Marx’s Big Idea

Nicholas Potts

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Published conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


    In the above quote Marx is condemning capitalism as an inherently flawed system. Moneymaking, the valorization/self-expansion of capital, is the sole purpose of the capitalist system, with the workers’ (the society of producers) interests being completely secondary. Production is not simply for consumption; production is an end in itself. Capitalism does deliver technological progress, but, rather than this simply improving all’s wellbeing, the means of production are concentrated in the hands of capitalists, increasing inequality. Furthermore as capital expands it comes up against a barrier of its own making, as we shall explain, in the form of a tendency for the rate of profit to fall as capital is accumulated in boom. Cyclical crises are inevitable, capital must be sacrificed to restore the profit rate and again allow capital to be accumulated at a faster rate. Capitalism is historically necessary to create the material foundations (level of development/technology) on which a superior form of society can be created, with capitalism’s life span being limited precisely because of its inherently flawed nature. Marx’s economics certainly leads Marx to a revolutionary conclusion, and, given that we have not moved on to a superior form of society, economists must have scientifically superseded Marx’s analysis in the 125 years since his death?
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationThe Corporate and Social Transformation of Money and Banking
    Subtitle of host publicationBreafing the Serfdom
    EditorsCarl Adams, Simon Mouatt
    Place of PublicationBasingstoke
    PublisherPalgrave Macmillan Ltd.
    Number of pages25
    ISBN (Electronic)978-0-230-29897-2
    ISBN (Print)978-0-230-27594-2
    Publication statusPublished - 2011

    Publication series

    NameStudies in Banking and Financial Institutions
    PublisherPalgrave Macmillian


    Dive into the research topics of 'Marx’s Big Idea'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this