Numéro 53 :  Histoire globale

Avril 2013

Ce numéro est disponible en ligne sur le site du Cairn
http://www.cairn.info/revue-actuel-marx.htm


[Sommaire]      [Auteurs]       [Abstracts]
 

Le concept d’« histoire globale » recouvre aujourd’hui différentes entreprises de renouvellement des études historiques. C’est plus spécifiquement le courant qui s’est organisé autour du paradigme du « système-monde » qui est considéré ici, d’une part parce qu’il est le lieu de nouveaux rapports des historiens à Marx, et d’autre part parce qu’il invite à transformer le cadre général de la conception matérialiste de l’histoire.
En donnant la parole à des théoriciens majeurs de ce courant, il s’agit de confronter différentes orientations, d’examiner les principaux concepts en jeu, et plus généralement, de comprendre ce qu’il advient des traditions théoriques et politiques issues de Marx quand le passé, le présent et l’avenir semblent soudain réinventés par un tout autre esprit historique.

 

 

SOMMAIRE

Présentation
Dossier : Histoire globale

Entretien avec I. WALLERSTEIN, Une crise globale qui attend encore sa résolution
Barry K. GILLS, La Théorie du Système Monde (TSM) : Analyse de l'histoire mondiale, de la mondialisation et de la crise mondiale
Philippe BEAUJARD, Systèmes-mondes anciens. Processus de domination, de co-évolution et de résistance. L’exemple de la côte est-africaine avant le XVIIe siècle
Pierre NOREL, L’émergence du capitalisme au prisme de l’histoire globale
Yves David HUGOT, Où et quand le capitalisme est-il né ? Conceptualisations et jeux d’échelle chez Robert Brenner, Immanuel Wallerstein et André Gunder Frank
Pierre CHARBONNIER, Le rendement et le butin. Regard écologique sur l’histoire du capitalisme
Jacques BIDET, Le marxisme face à l’histoire globale

Interventions

Jean VIOULAC, Révolution et démystification dans la pensée de Karl Marx
André TOSEL, La démocratie entre conflit social et conflit identitaire
Paulo NAKATANI, Rémy HERRERA, Notes sur Keynes et la crise. Hier et aujourd’hui

En débat

S. HABER, F. MONFERRAND, Un capitalisme infini ? À propos de P. Dardot, C. Laval, Marx, Prénom : Karl

Livres

AUTEURS

Philippe BEAUJARD est ingénieur agronome, ethnologue et historien, est directeur de recherche émérite au CNRS et membre du Centre d’Études des Mondes Africains (CEMAf). Il est l’auteur de plusieurs ouvrages d’ethnologie et de linguistique consacrés à Madagascar. Il a dirigé, avec Laurent Berger et Philippe Norel, Histoire globale, mondialisation et capitalisme (La Découverte, 2009). Et il vient de publier une somme de 1200 pages en deux volumes : Systèmes-mondes anciens. Processus de domination, de co-évolution et de résistance. L’exemple de la côte est-africaine avant le XVIIe siècle (Armand Colin, 2012).

Jacques BIDET, philosophe, professeur émérite à l’Université Paris-X, est directeur honoraire de la revue Actuel Marx et membre de SOPHIAPOL. Dans le cadre d’un programme désigné « théorie métastructurelle de la modernité », il a notamment publié Théorie générale, Théorie du droit, de l’économie et de la politique (Puf, 1999) ; Explication et reconstruction du Capital (Puf, 2004) ; Altermarxisme, Un autre marxisme pour un autre monde (avec Gérard Duménil, Puf, 2007) ; L'État-monde (Puf, 2011).

Pierre CHARBONNIER est agrégé et docteur en philosophie, chargé de recherches au CNRS (Institut Marcel Mauss). Son travail porte sur les relations entre les sciences sociales et l’environnement, les fondements de l’écologie politique ainsi que l'histoire des énergies. Il a récemment publié « De l’écologie à l’écologisme de Marx : sur l’histoire naturelle du capitalisme » (Tracés, n° 22, 2012) et « La nature est-elle un fait social comme les autres ? » (Cahiers Philosophiques, n° 132, 2013).

Barry GILLS, professeur de politique mondiale à l’Université de Newcastle, fondateur du World-Historical Systems Theory Group. Il a collaboré avec le dernier André Gunder Frank dans la formulation de la théorie du Système Monde. Ses écrits portent sur l’économie politique du développement, la mondialisation et les politiques de résistance : Globalization and Global History (avec W.R. Thompson, Routledge, 2006), Globalization in Crisis (Routledge, 2011), André Gunder Frank and Global Development (avec Patrick Manning, Routledge, 2012), People Power in an Era of Global Crisis, avec Kevin Gray (à paraître, Routledge).

Stéphane HABER est professeur de philosophie à l’Université Paris-Ouest-Nanterre. Il a récemment publié : L’Aliénation (Puf, 2007); L’Homme dépossédé (CNRS Éditions, 2009) ; Freud sociologue (Bord de l’Eau, 2012) ; Freud et la théorie sociale (La Dispute, 2012) ; Penser le néocapitalisme (Prairies Ordinaires, 2013).

Rémy HERRERA est chercheur au CNRS (UMR 8174 Centre d’Économie de la Sorbonne) et enseigne à l'Université de Paris 1. Il a récemment publié Un Autre Capitalisme n'est pas possible (Syllepse, 2010) ; Dépenses publiques et croissance économique (L’Harmattan, 2010) ; Les Avancées révolutionnaires en Amérique latine (Parangon, 2010).

David HUGOT, professeur agrégé de philosophie au lycée Montesquieu d’Herblay (95), a été certifié d’histoire-géographie. Il prépare à l’Université Paris-Ouest-Nanterre une thèse de doctorat intitulée « Système social et histoire mondiale chez Immanuel Wallerstein ».

Frédéric MONFERRAND est doctorant contractuel en philosophie à l'Université de Paris-Ouest-Nanterre. Sa thèse porte sur le rapport entre ontologie sociale et théorie du capitalisme chez Marx. Il a co-dirigé avec Vincent Chanson et Alexis Cukier un ouvrage sur la réification à paraître en 2013 aux éditions La Dispute.

Paulo NAKATANI est professeur d'économie à l’Université fédérale d'Espirito Santo à Vitoria au Brésil, ancien président de la Société brésilienne d'économie politique (SEP) et directeur de la revue de la SEP. Il a publié plusieurs ouvrages, notamment Que e o capital ficticio, co-écrit avec Rosa Maria Marques et édité par Brasiliense (Sao Paolo, 2009).

Philippe NOREL, économiste, maître de conférences à l’Université de Poitiers et chargé de cours à Sciences-Po. Il a publié notamment L’Invention du Marché, une histoire économique de la mondialisation (Seuil, 2004), co-dirigé Histoire globale, mondialisations et capitalisme (La Découverte, 2009) et vient de rééditer L’Histoire économique globale (Points-Seuil, 2013).

Jean VIOULAC est professeur agrégé et docteur en philosophie, auteur de L’Époque de la technique. Marx, Heidegger et l’accomplissement de la métaphysique (Puf, 2009) et de La Logique totalitaire. Essai sur la crise de l’Occident (Puf, 2013).

André TOSEL, professeur émérite à l’Université de Nice, a récemment publié : Penser l'histoire. Le XVIII Brumaire de Louis Napoléon Bonaparte de Karl Marx (Belin, 2007) ; Un monde en abîme. Essai sur la mondialisation capitaliste (Kimé, 2008) ; Spinoza ou l'autre (in)finitude (L'Harmattan, 2008) ; Le Marxisme du XXe siècle (Syllepse, 2009) : Du retour du religieux. Scénarios de la mondialisation culturelle I (Kimé, 2011) ; Civilisations, cultures, conflits. Scénarios de la mondialisation culturelle II (Kimé, 2011).

Immanuel WALLERSTEIN, sociologue et historien américain, professeur à l’Université de Yale. Initiateur de la théorie du système-monde, exposée dans The Modern World-System, son œuvre majeure, en trois volumes 1974, 1980 et 1989. Parmi ses nombreux autres ouvrages, signalons quelques traductions françaises : Le Capitalisme historique (La Découverte, 1985) ; Race, nation, classe : Les identités ambiguës (avec Étienne Balibar, La Découverte, 1988) ; L'Après-libéralisme : Essai sur un système-Monde à réinventer (Éditions de l'Aube, 1999) ; Comprendre le monde. Introduction à l'analyse des système-monde (La Découverte, 2006) ; L'Universalisme européen : de la colonisation au droit d'ingérence (Démopolis, 2008).
 

ABSTRACTS

Philippe Beaujard, Old Worlds-Systems, Processes of Domination, Co-Evolution and Resistance: the Case of the East African Coast before the Seventeenth Century
This article examines the destiny of Swahili east Africa as periphery of a world-system whose center was the Indian Ocean – point of entry of the Europeans into the system. It analyses the relations between the east African coast, with its continental hinterlands, and the Arabian, Persian, and Indian “cores” of a system characterised by exploitation, slavery, ideological and political domination, but also by the exchange and diffusion of knowledge, weaving, writing, Islam. The article thus re-examines the concepts of labour division, exchange value, money, capital, etc. It highlights the reactive and inventive capacity of Africa, hampered only by its remoteness from the great centers and by the lack of agricultural potential which elsewhere rendered possible a demographical leap and an autonomous upward leverage in power.
Keywords: the Indian Ocean, Swahili, slavery, world-system, Islam, periphery.

Jacques Bidet, Marxism in the Face of Global History
The cyclical standpoint involved in World-System theories – and which climaxes in the question “who will be the next hegemon?” – would appear to neutralize the Marxist perspective directed towards an ultimate goal which is the end of capitalism and class domination. "Global history" offers a profound renewal of our historical knowledge, questioning some of the classical claims of Marxism. In line with the argument in L’État-monde (2011), it is however argued here that one cannot be satisfied with a purely systemic conception of the present time. Modernity is the effect not only of (world) system but also of (class) structure, “classes” being understood here in terms of a state institution within a nation-state. As a result of the technological developments which it propels, capitalist modernity possesses a structural tendency leading from nation-state to a World (class) State that is involved in the World System. In this sense, the present time can be defined as that of ultimodernity. In this ecological terminus, the human species forms a (class-structured) political community. The tasks of Marxism thus return and are restated, in what is a more complex and more uncertain mode.
Keywords: world-system, global history, metastructure, world state, modernity, marxism

Pierre Charbonnier, The Yield and the Booty. An Ecological Perspective on the History of Capitalism.
This article examines the history of globalized capitalism from the perspective of the relations to the environment which it helped to construct. It proposes a definition of globalized capitalism as a form of relation to nature. If philosophy has frequently postulated that modernity is characterized by the dissociation between the natural and the social, the history of the economic take-off of the states of Western Europe throws a singular light on this hypothesis. Combining a reading of Karl Polanyi and Kenneth Pomeranz, it can be argued that the logic of commodity always tends to render invisible the relations to the environment which define capitalism. The temporal and spatial lag between those populations which live the concrete experience of the industrial revolution and the enormous natural resources required for its appearance enable us to understand how it has been possible for the representation of the economy to become so radically dissociated from its natural metabolism.
Keywords: nature, history, colonialism, energy, commodity

Stéphane Haber and Frédéric Monferrand, An Infinite Capitalism? Some Remarks on Marx, prénom : Karl by Pierre Dardot and Christian Laval
In their recent book, Marx, prénom : Karl, Paris, Gallimard, « Les Essais », 2012, 809 pages, Pierre Dardot and Christian Laval put forward the idea of a contradictory Marx. They argue that his work attempted to bring together two heterogeneous elements: a particularly bleak vision of capitalism as a powerful system endowed with the capacity to reproduce itself and extend its hegemon interminably, a conception of revolutionary will focused on the purportedly emancipatory action of the working class. The article examines the difficulties inherent to such an interpretation and it seeks to demonstrate that what we can understand as Marx’s reservations concerning such a view of the question renders his work somewhat less strange and less contradictory than Dardot and Laval would seem to suggest.
Keywords: Marx, Marxism, historical materialism, capitalism, communism

Barry Gills, The World System Theory: an Analysis of Global History, Globalization and Global Crisis
This article provides a concise summary of the distinctive concepts and historical interpretations provided by the World System theory developed by the author and the late Andre Gunder Frank. A series of contrasts are made between this new approach and that of classical Marxism and neo-Marxist Wallersteinian world-system theory. A critique is presented of the Eurocentric aspects of these other approaches and an alternative non-Eurocentric analysis is offered. The formulations of the Gills and Frank world system analysis are an attempt to preserve many elements of the Historical Materialist tradition and remain true to its critical intent, while providing a framework that responds to the framing of world development in truly world historical context, and encompasses both the past history of several millennia of world development processes and the problematic of "globalization" and global history.
Keywords: world system theory, historical materialism, globalization, global history, eurocentrism

Rémy Herrera, Paulo Nakatani, Keynes and the Crisis, Then and Now
The profound ongoing crisis has provided an opportunity for a reemergence of the arguments of John Maynard Keynes. "Keynesian" interpretations of the current crisis are numerous. Most of them only formulate what are bland "reformist" visions, aimed at the introduction of minimal alterations to the functioning of the capitalist system in order to make it survive. The article first analyzes the links between Keynes and the economic mainstream of his time; it then examines the theoretical model of crisis which he has transmitted. In conclusion, it looks at the anti-crisis policies being implemented today, asking the question whether they are or are not "Keynesian".
Keywords: economy, Keynes, crisis, anti-crisis policies, reformism

David Hugot, Where and when was Capitalism Born? Conceptualisations and Questions of Scale in the Work of Robert Brenner, Immanuel Wallerstein and André Gunder Frank
According to what is a common reading of Marx, the fully-fledged conditions of capitalism combine a particular relation of production (represented by wage-labour) and a particular state of the factors of production (arising from the industrial revolution). Such a configuration brought about the birth of capitalism in England in the second half of the eighteenth century. The need to account for certain phenomena such as the persistence of under-development in the countries of Africa or in south America in the 1970s or, by contrast, the rapid development of Asian economies from the 1990s onwards have led certain historians, sociologists and economists to reappraise the history of capitalism by way of an enlargement of the temporal and geographical perspective. Drawing on the notion of “world-economy” put forward by Fernand Braudel, Immanuel Wallerstein has consequently located the birth of capitalism in the establishment, at the beginning of the 16th century, of a space of unequal production and exchange, polarized between center and periphery, encompassing the whole of Europe and its dependencies. Enlarging on this model, André Gunder Frank has shown that it is possible to trace back to antiquity the existence of a system of accumulation, the historical centre of which had almost always been Asia.
Keywords: marxism, world history, capitalism, Immanuel Wallerstein, André Gunder Frank

Philippe Norel, The Emergence of Capitalism in the Perspective of Global History
This article examines the question of the nature and concrete beginnings of capitalism. The essential core of agricultural, craft, commercial and military technologies which make up the context for its European emergence derive from Asia, and were sometimes linked to market economies. Does this mean that capital was therefore at work, elsewhere than in Europe? Wallerstein dates the capitalism of the modern world-system back to the emergence of European hegemony. Frank and Gills postulate capitalism’s pluri-millenial existence, whereas for Braudel, going beyond Marx and Weber, it does not really affirm itself before high-seas trading achieved its positions of monopoly and domination over state authorities. In order to focus the debate on the places and epochs of the birth of capitalism, Morel here proposes to distinguish between « active merchant capitalism », market systems, and capitalism. He therefore proposes a more complex model, based on the interaction between merchant logic and state or territorial logic, which eventually leads, in line with the approach of Arrighi or Mielants, from the diffuse capitalism of the merchants to the modern concentrated capitalism.
Keywords: capitalism, merchant capital, diasporas, the Indian ocean, market economy, Marx, Weber, Braudel.

André Tosel, Democracy between Social Conflicts and Identity Conflicts
This article draws a distinction between social struggles, which cannot be understood without reference to the opposition between capital and labour, and struggles about identity. Social conflicts or class struggles are rooted in the affirmation of the generic determinations (life, work, language). They involve a univeralist dimension which is inscribed in the questioning of the imperial universal characteristic of global capitalist domination. Identity conflicts are grounded on the acknowledgement of certain determinations relating to forms of belonging which have been denied or been dominated and are organised around the opposition between « us » and « them ». Their object is the recognition of what is deemed to be necessary within these identities. This tension requires reexamining, without its being construed as a version of the old structure/superstructure dualism. The pure logic of capitalism is always invested within and over-determined by the dialectic of anthropological differences, for which there is no ultimate resolution. These differences are always bound up with the affirmation of life, work, and speech. It therefore follows, in political terms, that we must avoid the autonomisation of either of these conflicts and that we must therefore take into account the unending movement from one to the other.
Keywords: class struggle, anthropological difference, identities, recognition, emancipation, capitalism, globalisation

Jean Vioulac, Revolution and Demystification in the Thinking of Karl Marx
Marx’s aim is to criticize capitalist economy from a scientific point of view. To do so, he operates within the field of classical economics, whose scientific aspect he fully acknowledges. The claim of science is to propose what are universal and necessary laws to which individuals can only submit. The scientific approach of economy thus reduces any protest to the status of a mere utopia. The entire Marxian criticism is based on a fundamental ontological decision which re-defines the subjective activity of the living individual agents as the source of reality, thus re-considering the theoretical field as an emanation of their real process. In this way, Marx highlights the mystification specific to theoretical logic. However he simultaneously discovers “the prosaically real, and by no means imaginary, mystification” inherent to the capitalist production apparatus, and which produces the “phantasmagoric form” of value. This explains why the Revolution, from both the theoretical and the practical point of view, can be defined as demystification.
Keywords: capitalism, speculation, mystification, critique, revolution

Immanuel Wallerstein, Dynamics of (Unresolved) Global Crisis: Thirty Years Later
The world-system is in a structural crisis. This is not merely a downturn in some parameters, but a moment when the system as a system has moved too far from equilibrium and bifurcates. There are then two alternatives, and the political struggle is over which of the two alternatives is ultimately "chosen" as a result of an infinity of nano-actions by an infinity of actors at an infinity of nano-moments. The outcome cannot be predicted, but it is certain that one of the two branches of the bifurcation will eventually prevail. The article traces how a capitalist world-economy normally functions and how the processes of permitting the maximum accumulation of capital self-exhaust over time, leading to the structural crisis. It traces the mode of functioning of the two principal cyclical rhythms of the historical system - the Kondratieff curves and the hegemonic curves - and why they have now come close to asymptotes they cannot cross. It also traces the impact of the world-revolution of 1968 on the capacity of the system to sustain its geoculture, and the return to independent operation of both the conservative right and the radical left, now liberated from the constraints of the liberal center.
Keywords: world-system, structural crisis, world-economy, capitalism, Kondratieff, geoculture, 1968