Gramsci, Laclau, Mouffe (and Bhaskar)

Andy Daitsman adaitsma at
Sun Mar 5 23:19:42 MST 1995

>Chodos wrote of L&M
 This is the only possible conclusion from a rejection of
>determinism, in the sense of not postulating an epochal trajectory of social
>systems (primitive communism, slavery, feudalism, capitalism, socialism,
>communism, or some such list).
To which Paul replied:
>In what sense do you reject this trajectory?
>Do you reckon that the earlier transitions never happened, or that
>the last one is unlikely or that arbitrary reverse transistions
>may occur - socialism -> feudalism for example.

Jury is still out on whether a socialism -> feudalism transition is going to
occur, but in Latin America and the Caribbean, we saw a lot of transitions
from slavery to feudalism -- some of them even before slavery was abolished.
 If you want an example of the latter, Stuart Schwartz published a very
interesting document in the Hispanic American Historical Review way back in
1977.  The document was a proposed peace treaty written by runaway slaves in
the Brazilian province of Ilheus in the 1790s, and it laid out the
conditions under which they return to servitude.

(The treaty wasn't accepted by the way.  The slaves were tricked into
returning, and then sold off to other regions of Brazil.)


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