Chris Burford cburford at
Tue Apr 4 07:16:14 MDT 1995

On 3rd April Ron wrote

 > Perhaps it would be a good idea if the practical activities of
 > some of these theoreticians were referred to sometimes.

Hi Ron,

I believe that Roy Bhaskar is on the editorial committee of the
theoretical journal of the Socialist Movement, of which his partner,
Hilary Wainwright is editor. Assuming therefore that personal
relationships are stable, (by no means a certainty in late 20th century
capitalism), it is probable that he discusses and tries to reconcile his
philosophical approaches closely with practical decisions of this
organisation, which is trying to take a coherent position to the left of
the British Labour Party, while having influence within it. Indeed he
could be quite influential.

Perhaps there is a theory of where the de-onts are in the British Labour
Party, but it may not have been taken to the masses yet.

On the other hand, Ron, the interests we share in 'chaos' theory and
complexity theory, so at least one friend of ours suggests, may not have
any practical implications for politics either. And I think that if we
are looking for a meta-theory which allows us to re-read Marx
intelligently it is possible that if it is to be discovered, it is
unlikely to be one with major new implications in practice. It may just
tell us that what we have been doing all along is intelligible and should
be taken just a bit further.


Chris Burford

PS I may have got my facts on Bhaskar wrong, so I hope someone can
correct them. (I hope too Hans Despain catches this post). I am at
present suffering the cruel and unusual punishment of being able to
download the marxism list, but not being able to upload any prepared
response to it, without typing on line at great expense. It does not
however appear to have made the list any shorter. Is it my impression or
has there really been a volume explosion? And if there is a quantitative
change, what possible qualitative change may next occur?

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