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Are you reading Capital? The couple of chapters are the hardest. Maybe start with something like Value Price and Profit

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I am also reading Capital fam, not easy at all started over 3 times allready. I would recommend reading: A Companion to Marx's Capital by David Harvey on the side.

Thanks for your advice comrades! It's the second time I'm trying to start reading it. It's not that hard really especially after some introductory leftist literature/youtube videos.
What troubles me is the following. It makes sense that money (before abandonment of the gold standard) is a commodity. Can the same be said about fiat money? Maybe I'm supposed to figure it out when I finish all three volumes of Capital.
And I feel like a complete brainlet for not having read anything from Shakespeare except seeing some film adaptations.

It's hardly relevant to the rest of the book either which is just "hurr look at the shitty working conditions"



start with the greeks shitter, you can't understand marx until you read hegel or atleast the classical economists like ricardo and smith so you can see who he's actually arguing against

Just go through it. When you finish go back to the beginning. But it is of course very difficult if you haven't read anything substantial from other marxists, from Marx and from some philosopher in general.

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Bad advice. You don't have to know anything about Smith or Ricardo. All you have to do is live in a capitalist society and maybe go to a job for a capitalist. You don't need anything else to understand the basic thing of what about capitalism is Marx criticizing.

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I'm also reading Capital for the first time (it's actually my third try but this time I think I'm gonna make it). Currently I'm on chapter 8. All I can say to you OP is: keep trying, keep reading it, it'll all sort out.

Like anons said, the first three chapter are incredibly dense and difficult. Especially the 3rd chapter. But there are good news: you don't need to understand everything of that to get the rest of the book, at least the first volume. Of course, read it and do your best, but if you don't get something then that's completely normal and you don't have to worry at all.

You will be coming back to the first three chapters which are really crucial, but later. At least for now, you can continue your reading. Expect understanding capital and surplus value in the next few chapters, as well as some really interesting anthropological notes.

Yes, money as a commodity has a value that is proportional to the socially necessary labor time needed to produce it. But what about fiat money? it's not a commodity. It costs nearly anything. How to explain it's value in terms of LTV? Well, what marxist economists say is that types of exchange actually reflect the overall productivity of a geographical space. I'm not really that sure about that as I haven't read much, but I know that some like Shaikh treat the issue and it exists.

I would recommend the following books:
-Reading capital with Harvey
-The making of Marx's "Capital", by Rosdolsky the making of&open=0&res=25&view=simple&phrase=1&column=def

You don't have to read them all, but if you don't get something you can look for the page where this issue is explained and probably you'll have a better understanding. You can also make a thread here. Right now there are lots of threads revolving around LTV and issues like that.

Good luck OP!

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bullshit advice, it only delays the much needed understanding of Capital for the masses

sorry for double posting but, can some mod make this the reading capital general thread? it would be great for the board to have a general thread where we can all improve our understanding of this great book

Good post user. To this I would also add Reading Capital by the French frogs (Balibar, Althuserr et al) and Michael Heinrich's An Introduction to the Three Volumes of Karl Marx's Capital (which is an odd option to use in the English title it should be more like The Critique of Political Economy).

Pseud-tier advice. Marx explains himself well enough in Vol. 1 that you can do fine without reading Ricardo or Smith, and you definitely don't need the Greeks. Just patience and reading comprehension.

Doesn't he, like, argue that Marx never actually held a labour theory of value?

bro just buy a purple light and make "breadtube" videos, you will never have to open Capital or read a single line of Marx again.

Not in that book, but he did wrote an article where he says that very recently. I think he makes some really good points that are usually forgotten by economists. But he is just plainly wrong saying Marx didn't have a labor theory of value. His theory of value is labor based and this is explicit in the first chapters. However, like I said, he still makes some good points (the importance of the market for value, etc.)

Fucking idiots, you can't understand Marxism until you read Hegel or at least classical economists.

Consequently, half a century later none of the Marxists understood Marx!!

Lenin's Collected works, Vol.38 p.180

Also to that philistine who argued that it delayed the masses, please tell me how many viet cong members read Capital? The masses don't need to read a 3 volume thousands of pages book to understand who they are fighting for. That's what the Manifesto is for.

God damn it shut the fuck up. Have you ever read the book? Marx writes it in a way that is completely understandable. Of course, reading the whole history of western philosophy and thought it's great and it surely improves your understanding. The same with classical economists (which I have read). But really you barely need it to understand what Marx is saying. It helps, sure, but it's not totally necessary.

It's not about improving your understanding, it's Imperative that you read Hegel to actually understand what he's saying and why. I don't think that Ricardo or Smith or Malthus are as important as Hegel, but reading them paints the picture of what Economics was actually about during Marx's time.

And also you're literally arguing against Lenin here, you do realize that?

Lenin wrote that statement once in a private notebook and never mentioned it again. You'd think if he really believed it he'd be ordering the printing of millions of copies of Science of Logic and shoving them in the hands of anyone wishing to learn Marxist theory after the revolution, but he didn't.

Obviously reading the foundations of Marx's work will improve your understanding, but don't let this Start with the Greeks bullshit keep you from reading him at all.

Just keep reading, take some Juul hits while you're reading if you need to satisfy your screendamaged ADHD brain.

Fuck David Harvey, he is a brainlet revisionist who thinks that Marx didn't believe in the LTV.

Capital itself isn't the most important thing to read, especially starting out. There's much more foundational things you miss if you start there. Loads of vulgar Marxists can quote capital but get extremely basic things about Marx wrong. A lot of the major critiques of Marxism and problems with bad "Marxists" are things that Marx was dealing with in his time and explicitly addressed. Read these (they're short) to get some of your foundations a little stronger. Read more of his shorter stuff to get an understanding of his thought before you try to tackle the doorstopper again.

If you're reading, write down anything that confuses you or you don't get. Then go back and read your notes as you read the book. If you finish and still don't get it, keep the notes and try to find other sources on those questions.

Fuck off with this liberal rehabilitation.

We can criticize David Harvey for having misconceptions on Marx but we cannot dismiss 50 years of work off hand. He's also not a liberal. He has nuanced opinions. For example he has said things such as the "left should not fetishize organizational structure", criticizing the tendency for anarchists to focus on horizontal organization. His stance on existing socialism is fair, especially regarding China, never laying blame on the socialist states or parties but on the broader capitalist world - correctly identifying problems within those states and offering countermeasures. He advocates for radical policies we should support such as removing housing from the market. There are problems with Harvey's theory but his advice is good.

Yeah we can. Most lib shills waste their whole life on BS.

How is he a liberal?

I tried reading the critique of the Gotha program, but he keeps going, "And Lassalle said this, which is fucking stupid. Instead, my statement about so-and-so makes more sense." Feels like I need to read Lassalle first.

All you need to know about Lasalle is that he's a Jewish Nigger that Marx hates for reasons.


Think of it as shit posting
The Self and It's Own by Stirner and The section dedicated to it's critique in The German Ideology are nice and short and it's mostly just shitposting and bants on Marx's part, but there's one crucial line where Marx begins his theoretical development towards socialism in contrast to mutualism

Thanks comrade! Good luck to you as well!

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No one will listen to this advice, but it’s the only correct answer ITT. No one listens, this is why this board fails to understand Marxist science

I would recommend resnick's video lecture on marx economics, it goes through all the major points without so much fluff

Someone recommended you David Harvey's book. I haven't read it yet, but I can definitely recommend Harvey's lecture series on Capital (available on I'm currently reading the book and usually watch a next one of the lectures every time I've finished the relevant section.
Another advice would be to read it together with others and do some sort of reading group - this is what I'm actively doing with fellow members of my party. If you are you in some sort of party or org, or have socialist friends, chances are good you can find someone that will be up for this. Good luck comrade and don't give up!

read wage labour and capital

Thank you for this thread OP. I've read the first two chapters a month ago and have been putting off the 3rd because I'm intimidated by it, as it is the longest among the autistic ones before the fun starts.
I don't really like Althusser, but his advice to start with the 4th chapter might not be so bad. M-C-M' is easy to understand, because use value and exchange value are easy concepts to grasp if you've ever thought about goods and their usefulness in contrast to their price for more than five minutes.
It's probably not wise to skip them entirely, but maybe to just skim through them and do some research on the internet about the parts that are too boring to seem useful at all.

It is actually a somewhat huge debate in Marxism. I personally like Jehu's interpretation that fiat money is the result of a breakdown of exchange value, as a sort of ploy to both extract more surplus value from workers and hide the fact that commodities have less human labor embedded in them.
> inb4 tl;dr: "Inflation is class war fought by [economic] means."

You don't need to read Hegel before Capital, unless you want to become a theorycel. A few Žižek lectures and the 2nd chapter of Socialism: Utopian and Scientific should be enough for anyone to get the shtick. Reading Marx before Hegel is probably a better idea if you want to get prepared for Hegel actually, but I believe Nick Land is more important to understand how capital functions today.
You can get a good idea of the difference between classical economics vs. neoclassicals vs. Keynesians if you watch the Anwar Shaikh's lectures about the "Historical Foundations of Political Economy" and read stuff like
/lit/-style pseud-gatekeeping is very cringe tbh.

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reminder: there is a board to discuss things like this.

Should I read Smith and/or Ricardo before Marx?

don't point people to that copy-pasting faggot ismali lmao

fuck that board and that guy

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it looks like the ancap flag

That's a (mostly) leftcom board he posted to.

When did Ismail hurt you btw?

definitely not. 100% don't. read the Wikipedia summary if you have fomo.

You guys are fucking retarded if you think the LTV is hardly relevant to the Marxist analysis of capitalism.

wrong board retard

That's where you are wrong faggot.

Reading his idiotic ramblings (which are just copy pasted sentences from book, not something he would be able to write on his own it seems) on LTV and USSR.

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Let me guess, you're the trot who made that condescending thread on /marx/ and got btfo for it

Opinion discarded

Nope. I'm a guy that countered his non-arguments once and then saw that he was like a robot only being able to repeat what he copied from a book he has.

So what was the argument about?