Book Cover
Author Banaji, Jairus, 1947-

Title Theory as history : essays on modes of production and exploitation / by Jairus Banaji
Published Leiden ; Boston : Brill, 2010
Online access available from:
ProQuest Ebook Central Subscription Collection    View Resource Record  
EBSCO eBook Academic Collection    View Resource Record  


Description 1 online resource (xix, 406 pages)
Series Historical materialism book series, 1570-1522 ; v. 25
Historical materialism book series ; 25
Contents Contents; Foreword; Acknowledgements; Chapter One Introduction: Themes in Historical Materialism; 1.1. Questions of theory; 1.2. A Marxist characterisation of 'Asiatic' régimes; 1.2.1. From the Asiatic to the tributary mode: Marx, Haldon and beyond; 1.2.2. Ruler and ruling class: configurations of the tributary mode; 1.3. Some general conclusions; Chapter Two Modes of Production in a Materialist Conception of History; 2.1. The retreat into historical formalism; 2.2. Produktionsweise as 'labour-process' and 'epoch of production'; 2.3. Levels of abstraction in historical materialism
2.3.1. Wage-labour as abstract determination and determinate abstraction2.3.2. Serf-owning capital; 2.3.3. The defining role of the laws of motion; 2.3.4. The failure of abstraction in vulgar Marxism; 2.4. Reading history backwards; 2.5. Slavery and the world-market; 2.5.1. 'Slavery'; 2.5.2. The nascent world-market; 2.6. Feudal production; 2.6.1. The estate; 2.6.2. Peculiarities of the 'second serfdom'; 2.6.3. Commodity-feudalism as the pure form; 2.6.4. Modes of production as objects of long duration; 2.6.5. Two brief conclusions; 2.7. Simple-commodity production: a 'determination of form'
2.7.1. The peasant mode of production2.7.2. The simple-commodity producer as wage-slave; Chapter Three Historical Arguments for a 'Logic of Deployment' in 'Precapitalist' Agriculture; 3.1. Part I; 3.2. Part Ii; 3.3. Part Iii; Chapter Four Workers Before Capitalism; Chapter Five The Fictions of Free Labour: Contract, Coercion, and so-called Unfree Labour; 5.1. Premises: the elusive reality of consent; 5.2. A Marxism of liberal mystifications?; 5.3. Forms of exploitation based on wage-labour; 5.4. 'Free contract' in Sartre's Critique; 5.5. Summary
7.3. Unresolved issues7.4. The reshaping of relations of production; 7.4.1. The legacy of the colonate; 7.4.2. Slavery and the post-Roman labour-force; 7.4.3. The legacy of direct management; 7.4.4. What happened to the aristocracy?; 7.5. Final comments: Wickham and modes of production; Chapter Eight Aristocracies, Peasantries and the Framing of the Early Middle Ages; 8.1. Introduction; 8.2. Aristocracies; 8.3. The agrarian watershed of the seventh century; 8.4. Critique of Wickham; 8.5. The East: vulnerability; Chapter Nine Islam, the Mediterranean and the Rise of Capitalism
9.1. Historiographies of capital
Chapter Six Agrarian History and the Labour-Organisation of Byzantine Large Estates6.1. Introduction; 6.2. A historiography of abstractions; 6.3 Rural stratification: geouchountes, ktetores and ergatai; 6.4. The case for permanent labour; 6.5. Restructuring in the later empire; 6.6. The new estates; 6.7. The labour-organisation of sixth-century estates; 6.8. Conclusion; Chapter Seven Late Antiquity to the Early Middle Ages: What Kind of Transition? (A Discussion of Chris Wickham's magnum opus); 7.1. Introduction: Marxist uncertainties; 7.2. Background to the late empire
Summary The essays collected here straddle four decades of work in both historiography and Marxist theory, combining source-based historical work in a wide range of languages with sophisticated discussion of Marx's categories. Key themes include the distinctions that are crucial to restoring complexity to the Marxist notion of a 'mode of production'; the emergence of medieval relations of production; the origins of capitalism; the dichotomy between free and unfree labour; and essays in agrarian history that range widely from Byzantine Egypt to 19th-century colonialism. The essays demonstrate the impor
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index
Notes Print version record
Subject Historical materialism.
Marxian historiography.
Form Electronic book
LC no. 2010004492
ISBN 900418368X (cloth)
9004183728 (electronic bk.)
9789004183681 (cloth)
9789004183728 (electronic bk.)