The controversy about Marx and justice
in The Norman Geras Reader
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This chapter reviews a fast-growing sector of the current literature on Karl Marx, i.e. whether Marx condemn capitalism in the light of any principle of justice. It surveys the case for thinking he does not and the case for thinking that he does. Beginning with a preliminary sketch on the general lines of Marx's account of capitalist exploitation, the chapter reviews the texts and arguments put forward by those who deny that Marx condemned capitalism as unjust and the texts and arguments put forward by those who claim he did so condemn it. It also offers some conclusions, and argument in support of them. Marx's impatience with the language of norms and values is global in range. And yet he himself, despite it, does plainly condemn capitalism; for its oppressions and unfreedoms and also, as the argument of this chapter has been, for its injustices.

The Norman Geras Reader

‘What’s there is there’

Editors: Ben Cohen and Eve Garrard


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