I have commented on this one from time to time before, but every now and then I encounter foreign Marxist who come to China with a preset idea of what socialism should be. Inevitably, China today does not fit the definition, so it cannot – they think – be socialist. This assumption also applies to pretty much any other place in the world that has had a socialist revolution.

But then a question arises? What do you make of some of the categories of Chinese Marxism: Marxist political economy as the guiding principle of economic planning; socialist core values; socialism with Chinese characteristics; socialist market economy; democratic centralism; democratic peoples dictatorship, and so on.

The response varies, but it turns on a distinction between being out of touch with reality or in touch with reality. If the first, then Chinese Marxists are deluded, since they cannot see what is really going on. But this approach really struggles to make sense of what they are actually doing. If the second – in touch with reality – then they must be hypocrites, or perhaps cynics who use Marxist language to say something else. It becomes a spinning of words with  a coded meaning or no meaning at all. Again, this is an impossible position, since the leaders, teachers, party members, students and common people are largely very serious about these terms – and they usually know what they mean.

Perhaps a better approach is take Chinese Marxism seriously and try to understand what it means.

Two further points. First, socialism is often expected to be perfect and ready made. The reality is that it is never perfect, for it is a work in progress. Second, we need to be aware of the many levels of socialism, whether social, economic, cultural, political and so on. These interwoven aspects move at different and uneven speeds, so that figuring out the complexity of a work in progress becomes even more difficult.

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This one came as a surprise to me, although it shouldn’t really. Many Chinese people are rather fond of Angela Merkel, whom they call Moke’er dama (dama being a term of respectful affection for an older woman, especially one’s father’s elder brother’s wife).

Why? As one person put it: ‘Merkel grew up in a socialist country. She looks and plans in a long-term way’. And another: ‘Among Western leaders, she understands the Chinese theory “seeking truth from facts” the best’.

Of course, it helps that China-German relations have steadily improved since she became chancellor in 2005.

AM

In the aftermath of workshop on the ‘Socialist State’, I have been thinking about the category of enmeshment in order to understand Chinese socialism. It came up at various points in the workshop.

For example, in a discussion over the issue of public and private ‘ownership’ in economic matters, one of the Chinese participants pointed out that the opposition does not make sense in a Chinese context. Instead, the reality of a ‘socialist market economy’ is one way to think about the situation differently.

What does this mean? To begin with, it indicates that ‘market economy’ does not necessarily mean ‘capitalism’ or indeed a ‘capitalist market economy’. As I have pointed out earlier, most market economies throughout history have not been capitalist. So the possibility arises that a socialist market economy is different from a capitalist market economy – even in the context of a global dominance of a capitalist market economy.

One might point to the fact that most of the franchises for KFC in China are government owned. Or to the fact that many of the leaders of ‘private’ companies are members of the CPC. Or that the fostering of ‘start-ups’ have government backing. Or that the development of the internet in China is inescapably tied to governmental involvement. Or to Deng Xiaoping’s statement that there is no necessary contradiction between socialism and capitalism. Or indeed Mao’s quotation of an old Chinese proverb: ‘Things that oppose each other also complement one another’. The list goes on.

But this is only a beginning. Enmeshment has many other levels, well beyond economic matters. A key feature on a political level is the enmeshment between state and civil society. The problem here is that this is a rather perverse and very European way of putting it. Why? In a European – or, rather, North Atlantic – mode of understanding, the state is alienated from civil society, something ‘out there’ that imposes its will from time to time, intervening in society and the economy. On this understanding, civil society becomes the focus of new ideas and possible opposition to the state.

But what if you have a very different situation in which these features are enmeshed with one another in all manner of complex ways? This means that the very idea of ‘civil society’ is a very bourgeois invention. Indeed, the original German is ‘bourgeois society’ and not ‘civil society’. This would mean that civil society in this sense does not exist in China, which is a good thing.

A further feature of enmeshment is what is called non-antagonistic contradictions. The term originally arose in the Soviet Union, especially in the 1930s with the achievement of socialism, albeit in ways that were not expected. Mao for one found the idea extremely useful in the context of socialism in power (as we see in his crucial essay, ‘On Contradiction’). For example, classes will continue to exist under socialism, but now in a non-antagonistic fashion. In the Soviet Union, this meant workers, farmers and intellectuals. In China, this means workers, farmers and a ‘middle class’, although we need a new term here. Why? These are the vast number of people that have benefitted from the 40-year anti-poverty campaign. Their lives have become secure (anquan) in a way not imagined before. But they realise very well that their situation is due to the long project of the CPC.

The upshot: Deng Xiaoping’s category of the ‘people’s democratic dictatorship’ (one of his four Cardinal Principles) includes this new class. A very new interpretation of the ‘dictatorship of the proletariat and peasants’ that includes everyone in what can only be called socialist democracy. Jiang Zemin’s ‘Three Represents’ (2002) is the clarification of this position.

My thoughts are only at their early stage of thinking about enmeshment, but let me add one more point. The appropriation of the idea of ‘the common’ in China now takes a distinct turn. In a North Atlantic situation, ‘the common’ is an effort to rethink communism, even though it comes from a very theological idea in which the world was created by God, with everything in common. In a Chinese situation, the common includes the crucial role of governance. The government is involved in and directs the common, not in the sense of censorship but in the sense that any function of the common is enmeshed with governance.

My perception is that all of this makes sense of the old Confucian category of datong, the Great Peace or Great Harmony, which has been reinterpreted in terms of communism. Datong is not an overcoming of contradictions but rather a form of existence in which contradictions function in a non-antagonistic fashion. Of course, a datong society lies in the distant future, perhaps 500 or 1000 years away. Meanwhile, the aim for 2021 is for a xiaokang shehui, a moderately prosperous, peaceful and secure society.

Renmin Workshop on Socialism in Power

23-24 September 2017

Paper Abstracts

Roger Markwick

(School of Humanities and Social Science, University of Newcastle)

Failures and Successes: Soviet and Chinese State-Socialist Reforms in the Face of Global Capitalism

Abstract: The demise of the Soviet Union and the seeming success of China’s reforms in the 1980s and 1990s is a study in contrasts. This paper will compare the approaches adopted by the Soviet and Chinese Communist Parties to the reform of state socialism and why one ended in collapse and the other in resurgence. In undertaking this comparison, the paper will consider the specific challenges each state faced, international and domestic, in the context of neo-liberal capitalism; the intellectual compasses that guided their respective party leaderships; the parts played by domestic social forces in the reforms; and what light all these considerations cast on the role of the strong socialist state in the transition to world socialism.

失败和成功:在国际资本主义背景下的苏联和中国国家社会主义改革

提要:苏联的解体和中国在20世纪八九十年代明显成功的改革,可作对比研究。本文将会比较苏联共产党和中国共产党在国家社会主义改革方面所采取的不同方法,为什么其中一个解体而另外一个复兴。为了进行比较,在新自由主义的资本主义背景下,本文将会考察每个国家所面临的不同的国际和国内挑战;知识分子的能力来掌握各自政党的领导权;国内社会力量所起的作用;所有这些考量对强大的社会主义国家向世界社会主义过渡所起到的启

 

俞敏

(南京师范大学公共管理学院)

YU, Min

(School of Public Administration, Nanjing Normal University)

马克思主义经典作家关于“过渡时期”国家职能的理论探索和历史实践
National Governance in the “Transition Period” According to Classical Marxist Writers: Theoretical Exploration and Historical Praxis

 

提要:马克思、恩格斯认为,“过渡时期”的国家即无产阶级专政的职能和任务是建立全社会占有生产资料的公有制和发展社会生产力,创造消灭阶级和进入无阶级社会的条件。列宁强调,在从资本主义到共产主义的整个过渡时期,必须坚持无产阶级专政。无产阶级专政是对大多数人的民主和对极少数剥削者的专政。十月革命后,苏俄的无产阶级专政实践,从必须坚持党的领导、必须建设无产阶级军队、必须加强人民监督和党内监督的方面,发展了马克思主义关于“过渡时期”和无产阶级专政的理论。

Abstract: Marx and Engels assert that the functions and tasks of nations in the “transition period”, i.e., the dictatorship of the proletariat, are to establish public ownership by the entire society, to develop productive forces, to offer conditions to eliminate classes, and step into a classless society. The entire transition period from capitalism to communism, according to Lenin, should be through the guidance of the proletarian dictatorship. This proletarian dictatorship is democracy for the majority and dictatorship over the few exploiters. After the October Revolution, the practice of the dictatorship of the proletariat in Russia strictly followed the leadership of Communist Party, the construction of a proletarian army and supervision from the people and within the Party. This develops Marx’s theories of the “transition period” and the dictatorship of the proletariat.

关键词:“过渡时期”;无产阶级专政;党的领导;治理和管理;监督

Key words: “transition period”; proletariat dictatorship; Party leadership; management and governance; supervision

 

程恩富

(中国社会科学院马克思主义研究学部主任

《国际思想评论》英文国际期刊主编)

Cheng Enfu

(Director, Academic Division of Marxism, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences; Editor-in-Chief, International Critical Thought)

 

关于社会主义国家的若干理论

摘要:本文从五个方面澄清社会主义国家的概念。一是在阶级社会中,任何国家都是一个或多个阶级所使用的非中立工具。在社会主义社会,国家都是由先进的工人阶级领导(通过共产党这一先锋队)、以工农联盟为基础、广泛团结一切拥护社会主义的阶级阶层的政治组织,也是组织和管理经济、政治、文化、社会和军事的政权机构。二是阶级在国家分析中具有首要性质、作用和地位。现阶段中外都存在阶级、阶级斗争和敌对势力。三是工农专政、人民民主专政(宪政)、无产阶级专政(宪政)、社会主义宪政这几个概念的实质都一样,实现形式可以多样化。四是共产党在治理社会主义国家中具有决定性的领导作用,但领导或执政的具体体制机制可以不断调整。中国和苏联等社会主义国家的原有治理模式总体上是成功的,但也有严重教训,应在改革中继续完善。五是与资本主义国家有差别,必须建立小而强的社会主义国家,即国家机构和人员相对较少,而经济、政治、文化、社会和国防等建设和治理功能要相对较强。

A Few Theoretical Points on the Socialist State

Abstract: This paper explicates the concept of “socialist state” from five aspects. First, in any class society, state is a non-neutral tool utilized by a particular class or an alliance of classes. A socialist state is such an organization that is led by the progressive working class (through the communist party as its vanguard), based upon the worker-peasant alliance, and characteristic of the solidarity among a wide range of classes and social strata in favor of socialism. It is also a political power that organizes and administrates economic, political, cultural, social and military affairs. Second, class is of primary importance in the analysis of state, given that class, class struggle and hostile forces exist both domestically and internationally. Third, the concepts of worker-peasant dictatorship, people’s democratic dictatorship/constitutionalism, proletarian dictatorship/constitutionalism, and socialist constitutionalism share the same essence, but may differ in concrete ways of their realization. Four, the communist party necessarily assumes a decisive leading role in the governance of socialist state, with possible adjustments in concrete systems and mechanisms of such governance. In general, the governance model of socialist states such as China and the former Soviet Union had their successes, but in the meantime leave us with serious lessons, and therefore require further improvement through reform. Five, different from capitalist states, there must be small yet strong socialist states, i.e., state that has small number of governing bodies and personnel, but strong functions in economic, political, cultural, social, and national defense development and administration.

 

袁芳

(上海市委党校第二分校)

Yuan Fang

(Party School of Shanghai Committee of the C.P.C., Second Branch Campus)

 

社会主义国家理念的现代发展:从法制法治

摘要:伴随着世界社会主义由一国到多国、一种模式到多种模式、一个中心到去中心的跌宕起伏,社会主义与国家的关系一直演绎着理论与现实的双重变奏。自马克思创立科学社会主义理论,到列宁通过十月革命将这一理论变为现实,再到中国的社会主义革命和建设,直至当代的中国国家治理现代化创新——依法治国,社会主义国家理念在中国正在发育和发展出一种既有别于也高于近代以来所有的政治形式的国家形态。十八届四中全会在最终意义上确立的全面依法治国的当代社会主义国家建设的伟大实践,这一从“法制”到“法治”的变化,并非只是国家治理方式和理念的变革,更深层次是自马克思科学社会主义理论创立之时所蕴含的社会主义国家理念的现代发展和彰显。 本文将从诞生于革命相连的社会主义国家、国家消亡:国家仍具有经济和政治方面的职能、社会主义国家的政治承诺:对政治异化的批判和消除、从“法制”到“法治”:中国特色社会主义国家权力法治化的创新四个方面进行解读。

关键词:马克思;社会主义;国家;政治异化

 

The Modern Development of the Socialist State as a Concept: from “Rule of Law” to “Rule by Law”

Abstract: As global socialism has moved from one state to many states, from one model to multiple models, from one center to decentralization, the relation between socialism and the state has demonstrated both theoretical and practical developments.  It was initiated through the the establishment of scientific socialist theory by Karl Marx, became reality through Lenin’s October Revolution, developed through China’s socialist revolution and construction, and is now embodied in the modernisation and innovation of China’s contemporary state governance. According to rule by law, the concept of a socialist state in China has flourished and developed into a distinctive and superior political form. The Fourth Plenary Session of the 18th CPC Central Committee, in a comprehensive sense, established the goal of building a socialist nation through rule by law. The change from “rule of law” to “rule by law” is not simply a change of mindset concerning national governance; the deeper connotation concerns the modern development and demonstration of the socialist state concept. This concept is embedded in the birth of scientific socialist theory by Marx. This article contains four aspects: first, the birth of socialist countries through revolution and the concept of the withering away of the state; second, the continuing economic and political impact of the state; third, the political commitment of the socialist state and its critique and elimination of political alienation; fourth, the move from “rule of law” to “rule by law”, which entails the innovation of rule by law in a socialist country with Chinese characteristics.

Key words: Marx; socialism; state; political alienation

 

张双利

(复旦大学哲学学院)

Zhang Shuangli

(School of Philosophy, Fudan University)

Social Transformation and the Socialist State: On Reassessing Georg Lukács’ Theory of the Proletarian State in a Contemporary Chinese Context

As for Marx’s theory of the state, it is widely held that it is just the reversal of the Hegelian model about the relationship between the state and civil society. However, in his controversy between Rosa Luxemburg on the Russian revolution, Georg Lukács pointed out clearly that Marx’s theory of the bourgeois state and that of the proletarian state was qualitatively different. While the former is characterized by the insight of the secondary position of the state in its relation with civil society, the latter is rather characterized by the insight of the primary position of the proletarian state in the process of social revolution. In this paper, I will firstly explicate how Marx has reversed the Hegelian model in his theory of the bourgeois state. Secondly, I will try to articulate Lukács’ development of Marx’s insights about the proletarian state, especially his arguments about the primary position of the proletariat state in the process of social revolution. Finally, I will try to illustrate the relevance of Lukács’ theory of the proletarian state in the contemporary Chinese context. It will be argued that maybe we could borrow the Hegelian model (the state-civil society-the state) again to grasp the position of the Chinese socialist state in the process of social transformation.

社会转型与社会主义国家—-在当代中国语境中重解卢卡奇的无产阶级国家理论

近40年以来, 政治哲学一直是中国理论界的热点,社会主义政权的正当性问题又是所有政治哲学讨论的焦点。之所以如此,是因为改革的过程在中国带来了市场经济领域的相对独立发展,怎样理解市场经济领域与社会主义国家之间的关系成为当代中国思想必须回应的一大难题。

我们要在思想上回应这一重大现实难题, 尤其是直接回应关于社会主义国家政权正当性的问题,就必须首先超越对马克思国家理论的简单化理解。长期以来, 中国学界一直把马克思的国家观简单看作是对以黑格尔为代表的唯心主义国家观的颠倒。如果说在黑格尔那里是现代国家决定市民社会, 那么在马克思这里则是市民社会决定现代国家,或, 经济基础决定上层建筑。如此一来, 国家在与社会之间的关系中就被明确认作是附属性的、第二位的。如果我们停留于这一简单理解, 将根本无从把握社会主义国家与市场经济领域之间关系的复杂规定性, 更不可能在当代语境中来回应关于社会主义国家政权的正当性问题。

针对这一理论困境,本文将着力指出我们可以借助西方马克思主义思想家卢卡奇的无产阶级国家理论来更好地把握马克思主义国家理论的复杂性。在与卢森堡关于俄国革命的争论中, 卢卡奇试图从马克思、恩格斯的国家理论出发,并同时借助韦伯关于社会统治的正当性理论思想,来对苏联的无产阶级国家实践(苏维埃)进行理论分析。

关于马克思、恩格斯的国家理论, 卢卡奇从两个方向进行了发挥:首先,卢卡奇指出, 关于政治与经济的关系, 马克思和恩格斯都明确指出了资产阶级国家与无产阶级国家的根本不同:由于社会主义国家肩负着社会革命的使命, 它在与经济之间的关系中不是处于附属性的地位,而是正好相反,一直处于主导性的地位。其次,不同于马克思、恩格斯仅仅强调无产阶级国家必然灭亡,卢卡奇在韦伯关于国家政权的正当性思想的影响之下特别强调无产阶级国家政权的正当性问题。他强调指出无产阶级国家必须把确立其统治的正当性当作当务之急,苏联的苏维埃政权之所以能够取得成功, 恰恰是因为她很好地解决了这一问题。

借助于卢卡奇对马克思的无产阶级国家理论的进一步发挥, 我们可以更好地理解中国关于社会主义国家的具体实践。首先是,在1949-1978年间,中国的社会主义国家实践为什么带来一个高度政治化的社会。 其次是, 1978年改革开放之后, 中国的社会主义国家实践为何又会带来对整个社会的“非政治化”。 最后是,在以社会主义国家为主导的改革实践中,为何又会出现一种“黑格尔”式的国家与社会之间的关系:在国家与社会之间的关系中,国家是处于主导地位的主体,它带来了相对独立的市场经济领域的发展,制造出了国家与市场经济领域之间的相对分离,它同时还致力于把两者之间的关系纳入国家的统摄之下。当然也正是在这个层次上我们才能够更好的反思内在于这一关系中的一些结构性的缺陷和难题。

 

Roland Boer

(School of Humanities, Renmin University of China; School of Humanities and Social Science, University of Newcastle, Australia)

薄国强

(中国人民大学;澳大利亚纽卡斯尔大学)

 

From the Bourgeois to the Socialist State

This study focuses on the theoretical development of the socialist state. It does in two parts. The first part argues that theories of the bourgeois state stem from Engels, from whose initial theory two paths open up. One moves via Weber and results in a range of theories concerning the European nation-state (the specificity is important), while the other runs through Lenin to influence a large number of Marxist theories of such a state. The second part analyses the origins of a theory of the socialist state. For this investigation, we need to work carefully through Stalin’s texts, for he was the first to develop the framework for such a theory. The pertinence of this theory for a Chinese situation should not be under-estimated, given the complex influence of Soviet thought on Chinese Marxist thought during the Yan’an period in the 1930s and even 1940s. The paper concludes with a comparison between the definitions of Engels and Stalin to illustrate the significant differences between them.

从资本主义到社会主义国家

本文主要从两个方面来研究社会主义国家的理论发展。第一部分论证资产阶级国家的理论 起源于恩格斯,从他最初的理论又发展出两条不同的路径,一条通过韦伯,形成了关于欧洲民 族国家的一系列的理论(差别是很重要的);另一条经由列宁,影响关于俄国的很多马克思主 义理论。第二部分分析有关社会主义国家的一个理论的起源。因为这个调查,我们需耍仔细研 读斯大林的文本, 因为他是最初发展这一理论框架的人。这一理论和中国形势的相关性不应该…

 

Tom Griffiths

(School of Education, University of Newcastle, Australia)

Cuban Socialism in Power: Transforming the World-System

Cuban socialism in power has been subject to a huge scholarship, focused on multiple areas of public policy and governance, which continues 58 years after the triumph of the Cuban Revolution in 1959. This work includes the predictable polarised positions for and against the Cuban Revolution, and arguments for and against Cuban socialism in power. It extends to debate amongst those sympathetic to socialism but taking issue with Cuba’s particular forms and practices, such as critiques of Soviet influence, questions of leadership, or the functioning of democratic centralism within the Cuban Communist Party. Some particular critiques come from broader, historical, sectarian positions characterising Cuba as a deformed workers state and / or an example of State Capitalism.

Seemingly against all odds, socialism remained (and remains) in power in Cuba post-1989. Cuban socialism prevailed throughout the resultant “special period in peacetime” with extreme economic recession and deprivations for the majority of Cubans, the disruption and inversion of social scales via economic reforms designed to gain hard currency, the ongoing system of dual currencies, the ongoing dislocation of families through migration, and the recent death of Fidel Castro. The formal and constitutional commitment to building socialism has remained in place, with no so-called transition to capitalism, notwithstanding minor reforms to allow self-employment and small-scale independent businesses in some industries.

This paper considers Cuban socialism in power by examining a selection of instances of significant political debate within Cuba, including: the 1986 response to particular Soviet publications; the post-1989 case of the Centre for American Studies (CEA); the 7th Congress of the Communist Party of Cuba (PCC) in 2016 and associated pre-Congress discussions; the case of Cuban intellectual and scholar Esteban Morales; and the recent critique of Cuban State media at the Cuban Journalists Union conference in 2016.

With reference to these and other historical examples, I argue that they indicate a significant failure of Cuba’s socialist education, or at least a perceived failure by the leadership, expressed as a lack of trust in citizens to draw the right conclusions and to make and win the argument for socialism. At the same time, such events show a preparedness of Cuban militants and citizens, at particular moments, to indeed put forward arguments for change within a socialist framework. The paper concludes with some reflections on this phenomenon from a world-systems analysis perspective, centred on the potential contribution for Cuba and the region to contribute to a socialist transition of the capitalist world-system, as part of a broader movement to define and build twenty-first century socialism.

执政中的古巳政权:重塑世界体系

提要:古巴社会主义政权在古巴1957年革命胜利之后延续了58年,执政的古巴社会主义政权已经成为了为一个巨大的学术议题,以公共政策和管理的多元领域为主要研究方向。本文涉及支持或反对古巴革命的两极立场(这是可以预料到的),以及支持和反对古巴社会主义执政的论据。接着延伸讨论那些对社会主义抱以同情但同时又和吉巴的社会主义的特殊形式和实践进行争论的声音和做法,比如,对苏联影响的批评,对领导权的质疑,古巴共产党内民主集中制的运行问题。一些特殊的批评来自更广泛的、历史的和派别的立场,将古巴描述为畸形的工人阶级国家和(或)国家资本主义的一个例子。

在1989年之后的时期,社会主义发展看似困难重重,但在古巴仍然保持领导地位。古巴社会主义在“和平时期的特殊时期”占据主导,这一时期伴随着经济的衰退和对大多数古巴人的剥削,为了获取硬通货而进行的经济改革导致了社会制度的混乱和倒置,双货币体制继续推行,迁移家庭得不到适当安置,以及最近菲德尔·卡斯特罗的死亡。建设社会主义仍是正式、宪法的承诺,没有所谓的向资本主义过渡。虽如此,在一些工业领域,也有一些小的改革允许自由职业者和小规模的独立企业存在。

本文通过选取在古巴内部进行的重大政治讨论的例子来考察执政中的古巴社会主义,这些例子包括: 1986年回应苏联的特殊出版物; 1989年之后美洲研究中心的个案; 2016年古巴共产党第七次会议和会议前的相关讨论;古巴知识分子和学者埃斯特班·莫拉莱斯的个案; 2016年古巴最近的记者联合大会上对古巴国家媒体的批判。

通过参考这些和其他历史事件,我的观点是,它们表明了古巴社会主义教育的重大失误,或者至少是能够认识到的领导权的失败,表现为不信任公民能够得出正确的结论,并为社会主义提供辩护依据。同时,这些事件表明,在特定时期,吉巴活跃的反对派和公民推动了关于在社会主义框架内进行改革的讨论。本文从世界体系分析的视角对这一现象做一些反思,聚焦古巴和古巴对世界体系下的资本主义过渡为社会主义潜在的贡献,将其视为定义和建设21世纪社会主义的行动的一部分。

 

臧峰宇

(中国人民大学 哲学院)

Zang Fengyu

(School of Philosophy, Renmin University of China)

马克思共同体思想的核心要义与中国语境

摘  要:马克思在研究共同体的古典形式与现代形式的过程中归纳了共同体的基本形式,提出超越“虚幻的共同体”并实现“自由人的联合体”的合理方案,为构建中华民族共同体和人类命运共同体提供了深远的理论启示。深入理解马克思共同体思想的核心要义、中国语境与当代价值,把握当今时代人们的共同利益、共享发展的必要性和可能性以及从中形成的共同价值观,在价值多样性的互动中凝炼当今人类价值观念的最大公约数,有益于更好地满足人们日益增长的物质文化需求。以此解决全球化时代棘手的公共危机和全球性问题,促进世界各国合作与发展,实现我们时代共享发展的理想图景。

关键词:共同体;核心要义;中国语境;当代价值;公共生活

Karl Marx’s Concept of Community: Its Essence and Chinese Context

Karl Marx summarized the fundamental forms of community in his research on classical and modern versions of community. He proposed to go beyond the “illusory community” and realize “free union.” This proposal offers profound theoretical insights for the construction of the Chinese national community and a community of shared future for humankind. To deepen the understanding of the essence of a Marxian community, its Chinese context and its current value, to grasp the necessity and possibility of shared benefits and development, especially the shared value therein, to pursue the common grounds of human values in the multivalent interaction—these will be conducive to the satisfaction of the people’s increasing demands both materially and culturally. Such is the solution to the challenging public crises and global issues. It will also promote cooperation and development for every country in the world; the ideal landscape of shared development, in this procedure, will be realized accordingly.

Key words: community; essence; Chinese context; current value; public life

 

鲁绍臣

(复旦大学哲学学院)

Lu Shaochen

(School of Philosophy, Fudan University)

通过社会共通而来的共有:后资本主义时代的资本

2008年秋季开始的经济危机之后,有关社会主义和资本主义的主流观点都在重新调整。但是迈克尔·哈特认为,以往我们好像不得不从生产方式私有化的资本主义和公有化的社会主义这两者之中择其一,但我们的认知应该超出这个二选一的思维定势。我们应该探索一种新的可能性,既非资本主义的私有制,也非社会主义的公有制,而是共产主义的共有。哈特遭到大卫·哈维的猛烈抨击,但是对我来说,共有是我们可以解决国家和私有制分歧的第三条道路。

在后资本主义时代,共有不像工厂和机器是一种生产方式,而是每一位公民都有所有权的公共财产。和哈特的观点不同,我认为出于公共服务的考虑,共有应该由国家控制。这意味着,社会主义不是由私有财产和商品的废除而是由主要社会财产的共有权来定义的。我把它称之为国家控制的社会共有资本。从这个意义上来看,它意味着国家和公民社会不再是分开的两个部分,而是被社会共有资本连在一起的整体。

马克思在《资本论》的第三卷没有直接使用社会共有资本这一术语,他注意到股份公司的崛起,在这里私有财产在概念上转化为社会财产,因为股票开始被人们持有。他也注意到,信用体系和抽象财富一方面剌激了资本家对劳动力、少数人对社会财富的利用,另一方面它构成了向新的生产方式的过渡形式。与我而言,这意味着社会共有资本由国家控制。

The Common via Social Common: Capital in Post Capitalism

After the financial crisis that exploded in autumn 2008, the dominant views of capitalism and socialism were rearranged. However, Michael Hardt has claimed that we need to look outside this alternative, as too often it appears as though our only choices are capitalism or socialism via the privatisation or publicisation of the means of production. We need to explore another possibility: neither the private property of capitalism nor the public property of socialism but the common in communism. Hardt was heavily criticized by David Harvey, but for me, the common is really the third way by which we can overcome the division of the private and the state.

The common in post capitalism appear not as the means of production, such as factories and machines, but as the common wealth which every citizen has the ownership. But different from Hardt, I think the common should be controlled by the state for the common service. That means socialism should not be defined by the abolition of private property and commodity, but by the common ownership of the major social wealth. I call it Social Common Capital controlled by state. In this sense, it means the state and civil society are not two parts any more, they are united by social common capital.

In the third volume of Capital, Marx does not directly use the phrase ‘Social Common Capital’. He notes the rise of the joint-stock company, in which private property is conceptually transformed into social property, as stocks came to be held by people. He also notes how the credit system and the abstract wealth on the one hand intensifies capitalist exploitation of labour and the exploitation of ‘social wealth’ by the few, while on the other hand it ‘constitutes the form of transition towards a new mode of production’. For me that means the social common capital controlled by the state

About seven or eight years ago, the foreign students I met in China were almost always studying Sinology. Since then, I have met more and more studying all sorts of subjects. Part of the reason is that the Chinese government keeps adding more levels of scholarships, the latest being the ‘Belt and Road’ scholarships. And part of the reason is that the prospects of employment after graduation have become a whole lot easier for foreign students. More importantly, people are attracted to a a rising power, with a difference: the Communist Party is in power and the socialism they are promoting is to improve the lives of everyone. As for my own interests, I find that international students want to come to China to study, especially in Marxism!

On the other side, of the more than half a million Chinese students who went overseas to study in the last year, the job prospects are not as good as they used to be. Now they find themselves in the mix with almost 8 million Chinese graduates. Those who studied overseas used to believe that a foreign degree would give them a fast track to a better job. But employers here have become more wary. They are not so readily able to evaluate the overseas qualification, and Chinese qualifications have come to be regarded as equal to foreign qualifications.

This issue has a number of levels. To begin with, many foreign universities still tend to regard China as a huge student mine. They see the Chinese tendency to save and then spend money on education as a way to deal with increasing budget shortfalls at home, as governments cut university budgets. This practice has begun to raise suspicions in China about the quality of overseas qualifications. Further, Chinese universities have been lifting their international game, so that they are increasingly on par with other universities overseas. Further, stories in China of graduates from foreign universities finding it difficult to get a good job in China have raised the question about whether it is really that useful to gain a foreign qualification.

So a shift is underway: more foreign students in China, questions about the quality of overseas qualifications. One of the signs of a rising power is not that people come to it for education and employment, rather than heading overseas.

Hedlund has provided an invaluable link to an article in the Asia-Pacific Journal on the myth of the ‘North Korean collapse’. Well worth a careful read, and it backs up my anecdotal impressions when I visited a couple of years ago. Keen to get back and spend more time there.

Here’s an interesting little fact: the DPRK’s economy grew by 3.9% last year. Officially, it trades with China, Russia, Thailand, Philippines, Pakistan, India and even … South Korea. Unofficially, it trades in small arms manufacture and a range of other goods sought the world over. In fact, the DPRK’s economy has been steadily improving for the last decade, with a couple of small dips.

How can this happen, when sanctions are supposed to hurt them? They are well-organised, quite used to sanctions, and developing their own version of the ‘reform and opening up’ policy China began four decades ago. As for China, the number one trading partner, it is keen to see the lives of DPRK citizens improve, since this leads to stability on the peninsula.