The question of marxism and science is a bit vexed: Marx attempted something daring: a comprehensive science of history, ideology and economics, but the result has been more of a hindrance than a help. That wasn’t true at the starting point of the Second Internationale when a large audience began to zip through Capital with alacrity and enthusiasm. But the dazzle is gone now and a new perspective is needed: I think, ironically, in a more mature science audience the obsessive claims for historical materialism as science seem counterproductive. One can proceed more easily without having to defend exotic ‘science’ claims. What is needed is a critique of ideology and theory, the study of class relations in empirically given historical civilizations, and a project as recipe for action, not a theory that predicts some teleological outcome. Meanwhile the theories of classical economics, marxist or otherwise,need to be set aside so that energy can focus on the world of economic theory current.
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