The Brenner thesis, Spain and Ireland

Yoshie Furuhashi furuhashi.1 at SPAMosu.edu
Mon Nov 6 18:47:07 MST 2000


Dear Mine:

>  > >You still repeat that Brenner thinks that "slavery or >debt peonage,
>>  >the primary forms of class exploitation in the New >World, had
>>  >anything to do with capitalism," but this proposition >is unsupported
>>  >by evidence.
>
>Perfect empirical fallacy. If we rely on pure evidences, we dismiss
>ideological
>*implications*.The reason why there is ZERO (or very LITTLE) mentioning of
>slavery in Brenner's works is because he implicitly thinks that
>"slavery or debt
>peonage, the primary forms of class exploitation in the New World,
>had anything
>to do with capitalism," This implication automatically explains why Brenner
>believes capitalism emerged in Britian due to superiority of internal
>circumstances there, *regardless of colonialism*.
>
>Lou's conclusion has *also* got to do with the fact that there are only TWO
>SENTENCES devoted to slavery in Wood's book.

I hope we will get beyond the equation of "priority" with "superiority."

Anyhow, Michael Perelman's book _The Invention of Capitalism_ spends
very few pages directly addressing questions of gender oppression,
but nonetheless it has given me many clues as to how to think about
them in a historical materialist fashion.  I have used Wood's &
Brenner's works in the same way, except that Brenner's _Merchants and
Revolution_ is nearly entirely about profits from colonialism, the
triangular trade, slave labor, etc. enabling new London merchants as
political actors in revolutions in England (so much so that some
readers think that _Merchants and Revolution_ contradicts Brenner's
arguments elsewhere, while I for one do not think so).

Yoshie





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