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Pre-Capitalist Economic Formations
Sat, October 31 @ 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM$7 – $11
UNDERSTANDING THE PURPOSE OF MARX’S DISCUSSIONS OF PRE-CAPITALIST ECONOMIC FORMATIONS
A presentation and discussion with Radhika Desai
Marx’s remarks on pre-capitalist economic formations, whether in the Grundrisse or The German Ideology have given rise to a vast literature on the subject, all seeking to apply what they take to be a historical materialist method to analysing diverse modes of production across time and space. While much of this effort has been erudite and enlightening, in this lecture Radhika will propose that Marx’s purpose in these investigations and commentaries had nothing to do with either a stagist or a determinist view of history. Against these accusations, often levelled at Marx and often put forth by the exertions of many a “Marxist”, there are reasons to believe that Marx was going beyond the stagism and determinism of received accounts to something far more sophisticated and radical.
RADHIKA DESAI is professor at the Department of Political Studies, and Director, Geopolitical Economy Research Group, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada. She is the author of Geopolitical Economy: After US Hegemony, Globalization and Empire (2013), Slouching Towards Ayodhya: From Congress to Hindutva in Indian Politics (2nd rev ed, 2004) and Intellectuals and Socialism: ‘Social Democrats’ and the Labour Party (1994), a New Statesman and Society Book of the Month, and editor or co-editor of Karl Polanyi for the Twenty-First Century (2020) Revolutions (2020), Russia, Ukraine and Contemporary Imperialism, an issue of International ‘Critical Thought (2016), Theoretical Engagements in Geopolitical Economy (2015), Analytical Gains from Geopolitical Economy (2015), Revitalizing Marxist Theory for Today’s Capitalism (2010) and Developmental and Cultural Nationalisms (2009). Currently she is working on several books: The Coming Crash of the Dollar Creditorcracy (with Michael Hudson), Marx as a Monetary Theorist and The Making of the Indian Capitalist Class.
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