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 Post subject: Capital Volume 3 Reading Group
PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 11:25 am 
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Is anyone interested in doing a collective read through of Volume 3.

I feel like Volume 1 reading groups are a dime a dozen, but the actual part of Capital I struggle with making it through is all the fucking algebra. Having a reading group wold make it easy to be accountable in reading through without skipping anything.

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"The death of the poor man is the worst eventuality for the creditor. It is the death of his capital together with the interest."
- Marx, Comments on James Mill -

"Citizen Weston illustrated his theory by telling you that a bowl contains a certain quantity of soup, to be eaten by a certain number of persons, an increase in the broadness of the spoons would produce no increase in the amount of soup. He must allow me to find this illustration rather spoony."
- Marx, Value, Price and profit -


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 Post subject: Re: Capital Volume 3 Reading Group
PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 11:55 am 
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How do you want to do the reading group? I might be able to join in.

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 Post subject: Re: Capital Volume 3 Reading Group
PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 4:04 pm 
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We can do it on the board or via discord, either way is fine.

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"The death of the poor man is the worst eventuality for the creditor. It is the death of his capital together with the interest."
- Marx, Comments on James Mill -

"Citizen Weston illustrated his theory by telling you that a bowl contains a certain quantity of soup, to be eaten by a certain number of persons, an increase in the broadness of the spoons would produce no increase in the amount of soup. He must allow me to find this illustration rather spoony."
- Marx, Value, Price and profit -


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 Post subject: Re: Capital Volume 3 Reading Group
PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 8:07 pm 
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What time, translated to e.s.t. and day would you like to do it if done via discord? It's probably going to work out better to do it on the board.

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 Post subject: Re: Capital Volume 3 Reading Group
PostPosted: Sun May 21, 2017 8:37 am 
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Perhaps, since there's only two of us, instead of a reading group as such, we could use this as an accountability thread, give ourselves a set amount of time to read a set amount of the text, and post in here when were done. If we read faster than the set time, we can move onto the next section, which allows for a certain amount of flexibility.

By my reckoning the total body of the text is 909 pages (I have the translation by David Fernbach which was published as part of the Penguin Classics collection. If we read a section of the text equivalent to about 100 pages each week (~14 pages a day, just to give you an idea of how little that is) it would only take us 9 weeks total to finish the project. Depending on how things work out we could do it in much less, although I don't know how fast a reader you are.

A preliminary idea of how to divide the text

Chapters 1-5

Chapters 6-10

Chapters 11-17

Chapters 18-23

Chapters 24-29

Chapters 30-35

Chapters 36-40

Chapters 41-46

Chapters 47-52

This ends up being approximately 100 pages per selection. The chapter titles in my copy line up with the chapter titles on MIA, so it should amount to the same if you're reading from that copy.

If you don't have any objections, we can start now and set next Sunday as the limit for the first check in (chapters 1 through 5 inclusive).

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"The death of the poor man is the worst eventuality for the creditor. It is the death of his capital together with the interest."
- Marx, Comments on James Mill -

"Citizen Weston illustrated his theory by telling you that a bowl contains a certain quantity of soup, to be eaten by a certain number of persons, an increase in the broadness of the spoons would produce no increase in the amount of soup. He must allow me to find this illustration rather spoony."
- Marx, Value, Price and profit -


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 Post subject: Re: Capital Volume 3 Reading Group
PostPosted: Sun May 21, 2017 10:26 am 
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I'm not going to read it silly. It takes me about a week and a half to listen to the whole thing at work since I can pretty much listen to it for about 7 hours straight.

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 Post subject: Re: Capital Volume 3 Reading Group
PostPosted: Sun May 21, 2017 2:13 pm 
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Sorry we can't all be part of the labour aristocracy and get paid to listen to Marx on audiobook for seven hours a day.

Either way, first five chapters, one week.

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"The death of the poor man is the worst eventuality for the creditor. It is the death of his capital together with the interest."
- Marx, Comments on James Mill -

"Citizen Weston illustrated his theory by telling you that a bowl contains a certain quantity of soup, to be eaten by a certain number of persons, an increase in the broadness of the spoons would produce no increase in the amount of soup. He must allow me to find this illustration rather spoony."
- Marx, Value, Price and profit -


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 Post subject: Re: Capital Volume 3 Reading Group
PostPosted: Sun May 21, 2017 4:45 pm 
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I just want to tell you all that I'm fucking stupid.

It took me thirty minutes of staring at the first couple of equations in chapter 3 to work out how Marx derived the proportion p':s' = v:C... ;_;

Then I got it and now I'm stuck questioning my entire existence. But I did find this amazing Anwar Shaikh article on neo-Ricardianism, so that's a plus.

_________________
"The death of the poor man is the worst eventuality for the creditor. It is the death of his capital together with the interest."
- Marx, Comments on James Mill -

"Citizen Weston illustrated his theory by telling you that a bowl contains a certain quantity of soup, to be eaten by a certain number of persons, an increase in the broadness of the spoons would produce no increase in the amount of soup. He must allow me to find this illustration rather spoony."
- Marx, Value, Price and profit -


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 Post subject: Re: Capital Volume 3 Reading Group
PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2017 5:23 pm 
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Yea, listening to chapters like chapter 3 is one of the more taxing elements of audiobooking. A lot of pausing and restarting and coming home and glancing at the equations. C is read no differently than c is which can engender some confusion unless it is already understood.

It's fairly clear, however, that chapter 3 nicely sets us up with the mathematical basis for understanding the average rate of profit by showing the variety of ways in which the same rate of profit can be achieved with differing compositions of capital, rate of surplus labour, productivity of labour, etc. I didn't get to chapter 4 today but that's a good one, understanding the distinction between capital advanced and capital consumed in that circuit as it relates to the establishment of an average rate of profit is super important. Gotta comment too that the preface is pretty enlightening and contains this quote from Engels which I really like.

Engels wrote:
In our eventful time, just as in the 16th century, pure theorists on social affairs are found only on the side of reaction and for this reason they are not even theorists in the full sense of the word, but simply apologists of reaction.

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 Post subject: Re: Capital Volume 3 Reading Group
PostPosted: Tue May 23, 2017 3:26 pm 
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Yeah I think the main takeaway from chapter three is the understanding that the rate of profit varies in various ways according to the different rates of value and value compositions of capital.

I finished chapter four today, feeling a little sleepy. I'll probably finish chapter five tomorrow.

wrt the first two chapters, the main thing I noted was the explanations of how the surface phenomena of capitalist society are taken by political economy as the essentials, value appears as the cost-price, surplus-value as a markup to the cost price, which relates just as much to the constant as to the variable part of capital, and can be produced by circulation or mutual cheating, and the ratio of surplus-value to the total capital advanced further obscures the essential difference between constant and variable capital, leaving fixed and circulating capital as the only apparently important difference. Political economy functions by taking the appearance of capital for the essential relations and thus begins to mark itself out more and more as an ideology rather than a value free field of scientific enquiry.

_________________
"The death of the poor man is the worst eventuality for the creditor. It is the death of his capital together with the interest."
- Marx, Comments on James Mill -

"Citizen Weston illustrated his theory by telling you that a bowl contains a certain quantity of soup, to be eaten by a certain number of persons, an increase in the broadness of the spoons would produce no increase in the amount of soup. He must allow me to find this illustration rather spoony."
- Marx, Value, Price and profit -


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