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An Essay on Marxian Economics

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Language  English
Author  Joan Robinson
Subject  Karl Marx
Originally published  1942
ISBN  0333058003
Country  United Kingdom
An Essay on Marxian Economics t3gstaticcomimagesqtbnANd9GcSdoF6UEakSa1EOj
Media type  Print (Hardcover and Paperback)
Similar  Joan Robinson books, Capitalism books

An Essay on Marxian Economics is a 1942 book about Karl Marx by Joan Robinson. The first work by a major British economist to show interest in Marx since the 19th century, it has received both praise and criticism from commentators.



Robinson re-evaluates Marx positively in relation to classical orthodoxy, but argues that he contains limitations that can be remedied only by using the work of John Maynard Keynes. She completely rejects Marx's labor theory of value, and recasts his work within the framework of aggregate Keynesian variables. Robinson argues that there is a contradiction between the first and second volumes of Capital: in Capital, Volume I, Marx assumes that a rising labor productivity leads to a rising rate of exploitation, whereas in Capital, Volume III he assumes that rising labor productivity could lead, through a stable rate of exploitation, to a rising rate of real wages and a declining rate of profit.

Scholarly reception

Eric Roll, reviewing An Essay on Marxian Economics in The Yale Law Journal, called it an important work, writing that its appearance alongside Paul Sweezy's The Theory of Capitalist Development (1942) represented "a significant landmark in the development of economic thinking." Political scientist David McLellan described Robinson's work as "an impressive attempt to revitalise Marx's main economic doctrines."

Marxist theorist Ernest Mandel accused Robinson of misinterpretations of Marx similar to those of Rosa Luxemburg. He rejected her view that there is a contradiction in Capital, arguing that she fails to understand that the first and second volumes of Capital are at different levels of abstraction, deal with different questions, and make different assumptions in order to clarify the specific dynamics which allow answers to them.


An Essay on Marxian Economics Wikipedia

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