The Accumulation of Capital
During the years 1906-13 Rosa Luxemburg lectured on political economy at a German Social Democratic Party school of activists. While doing so she prepared a book on Marxian economics entitled Introduction to Political Economy. When about to conclude the basic draft she met with an unexpected difficulty:
I could not succeed in depicting the total process of capitalist production in all its practical relations and with its objective historical limitations with sufficient clarity. Closer examination of the matter then convinced me that it was a question of rather more than the mere art of representation, and that a problem remained to be solved which is connected with the theoretical matter of Volume II of Marx’s Capital and at the same time closely connected with present-day imperialist politics and their economic roots.
In this way Rosa Luxemburg came to write her major theoretical work, The Accumulation of Capital: A Contribution to an Economic Explanation of Imperialism (Berlin, 1913). The book is not at all easy to follow, especially for anyone not conversant with Marx’s Capital. At the same time, without doubt, Rosa Luxemburg’s contribution, whether one agrees with it or not, is one of the most, if not the most, important and original contributions to Marxian economic doctrine since Capital. (más…)