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This content downloaded from on Mon, 08 Jul UTC Anselm. Jappe starting-point, at opposite up, in spite of himself, esp. Anselm Jappe disseca neste livro o pensamento de Marx e a sua evolução. Começa por explicar os conceitos básicos para se perceber Marx, como. Anselm Jappe has 20 books on Goodreads with ratings. Anselm Jappe's most popular book is Guy Debord.

You have since become arguably the best-known proponent of the Critique of Value in France. What is the Critique of Value?

How did your association with it come about and why has it come to define your work? Jappe: I conceived of my book Guy Debord not as the contemplation of some past phenomenon, but as a contribution to the elaboration of a new understanding of late capitalism and the possibilities of overcoming it.

So I was looking for other radical analyses of the sorry state of the world. Another aspect that links Situationist ideas to the Critique of Value is the critique of labor. Abstract labor means labor without quality, labor considered as pure expenditure of human energy measured by time, without any specific content.

It is therefore a destructive form of social production, since it cannot take into account its content and consequences. The production of use values exists only as a kind of appendage to value-production, which consists in the transformation of a sum of money into a bigger sum of money—and this can only be done by adding labor to labor, without any consideration of its real usefulness.

Class struggle is the form in which the historical development of the logic of value took shape. They were therefore essentially forms of immanent critique, linked to the ascending phase of capitalism, when there was still something to distribute.

But from the very start, there was a major contradiction lurking inside the process of value-production: only living labor—labor in the act of its execution—creates value.

Technology does not. However, competition between various capitals also forces every owner of capital to use technology as much as possible in order to increase the productivity of his workers. This allows him to gain more profit in the short term. However, the value contained in every single commodity also diminishes.

Only a continuous increase in the total mass of commodities can compensate this decrease in the value of each commodity, but this mechanism creates the insanity of production for the sake of production, with all of the terrible ecological consequences that we now know about.

This compensation mechanism cannot last forever and, from the s onwards, the microelectronic revolution definitively destroyed much more labor than it created. Since that time capitalism finds itself stuck in a never-ending crisis.

This crisis is no longer cyclical; rather it is caused by capitalism reaching its inner limits. Only the massive expansion of debt and of financial markets continues to mask the profound exhaustion of capitalist production. This is no longer a utopian project but rather the only possible reaction to the real end of money and value, commodity and labor, which is already taking place.

The only question is whether there will be an emancipatory outcome or a general barbarization.

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For more than twenty years now I have contributed to the elaboration and diffusion of the Critique of Value because this approach is, in my eyes at least, the only one that gets at the very core of the capitalist system instead of limiting itself to describing individual phenomena.

I am convinced that this kind of theoretical critique and its practical consequences are the only alternative to the rising tide of populism which restricts its critique to opposition to banks, speculation and the financial sphere, and which could result in a dangerous mix of left-wing and traditional right-wing opinion. Rail: Perhaps the most radical and central argument of the Critique of Value is that work or labor is an entirely negative and destructive social form that is, moreover, historically specific to capitalism.

How does your critique of work differ from traditional autonomist or anarchist critiques of work? In the best-case scenario, there was the promise that they would be abolished in some very distant future. It must be said that Marx himself was often rather ambiguous about this and sometimes questioned the supra-historical status of labor.

The goal became to free labor, not to free people from labor. The radical left only ever condemned the stranglehold that the bureaucratic apparatus had on the socialist collectivization of property, but not the role of labor itself and how it was organized.

Even anarchists tended to take part in the cult of the worker. It was only among artists, poets, and bohemians—in particular, the Surrealists—that you could find a refusal of labor. After , a rejection of labor began to emerge within some sectors of the working class, particularly in Northern Italy, and among many young people who no longer identified with spending their life working.

This refusal, however, remained subjective, without a theoretical understanding of the twofold nature of labor, and therefore led to dubious results: either praising the machines that are supposed to work in our place, which results in technophilia and an acceptance of a process whereby human beings are replaced by technology, or celebrating freelancing, in which it is believed people manage their own labor and own the means of production themselves in the information and communication sector, for example , even though they remain completely dependent on market mechanisms.

This means that labor, as such, is reduced to the simple expenditure of human energy.

As Aventuras da Mercadoria: Para uma nova crítica do valor.

The absurd tyranny of labor in modern society is the direct consequence of the structural role of abstract labor. In contrast to those who simply put these crises down to bad management or capitalist greed, how does the Critique of Value help us to understand what is going on structurally, behind the appearance of these near-fatal collapses of financial systems and national economies? When mainstream Marxism predicted a final collapse, it always assumed that this would take the form of a political revolution that would result from the intolerable conditions created by capitalist exploitation.

There is, however, a very important factor that was not considered: the shrinking of the mass of value and profit in the long run that I mentioned before.

This problem appeared only in a limited way: the fall of the rate of profit.

After capitalism was able to successfully incorporate immanent critiques into itself, particularly during the Keynesian-Fordist boom that followed the second World War, many Marxists became definitively convinced that capitalism would never encounter another economic crisis and that only subjective discontent could bring about its overcoming.

The Situationists, like the Frankfurt school, held completely to this perspective.

As I mentioned before, however, this totally changed after the s. The accumulation of capital reached its limits because its base, the extraction of surplus value from living labor, became smaller and smaller as the importance of living labor continuously waned.

The result is that capitalism is now only able to survive through simulation; that is, by anticipating future profits—which will never arrive—through credit. This sensation of rushing and wandering outside the boundaries of what is considered safe and normal provides the extreme with its adrenaline-charged response of excitement or horror.

The analyses contained in this volume consider a number of manifestations of the extreme litteraire.

Similar authors to follow

The ambiguities of gender in medieval romance are explored in the context of the Arthurian court. The 19th century is examined through the prose poems of Baudelaire and the litterature sauvage of the Zutistes.

The difficulties of writing the trauma of war and genocide in the 20th century are discussed through the work of Jorges Semprun and Agota Kristof. The contemporary extreme in French literature is examined in the autofiction of Christine Angot, the work of Annie Ernaux, Catherine Millet, the controversial novels of Michel Houellebecq, and the worldwide influence of the Marquis de Sade on writing today.

This is a major transformation that is not always given sufficient attention. Gradually, every activity, every thought or feeling, within capitalist societies, took the form of a commodity or could be satisfied by commodities.

All of this is well known and it would be superfluous to repeat it here. But what has not been presented with sufficient clarity is the fact that, due to this development, capitalist society no longer appears to be divided into merely rulers and ruled, exploiters and exploited, managers and managed, executioners and victims.

Capitalism is, in an increasingly more obvious way, a society governed by the anonymous, blind, automatic and uncontrollable mechanisms of value production. Everyone seems to be simultaneously participants in and victims of this mechanism, even though, of course, the various roles assumed and the compensations received are not the same.

In the classical revolutions, and at their high point in the Spanish Revolution of , capitalism was fought by populations that perceived capitalism as an external force, an imposition and an invasion. Against this external force, they opposed totally different human values, and ways and goals of life.

Although we do not have to idealize them, they constituted a kind of qualitative alternative to capitalist society.

Whether or not they recognized this fact, these movements derived a large part of their power from their being rooted in certain pre-capitalist customs: in their predilection for the gift, generosity, life in common, scorn for material wealth as an end in itself, and in another way of perceiving of the passage of time….

Marx had to admit during the last few years of his life that what remained of the ancient collective property in land among numerous peoples could constitute a basis for a future communist society.

Today, these forms still exist, above all among the indigenous peoples of Latin America and I leave it up to you to decide if they can form the basis of a future emancipated society that has deep roots in the past. I guess your answer is yes…. Their demands must be understood as essentially related to the conditions of their participation in this realm, as was previously the case with the classical workers movement.

Whether it takes the form of a wage conflict mediated by the trade unions or a revolt in the suburban fringe, the issue is almost always access to the wealth of commodity society. There is no doubt that such access is generally necessary for survival in the commodity society.

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But it is equally true that these struggles do not raise the demand of abolishing the current system and creating other ways of living. He lacks the subjective foundations for liberation, and therefore also the desire for liberation, because he has internalized the capitalist way of life competition, success, speed, etc. In general, his protests are indicative of his fears of being excluded from this way of life, or of not being able to attain it; on very few occasions they are a reflection of his mere rejection of this way of life.

Commodity society has exhausted the living sources of imagination among children, who are surrounded from their very first years with veritable de-cerebration machines.

The protest movements that are now appearing on the scene do not lack a certain ambiguity. Often, people protest simply because the system did not keep its promises. In this manner, they demonstrate for the defense of the status quo, or rather the status quo ante.

Let us take a look at the Occupy Wall Street movement and its spin-offs. In this case, it is the financial sector that is held responsible for the current crisis. It is claimed that the financial sphere rules the economy, and ultimately society as a whole. According to the currently widespread critique of finance, the banks, the insurance companies, and the speculative funds are not investing in real production but divert almost all available money towards speculation that only enriches the speculators, while destroying jobs and generating poverty.

Finance capital, so they say, can impose its law even on the governments of the most powerful countries, when it does not actually just download their cooperation. They also download the media. Thus, democracy is being evacuated of all substance. But, just how sure are we that the absolute power of the financial sphere and the neoliberal policies that support them are the primary cause of the current disruption?

What if, to the contrary, they are only the symptom of a much more profound crisis? Far from being a factor that disrupts an economy that is itself healthy, speculation is what has allowed the economy to preserve the fiction of capitalist prosperity for the last several decades.

Without the crutches offered by financialization, market society would already have collapsed, along with its jobs and its democracy. What the financial crises herald is the exhaustion of the basic categories of capitalism: commodity and money, labor and value. It is instead necessary to understand the highly destructive nature of money, of the commodity, and of the labor that produces them.

To petition capitalism to become healthy again, to carry out a more equitable distribution and to become more just, is an illusion. The current catastrophes are not the result of a conspiracy on the part of the greediest fraction of the ruling class; they are instead the inevitable consequences of the problems that have always been inseparable from the very nature of capitalism. Living on credit is not a perversion susceptible to reform, but more like the last gasp for capitalism and all those who live in this system.

The only choice left is a real critique of capitalist society in all its aspects, and not just its neoliberal guise.

Anselm Jappe: La fin du capitalisme ne sera pas une fin pacifique

Capitalism is not just the market: the State is its other face while it is at the same time structurally subject to capital. The State can never be a public forum for sovereign decision-making. Even under the dual denomination State-Market, capitalism is not, or is no longer, a mere coercive power that is imposed from the outside upon always-refractory subjects.Rail: Finally, what do you think the development and shape of a movement of human emancipation might look like in the best possible scenario?

I get the impression that this is much less common these days. And why do you think your approach to his work still resonates so strongly? For more than twenty years now I have contributed to the elaboration and diffusion of the Critique of Value because this approach is, in my eyes at least, the only one that gets at the very core of the capitalist system instead of limiting itself to describing individual phenomena.

Taken together, these essays demonstrate that the quality of the extreme can be applied to a great number of texts for different reasons and from myriad perspectives.

KARIMA from Murfreesboro
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