Imperialism. Blake I

jones/bhandari djones at uclink.berkeley.edu
Thu Jul 27 04:24:39 MDT 1995


The following two posts quote from  William J Blake's 1946 unpublished
manuscript on Imperialism; as an elaboration of the Leninist theory, I am
hoping it will help us evaluate it in light of present realities.

Who was William J Blake you may ask:  Wall Street banker, famous novelist,
dandy and according to some the leading American expert of his time in
Marxist economics--for anyone who wants to know the state of the Marxist
Kritik *in the world* before WWII,  his 1939 textbook is a must.

But Sweezy began his 1942 'classic'--"There exists in English no reasonably
comprehensive analytical study of Marxian political economy."  A flat-out
conscious lie!  Still much to be written contrasting Sweezy's 'equilibrium'
take on Marxian value with Blake's value-theoretic analysis of
disequilibrium, contradiction and critique, but Postone has clarified and
developed the contrast brilliantly.

I will write about Blake one day soon, but the conditions under which
uncompromising revolutionary Marxist authors have had to produce are the
same barbaric social relations under which humanity toils and suffers--so
the work of recollection, reconstruction and rectification is also
difficult.

 Blake once wrote: "Few societies have ever openly exhibited their true
meaning.  Those who are at ease in Zion have no motive to explore that
meaning: only those whose aspirations are maturing, the heirs, need
analytical insight."

I cannot think of any American radical theorist who was  more ill at ease
in Zion than Bill Blake, my favorite jewish marxist rastaman, the blackest
rationalizer of Ezekial.





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