The Value Abstraction and the Dialectic of Social Development

Science and Society 56 (3):261 - 290 (1992)
The idea that human history evinces a pattern of development rooted in the propensity of human beings toward technical forms of rationality is fundamental to Marx's materialist conception of history. Yet the "dialectic of forces and relations of production" as traditionally conceived in historical-materialist discourse has found only weak expressions in social formations dominated by precapitalist modes of production. The hypothesis is advanced that the role of simple commodity production and exchange in such formations may be decisive to the emergence of cognitive faculties capable of giving a systematic impulse to the development of science and technology, and therefore to a precapitalist forces-relations dialectic. This suggests a new way of appreciating Marx's "ranking" of the Asiatic, ancient, feudal and capitalist modes of production as "progressive epochs" in the development of human society, while illuminating the socio-historical provenance (and sources of variability) of the categories of human thought.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 24,463
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Christopher J. Arthur (2008). Systematic Dialectic. In Bertell Ollman & Tony Smith (eds.), Science and Society. Palgrave-Macmillan. pp. 447 - 459.
Peter Ruben (1991). Die Philosophie Und Das Marxsche Erbe. Studies in East European Thought 42 (3):235-252.

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

6 ( #533,476 of 1,925,522 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #418,152 of 1,925,522 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.