Capital as read by Moishe Postone: Alchemy or Astrology?
Moishe Postone’s book Time, Work, and Social Domination (1993) is intended to be a Hegelian interpretation of Marx’s Capital. Capital is the great subject that moves itself under the impulse of value. Its “movement” is related not to class relations nor to the market, which is supposedly external to labour, but rather to the temporal constraint inherent in a dialectic proper to value, one that binds everybody to an infinite process of abstract labour. This reign of value destroys the concrete world of use values, and Postone argues that this will be the case until we become aware of the contradiction between what capitalist society is and the possibilities it opens. According to the author, such an exposition interprets Capital more on the basis of its rough draft, Grundrisse, as opposed fifteen years of re- elaboration which followed. The following discussion is based on confusions regarding the main Marxian concepts of labour, domination, value, valorization, abstract, and production.
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