Re: [ox-en] Fundamental text by StefanMn and StefanMz - Part 2
- From: Stefan Merten <smerten oekonux.de>
- Date: Fri, 14 Mar 2008 20:08:43 +0100
Yesterday Stefan Merten wrote:
Here comes the second part.
The text is still under heavy development :-) . I added a quite
important section to this part.
Capitalism as a (historical) germ form
If we think of peer production as a new germ form then if peer
production reaches its restructuring step it will have organized
industrial production according to its own logic. And probably as
agriculture today differs largely from agriculture in the feudal ages
this type of industrialization will look differently from what we know
Mode of production as the driver
Indeed following Marxian analysis it is the *mode of production* which
was the most important driver for the change from feudalism to
something new: capitalism. It was a fundamental change in the mode of
production which changed not only the way goods are produced but the
complete social fabric and--over time--this happened on a global
basis. It was a fundamental change in the mode of production which
ended one era of mankind and started another one.
One fundamental change for the germ form capitalism was the type of
money usage and following from that the dominance of exchange based
societal forms. Of course there are lots of phenomenons which are
based on that--for instance capital and labor and its contradictions
or property relationships to name just a few. But the core of
capitalism is that success of a system based on exchange.
A germ form inside capitalism pointing to a new logic must challenge
this exchange based system or otherwise it will be absorbed by the
dominant logic. And it needs to do this in a way which can be
generalized enough otherwise it will stay a marginal phenomenon. A
germ form with the capability to overcome capitalism must be a mode of
production which works *beyond* any exchange based system--and at the
same time does a better job. Just like capitalism did a better job
The shift from feudalism to capitalism shows what a change in the mode
of production can mean once it is unleashed. Germ form theory gives us
a perspective to understand how that development happened: In
retrospective we can see how the germ form of capitalism developed.
But--with the necessary caution--germ form theory can be applied to
contemporary phenomenons as well. In the next section we will do that.
We will explain the phenomenon of peer production mainly using the
example of Free Software and show where peer production is today using
germ form theory.
Contact: projekt oekonux.de