This chapter shares with students a dictionary definition of “capitalism”, and shows them that with this particular definition, there is no way to distinguish between, say, an antebellum plantation worked by enslaved Africans and a New England textile factory employing (newly proletarianised) female wage labourers. These are two value-producing systems that, for all their ties to each other, students nonetheless know have fundamental differences. The chapter introduces them to Marx’s concept of the mode of production as at least a more incisive approach than the dictionary’s, even if it is not the last word. In the Marxist strain in geography, with some exception, there is a place for concepts where affect gets its due and concepts reserved for reason/rationality. In the former one might group ideology, consciousness, fetishism, species being. To the latter most especially belongs value.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2019 The Authors/Antipode Foundation Ltd.
- Enslaved africans
- Female wage labourers
- New england textile factory
- Value-producing systems