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Have you read Das Kapital?

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Have you read Das Kapital?

Yes
19
32%
No
31
53%
Other
9
15%
 
Total votes : 59
Soviet cogitations: 71
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 13 Feb 2013, 07:11
Pioneer
Post 13 May 2013, 23:06
No. Care to back up your assertions?[/quote]

Well I didn't say the book was obscure nonsense,I said that the authors in the wiki article who are described as "analytic philosophers" did. In fact I said below that in my comment that I wasn't going to weigh in on it, describing my position as neutral, like that of Switzerland.
However, if you are curious as to why the analytic philosophers believe it is obscurantist nonsense I suggest you read their books which are in the wiki article bibliography. They definitely made a bona fide attempt to parse it. In all fairness though, many of them are not "bourgeois". They are really trying to clarify the text into testable assertions as any scientific treatise must be testable. I thought some people would find the effort interesting. Clear and distinct ideas are preferable to bullshit.
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Soviet cogitations: 75
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 14 Feb 2013, 03:36
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Pioneer
Post 14 May 2013, 06:20
I have listened to the foreward on audiotape. If that counts for anything.
Soviet cogitations: 78
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 14 Nov 2014, 02:42
Pioneer
Post 15 Nov 2014, 14:24
I've read the first 150 pages or so of vol. 1. I am going to have another go at all four when I finish Engels' "The Origin of the Family, Private Property, and the State" which I'm reading now. But Das Kapital is deep stuff. I'm just no mathematician. Nor am I inherantly good at economics. So the book is not easy for me either. I do better with works like what I am reading of Engels right now, the more sociological type stuff.
Soviet cogitations: 1128
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Aug 2008, 18:12
Party Member
Post 16 Nov 2014, 13:30
Quote:
I've read the first 150 pages or so of vol. 1. I am going to have another go at all four when I finish Engels' "The Origin of the Family, Private Property, and the State" which I'm reading now. But Das Kapital is deep stuff. I'm just no mathematician. Nor am I inherantly good at economics. So the book is not easy for me either. I do better with works like what I am reading of Engels right now, the more sociological type stuff.


You don't need to be a mathematician or an economist to understand Das Kapital. You just need to make sure you understand each bit before moving on to the next bit. The way Marx structured it is that he added more and more elements as he went along. As long as you understand and remember what each element is, you should be fine.
Soviet cogitations: 78
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 14 Nov 2014, 02:42
Pioneer
Post 23 Dec 2014, 05:46
Greetings, Red Britain. Perhaps you are right. I have finally finished the book by Engels (dense reading, but really good stuff), and am now delving back into Das Kapital. I shall keep what you said in mind. Have you read Engels' above work? What do you think of it? I was totally impressed by it. The man was as genius.
Soviet cogitations: 1128
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Aug 2008, 18:12
Party Member
Post 23 Dec 2014, 11:33
Haven't read it but I'm sure I will at some stage. Currently finishing off Anti-Duhring which is very poor for much of it (although with some interesting bits on historical materialism). Engels advocates the complete destruction of all the major towns and cities as part of the abolition of the difference between town and countryside.
Soviet cogitations: 78
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 14 Nov 2014, 02:42
Pioneer
Post 23 Dec 2014, 12:59
Ok, can someone say 'extreme', please? I'll have to read that one. Sounds a little Pol Pot-ish to me.
Soviet cogitations: 1128
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Aug 2008, 18:12
Party Member
Post 23 Dec 2014, 13:17
Engels wrote:
The abolition of the separation of town and country is therefore not utopian, also, in so far as it is conditioned on the most equal distribution possible of modern industry over the whole country. It is true that in the huge towns civilisation has bequeathed us a heritage which it will take much time and trouble to get rid of. But it must and will be got rid of, however, protracted a process it may be. Whatever destiny may be in store for the German Empire of the Prussian nation, Bismarck can go to his grave proudly aware that the desire of his heart is sure to be fulfilled: the great towns will perish.


It's not in the Pol Potian/utopian sense, but merely part of the abolition of the differentiation in social relations between town and country. Still something I find hard to imagine though.
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Soviet cogitations: 2293
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 10 Aug 2010, 14:21
Party Bureaucrat
Post 24 Dec 2014, 02:38
Engels doesn't say that you should destroy all cities, he says that you should try to establish the "most equal distribution possible of modern industry over the whole country", and thus the great towns will "perish". The question there is simple: does a big factory actually need a great town to work, or can it work without a great town? Wouldn't the overthrow of capitalism and profit-seeking mentality make it more easier to establish big industries in other places than big towns? And finally I would say that you have the very important question of ecology. Engels says:

"Accordingly, abolition of the antithesis between town and country is not merely possible. It has become a direct necessity of industrial production itself, just as it has become a necessity of agricultural production and, besides, of public health. The present poisoning of the air, water and land can be put an end to only by the fusion of town and country; and only such fusion will change the situation of the masses now languishing in the towns, and enable their excrement to be used for the production of plants instead of for the production of disease."

Isn't it easier for us, who live in a world in which ecology has become a very important idea, to understand what Engels meant?
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"Fishing is part of agriculture" Gred
"Loz, you are like me" Yami
"I am one of the better read Marxists on this site" Gred
Soviet cogitations: 78
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 14 Nov 2014, 02:42
Pioneer
Post 24 Dec 2014, 03:55
OP-bagration, I think I see your point. Engels wasn't advocating some kind of radical "Year Zero" the way Pol Pot was, with complete destruction of society as his goal. Rather, he was looking for transformation of the existing society into a more egalitarian one that would be inherantly better for all concerned. I can tell by the quotesthat he wasn't trying to blow stuff up. Instead he was trying to build a new world.
Soviet cogitations: 1128
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Aug 2008, 18:12
Party Member
Post 24 Dec 2014, 14:10
Quote:
The question there is simple: does a big factory actually need a great town to work, or can it work without a great town?


The reason why big factories tend to be built in big towns is because the workers need to live nearby. The bigger the factory, the more people it employs and thus the bigger the nearby town. The existence of a large number of workers will mean they will also need nearby schools, hospitals, shops and other services. If you want that to perish then the only solution is for smaller factories.

We might want to also recognise the social importance of towns and cities. Humans are social animals, that's why many people like living and working in big cities.
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Soviet cogitations: 2293
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 10 Aug 2010, 14:21
Party Bureaucrat
Post 25 Dec 2014, 02:44
Quote:
The reason why big factories tend to be built in big towns is because the workers need to live nearby. The bigger the factory, the more people it employs and thus the bigger the nearby town.

That's probably true, although no factory is big enough to create a whole town, except maybe when you have important natural resources such as oil. But that doesn't mean that a big factory can't survive without a great town. Being close to a great town, in which you have a concentration of human resources and political power is probably more profitable. But in a non-capitalist world, a big factory could work almost everywhere. Nearby schools, hospitals, shops? A lot of people live in the countryside, and yet they have access to schools, hospitals and shops.

In the 19th Century towns were huge cesspits, illnesses were spreading much faster than they were in the countryside. This is what Engels had in mind when he wrote against great town, exactly as Rousseau did before him. Nowadays life seems much healthier in the towns, but when you think about it the situation is getting worse day and day due to pollution. In some great towns people are even forced to wear masks because of air pollution...

So I rather accept Engels' idea that we will have to do something to hinder and even reverse the developement of great towns.
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"Fishing is part of agriculture" Gred
"Loz, you are like me" Yami
"I am one of the better read Marxists on this site" Gred
Soviet cogitations: 3
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 27 Dec 2014, 00:07
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 27 Dec 2014, 00:12
I did, twice actually quite a few years ago. The first time was hard going however the second time was a lot easier. When the global economy fell in a heap a few years ago some of the contents came back to my mind
[+-]
User avatar
Soviet cogitations: 1782
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Oct 2009, 20:08
Resident Artist
Post 13 Apr 2015, 22:48
No, but it should be on my reading list.
Soviet cogitations: 9
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 04 Mar 2018, 23:37
Ideology: Social Democracy
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 07 Mar 2018, 04:01
I am reading A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy. This should probably be listed as Das Kapital volume half. It was written in 1859, and contains a lot of what would end up in Das Kapital volume one. But it also contains a considerable amount of original stuff that was not later included. I shall turn to Das Kapital after I finish this.
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