by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, introduction by Zak Cope and Torkil Lauesen
Originally compiled and edited by the Communist Working Circle (CWC), in 1972, this is a republished collection of excerpts from the corpus of Marx and Engels. These show the evolution of Marx and Engels's ideas on the nascent labor aristocracy and the complicating factors of colonialism and chauvinism, with a focus on the British Empire of their time.
This edition of "On Colonies" includes a substantial introduction by Marxist economist Zak Cope and former CWC member Torkil Lauesen, centering these concepts in theory and history. Cope and Lauesen show how Marx and Engels's initial belief that capitalism would extend seamlessly around the globe in the same form was proven wrong by events, as instead worldwide imperialism spread capitalism as a polarizing process, not only between the bourgeoisie and the working class, but also as a division between an imperialist center and an exploited periphery.
This fundamental contradiction gave capitalism completely new conditions of growth and accounts for its tragic longevity. Both foundational and indispensable, "On Colonies" provides a useful introduction to "Third Worldist" analysis of global capitalism, tracing its roots back to Marxism's earliest works.
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