The Origin of Das Kapital and the Conceptual and Problematic Structure of Marx’s Critique of Political Economy

Mikołaj Ratajczak

The aim of this text is to analyse the origin of Volume I of Das Kapital. I discuss the subsequent manuscripts of Marx’s project to critically present the social reality of capitalist societies. I’m trying to show, how Marx, while developing his method of a critique of political economy, worked also on the presentation of the effects of this critique, on the clarification of the scope of his research and how he changed the order of the content of the entire project. Thence the article is not an analysis of the historical aspect of Marx’s work on Das Kapital, but an attempt to present the main assumptions, goals and ideas of his critique of political economy. Moreover, the text also discusses the effects of the collective work on the new edition of Marx’s and Engel’s collected works (MEGA2) and the importance of these effects for the contemporary studies on Marx’s thought.


Keywords: Marx • Das Kapital • critique of political economy • dialectics • Marxism

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