Capital (fwd)

Spoon spoon at
Wed Oct 26 21:16:22 MDT 1994

Date: Wed, 26 Oct 1994 21:51:04 -0400 (EDT)
From: Justin Schwartz <jschwart at>
Subject: Re: Capital

On Wed, 26 Oct 1994, Jacob Zumoff wrote:

> Justin-
> I recently read your post on Capital ( I su**cribe to both Left-L and Marxism
> lists).  I don't know German so I can't really comment on whether you say is
> true, but I am interested in finding out about your translation of the part
> about the fetish of commodities.

Send me your address. I'll send you a copy of the ROUGH, NOT-FOR-CITATION

 I am just in the process of reading the
> first volume of K for the second time, and all I can say is that I am
> somewhat confused.

Welcome to the club.

  (Actually, if I remember from the first time I read it, I
> enjoyed the later, more historical, portions alot.)   I don't know if the
> reason that I have trouble is the translation, or just that it is so complex.

Bit of both, but mostly the latter.

> Also, do you know if there is a published guide to reading the first volume
> of K?  It seems to me that many people, even many Marxists (or especially
> Marxists?) start reading K with great eagerness but then become discouraged
> and quit.  Do you know of any guides?

Anthony Brewer, A Guide to Marx's Capital (Cambridge), chapter by chapter
summaries of the whole book, all three volumes.

Ben Fine, Marx's Capital, 3rd ed. (MacMillan). Very compressed guide to
all three volumes. Fewer than 100 pp.

M.C. Howard and J.F. King, The Political Economy of Marx, 2nd ed. (NYU
Press). Neo-Sraffan approach. Very clear.

Paul Sweezy, The Theory of Capitalist Development (Monthly Review). An
oldie but goodie, excellent exposition.

I.I. Rubin, Essays on Marx's Theory of Value (Black Rose). Very difficult
but very deep, an old (1920s) Soviet reading.

Tony Smith, The Logic of Marx's Capital (SUNY Press). Argues--I now think
correctly--that the structure of Marx's argument derives from Hegel's
Logic. Nonetheless quite clear.

Do you do maths? Then you might want to see:

Michio Morishima, Marx's Economics (Cambridge)

Meghnad Desai, Marxian Economics (Rowman and Littlefield)

John Roemer, Analytical Foundations of Marxian Economic Theory (Cambridge)

--Justin Schwartz


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