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View Diary: On the 'Vindication' of Marx *updated (208 comments)

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  •  I think the later (3+ / 0-)
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    IreGyre, KJG52, lotlizard

    Marx of Capital abandons teleological conceptions of history, instead making arguments to the effect that "given these antagonism, they will likely unfold in this way".  Whether or not he's successful in this is another question.  I think Braudal gives a much richer and more sophisticated account of how capitalism developed that's still sensitive to Marx's account.  This isn't much different than the climate scientist saying "given these trends the probable outcome is x."  A lot of Marxists, however, did not seem to follow him.  I fully agree that if final causation or teleology truly animates Marx's thought in the way this diary suggests, he should be thrown in the dustbin.

    •  No, you're talking about different things. (2+ / 0-)
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      lucid, melo

      Historical materialism and dialectical materialism speak to time periods that encompass the entirity of history.  Given that, it is rather esy to see how the development of our present technological, monetarized and ultimately capitalist society (and beyond) is inevitable.  In modern terms, it might be understood as an expression of the nature of our bilology and form of intellect (tool users, pattern-recognition, discriminatory analysis, etc.)

      If you want to call that 'teleological' fine, but I prefer to remember that Marx's earlier, more purely pholosophical works developed in response to and critique of Hegel, who was teleological in his view of History (not surprising for a Prussian Christian determined to argue Frederick was the pinnacle of History, no? :-))  IOW, that particular explcation of Marx's analysis is not so much Marxist as Hegelian, and thus much more teleological seeming.  And even that is more a function of not having the broader and deeper understanding of human nature we now have.

      If you want to argue what Stwirley calls 'accumulatve histroy' (a kind of 'Great Mena' and Happy Accidents theory?), that makes sense but only a smaller time-scale.  Thus, you must allow the vissicitudes of chance and human motivations if your trying to explain e.g., how come Britain rules the waves rather than Spain, or why China left the 'Progress' train with Doaism and Confuciansm.  But you also have to understand that sooner or later someone was going take the role of Britain and China was going to get Dong'ed into the modern world.

      •  I'm not sure how this (0+ / 0-)

        responds to my comment.  I was rejecting the notion that Marx has a teleological conception of history or that he shares Hegel's position, not defending it.

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