Along the Steep Pathways of Political Scientist Dag Strpić in the Reading of Marx

Review article

Dragutin Lalović ; Faculty of Political Science Zagreb

Fulltext: croatian, pdf (413 KB) pages 72-106 cite

The text delineates and evaluates the principal features of the scientific approach, mode of argumentation and the possible scope of Strpić’s theoretical legacy in terms of research and analysis as well as the development of society in general. In particular, the focus is on his fundamental research of Marx’s epochal critique of political economy, presented primarily in the book Commodity Production and Associated Labour in Marx’s Critique of Political Economy (2017/1991). First of all, an account is given of Strpić’s initial programme of research into contemporary Marxian completing and developing of Marx’s “Critique” (1981/1982). The central point of the exposé is a concise overview of the main elements of Strpić’s reading of Marx’s critique of political economy. The first element is an evaluation of Marx’s reception Politička misao, god. 57, br. 2, 2020, str. 72-106 106 of classical British political theory and political economy, and of the reception of this legacy in Hegel’s philosophy. The second is a reconstruction of the logic of Marx’s apparatus of categories as the abstract sphere of “capital in general”, in distinction to the concrete sphere of competition between “many capitals”, and, within that field of research, an adequate definition of “commodity in general” as a logical starting point of the entire theoretical system and of value as law of fluctuation of market prices. Thirdly, it is apt to approach The Capital from the dynamic perspective of the theory of societal cycles and cyclical development; the tendency laws of historical development of capitalist accumulation must lead to the understanding of the structure of capital as a social process of production, circulation and reproduction. The fourth element is differentiation between the Marxian (scientific and critical) and the Marxist (ideological and class-based) approaches to the critique of political economy. This is followed by a detailed account and critical evaluation of Strpić’s intriguing view on the duality of classical political theories, which, in his judgment, is manifest as a distinction between Machiavelli’s “politicology”, which perceives politics in terms of power and ruling, and Hobbes’s “politology”, as systematic science of the civil community (Common-wealth). This then is the basis of an inquiry into Strpić’s Hobbesian politological understanding of Marx. In the final section, an attempt is made to discern the reasons for Marx’s failure to finish the project of political economy critique, which is why his interpreters are faced with almost insurmountable theoretical obstacles in their effort to develop Marx’s scientific legacy into a possible foundation of contemporary theoretical and empirical research of the major problems of our time.

Critique of Political Economy; Political Science; Marxism; Marx; Hobbes; Strpić

Hrčak ID: 244409