Social Scientist. v 7, no. 77 (Dec 1978) p. 3.

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On Marxian Economics

THREE events seem to have contributed a good deal to the recent upsurges of interest in Marxian economics. During the sixties and seventies the world witnessed historic transitions in south-east Asia on the one hand, and the deep economic crisis in the capitalist system on the other. About this time a large/segment of Marx's writings, hitherto inaccessible to English readers, became widely available in translation. Third, the seminal work of Piero Sraffa triggered off a fresh debate on capital theory which in due course spilled over on to the economics of Marx.

This paper is intended to take stock of the present situation. What is the present position of Marxian economics ? Where does it go from here ?


Accumulation of capital is the prime mover of capitalism. The capitalist goes to the market with a certain amount of money to buy the means of production and labour-power. Once the commodities are produced with the help of these inputs he again comes to the market, this time as a Seller. Now he gets a bigger sum of money, bigger by the amount of profit he makes. Setting aside a part of it for consumption, the rest he ploughs back into production. He thus continually expands his capital at the fastest

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