Thursday, June 21, 2007

Studies in Language and Capitalism

For those who tire of reading sociobiological explanations of language check out this article by Marnie Holborow.

Putting The Social Back Into Language: Marx, Volosinov and Vygotsky

In other items of interest:

"In a speech, President JF Kennedy said that if only Karl Marx "had remained a foreign correspondent, history might have been different". How wrong he was, argues Christopher Hitchens. Much of Marx's writing during his years as a hack was a passionate defence of the values that were to inform his political philosophy."

Links courtesy of Book Forum (formerly Political Theory Daily.)

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Marx in China

It's been a while since I posted on here folks. Anyone still watching?

Here is an article by William Pesik who contemplates how Marx would view China and it's emerging capitalist economy.

"Karl Marx is back in China, and the philosopher is arguably bigger than ever."

Karl Marx Is Back, and Punting on Chinese Stocks:

"It's interesting, then, that China's markets in some respects are looking more like the kinds envisioned by Marx than by laissez-faire champion Friedman.

Mao Zedong fancied himself an heir to Marx. Today, when investors look at China's 11 percent growth and domestic reforms, the Marxist theory China subscribed to back in the 20th century seldom comes to mind.

And were Marx to visit modern-day China, he might be distressed to see how the rich are flourishing and a sizeable portion of gross domestic product comes from private companies, while the poor need to pay for education and health care. China also hopes one day to arrive at a system where markets control the prices of goods, production and labor.

Yet something about China's spectacular stock rally has Marx written all over it.

One of the German-born philosopher's main worries about free markets was a ``reserve army of labor,'' a huge labor pool that would prevent wages from rising and benefit only corporations that exploited workers. In today's China, a reserve army of individual investors is stepping forward to boost stock prices.

Ignoring Greenspan."