[OPE-L:1502] Re: Lapides and Marx's wage theory

Gerald Levy (glevy@pratt.edu)
Tue, 19 Oct 1999 12:42:39 -0400 (EDT)

Re Mike L's [OPE-L:1498]:

> If Lapides' position also involves the emphasis upon class
> struggle, then that is an irony of the situation.

There's a lot of irony on this question.

I.e. the desire to locate class struggle as central to the theory
of political economy is central to such diverse groups and individuals

a) the social structure of accumulation school [Hi Terry!];

b) autonomist Marxists [Hi Massimo!];

c) Althusserian Marxists [Hi Steve C! Hi Bruce! Hi Antonio!]

d) surplus approach theory [Hi Ajit!]

e) the historical materialist approach of some Analytical Marxists (Hi

and yourself and Kenneth L.

Thus one might say that this is an inspiration, or "point of departure",
for all of the above.

Where they differ is on such questions as:

a) what is the status of class struggle in Marx's theory in _Capital_?

b) does that subject matter need to be integrated into Marxist theory of
p.e. more?

c) if the answer to b) is "yes", then how?

Even if there is agreement by many re a) and b), different methodological
perspectives might mean that the answer to c) is different.

As for others: every Marxist that I know of says that class struggle is
central to understanding capitalism and history. What seems to be at
issue, though, is whether Marx's treatment or non-treatment of class
struggle in _Capital_ was legitimate for Marx's purposes (and for our
purpose of comprehending the dynamics of capitalism). And that, of
course, depends on what you think Marx was trying to do when
writing _Capital_. To answer that question, you have to situate _Capital_
in terms of Marx's overall "project" and take a position on such questions
as the 6-book-plan including the "missing book" on Wage-Labour.

In solidarity, Jerry

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