Haymarket Books
Books for changing the world
Studies On Pre-Capitalist Modes of Production
This collection represents a wide-ranging and important new contribution to the historical debate of how to understand pre-capitalist societies.
In this collection British and Argentinian historians analyze the Asiatic, Germanic, peasant, slave, feudal, and tributary modes of production by exploring historical processes and diverse problems of Marxist theory. The studies treat an array of pre-capitalist social formations, including medieval Iceland and Norway, Byzantium, the Roman Empire, ancient Egypt, medieval León and Castile, and the Castilian later Middle Ages.
  • "A Marxist analysis must relate the parts dialectically to a totality, and cannot be served by reductive analytical categories that are defined by fixed internal characteristics, rather than by their dynamic interrelations. The best contributions in this fascinating collection are alive to the way that Marx developed his dialectical approach to analysis, and in a range of detailed case studies, are able to show the fruitful potential the study of modes of production can still provide. Indeed, if Marxists can overcome subservience to positivistic analytical presumptions, and recapture Marx’s own way of thinking, then we are only at the beginning of a potential transformation in our understanding of human history.”

    —Dominic Alexander, Counterfire