The Tudor revolution

July 2024 Forums General discussion The Tudor revolution

Viewing 14 posts - 301 through 314 (of 314 total)
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  • #208039
    DJP
    Participant

    “I thought, as merchants, financiers, pirates and slavers they were the same old bourgeoisie.”

    Strange that you put pirates in this list. Pirates would come from a variety of social classes (it was one option for runaway slaves) and piracy and capitalism are definitely not the same things, in fact, the rise of capitalism would be the demise of piracy. Piracy is bad for the business of capitalists.

    #208040
    Wez
    Participant

    DJP – Perhaps I should have called them ‘privateers’ as I had Drake and others of his ilk in mind.

    #208041
    DJP
    Participant

    ‘Privateers’ and pirates are the same thing, just depends on what side of a state line you’re standing. As I’m sure you’ll agree. Still fail to see how they are capitalists though…

    #208046
    Wez
    Participant

    DJP – I think that I got the idea from Hill that they amassed such wealth that they became capitalists. If we’re mistaken I’m sure someone on here will have evidence to the contrary.

    #208058
    alanjjohnstone
    Keymaster
    #208060
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    At he beginning of the COVID 19 pandemic the Europeans powers and the USA became pirates stealing from each others medical equipment and accessories, like the old days of the Buccaneers,  Filibusters and Francis Drake  in the Caribbean islands, the USA is the Tortola island, the head office of all pirates and thieves

    #208093
    alanjjohnstone
    Keymaster

    A new word for me “A techno-feudalistic society”

    – monopoly control in nearly every industry and sector of society, and the populace pushed further and further into debt with various forms of rent that must be paid to landowners, corporate utilities, rising food costs, insurances, and taxes and fees,  … petitioning the lords of the manors while we toil as serfs and give away our labor for a pittance.

    https://dissidentvoice.org/2020/10/nobody-for-president-voting-legitimizes-a-fraudulent-democracy/

    #208094
    LBird
    Participant

    robbo, if you (or anyone else) is minded to look further into the Brenner/Wood thesis, and explore the differences between ‘Political Marxism’ (idealism-materialism) and ‘Orthodox Marxism’ (materialism), have a read of:

    The Origin of Capitalism in England 1400-1600 by Spencer Dimmock, Haymarket (2015), which is part of the Historical Materialism book series.

    #208096
    ALB
    Keymaster

    “A techno-feudalistic society”

    Another example of how the word “feudalism” has come to be associated with directly political forms of economic exploitation. It was the ideologists of bourgeois revolutions that made “feudalism” a dirty word, so using it in this way is a tribute to their success. There are better words to describe this sort of thing, which don’t give credit to these ideologues and which they won’t like, such as “crony capitalism” and “oligarchy”.

    Incidentally, I think the old Deleonist SLP of America used to call the state capitalist USSR “industrial feudalism”.

    #208167
    ALB
    Keymaster

    This article from the Socialist Standard of May 1919 describes the English Revolution in the following way:

    ”By the time the bourgeois had arrived at wealth, then, and desired to become the ruling power, the Crown had secured the powers of government into its own hands, but at the same time, the necessities of the regal exchequer had compelled the feudal party to concede certain privileges and powers to the new class, and in this way the former helped to dig its own grave.

    At the outbreak of the Revolution the parties taking part were : The Court Party, the lords and large landed proprietors ; the merchants ; the small farmers or country squires ; the town shop-keepers ; the political adventurers or opportunists ; and underneath all the poor of town and country.

    The actual struggle commenced in 1642, when the Commons strove for the right to control the militia, and so take the military power out of the royal hands. In spite of the refusal of Charles to grant this request the militia were rapidly enrolled and lord lieutenants appointed.

    The Lords desired to limit kingly power, the Commons to abolish it. In the early part of the war the Lords or Presbyterian party predominated and the policy of compromise was adopted. Underneath the Lords, however, were the Independents, growing daily in strength, menacing the policy and position of the Lords, and eventually compelling them to go over to the Court.

    The Independents appealed only to Reason. Institutions, laws, customs everything, was by them brought before the bar of Reason and called upon to order itself according to the will of man, i.e., mercantile man. Equality of Rights, the “just” distribution of social property, was their cry.

    The principal figure in this party was Oliver Cromwell, a country squire of Hundingdonshire. Cromwell was a descendant of the unprincipled adventurer chosen by Henry VIII. as his chief instrument in the confiscation of the monastic lands, in which, process Cromwell the elder succeeded, by embezzlement, in amassing an enormous amount of wealth. Cromwell’s parents had further augmented the monastic spoils by the profits derived from a lucrative brewery business. Such were the origin and connections of the man who was to lead the wealthier merchants to victory.

    He organised a band of religious zealots drawn from the ranks of farmers and tradesmen, who contributed much to the earlier successes of the Parliamentary forces and also considerably exalted the power of their commander.

    As the war progressed the Independents gradually gained the ascendant, and Charles I. was executed Jan. 30, 1648.

    By 1649 the Independents had become strong enough to declare a commonwealth with a single House of Commons and Council of State, Cromwell managing to manoeuvre himself into the position of Lord Protector. The final working out of this was that all the executive power was centred in his hands. Then commenced the much desired epoch of the Merchants.“

    #208222
    alanjjohnstone
    Keymaster

    Wolff and the fascist threat as he talks about feudalism

    https://www.alternet.org/2020/10/how-fascism-converged-with-capitalism-to-redefine-government/

    ‘…In decentralized feudalisms, lords wielded state-type powers alongside their economic positions directing production by their subordinated serfs. Eventually, when pandemics, long-distance trade, serf revolts, or divisive warfare among lords (as dramatized in Shakespeare’s plays) threatened feudalism, a centralized state arose from among contending lords. That state—a supreme lord or king—shared social power with the hierarchy of what we might call “private” lords to reproduce feudalism. In medieval Europe, strengthened feudal states evolved into absolute monarchies. Those were tight alliances between kings and hierarchies of lords within boundaries defining different nations. Those tight alliances deployed violence against serfs, serfs’ revolts, rebellious lords, external threats, and one another…’

    #224454
    ZJW
    Participant

    Regarding the ‘Why England?’ question —

    1) Aside from Meiksins Wood’s book ‘The Origin of Capitalism: A Longer View’ (easily downloadable free from libgen) also see George Comninel’s 2000 ‘English Feudalism and the Origins of Capitalism’ which can be read at http://www.yorku.ca/comninel/courses/ComninelPDF/English_feudalism(JPS).pdf . An earlier version of it was favorably referred to in a footnote in an previous book by Meiksins Wood.

    The abstract of the Comninel is the following:

    ‘The specific historical basis for the development of capitalism in England — and not in France — is traced to the unique structure of English manorial lordship. It is the absence from English lordship of seigneurie banale – the specific political form of parcellised sovereignty that figured centrally in the development of Continental feudalism – that accounts for the peculiarly ‘economic’ turn taken in the development of English class relations of surplus extraction. In France, by contrast, the distinctly ‘political’ tenor of subsequent social development can equally specifically be traced to the central role of seigneurie banale in the fundamental class relations of feudalism.’

    (By the way, based on both political and economic criteria, he draws a distinction between ‘manorialism’, ‘feudalism’ , and ‘absolutism’:

    ‘All three of these systems of class relations of exploitation were based upon the ‘extra-economic’ appropriation of surplus from peasants, and the differences among them are far less than the qualitative difference between capitalism and them all. Yet distinctions may be drawn between manorialism, feudalism, and absolutism in precisely the same way that Marx distinguished the extraction of labour-rent in Asia from European feudalism – specifically in relation to differing structures of extra-economic coercion of the peasants.’)

    Regarding the Bird-recommended book by Spencer Dimmock from 2014, ‘The Origin of Capitalism in England, 1400–1600’, its detailed table of contents, on Google Books, can be seen here: shorturl.at/gqvCZ . This book (likewise downloadable from libgen) ought to be reviewed in the SS.

    (Dimmock might be surprised at Bird’s characterisation of the Political Marxism current in Bird-comment #208026. Near the beginning of the chapter ‘Orthodox Marxism versus Political Marxism’, Dimmock writes:

    ‘As we shall see, the accusation of voluntarism – among other things – against Robert Brenner and Ellen Meiksins Wood (the Wood referred to in the above quote) stems from a total misreading of Brenner’s thesis and its application by Wood and other political Marxists such as George Comninel, Benno Teschke and Charles Post. Far from abandoning historical materialism, Brenner’s social-property
    relations perspective has sought to bring it to life by rejecting the tendency to teleology and techno-determinism in earlier orthodox accounts.’

    #224461
    LBird
    Participant

    ZJW wrote “Regarding the Bird-recommended book by Spencer Dimmock from 2014, ‘The Origin of Capitalism in England, 1400–1600’, its detailed table of contents, on Google Books, can be seen here: shorturl.at/gqvCZ . This book (likewise downloadable from libgen) ought to be reviewed in the SS.

    (Dimmock might be surprised at Bird’s characterisation of the Political Marxism current in Bird-comment #208026. Near the beginning of the chapter ‘Orthodox Marxism versus Political Marxism’, Dimmock writes:

    ‘As we shall see, the accusation of voluntarism – among other things – against Robert Brenner and Ellen Meiksins Wood (the Wood referred to in the above quote) stems from a total misreading of Brenner’s thesis and its application by Wood and other political Marxists such as George Comninel, Benno Teschke and Charles Post. Far from abandoning historical materialism, Brenner’s social-property
    relations perspective has sought to bring it to life by rejecting the tendency to teleology and techno-determinism in earlier orthodox accounts.’

    I think Dimmock’s book is very good introduction to the debates surrounding the ‘origins of capitalism’ between ‘orthodox Marxism’ (ie. the Engels-influenced “battle between ‘materialism’ and ‘idealism'”) and ‘political Marxism’ (ie. the Marx-influenced “unity of ‘materialism’ and ‘idealism’).

    I don’t think Dimmock would be at all surprised at my ‘characterisation’. If anyone’s interested in my claim, have a read of Dimmock’s book, and get back to me here, with any questions.

    #224462
    LBird
    Participant

    As an example of this ‘unifying’ aspect to Marx’s philosophical approach being followed by Dimmock, see p. 159, footnote 3:

    The study of conquest, battles and state and legal constitutions forms a separate discipline to social and economic history in most British academies. Bringing the two disciplines together has been one of the most interesting and hopefully fruitful aspects of my research since then.

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 8 months ago by LBird.
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