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Counterfeit CapitalPoetic Labor and Revolutionary Irony$
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Jennifer Bajorek

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780804758246

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804758246.001.0001

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An/economy and Some Others (Accumulation and the Coming Injustice)

An/economy and Some Others (Accumulation and the Coming Injustice)

(p.68) Chapter 3 An/economy and Some Others (Accumulation and the Coming Injustice)
Counterfeit Capital
Stanford University Press

This chapter presents a reading of Marx's analysis of capital's history in Capital. It then considers similarities between Capital and Baudelaire's prose poem, La Fausse Monnaie (“Counterfeit Money”). According to Marx, capital, even as it liberates its own future, suppresses the violence of its history through the daily repetition of its originary violence. On the one hand, it seems irrefutable that once capital moves from simple reproduction to reproduction on an expanded scale, things get progressively worse for an ever-increasing number of people. What remains unclear is whether capital, when viewed from the perspective of this progressive worsening, actually keeps things exactly the same—by making them worse. In La Fausse Monnaie, Baudelaire seems to suggest not simply that capital's true foundation is in the simultaneous credibility and unverifiability of the counterfeit, but that capital is in some sense always the least able or entitled to read its own fictions.

Keywords:   Marx, Capital, Baudelaire, La Fausse Monnaie, Counterfeit Money, violence

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