A question on Marx and the State

Amanda Tattersall amandatatts at SPAMhotmail.com
Sat Feb 24 19:10:00 MST 2001


I am currently doing my Honours thesis and have a question to ask anyone who is

I am looking at the relationship between capitalism and the liberal democratic
state, and considering the way in which their structural relationship has
changed and elongated the nature of capitalism. In doing this I am considering
Marx’s analysis of the state and capitalism, and analysing how he did and didn’t
deal with the issues (and thus consequences) of evolving representative
democracy in the late 1800s.

I intend to thus look at the treatment of representative democracy in Marx and
Marxism to see how an analysis of this phenomenon contributes to a more complex
analysis of the contemporary state as it exists in developed capitalist
‘democratic’ countries. My basic question is does anyone know of any references
to or authors (who consider themselves Marxists) who deal with representative
democracy in relation to capitalism. I have looked at Habermas, and his analysis
of accommodation and the public sphere, but was wondering if people knew of
other works or series of work on the issue.

Specifically I am looking for people who have analysed the state and discussed
the way in which franchise, institutional structures (eg the law or the media)
have accommodated political struggle and prolonged capitalism. Furthermore, from
an economic point of view, the way in which Keynesian economic management
attempts to use state apparatus to mitigate the contradictions in capitalism.
Anyone who speaks on such issues, or any contemporary who writes on how Marx
spoke on those issues would assist my work greatly.

Finally, I was wondering if anyone knew of any writers who had considered using
dialectic method to analyse the apparatus of the state (and its relationship
with capitalism).

Thanks for your help,


Amanda Tattersall
amandatatts at hotmail.com
0408 05 7779

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