glevy@acnet.pratt.edu (glevy@acnet.pratt.edu)
Wed, 25 Oct 1995 02:52:20 -0700

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We agreed to discuss the best way to move forward after the
"brainstorming" (which followed our discussion of Marx's plans for
_Capital_). There have been a whole range of alternatives suggested. Many
of those alternatives, however, did not receive any support or received
active opposition.

The two alternatives which seem to have met with some support are:

1) A proposal that we work our way through _Capital_ systematically
discussing various issues in turn.

2) A proposal that we divide into 2-3 sub-groups where one group follows
the above procedure and the other(s) selects a later starting point (e.g.
some point in Volume 3 or a "post-Capital" topic).

Either of these procedures could be made to work with greater specification.

A number of people have strongly expressed the desire that we proceed in
a united way to the next step rather than dividing into sub-groups at
this stage. I think we should try to keep the group together if this is
possible. The only way we will know for sure is to give it a try. So, I'd
say let's go ahead with Mike L's "working through CAPITAL" idea with the
following understandings.

1) Let's establish initial timeframes for discussion (like Mike L.
suggested in #327). We can decide to extend or contract those timeframes
as we get into the process.

2) The above procedure should be flexible enough that it allows for list
members to discuss other issues that concern them, especially those
falling under the general umbrella of "extending Marx." This would mean,
in practice, that a number of different threads would be pursued

3) The prospect of beginning with Vol. 1, Part 1 is rather daunting. How
could it be made to work? Let me tentatively suggest the following:

a) For each section of _Capital_ we ask list members for "unanswered

b) As people make suggestions, others can either agree that the questions
are questions _or_ offer *answers*.

c) We allow for an interchange of views on the "questions" and "answers."
The goal should be for us to clearly understand and specify our

d) If we find that we are not in agreement, we agree to disagree by
summarizing our positions and then *moving forward* to the next topics.

If the above was done consistently, we would generate a set of questions
regarding political economy and a set of proposed answers. The object of
all this is to get us to a position where, in due course, we can discuss
the "unfinished" tasks.

I think this could be made to work, but it would require a certain amount
of discipline, in the sense that we will need to keep our discussions
focused, and active participation of many more list members.

If there is anyone who has strong objections to giving this procedure a
try or who wants to suggest modifications, please make your ideas known.
In any event, we *must* decide.

If there is agreement, I would suggest beginning on Monday. In the
meantime, of course, we can continue discussing any of the interesting
threads that have emerged in the recent period.

In OPE-L Solidarity,