Against the Market: Political Economy, Market Socialism and the Marxist Critique

Front Cover
In this innovative book, David McNally develops a powerful critique of market socialism, by tracing it back to its roots in early political economy. He ranges from Adam Smith's attempt to reconcile moral philosophy with market economics to Malthus's reformulation of Smith's political economy which made it possible to justify poverty as a moral necessity. Smith's economic theory was also the source of an attempt to construct a critique of capitalism derived from his conception of free and equal exchange governed by natural price. This Smithian forerunner of today's market socialism sought to reform the market without abolishing the social relations on which it was based. McNally explores this tradition sympathetically, but exposes its fatal flaws.

The book concludes with an incisive consideration of efforts by writers such as Alec Nove to construct a “feasible” model of market socialism. McNally shows these efforts are still plagued by the failure of early Smithian socialism to come to grips with the social foundations of the market, the commodification of labor-power which is the key to market regulation of the economy. The results, he argues, are neither socialist nor workable.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

Origins of Capitalism and the Market
5
the Ambiguous Legacy
43
Sympathy Communication and Exchange
50
Moral Economy and the Market
58
Humanitarianism
71
Owenism and Political Economy
112
the Labour Exchange
133
Marxs
139
Marxs Economy and
154
Beyond the Market
170
The Political Economy of the Working Class
184
The Question of Calculation
197
Socialized Markets or Market Reformism?
213
Notes
225
Index
255
Copyright

from First Encounter
146

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (1993)

David McNally is Professor of Political Science at York University, Toronto. He is author of Political Economy and the Rise of Capitalism and Against the Market: Political Economy, Market Socialism and the Marxist Critique.

Bibliographic information