Michael A. Lebowitz – Primitive Accumulation versus Contested Reproduction

If we don’t understand a system as it is fully developed [its ‘Being’] and thus its critical characteristics, we cannot investigate the ‘becoming’ of those characteristics. This is why Marx discussed primitive (or original) accumulation of capital only at the end of Volume 1 of Capital. Exclusive focus upon the emergence of the new elements, however, is not real history. ‘Becoming’ is two sided: it is both a coming into being and a passing away. The concept of primitive accumulation explores only the former; it considers the new being born but not the old struggling to remain alive. It is, in short, one-sided. Not only does it fail to explore on its own the struggle of the old for its reproduction but it also does not consider the interaction, the morbid symptoms and dysfunction when two sets of productive relations are engaged in contested reproduction with respect to their control of the elements of production.

What is lost? The centrality of class struggle – the struggle of two sides and the conditions thereby in which history is made. The paper considers various historical phenomena using the concept of contested reproduction.

Michael A. Lebowitz is Professor Emeritus of Economics of Simon Fraser University in Canada and author of The Socialist Alternative: Real Human Development (2010) and Contradictions of “Real Socialism”: The Conductor and the Conducted (2012).

Michael A. Lebowitz – Prvotna akumulacija proti sporni reprodukciji

Če ne razumemo sistema, ko je dovršen (njegove »biti«), in s tem njegovih ključnih lastnosti, ne moremo preiskati »postajanja« teh lastnosti. Zato Marx o prvotni (ali izvorni) akumulaciji kapitala razpravlja šele na koncu prvega zvezka Kapitala. Ekskluzivno osredotočanje na nastanek novih elementov pa ni resnična zgodovina. »Postajanje« je dvostransko: hkrati je prihajanje v bit in odmiranje. Koncept prvotne akumulacije raziskuje le prvi proces: obravnava rojstvo novega, ne pa tudi starega, ki se bori za preživetje. Skratka, je enostranski. Ne samo, da ne zmore razložiti boja starega za lastno reprodukcijo, temveč hkrati tudi ne obravnava interakcije, morbidnih simptomov in disfunkcionalnosti, ki se pojavijo, ko sta dve seriji produkcijskih odnosov vpleteni v sporno reprodukcijo z vidika njunega nadzora nad elementi produkcije.

Kaj se s tem izgubi? Osrednjost razrednega boja – boja dveh strani in s tem okoliščin, v katerih se dela zgodovina. Prispevek obravnava različne zgodovinske fenomene raziskuje in pri tem uporablja koncept sporne reprodukcije.

Michael A. Lebowitz je zaslužni profesor ekonomije na univerzi Simon Fraser v Kanadi in avtor knjig The Socialist Alternative: Real Human Development (2010) in Contradictions of “Real Socialism”: The Conductor and the Conducted (2012).

Lectures/Predavanja:
“The Concept of “Fairness”: Possibilities, Limits, Possibilities”
Rediscovering socialism and recovering Marx

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