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Wrong TurningsHow the Left Got Lost$
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Geoffrey M. Hodgson

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780226505749

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226505916.001.0001

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Marxism’s Wrong Turnings: Class War and Wholesale Collectivization

Marxism’s Wrong Turnings: Class War and Wholesale Collectivization

Chapter:
(p.78) Chapter 5 Marxism’s Wrong Turnings: Class War and Wholesale Collectivization
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Wrong Turnings
Author(s):

Geoffrey M. Hodgson

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226505916.003.0006

This is the first of two chapters on Marxism. It critically examines the Marxist notion of class struggle, with its elevation of the proletariat as the ‘universal class.’ It argues that the Marxist depiction of class as the most basic social unit is incoherent, because the definition of class itself depends on prior legal relations. The chapter also examines the incipient utopia in Marxism of a future planned economy. It summarizes diverse criticisms of collective planning from Albert Schäffle to Friedrich Hayek. Marx ruled out an economy consisting of autonomous worker cooperatives, but such a scheme is more viable than nationwide collectivization and the abolition of markets.

Keywords:   Marxism, class struggle, comprehensive national planning, criticisms of socialism, Albert Schäffle, Friedrich Hayek, worker cooperatives

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