An Addendum to Capitalism Without Being…..Smuggling in Postone

Just a brief addendum to the previous post, and obviously the thinkers to be involved are Marx, and most crucially the more oblivious Moishe Postone. The former’s work is the decisive reference point for all the other theorists of accelerationism, insofar as the latter remains in many ways an ultra-Marxist heresy developing from a critical appropriation of certain key Marxist insights, and consequently deemed a place intended to venture into the hypothesis of a “capitalism in-itself”. It’s not clear if such a concept can be cogently articulated. Unless the scope and depth of this critique is clearly laid out, any subsequent extrapolation risks falling flat cannot be ruled out. One particular Marxist text seems particularly apt in this context: Moishe Postone’s “Time, Labour, and Social Domination”, (the review of it could be read here), which is perhaps the most interesting corrective to orthodox Marxian critical theory. Postone argues that for Marx it is capital, not labour, that is the subject, so that the key to the supersession of exploitation, expropriation lies not in the liberation of labour but in a transformation of the capitalist mode of production that will release alienated social labor. This is a controversial analysis within Marxist circles, and Postone remains conventionally humanist at bottom, but his account provides a rather useful traction for the confrontation between Marxism and accelerationism.

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