[Marxism] Adam Smith and Communism

Dogan Gocmen dgn.gcmn at googlemail.com
Tue Sep 22 06:24:38 MDT 2009


"What did the other Scottish philosophers
have to say concerning alienation? What
did Hume have to say on the subject?

BTW can you give some references as to
where Smith describes the possibility of
communism?"


Jim,
thank you very much for your questions. I am not sure whether I can and
shall answer them at once.
This would probabiliy lead to an article. Please allow me first to change
the subject line. My answer to your first question is going to be short as
there is secondary literature.

Let me start with Francis Hutcheson. One of the central categories of the
classical Scottish philosophy is labour/division of labour
In his *A System of Moral Philosophysys* he crises the
individualistic/private property justifying approach to the concept of
labour as has been formulated by Locke and later worked out by Hume.
According to Hutcheson labour should not be seen as an physical realtion.
Today Hutcheson's appraoch may be read as a critique of Hanna Arendt. This
approach of Hutcheson provided the basis for further explorations as may be
seen in Ferguson's, Smith's and Millar's approach to the division of labour
and the distinction of *ranks* (classes). It less obvious in Hume's appraoch
as he explicitly defends the Lockean property theory. But unlike Locke he
approaches the issue from historical perspective and allows therefore to
draw different conclusions than he is prepared to do.


Dogan Göcmen
(http://dogangocmen.wordpress.com/)
Author of The Adam Smith Problem:
Reconciling Human Nature and Society in
The Theory of Moral Sentiments and Wealth of Nations, I. B. Tauris,
London&New York 2007



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