[OPE-L:4662] Re: Tilting at Windmills

Gil Skillma (gskillman@wesleyan.edu)
Mon, 7 Apr 1997 09:43:37 -0700 (PDT)

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Thank you, Hans. Gil

> Regarding Gil's question [OPE-L:4659] about Don Quixote, there is a
> famous footnote in the Commodity Fetishism Section of Chapter One of
> Capital where Marx writes among others:
> One thing is clear: the Middle Ages could not live on Catholicism,
> nor could the ancient world on politics. On the contrary, it is the
> manner in which they gained their livelihood which explains why in
> one case politics, in the other case Catholicism, played the main
> role. Regarding the Roman Republic, for instance, one needs no more
> than a slight acquaintance with its history to be aware that its
> secret history is the history of landed property. On the other hand,
> already Don Quixote had to pay for the mistake of believing that
> knight erranty was equally compatible with all economic forms of
> society.
> In Chapter Two, Marx writes:
> What chiefly distinguishes a commodity from its owner is the fact
> that the commodity considers every other commodity only as the form
> of appearance of its own value. A born leveller and cynic, it is
> always ready to exchange not only soul, but body, with each and every
> other commodity, even one that is more repulsive than Maritornes
> herself.
> Maritornes is a character from the novel Don Quixote.
> Hans.