social
> division of labor is organized, and the particular way in which a
> surplus product is extracted. There is a good quote by Marx in Capital
> vol. 3 in line with this.
> //Dave Z
> _______________________________________________
> ope mailing list

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