UK Politics and Global Capitalism

Interview with Bob Jessop, Conducted by Jerko Bakotin, for Jacobin. Recorded in Potsdam, Germany, 5 June 2015. This version may not be identical (for editing reasons) to the version on Jacobin. How do you explain the Conservative’s triumph in British elections? What were the preconditions that set the stage for such a development? We should not…

From Micro-Powers to Governmentality: Foucault’s Work on Statehood, State Formation, Statecraft and State Power

This article revisits Foucault’s analytics of power in the light of his lectures on governmentality and biopolitics in Society must be Defended (1975-6), Securité, territoire, population (1977-8) and Naissance de la biopolitique (1978-9). Foucault is renowned for his criticisms of state theory and advocacy of a bottom-up approach to social power; and for his hostility to many theoretical and practical manifestations of orthodox Marxism.

Gramsci as a Spatial Theorist

Antonio Gramsci’s philosophy of praxis is characterised by the spatialization as well as historicization of its analytical categories. These theoretical practices are deeply intertwined in his ‘absolute historicism’. Highlighting the spatiality of Gramsci’s analysis not only enables us to recover the many geographical themes in his work but also provides a useful counterweight to the emphasis on the historical dimensions of his historicism.

On the Limits of Limits to Capital

My contribution to this celebration of Limits to Capital (hereafter Limits or LC) approaches it as a magisterial work that is also a ‘classic’ text. Even though Harvey recently described it, with justified regret, as the least discussed and used of his books (2000), it is a work of massive theoretical ambition and solid accomplishment. As Harvey remarks elsewhere, Limits ‘seeks to integrate the financial (temporal) and geographical (call it global and spatial) aspects to accumulation within the framework of Marx’s overall argument.

Poulantzas’s State, Power, Socialism as a Modern Classic

Note: this is the long version of a chapter published in German as ‘Kapitalistischer Staatstyp und autoritärer Etatismus. Poulantzas’s Staatstheorie als moderner Klassik’, in L. Bretthauer et al., eds, Poulantzas Lesen: Zur Aktualität marxistischer Staatstheorie, Hamburg: VSA, 65-81; and retranslated in its short version in 2011 as ‘Poulantzas’s State, Power, Socialism as a modern classic’,…

Marxist Approaches to Power

This on-line version is the pre-copyedited, preprint version. The published version can be found here: ‘Marxist Approaches to Power’ in E. Amenta, K. Nash, A. Scott, eds, The Wiley-Blackwell Companion to Political Sociology, Oxford: Blackwell, 3-14, 2012. Marxist approaches to power focus on its relation to class domination in capitalist societies. Power is linked to…