Dependency Theory (Mine) - additional note

Nestor Miguel Gorojovsky gorojovsky at SPAMarnet.com.ar
Tue May 29 06:48:05 MDT 2001


En relación a Re: Dependency Theory (Mine) - additional note,
el 29 May 01, a las 4:20, Julio Huato dijo:

> In spite of my admittedly crass ignorance of US history, I'll dare
> here to illustrate my point by referring to the relationship between
> capitalist production and slave production prior to the US Civil
> War.
>
> Slavery in the US was temporarily reinforced by the demands of
> capitalist production, but -- in itself -- it was NOT capitalist
> production.  It was an extraneous object in the flesh of a social
> formation where capitalist production was clearly hegemonic.
> Capitalist production is production by workers who are free from
> legal constraints or extra-economic coercion.  Slavery in the
> southern states does not meet the criteria.
>
> If we see the production of cotton, tobacco, sugar, etc. by slave
> work in the southern plantations as a form of capitalist production,
> socially indistinguishable from industrial capitalist production in
> the north, only technically different from it, then we are not in a
> position to understand why the further development of capitalist
> production in the US allowed and drove capitalists to jettison
> slavery and, by doing that, it did not get weaker or slower, but
> actually stronger and faster.

What Julio does not see, and it is coherent with his rejection of the
Leninist conception of imperialism, is that although the direct
productive relation in the South was not capitalist, and that there
was such a relation in the North, the South was seamlessly integrated
to the capitalist production of the mills in Manchester. Thus, what
was at stake was NOT an abstract debate over the capitalist character
of slave labour, but a concrete one on the capitalist character of the
slaveowning oligarchy, on what to do with a class of capitalists who
do not behave as a bourgeoisie. This is the core of the matter.  But
this is out of the scope of whoever does not see imperialism in its
true face.

Néstor Miguel Gorojovsky
gorojovsky at arnet.com.ar







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