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‘Joint-Stock Company’ and ‘Share Capital’ as Economic Categories of Critical Political Economy

  • Judith Dellheim
Chapter
Part of the Luxemburg International Studies in Political Economy book series (LISPE)

Abstract

This contribution seeks to reconstruct and discuss, in an exemplary way, the evolution and use of the categories ‘joint-stock company’ and ‘share capital’ in Marx’s writings. The material considered, starting with 1844, is categorised into four periods, and guided by the two main questions: does financialisation under conditions of globalisation represent a new phenomenon, or merely the unfolding of capital relations and processes as already analysed by Marx? What are the implications of the answer to this question? In answering both questions, the impact of the second MEGA edition is of particular significance. These elaborations show how joint-stock companies and share capital have been transformed with the development of the capitalist mode of production, and how their role in the economy has changed, becoming and determining the new normality in it. Connected with this development, financialisation has developed as such. The analysis passes, then, into a more precise definition and theoretical explanation of ‘capital oligarchies’, into a conclusion on the cultural challenges facing more and more emancipatory-solidary actors, and thus into an argument for renewed engagement with the reception of Capital, Volume III in the context of a renewed ‘imperialism debate’ which will be of decisive importance for the revolutionary movement.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Judith Dellheim
    • 1
  1. 1.Rosa Luxemburg FoundationBerlinGermany

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