[OPE-L:4383] Re: Books 4-6 Revisited

Gerald Lev (glevy@pratt.edu)
Thu, 13 Mar 1997 17:27:38 -0800 (PST)

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Alejandro R asked in [OPE-L:4382]:

> I am not sure, but this "movement of prices" may correspond to the
> "analysis of competition". I dont know if in this plan the book of
> "capital" was splited in "capital in general" an "competition".

In the "Third _Grundrisse_ Plan", Book I ("Capital") is divided into two
parts. The first section of the first part concerns the "General concept
of capital." In the second part, you have (among many other topics)
"competition of capitals" (Penguin ed., p. 264).

Yet, as we have discussed on another thread, the meaning of competition
(or "many capitals") is somewhat unclear in _Capital_ with two different
"stories" being presented [see #4280]. My belief is that one concept
of competition was developed in VIII with the understanding that this
subject would have to be further concretized "eventually." How the subject
of competition would be further developed within the context of the
remaining 5 books is a very interesting question indeed ...

> Im wondering what would be the content of "Landed Property" after the
> section On Ground Rent already contained in Capital.

A very good question.

The section of Ch. 52, Vol III that I alluded to in [4380] would seem to
suggest that the main substance of Book II would concern the "fragmentation
of interests and positions" among landowners. This might then include the
class differentiation of large landowners, the peasantry, and other
elements of the "middle class" ("middle" in the sense of being between
capital and wage-labour). This, in turn, might require the further
development of the differentiation of landowners in the countryside and in
urban areas. For instance, what is the relationship of urban landowners to
the working class re renting residential housing?

I think that the subject of competition might also come up in Book II re
the process of proletarianization of some segments of the peasantry. I
also think that Marx may have come to realize later that he should
discuss the peasant communal structure in Russia and the policization
and radicalization of some segments of the peasantry.

Also: what is the relationship of different segments of "landowners" to
banking capital? ... industrial capital? ... the working class?

The above are only some tentative thoughts that I have on this subject and
I would like to hear what others on the list think about the proper
subject matter of Book II.

In solidarity, Jerry