ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Das Kapital, Volume 1—150 Years

What is it about Capital, Volume 1, and some of Marx’s other writings that helps us throw light on the capitalist process in an exploited country of the world capitalist system?


Bernard D’Mello, a member of the EPW editorial team, writes:

September 2017 marks 150 years since the first volume of Karl Marx’s Das Kapital was published in Hamburg, Germany. (An English translation of Volume 1 first appeared only in 1887. The first foreign language translation to be published was in Russian in 1872.) The appearance of Das Kapital in September 1867 marked a significant inflection point in the history of political economy and the social sciences because this was the first successful application of the method of materialist dialectics to understanding the process of capitalist development in an exploiting country of the world capitalist system. Marx transformed classical political economy with the application of his method of materialist dialectics to a critique of the thought of that school of economics. There is a theory and a history in Kapital, the one abstract, the other concrete, with inevitable tensions between the two. Marx was acutely aware of this and gave each of them their due, with an alternating emphasis.

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