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Capitalism

THE ELLEN MEIKSINS WOOD READER

Now Out! The Ellen Meiksins Wood Reader 

http://www.brill.com/ellen-meiksins-wood-reader

Edited by Larry Patriquin, NipissingUniversity

 

Volume: 40

Series: Historical Materialism Book Series

ISSN: 

1570-152

ISBN: 9789004230088

Publication Year: 2012

Edition info:  1

Version: Hardback

Publication Type: Book

Pages, Illustrations: xiii, 335 pp.

Imprint: BRILL

Language: English

Ellen Meiksins Wood is a leading contemporary political theorist who has elaborated an innovative approach to the history of political thought, the ‘social history of political theory’. She has been described as the founder, together with the historian Robert Brenner, of ‘Political Marxism’, a distinct version of historical materialism which has inspired a research program that spans a number of academic disciplines. Organized thematically, this Reader brings together selections from Wood’s groundbreaking scholarship, published over three decades, providing an overview of her original interpretations of capitalism, precapitalist societies, the state, political theory, democracy, citizenship, liberalism, civil society, the Enlightenment, globalization, imperialism, and socialism

Readership

All those interested in the history and theories of capitalism, socialism, imperialism, Marxism, liberalism, social classes, democracy, civil society, and citizenship.

 

Table of Contents

Preface

Acknowledgements

Introduction: The ‘Method’ of Ellen Meiksins Wood

1. Capitalism
The ‘economic’ and the ‘political’ in capitalism
Class-power and state-power
Feudalism and private property
Capitalism as the privatisation of political power
The localisation of class-struggle
England vs. the dominant model of capitalism
The bourgeois paradigm
Begging the question
Opportunity or imperative?
The commercialisation-model
Marx on the transition
Towns and trade
Agrarian capitalism
Market-dependent producers
A different kind of market-dependence?
Competitive markets

2. Precapitalist Societies
Class and state in China and Rome
Rome and the empire of private property
The city-states of Florence and Venice
Master and slave vs. landlord and peasant
Free producers and slaves
Slavery and the ‘decline’ of the Roman Empire
The ‘logic’ of slavery vs. the logic of capitalism
The ‘slave-mode of production’
Agricultural slavery and the peasant-citizen
The nexus of freedom and slavery in democratic Athens

3. The State in Historical Perspective
Class and state in ancient society
The emergence of the polis in ancient Athens
The ‘essence’ of the polis
Class in the democratic polis
Village and state, town and country, in democratic Athens
The rise and fall of Rome
The culture of property: the Roman law
From imperial Rome to ‘feudalism’
Absolutism and the modern state
The idea of the state
The peculiarities of the English state
Contrasting states: France vs. England

4. Social and Political Thought
The social history of political theory
Political theory in history: an overview
Plato
The Greek concept of freedom
Jean-Jacques Rousseau
John Locke
Revolution and tradition, c. 1640–1790

5. Democracy, Citizenship, Liberalism, and Civil Society
Labour and democracy, ancient and modern
From ancient to modern conceptions of citizenship
Capitalism and democratic citizenship
The American redefinition of democracy
A democracy devoid of social content
From democracy to liberalism
Capitalism and ‘liberal democracy’
Liberal democracy and capitalist hegemony
The idea of ‘civil society’
The civil-society argument
‘Civil society’ and the devaluation of democracy

6. The Enlightenment, Postmodernism, and the Post-‘New Left’
Modernity vs. capitalism: France vs. England
From modernity to postmodernity
Modernity and the non-history of capitalism
Themes of the postmodern left
Enlightenment vs. capitalism: Condorcet vs. Locke
Enlightenment-universalism
The periodisation of the Western left
Left-intellectuals and contemporary capitalism

7. Globalisation and Imperialism
Globalisation and the nation-state
Nation-states, classes, and universal capitalism
The indispensable state
Precapitalist imperialism
The classic age of imperialism
Globalisation and war
Globalisation and imperial hegemony
The contradictions of capitalist imperialism

8. Socialism
The end of the welfare-state ‘compact’
There are no social democrats now
Market-dependence vs. market-enablement
Left-strategies of market-enablement
The political implications of competition
The working class and the struggle for socialism
Class-conflict and the socialist project
Socialism and democracy
The state in classless societies
Liberalism vs. democracy
‘Universal human goods’
The self-emancipation of the working class
The socialist movement
Democracy as an economic mechanism

Bibliography of Works by Ellen Meiksins Wood, 1970–2012

References
Index

Originally published in: http://www.historicalmaterialism.org/news/distributed/now-out-the-ellen-meiksins-wood-reader

**END**

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Kevin Anderson

KEVIN ANDERSON IN GLASGOW

Joint Seminar: Centre for the Study if Socialist Theory and Movements together with Sociology, University of Glasgow

Kevin Anderson (University of California) who will speak about Marx on the Margins. He will give his talk in 915 (former T315) Adam Smith Building, Bute Gardens, University of Glasgow, on Tuesday Nov 9th, at 5 – 6.30pm.

Prof Anderson writes that he will discuss Marx as a theorist of ethnicity, “race” and migration.

“Marx expended considerable time and energy on the analysis of non-Western societies, as well as race, ethnicity, and nationalism in Europe and N. America. While some of these writings show a problematically unilinear perspective and  traces of ethnocentrism, Marx’s overall trajectory was toward a critique of national, ethnic, and colonial oppression and toward an appreciation of resistance movements in these spheres.”

(Kevin B. Anderson is a Professor of Sociology, Political Science, and Feminist Studies at University of California, Santa Barbara. He has worked in social and political theory, especially Marx, Hegel, the Frankfurt School, Foucault, and the Orientalism debate. His most recent books are Foucault and the Iranian Revolution (with Janet Afary, 2005) and Marx at the Margins (2010), and earlier, the Rosa Luxemburg Reader (2004) and Lenin, Hegel, and Western Marxism (1995). His current projects include a book on Theoretical Wars over the Middle East and co-editing a volume of the Marx-Engels Gesamtausgabe (MEGA).

END

‘I believe in the afterlife.

It starts tomorrow,

When I go to work’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Human Herbs’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h7tUq0HjIk (live)

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Karl Marx

MARX AT THE MARGINS – KEVIN B. ANDERSON IN LONDON

Meet Kevin Anderson, author ‘Marx at the Margins’ (University of Chicago, 2010).

When: Wednesday 10 November, 6pm-8pm.
Where: SOAS, Room G3 (ground floor)

Kevin Anderson’s new book, Marx at the Margins, has received critical acclaim for its important excavation of Marx’s writing on colonialism, ethnicity and nationalism, and non-Western and precapitalist societies. Geographically, the focus is on India and China, the Civil War in the U.S., Ireland and Poland, as well as Latin America, Russia, Algeria, Indonesia, and other non-Western societies.

Concerning colonialism and non-Western societies, this book traces the Eurocentrism as well as the implicitly unilinear concept of social development in works like the Communist Manifesto (1848) and the 1853 Tribune articles on India.  Later, especially with the Grundrisse (1857-58) and the 1856-58 writings on anti-colonial resistance in China and India, Marx’s thought evolves toward a more multilinear and decidedly anti-colonialist position.  This evolution culminates in his last decade, where three strands of his thought stand out: (1) the 1872-75 French edition of Capital, (2) the largely unpublished 1879-82 notebooks on non-Western and precapitalist societies and gender, and the late writings on Russia, which point to the possibility of alternative pathways of development. The 1879-82 notebooks, to which Kevin has access through the Marx-Engels Gesamtausgabe project, also show an interest in gender relations across a wide variety of societies. Concerning ethnicity and nationalism, this book concentrates on Marx’s writings on Poland, the Civil War in the U.S., and Ireland. His writings on Poland show a commitment to that country’s national emancipation from foreign occupation as a crucial test for the international democratic and labor movements.  Those on the Civil War discuss the relationship of race and class in the U.S. and the efforts of the international working class to take a stand against slavery and for democracy. Those on Ireland bring together both of these themes, whether on the relationship of Irish national emancipation to the prospects for the labor movement in Britain, or on the ethnic cleavages between Irish and British labor inside Britain. 

As a whole, this book seeks to show Marx’s critique of capital to have been far broader than is usually supposed.

Kevin will be in London for the 2010 Historical Materialism Conference (http://www.historicalmaterialism.org) and has kindly agreed to meet to discuss his book with SOAS faculty, students and others who may be interested.

The meeting is sponsored by the ‘Neoliberalism, Globalisation and States’ Research Cluster of the SOAS Development Studies Department

All are welcome

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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