Money versus Value?

Reconsidering the ‘Monetary Approach’ of the ‘post’-Uno School, Benetti/Cartelier, and the Neue Marx-Lektüre

In: Historical Materialism
Elena Louisa Lange Institute of Asian and Oriental Studies, University of Zurich

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Even after the demise of the influential Uno School in the 1980s, Japanese economists have been continuously engaged in the categorial reconstruction of Marx’s Critique of Political Economy, especially the theory of value and money. Writing in the 1980s–2000s, authors of the ‘post-Uno School’, such as Ebitsuka Akira, Mukai Kimitoshi, Kataoka Kōji etc., broadened the value-theoretical views of Uno School orthodoxy to include, among others, the Neue Marx-Lektüre (predominantly H.-G. Backhaus and M. Heinrich) and the French economists C. Benetti and J. Cartelier.

This paper will confront the ‘post-Uno School’s’ reading of Marx’s theory of value, which poses the theories of value and money as unreconcilable, leading them to discard the theory of value in favour of a ‘monetary approach’. We show that the dismissal of value theory leads to an introduction of Baileyan and neoclassical elements into Marx’s theory, which we believe to be both theoretically and practically precarious.

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