Feb 5 Exploitation and Expropriation

Chapter 25 was largely a culmination of Marx’s thoughts on a society wholly ruled by socially average abstract labor and what that society would look like if a society could be built according to the utopian laissez-faire theorists. Of course the world is not so theoretically pure so we must always be on the lookout for the relations between the internal logic of exploitation and expropriation and the actual history of exploitation and expropriation. What we are constantly looking for are mechanisms by which the logic is or is not translated into everyday life: mechanisms can be property rights, interest rates, police, etc., etc. This next historical section on “primitive accumulation” will be important for comparison and contrasting W Europe’s experience with East Asia’s.

Readings: Capital, chs. 26-33, especially 27-8, 30, and 33.

David Harvey on iTunesU chapters 26-33.