Returning Marx to Kant?

A Review of The Capitalist Schema: Time, Money, and the Culture of Abstraction by Christian Lotz

Matthias Rothe

Abstract

Christian Lotz’s book, The Capitalist Schema: Time, Money, and the Culture of Abstraction, seeks to reconcile Marx’s logic of conceptual determination with Kant’s logic of constitution. It is in this context that Lotz reconfigures Kant’s transcendental schema as money and understands money as an a priori determination that makes the world accessible and meaningful to individuals. Furthermore the book’s point of departure is Adorno’s Kant interpretation, and in foregrounding money Lotz also wishes to ‘reconnect Adorno’s Critical Theory to Marx’. The review engages with both endeavours, discusses the, so to speak, temporal impossibility of such a reconciliation project and revisits a previous attempt to bring Kant and Marx together: Alfred Sohn-Rethel’s theory of real abstraction.