Louis N Proyect
lnp3 at columbia.edu
Thu Mar 30 17:16:06 MST 1995
All this is very interesting, but I could do without Cockshott's
superciliousness. I would still appreciate some titles one way or
another. I know almost nothing about Ireland, although I understand that it
has the reputation in some circles of having been fucked over by England
(didn't Jonathan Swift say something like that?).
But I'm not trying to pick an argument with anybody about whether Ireland is
or is not like Rhodesia, etc. I'm just looking for a point of departure.
By the way, my off-the-cuff comments on Ireland are based on a reading I
just did of Raymond Crotty, an Irish Marxist who does see Ireland's
underdevelopment in the same context as the underdevelopment of India and
other British colonies. But what the fuck, what do I know--I'm no professor.
No PhD, no license to teach or write articles about Marxism.
On Thu, 30 Mar 1995, Paul Cockshott wrote:
> Louis seems to have decided what he wants the history
> book to tell him before he reads it.
> What you ought to be looking for is to understand how
> the capitalist mode of production developed, relatively
> unevenly in Ireland. By international standards, Ireland
> in the mid 19th century was one of the most industrially
> developed parts of the world with a textile industry
> that was within 50% of the size of the English one.
> By the late 19th century it was a world leader in
> heavy engineering and ship building. Remember where
> the Titanic was built.
> To compare Ireland in the 19th or 20th centuries with
> Africa in economic terms is grotesque.
> In economic terms, Ireland was part of the manufacturing
> heartland of the empire, exporting to India, the Argentine
> etc. But this development was geographically and religiously
> uneven. It was concentrated around Belfast and Dublin, and
> the greater part of the Bourgeoisie was of protestant religion.
> The Catholic middle class, developing later, for long under
> the restraint of the test acts, had little stake in this
> industrial development. The 'under development' of Ireland
> was the under development of but a section of the bourgeiosie.
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