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Daily Archives: January 10th, 2011

Jacob

THE LAW OF WORLDWIDE VALUE – SAMIR AMIN

New from Monthly Review Press

The Law of Worldwide Value

Samir Amin

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Or call 800.670.9499

$15.95 pbk | 144 pages

In his new extensively revised and expanded edition of this book, Samir Amin suggests new approaches to Marxian analysis of the crisis of the late capitalist system of generalized, financialized, and globalized oligopolies following on the financial collapse of 2008.

Considering that Marx’s Capital, written before the emergence of imperialism as a decisive factor in capitalist accumulation, could provide no explanation for the persistent “underdevelopment” of the
countries of the “global South,” Amin advances several important theoretical concepts extending traditional Marxian views of capitalist evolution.

Most strikingly, he proposes adding to the model of reproduction in Volume II of Capital a Third Department of Production devoted to surplus absorption, necessitated by the capitalist tendency constantly to produce an economic surplus too large to be realized by the consumption and investment purchases generated within Marx’s original two-department model.

Equally interesting is his theoretical concept of “imperialist rent,” derived from the scaling of radically different wages paid for the same labor in countries of the North and the South, whose effect has been to provide Northern capital with sufficient profits to permit it to pacify for a long period its conflict with the Northern proletariat. To account for this new type of rent he extends the Marxian “law of value” in the form of a “law of globalized value” whose operations determine such changes in the polarized world system as the industrial growth of many Third-World nations within the global imperialist context.

Amin sees the present crisis as a moment in the second long crisis of the capitalist system, dating from the early 1970’s (the first long crisis, he maintains, lasted from 1873 until 1945). He sees no exit from repeated crises under capitalism except the descent into barbarism. The challenge is not to escape from the crisis of capitalism —a hopeless project—but to escape from capitalism in crisis. And Amin reasserts his historical optimism as to the socialist project. He expects a “second wave” of socialist attempts that will stem from the self-liberating efforts of the nations and peoples of the South which, by eliminating the imperialist rent, will lead to an awakening of the Northern popular classes to join the awakening of the global South. This book has an important place among the theoretical resources for anyone involved in the study of contemporary Marxian economic and political theory.

Samir Amin was born in Egypt in 1931 and received his Ph.D. in economics in Paris in 1957. He is director of the Third World Forum in Dakar, Senegal. His numerous works include Eurocentrism: Second Edition, The World We Wish to See, The Liberal Virus, Accumulation on a World Scale, Unequal Development, and Spectres of Capitalism.

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Dr Linus

14th INTERNATIONAL GRADUATE CONFERENCE IN PHILOSOPHY

University of Essex
28 May 2011
‘PHILOSOPHY IN CRISIS’

Call for Papers

In a world that is encapsulated by talk of socio-economic crises, all institutions and practices are sensitive to the demands of instrumental reasoning.  As a result, philosophy is increasingly compelled to measure its worth against external criteria—the utility of its products. This situation provides the impetus for the consideration of philosophy’s role in society; but also occasions the revaluation of philosophy’s tasks as such. A closer discussion of crisis aims to shed light on the role and purpose of philosophy.

Topics include, but are not limited to:

§  Does the study of philosophy need to be justified?

§  What are the implications of crisis in the history of philosophy?

§  Possible effects of a productivity model in the academy.

§  Should philosophy primarily function as a guide for society or provide Critique?

§  What epistemological effects has crisis produced?

§  Pragmatism and crisis: is crisis the main vehicle of change and progression?

§  Should philosophy care about the demands of bureaucracy, or tailor research to the market?

§  What is the future of philosophy, and will philosophy be recognizable?

§  Is philosophy a tool for diagnosis and solution of crisis, or, does philosophy initiate crisis?

§  Evolution of crisis through the history of philosophy.

§  Does philosophy have to re-think its motivations, and more broadly, its view of itself?

§  What is philosophy?

We are happy to consider abstracts from postgraduates, but are also willing to accept submissions from junior research fellows and lecturers.

Keynote Speakers:
Peter Hallward (Kingston)
Fabian Freyenhagen (Essex)

Final papers should be suitable for a 20-minute presentation (2000-2500 words in length), which will be followed by a discussion. The Department of Philosophy will be able to offer invited speakers limited financial assistance toward the cost of travel. For enquiries, please e-mail someone at some email address to be determined, or see the website: http://www.essex.ac.uk/philosophy/gradconference

Abstracts of 500 words in length should be sent by 28 January 2011 to pygradc@essex.ac.uk or in duplicate by post to:
Graduate Conference 2010
Department of Philosophy
University of Essex
Colchester, CO4 3SQ
United Kingdom

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