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The changing 'logics' of capitalist competition
journal contributionposted on 2023-06-07, 17:38 authored by Benno TeschkeBenno Teschke, Hannes Lacher
This article criticizes contemporary attempts within the Marxist tradition to understand the current juncture of international relations in terms of either a return to classical Marxist theories of inter-imperial rivalry or ultra-imperialism. It argues instead to put the debate on a new theoretical footing that is able to capture the rich diversity of international relations and permutations of territorial orders within the entire history of capitalism since its inception in 17th-century England. It argues specifically that the system of multiple states and capitalism, rather than being causally co-emergent and co-constitutive, have historically different origins. Since the latter emerged within the former, their interrelation is not structurally determined by any ‘logic of capital’ per se or by a ‘logic of anarchy’ (or by their intersection). Rather, profound variations in capitalist international orders result from the contested construction of diverse projects of territorialization by historically situated capitalist classes and states. They are neither subject to an evolutionary long-term logic of globalization and global state-formation, nor to a recurring logic of inter-imperial rivalry, but far exceed the limits of these narrow options.
JournalCambridge Review of International Affairs
Department affiliated with
- International Relations Publications
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