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By Adalbert G. Lallier

This precis represents an try and examine Marx's propositions about the financial subject material. distinct emphasis is given to his seminal principles relating scope and approach; the phrases "Arbeitskraft" and "Mehrwert" and the difficulty of equivalent trade or unequal alternate; the outline of the stream of commodities and the movement of cash; the method of the transformation of surplus price into capital; the elucidation of price thought and cost conception; the linkage among creation, alternate and the scale of the industry; the critique of James Mill, Ricardo, John Stuart Mill, Bastiat, Proudhon; the reasons of gold flows and their results on rate degrees and trade premiums; and at last, an elaboration of his perspectives in regards to the dialectics of the evolution of capitalism.

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Extra info for The Economics of Marx's Grundrisse: An Annotated Summary

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This would enable us, finally, to d o justice to the most original intuition contained in th e works of Frank a nd Wal lerstein, which these two authors nevertheless d istort: the relative autonomy of mercantile forms from the mod es of production which sustain them. This mercantile autonomy, a ll the more notable the less i nd ustrial c apitalism is developed, constitutes a k i nd of 'economic bonapartism' that operates between vari­ ous productive structures, a nd prevails to the extent that pro­ duction for the m arket develops in non-capi talist forms.

On the other hand, to equate the two can only perpetuate the misunderstanding that haunts Frank's contrihution tb the debate. The final comment on the traditional form of the pole­ mic can perhaps best be left to Marx himself. fn a celebrated reflection on the economists of his day he wrote a passage that has still not lost its relevance: 'The first theoretical treatment of the modem mode of pro­ duction - the mercantile system - proceeded necessarily from the superficial phenomena of the circulation process as in: dividualized in the movements of merchant capital, and there­ fore grasped only the appearance of matters.

I 7 From among the ensemble of relations of production, we consider those linked to the ownership of the means of production to be the essential relations, since they determine the forms of canalization of the economic surplus and the effective degree of the division of labour, the basis in turn of the specific capa­ city of the productive forces for expansion. Their own level and rhythm of growth depends in turn on the destination of the economic surplus. We therefore designate as a mode of produc­ tion the logical and mutually co-ordinated articulation of: 1.

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