Sunday, November 27, 2011

Capital: Volume 1, Chapters 26-30 by Karl Marx

Chapter 26: The Secret of Primitive Accumulation

  1. "This primitive accumulation plays approximately the same role in political economy as original sin does in theology...from this original sin dates the poverty of the great majority who, despite all their labour, have up to now nothing to sell but themselves, and the wealth of the few that increases constantly, although they have long ceased to work. Such insipid childishness is every day preached to us in the defence of property." - 873-4
  2. "So-called primitive nothing else than the historical process of divorcing the producer from the means of production. It appears as 'primitive' because it forms the pre-history of capital, and of the mode of production corresponding to capital." - 875
Chapter 27: The Expropriation of the Agricultural Population from the Land

  1. "We must never forget that  even the serf was not only the owner of the piece of land attached to his house, although admittedly he was merely a tribute-paying owner, but also a co-proprietor of the common land." - 877, notes
  2. "A mass of 'free' and unattached proletarians was hurled onto the labour market by the dissolution of the bands of feudal retainers...the great feudal lords...created an incomparably larger proletariat by forcibly driving the peasantry from the land, to which the latter had the same feudal title as the lords themselves, and by usurpation of the common lands." - 878
  3. "the new landed aristocracy was the natural ally of the new bankocracy, of newly hatched high finance, and of the large manufacturers, at that time dependent on protective duties." - 885
  4. "The last great process of expropriation of the agricultural population from the soil is, finally, the so-called 'clearing of estates', i.e. the sweeping of human beings off them." - 889
  5. "The spoliation of the Church's property, the fraudulent alienation of the state domains, the theft of common lands, the usurpation of feudal and clan property and its transformation into modern private property under circumstances of ruthless terrorism, all these things were just so many idyllic methods of primitive accumulation. They conquered the field for capitalist agriculture, incorporated the soil into capital, and created for the urban industries the necessary supplies of free and rightless proletarians." - 895
Chapter 28: Bloody Legislation against the Expropriated since the End of the Fifteenth Century. The Forcing Down of Wages by Act of Parliament

  1. "Edward VI: A statute of the first year of his reign, 1547, ordains that if anyone refuses to work, he shall be condemned as a slave to the person who has denounced him as an idler." - 897
  2. "Elizabeth, 1572: Unlicensed beggars above 14 years of age are to be severely flogged and branded on the left ear unless someone will take them into service for two years" - 897-8
  3. "The rising bourgeoisie needs the power of the state and uses it to 'regulate' wages, i.e. to force them into the limits suitable for making a profit, to lengthen the working day, and to keep the worker himself at his normal level of dependence. This is an essential aspect of so-called primitive accumulation." - 899-900
  4. "Workers' combinations are treated as heinous crimes from the fourteenth century until 1825, the year of the repeal of the laws against combinations. The spirit of the Statute of Labourers of 1349 and its offshoots shines out clearly in the fact that while the state certainly dictates a maximum of wages, it on no account fixes a minimum." - 901
Chapter 29: The Genesis of the Capitalist Farmer

  1. "This form [sharecropping] disappears quickly in England, and gives place to the form of the farmer properly so called, who valorizes his own capital by employing wage-labourers, and pays a part of the surplus product, in money or in kind, to the landlord as ground rent." - 905
Chapter 30: Impact of the Agricultural Revolution on Industry. The Creation of a Home Market for Industrial Capital

  1. "The spindles and looms, formerly scattered over the face of the countryside, are now crowded together in a few great labour-barracks" - 909
  2. David Urquhart, Familiar Words as Affecting England and the English, "Twenty pounds of wool converted unobtrusively into the yearly clothing of a labourer's family by its own industry in the intervals of other work -- this makes no show; but bring it to market, send it to the factory, thence to the broker, thence to the dealer, and you will have great commercial operations, and nominal capital engaged to the amount of twenty times its value...The working class is thus amerced to support a wretched factory population, a parasitical shop-keeping class, and a fictitious commercial, monetary, and financial system." - 911, notes

No comments:

Post a Comment