April 21, 2008
I'm a history graduate student at Columbia University. I'm taking next year off between my second and third years of school, and I hope to use the free time to read this thing. My research project vaguely revolves around late nineteenth century political economy, the India and China trade, the formation of world markets and the international division of labor as well as the general topic of precapitalist/capitalist relations (primitive accumulation, agrarian production, plantation systems, hinterland/urban distinctions, the so-called peasant, etc.). I'm looking forward, of course, to Volume one but also the more confusing sections in volumes II and III that try to sketch out the political economic contradictions of accumulation, such as business cycles, historical crises, and the tendency for the rate of profit to fall. I care very little about what Marx said about non-European, Asiatic societies (e.g. "Marx was a racist").