It claims to have obtained political freedom for everybody; to have loosed the chains which fettered civil society; to have linked together different worlds; to have created trade promoting friendship between the peoples; to have created pure morality and a pleasant culture; to have given the people civilised needs in place of their crude wants, and the means of satisfying them. Meanwhile, it claims, the landowner--this idle, parasitic grain-profiteer--raises the price of the people's basic necessities and so forces the capitalist to raise wages without being able to increase productivity, thus impeding [the growth of] the nation's annual income, the accumulation of capital, and therefore the possibility of providing work for the people and wealth for the country, eventually cancelling it, thus producing a general decline--whilst he parasitically exploits every advantage of modern civilisation without doing the least thing for it, and without even abating in the slightest his feudal prejudices. Finally, let him--for whom the cultivation of the land and the land itself exist only as a source of money, which comes to him as a present--let him just take a look at his tenant farmer and say whether he himself is not a downright, fantastic, sly scoundrel who in his heart, and in actual fact, has for a long time belonged to free industry and to lovely trade, however much he may protest and prattle about historical memories and ethical or political goals. Everything which he can really advance to justify himself is true only of the cultivator of the land (the capitalist and the labourers), of whom the landowner is rather the enemy. Thus he gives evidence against himself. [Movable property claims that] without capital landed property is dead, worthless matter; that its civilised victory has discovered and made human labour the source of wealth in place of the dead thing. (See Paul Louis Courier, Saint-Simon, Ganilh, Ricardo, Mill, McCulloch and Destutt de Tracy and Michel Chevalier.)
....The real course of development
(to be inserted at this point) necessarily results in the victory of the capitalist over the landowner--that is to say, of developed over undeveloped, immature private property--just as in general, movement must triumph over immobility; open, self-conscious baseness over hidden, unconscious baseness; cupidity over self-indulgence; the avowedly restless, adroit self-interest of enlightenment over the parochial, worldly-wise, artless, idle and fantastic self-interest of superstition; and money over the other forms of private property.
....Those states which sense something of the danger attaching to fully developed free industry, to fully developed pure morality and to fully developed philanthropic trade, try, but in vain, to hold in check the capitalisation of landed property.
....Landed property
in its distinction from capital is private property--capital--still afflicted with local and political prejudices; it is capital which has not yet extricated itself from its entanglement with the world and found the form proper to itself--capital not yet fully developed. It must achieve its abstract, that is, its pure, expression in the course of its cosmogony.
....The character of private property is expressed by labour, capital, and the relations between these two. The movement through which these constituents have to pass is:
....First. Unmediated
or mediated unity of the two.
....Capital and labour are at first still united. Then, though separated and estranged, they reciprocally develop and further each other as positive conditions.
....[Second.] The two in opposition, mutually excluding each other. The worker knows the capitalist as his own non-existence, and vice versa: each tries to wrench from the other his existence.
....[Third.] Opposition
of each to itself. Capital = stored-up labour = labour. As such it splits into capital itself and its interest, and this latter again divides into interest and profit. The capitalist is completely sacrificed. He falls into the working class, whilst the worker (but only exceptionally) becomes a capitalist. Labour as a moment of capital--its costs, i.e. wages of labour--a sacrifice of capital.
....Splitting of labour into labour itself and the wages of labour. The worker himself a capital, a commodity.
....Clash of mutual contradictions.


Send comments to: Lemmaesthetics@freeuk.com
The Hypertext Manuscripts of Karl Marx, Paris 1844
Copyright Gary Tedman 2001
last modified: 10/8/01 10:49:05 PM