Structure and Agency in Historical Materialism: A Response to Knafo and Teschke

In: Historical Materialism
Charles Post Professor of Sociology, Borough of Manhattan Community College, City University of New York New York USA

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This essay argues that Knafo and Teschke fundamentally misread Brenner’s original contribution to the transition debate. They equate his rejection of trans-historical or trans-modal laws of motion with the notion that social-property relations do not have strong rules of reproduction that structure the actions of agents and give rise to ‘developmental patterns’ specific to each form of social labour. Knafo and Teschke’s critique of Brenner’s analysis of capitalist expansion and crisis is also theoretically and empirically questionable.

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