against progress

by cominsitu



“The moment when the productive forces were to reach the level required for the transformation of the mode of production was to be the moment when the crisis of capitalism began. This crisis was to expose the narrowness of this mode of production and its inability to hold new productive forces, and thus make visible the antagonism between the productive forces and the capitalist forms of production. But capital has run away; it has absorbed crises and it has successfully provided a social reserve for the proletarians. Many have nothing left to do but to run on ahead: some say the productive forces are not developed enough, others say they have stopped growing. Both reduce the whole problem either to organizing the vanguard, the party, or resort to activities designed to raise consciousness. […]

Historical materialism is a glorification of the wandering in which humanity has been tied to for more than a century: growth of productive forces as the condition sine-qua-non for liberation. But by definition all quantitative growth takes place in the sphere of the indefinite, the false infinite. Who will measure the “size” of the productive forces to determine whether or not the great day has come?”

Camatte, The Wandering of Humanity

“Marx says that revolutions are the locomotives of world history. But the situation may be quite different. Perhaps revolutions are not the train ride, but the human race grabbing for the emergency brake.”

Benjamin, Arcades