Discussion Contributions on the Question of Capitalism’s Decadence

This section collects contributions on the topic Has Capitalism entered its Decadence since 1914? apropos of the work in progress The Falsehoods of the International Communist Current (ICC) — A Critique.

It currently presents the following essays by commentators of the latter:

November 2021

 Decline and Senility of Capitalism with Marx, Engels and Communism.

  • A critical recapitulation and determination of capitalism’s historical phase (Anibal & materia, May 22, 2020)

 Some Key Questions for Luxemburg’s Theory of Accumulation.

  • Problems for the modern day supporters of Luxemburg’s theory of total dependence on precapitalist markets (Link, November 27, 2020)

March 2021

 Capitalism is coming to an end. But how?

  • Does China’s further integration into capitalism lead to the latter’s “obsolescence”? Fredo Corvo replies to C.Mcl. (Version of March 14, 2021)

 The Decadence of Capitalism. A Discussion

  • Aníbal & materia, Inter-Rev Forum (Version of March 22, 2021)

May 2021

 Is Decadence an Economic Phenomenon?

  • Link, May 17, 2021

December 2021

What are fetters on the productive forces?

  • Link, December 11, 2021

January 2022

In Defense of Historical Materialism (I)

  • A Reply to Link and Aníbal (C.Mcl., January 2022. Ch 1 -4)

February 2022

In Defense of Historical Materialism (Part II)

  • A reply to Link and Aníbal, continued (C.Mcl., Ch. 5: February 2002; Ch. 6&7 have been added on April 9, 2022)

March 2022

Understanding the decline of a mode of production (I) 

  • Response by Link to “In Defense of Historical Materialism” (February 28, 2022)

May 2022

On the text by C.Mcl. “In Defense of Historical Materialism”

  • Aníbal, January 26, 2022. Revised and supplemented version of May 28.

This section may be updated with new contributions. We invite interested readers to send in their commentaries and/or contributions. Please observe the modalities mentioned in the Colophon.

Last updated: May 31, 2022.

1 thought on “Discussion Contributions on the Question of Capitalism’s Decadence”

  1. A first reply to Fredo
    We welcome the foregoing exposition of his point of view by Fredo, partly on our request, and the first English translation of Pannekoek’s 1916 article on “the economic necessity of imperialism”, by a joint effort, as contributions to the discussion on these pages apropos of C.Mcl.’s analysis and critiques of certain conceptions of capitalism’s decadence.
    In the first place, they clarify what is meant by the rather sibylline and defiant comments we initially received from Fredo, together with a historic text that, to our knowledge, has hitherto remained unknown to readers outside of the Dutch language area.
    Having said this, we think this contribution, in a way, “surpasses” any controversy about the precise criteria and characteristics of capitalism’s decadence, and thereby supersedes the question this discussion has departed from: whether the First World War (1914 – 1918) can and must be seen as its first and irreversible historic manifestation, as its author considers any “theory of decadence (…) not only contrary to reality but (..) also to the theoretical foundations of Marxism”.
    On our part, we think the comrade is profoundly mistaken in this respect and, as a consequence, takes a departure by himself from the “theoretical foundations of Marxism” he intends to defend. To substantiate this, our first reply consists in recalling these foundations by means of some extracts from the ‘Anti-Dühring’ that, in our opinion, quite explicitly show that the founders of ‘historical materialism’ indeed considered the course of any historical mode of production as characterized by an ascending and a descending branch (see Classics of Marxism – Famous Quotes and Extracts on this site). We think this provides at least one instance, and not a minor one, that “proves [the comrade] wrong”.
    Far from considering this primordial issue, or indeed Fredo’s other and very interesting considerations and objections, as being exhausted, we reflect on a more elaborate reply.
    Henry Cinnamon, May 2021.

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