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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: 455
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 07 Nov 2010, 01:24
Komsomol
Post 08 Jun 2011, 22:10
my economics teacher gave me the first two parts

I've started reading it , pretty intensive but never got far. I think i found it hard because it's kinda slow moving like order said , also i am pretty intimidated by the book making me doubting whether i understood what i just red or not : these two 'problems' combined are quite frustrating. I will try finishing part one it in the summer
We need to make revolution so our kids wont grow up in corporate prostitution
Sky was the limit. Then the communists came!
Soviet cogitations: 10005
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 14 Jul 2008, 20:01
Ideology: Trotskyism
Philosophized
Post 08 Jun 2011, 22:20
Quote:
I still want it, it sounded good. How about some of the juicy bits?


I don't even have it anymore, I had just borrowed it from a friend I hardly ever see anymore.

Also their kind of political economy is stupid anyways... I mean it really is a fascinating description of the system they had but their attempt to describe and justify their system in terms of the Marxian critique of capitalist political economy is a little stupid. It's also shockingly metaphysical.
"Don't know why i'm still surprised with this shit anyway." - Loz
Soviet cogitations: 1128
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Aug 2008, 18:12
Party Member
Post 08 Jun 2011, 22:38
Well it's going quite well so far. Nearly at the end of chapter one and I have made extensive notes in a Word document to summarise what I've read. At the end of each chapter I'm planning to go through online summaries of it to check that I understood it all right. I'm using an actual book as opposed to an online version as I think with something like this you are much better off reading it from an actual book than scrolling down a screen.

I've heard that chapter one has a bit of a reputation of being confusing and hard to get into. I'm finding it ok if a bit tautological. It also tests my concentration when he keeps mentioning all his different variants of value and their subvariants. I suppose my mood will all depend on how much my reading of it correlates with the online summary.
Soviet cogitations: 10005
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 14 Jul 2008, 20:01
Ideology: Trotskyism
Philosophized
Post 08 Jun 2011, 22:45
Why should online summaries have understood it better than you? If something is unclear to you why don't you just discuss it here instead of reading some random summary and then going "oh I was wrong"... I dunno it doesn't seem like a good way of gaining knowledge.

edit: Lol I just read chapter I section 1 out of boredom.

omfg this is the best book in the world. also every criticism I've ever heard about the LTV is refuted within this first single section of a couple pages. This should be taught at school. Everybody can understand it and it's fücking awesome.
Last edited by Mabool on 08 Jun 2011, 22:59, edited 1 time in total.
"Don't know why i'm still surprised with this shit anyway." - Loz
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Soviet cogitations: 3765
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 11 Nov 2009, 07:13
Ideology: Other Leftist
Politburo
Post 08 Jun 2011, 22:59
probably because the reply time from the two people who have read it will be slower...
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Soviet cogitations: 1128
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Aug 2008, 18:12
Party Member
Post 08 Jun 2011, 23:11
Quote:
Why should online summaries have understood it better than you? If something is unclear to you why don't you just discuss it here instead of reading some random summary and then going "oh I was wrong"... I dunno it doesn't seem like a good way of gaining knowledge.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gBazR59SZXk

I'm going to assume Harvey will have understood it better than me
Soviet cogitations: 10005
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 14 Jul 2008, 20:01
Ideology: Trotskyism
Philosophized
Post 08 Jun 2011, 23:41
I'll watch that later, I'm reading now.


This is the most awesome read I've had in years. It's like you keep thinking all the time, wtf why is he saying the same thing over and over again? (This makes it far easier to understand though...) and then you go like OMG WTF HOW COULD I NOT SEE THIS >_<?! AWESOME ;_;!

This book is like an oversized LSD blotter.

It's also an orgasm of dialectics. Usually when I see dialectical thinking I'm like "wow, that was dialectics >.<!" because it's something exceptional in bourgeois discourse. I can't even do that here because I wouldn't be able to stop screaming because IT'S IN EVERY FÜCKING SENTENCE. And he does dialectics without any effort at all. I've never seen anybody do syntheses, abstractions and concretions so easily and humorously as Marx. It's like he's not even paying attention to the awesomeness of his own thought. It's like he's masturbating with dialectics.

"By the way, the language of commodities also has many other more or less correct dialects (besides Hebrew)."

like WTF ;_;! This is easily the best joke I've heard in months! Even though it's anti-Semitic and 150 years old ;_;!

Also it feels like I'm reading it for the first time. Although I'm not really learning anything new or substantial here (yet), the way it's presented is frighteningly good. This is one of these books where you start trembling on the inside out of respect for the genius that you're being confronted with.

But I'm noticing that when I read it 3 years ago I didn't understand shit even though I thought I did. So yeah, a couple years of practice with Marxist thought (and dialectics) seem to be necessary. I wouldn't even know how to explain the book's content to a non-Marxist because this is really a central part of our very own, exclusive, mindset. A Buddhist or Hegelian would probably understand, though.
"Don't know why i'm still surprised with this shit anyway." - Loz
Soviet cogitations: 4394
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 16 Jun 2004, 17:30
Politburo
Post 10 Jun 2011, 00:18
I read Volume I pretty well, deeply and thoroughly - as the last portion of it has to do with Thompson and Ireland. I didn't have any real trouble for two reasons:

1. I knew a lot about Thompson and thus what Marx was doing as a lot of what he was cribbing from was an Irish socialist speaking about more isolated and specific things - things that I knew well.

2. I was in graduate school when I really tackled it.

I haven't had time for the other volumes as of yet. Some day.
Alis Volat Propriis; Tiocfaidh Ar La; Proletarier Aller Länder, Vereinigt Euch!
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 21 Dec 2004, 23:53
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
Philosophized
Post 10 Jun 2011, 08:08
Attempted reading it once, didn't get to far. It's been on my to do list to get through Das Kapital via David Harvey; however, I've never gotten around to it.
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"By what standard of morality can the violence used by a slave to break his chains be considered the same as the violence of a slave master?" - Walter Rodney
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Soviet cogitations: 4779
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 12 May 2010, 07:43
Ideology: Other Leftist
Politburo
Post 10 Jun 2011, 08:38
Have read parts of it online and also in a history course that I took my freshman year at college even though it was not exactly intended for first-year students though I did well in the course overall. I understood what I've read in part but not really (or something like that feeling). Might attempt again in the future.
“Conservatism is the blind and fear-filled worship of dead radicals” - Mark Twain
Soviet cogitations: 1128
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 30 Aug 2008, 18:12
Party Member
Post 11 Jun 2011, 01:08
Well chapter one and two turned out very well. All seems to slot into place as far as I can gather. Getting into money now with chapter three which is getting a little tedious. Keep having to re-read things to make sure I get what he's on about.
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Soviet cogitations: 14
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 15 Jun 2011, 19:23
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 16 Jun 2011, 16:42
Yes

Of more use as sociology than economics, though it is the last great work of classical economics and gives keen insight into 19th century capitalism. The latter volumes were already out of date when published since marginalism was not incorporated.
Dave from PoFo
Soviet cogitations: 10005
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 14 Jul 2008, 20:01
Ideology: Trotskyism
Philosophized
Post 16 Jun 2011, 19:01
I would rather say that marginialism was neglected for the bullshit that it is. Engels adresses it in the preface to part III, though, demolishing it in a couple paragraphs.
"Don't know why i'm still surprised with this shit anyway." - Loz
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Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 15 Jun 2011, 19:23
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 16 Jun 2011, 19:32
Mabool wrote:
I would rather say that marginialism was neglected for the bullshit that it is. Engels adresses it in the preface to part III, though, demolishing it in a couple paragraphs.

Engels does not discuss marginalism so much as discuss its impact on some contemporary socialists, especially George Bernard Shaw which is not surprising given that at the time William Stanley Jevons had tremendous prestige within Britain. While I'm open to correction, as far as I know most critiques of marginalism were sociological in nature.

The development of marginalism resulted, more or less, in the abandonment of classical economics until some rehabilitation by Piero Sraffa. It was marginalism which resulted in the interest in "market socialism" by many otherwise Marxist economists like Oskar Lange.

Subsequent neo-Ricardian and post-Marxist economists have treated it with more respect than Engels, which is why for instance Anwar Shaikh devotes his professional career to reconciling marginalism with the Labor Theory of Value. What do you think the Cambridge Capital Controversy was really about, anyway?

Shaikh's 1998 paper The Empirical Strength of the Labour Theory of Value may be of interest to you: http://homepage.newschool.edu/~AShaikh/labthvalue.pdf
Dave from PoFo
Soviet cogitations: 10005
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 14 Jul 2008, 20:01
Ideology: Trotskyism
Philosophized
Post 16 Jun 2011, 19:49
Quote:
Engels does not discuss marginalism so much as discuss its impact on some contemporary socialists, especially George Bernard Shaw which is not surprising given that at the time William Stanley Jevons had tremendous prestige within Britain. While I'm open to correction, as far as I know most critiques of marginalism were sociological in nature.


I don't see how Bukharin's critique is sociological in nature.

Quote:
The development of marginalism resulted, more or less, in the abandonment of classical economics until some rehabilitation by Piero Sraffa.


Only in our half of the world.

Quote:
It was marginalism which resulted in the interest in "market socialism" by many otherwise Marxist economists like Oskar Lange.


Are you sure about that? Titoism seems to be a more probable influence; and within Titoism itself, historical materialism seems to have been the justification for the abandonment of the planned economy rather than marginalism.

I'll have a look at Shaikh's paper when I'm done with empirio-criticism.
"Don't know why i'm still surprised with this shit anyway." - Loz
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Soviet cogitations: 6211
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 04 Aug 2004, 20:49
Ideology: Democratic Socialism
Embalmed
Post 17 Jun 2011, 22:15
Yes, an easy read...unless you count the torrent of evidence gathered from official British documents explaining the horrors of industrial capitalism on a great part of the population.
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"Phil Spector is haunting Europe" -Dr. Karl H. Marx
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Soviet cogitations: 26
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 20 May 2009, 02:46
Pioneer
Post 23 Jun 2011, 20:32
I have indeed. One of the few books I read for a long time on a daily basis.
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Soviet cogitations: 10461
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 19 Aug 2006, 17:42
Ideology: Marxism-Leninism
R.I.P.
Post 04 Jul 2011, 22:10
I have Vol.s 1, 2, and 3, but I have not read any large portion of any of them. I use them for reference from time to time.
Soviet cogitations: 4
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 21 Jan 2013, 04:12
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 21 Jan 2013, 04:24
Comrade Gulper wrote:
An older, contemporaneous translation would likely be full of antiquated philosophical and economical terms, as well as plenty of very proper Victorian English, which was a particularly slow moving, fully descriptive sort of prose. So I can see how someone of this century may have problems with its pacing and over-stuffed paragraphing.


gRed Britain wrote:
I've heard that chapter one has a bit of a reputation of being confusing and hard to get into. I'm finding it ok if a bit tautological. It also tests my concentration when he keeps mentioning all his different variants of value and their subvariants.

OMG THANK YOU! I know this message is old but I had to reply. I've never read anything by Marx before so I was having a bit of trouble understanding the text. On one hand, it seemed as if he was running 300 laps around the same concept over and over, and on the other, I though I was problably missing something since there had to be some reason behind this. Anyways, I guess once I've finished the whole commodities section I'll be able to look back and be like "ohhhhhhhhhh".
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Soviet cogitations: 221
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 04 Feb 2013, 06:55
Ideology: Democratic Socialism
Pioneer
Post 05 Feb 2013, 01:56
I am reading it as we speak, Its a large book so I like to take my time with them. But hopefully before June I will have it read fully!
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