Marx's Capital - Second Violin's Dissonant Notes

Image: Nico Becker


Considerations on the three editions that make up The capital

     “To leave error unconfirmed is to encourage intellectual immorality” (Karl Marx).

     “All my life I've been doing what I was cut out to do: second fiddle – and I think I've done very well in that role. I am happy to have had a wonderful first violin: Marx” (Friedrich Engels).

The production of surplus value and fair exchange

Of the three books that make up The capital of Karl Marx, only the first volume was published when its author was still alive; a first edition in 1867, a second in 1872. Books II and III, edited by Engels, would only come out much later. Book II, in 1885; Book III still had to wait for almost 10 years: it appears in 1894.

In a letter addressed to Siegfried Meyer, dated April 1867, Marx seemed quite excited, as he lets on in this correspondence, in which he talks about the state of his work. It is with irony that he apologizes for taking the time to respond to his friend. “Why didn't I answer you?”, asks Marx, to then justify himself: “Because during all this period I had my foot in the grave (...). I laugh at so-called 'practical' people and their wisdom. If you want to behave like an animal, you can of course turn your back on the torments of humanity and worry only about your own skin.” What Marx has just expressed is just to say to Meyer that "it would really be regarded as impractical if I died without having finished my book, at least the manuscript".

In the following paragraph, he informs his interlocutor that “volume I of the work will appear in a few weeks, by Otto Maissner's Hamburg publishing house. Your Headline: The capital. Criticism of Political Economy. In order to personally bring the manuscript back to Germany, where I am spending a few days with a friend in Hannover on my way to London” (MARX, 2020, p.199).

Marx hoped that "within a year, the whole work [would be] published", that is, the three books of The capital, another fourth volume dedicated to the research of theories on Political Economy and which was published only at the beginning of the XNUMXth century, with the title Surplus Value Theories.

Marx's expectation did not materialize. What a shame! Against his will, he did not "die a practical man". But this is due to the imposition of certain circumstances. The first of these is that the author of The capital did not have time to put a final finish on the other two books (II and III). His acute aesthetic sense demanded that he should only deliver his writings to the press when he had them as a finished artistic whole, as the writing of Book I demonstrates, whose elegance of style makes it a true literary work.[I] A second reason is historical-empirical in nature. At the end of the 70s, in the XNUMXth century, Marx said that he could only publish books II and III, when the crisis in English industry reached its culmination. And finally, for a reason of a physiological nature, his precarious and weakened health repeatedly interrupted his work.

Even so, Marx left a heap of manuscripts, which Engels, after the death of his beloved Moor, used to edit Books II and III. Unfortunately, he was unable to apply the style and aesthetic beauty of Book I to these two books, for reasons that will be known later.

A comparison between Books I and the other two (Books II and III) would give the reader a good idea of ​​the differences that separate these three works. But such a comparison is out of the question. Here there is no room for a company of such size. However, it would be worth daring to outline, in general terms, the whole of Book I, leaving the task of later investigating and confronting the result of this boldness with the architecture given by Engels to the two remaining books of the work in his book. all.

Undoubtedly, this is not an easy task for someone who is not aware of the totality of The capital in their different moments and how they are intertwined in an organically articulated whole. Against this disadvantage, nothing can be done, except to warn the reader of how arduous is the work that science imposes on all those who dedicate themselves to it. With that warning in hand, there's nothing left to wait...


Conversion of commodity production laws into capitalist appropriation laws

Book I exposes the capital production process in its entirety, that is, as a unit of two different moments: appearance and essence. Appearance, as everyone knows, is the sphere of circulation, the world in which individuals exist for each other only as "owners of commodities".

If individuals only exist as owners, the society where they live appears to them as “the best of all possible worlds”, as they perceive it as the exclusive realm of freedom, equality, property and Bentham. “Liberty, because the buyers and sellers of a commodity, for example, of labor power, are moved only by their free will. They hire as free persons, endowed with the same rights (…). Equality, as they relate to each other only as owners of commodities and exchange equivalent for equivalent. Property, because each one has only what is his. Bentham, for each one looks only to himself. The only force that unites them and puts them in relation to each other is that of their own utility, their personal advantage, their private interests. And it is just because each is concerned only with himself and none is concerned with the other, that all, in consequence of a pre-established harmony of things or under the auspices of an all-crafty providence, jointly perform the work of their mutual advantage, of common utility, of general interest” (MARX, 2017a, p.250-251).

This is how people perceive this everyday world, not only because it is knowledge acquired sensorially (seeing, feeling, touching), but because this is the phenomenal aspect of reality, a spontaneous product of everyday praxis. In fact, when someone talks about money, for example, the only thing that comes to mind is that it is a matter, a quantity of paper or metallic currency, which they use to acquire the goods necessary for their survival. Not for a moment does he suspect that money is, above all, an economic and social category that expresses a form of relationship between men and that, for this reason, it is not simply matter, it is also a social form and, as such, an expression of different class relations inserted in a determined mode of production.

The money used by a capitalist, for example, to hire workers, is very different from the money workers spend to buy the goods and services they need. In the first case, money is capital, since its owner has spent it, paying wages, in order to earn more money; it is, therefore, a relationship of exploitation between two classes: capitalists and workers. In turn, the money that the worker spends on buying clothes, shoes, food, etc., is just a simple means of exchange with which he acquires what he needs to live.

Nobody knows about this, nor is anyone concerned about knowing. It is enough for him to know that money is a useful thing because all individuals use it to buy the products they need in their daily lives. That's enough, that's all you need to know! And this is so because the world that presents itself to thought appears to it as if it were reality as it truly is. For this reason, at the end of Chapter IV, of Book I, Marx invites the reader to together “[abandon][ii] that sphere of simple circulation or commodity exchange, from which the free trader vulgaris [vulgar] extracts notions, concepts and parameters to judge society from capital and salaried work, we can already perceive a certain transformation, it seems, in the physiognomy of our dramatic personae [theatrical characters]. The former possessor of money now presents himself as a capitalist, and the possessor of labor power as his worker. The first, with an air of importance, confident and eager for business; the second shy and hesitant, like someone who has brought his own skin to market and now has nothing left to look forward to but… skinning. (MARX, 2017a, p.251).

And so, the reader is led by Marx to leave that “rumorous sphere, where everything happens in the light of day, in front of everyone's eyes, and [accompany] the owners of money and labor power to the hidden terrain of production. , whose entry reads: No admittance except on business [Entry permitted for business purposes only]. Here it will be revealed not only how capital produces, but how itself, capital, is produced. The secret of creating surplus value must finally be revealed” (MARX, 2017a, p.250).

However, the secret of creating surplus value, which begins to be unveiled from chapter V, will only be fully known when the reader reaches chapter XXII, of book I. Only there, that world where freedom, equality reigned exclusively and property, becomes its direct opposite: freedom becomes non-freedom; equality, in non-equality; property, the right to appropriate the unpaid labor of others.

But doesn't this conversion annul the constitutional guarantees, according to which all are equal before the law and as such are guaranteed the inviolability of the right to freedom, equality and property, as govern all bourgeois constitutions?

The answer is a resounding no! For Marx, property is not theft. And it is not because “the law of exchange only requires equality between the exchange values ​​of commodities that are reciprocally alienated. It even demands, from the outset, the inequality of its use values, and bears no relation to its consumption, which only begins after the business is concluded” (MARX, 2017a, p.660).

Bourgeois justice is not even scratched with the production of surplus value, since the transactions that take place between the agents of production derive from the laws of commodity production as a natural consequence, as will be better explained later. “The legal forms,” says Marx, “in which these economic transactions appear as acts of the will of those involved, as expressions of their common will, and as contracts whose execution can be imposed on the contracting parties by the State, cannot determine, as mere forms that are, this content. They can only express it. When it corresponds to the mode of production, when it is appropriate, that content is fair; when it contradicts it, it is unjust. Slavery, based on the capitalist mode of production, is unjust, as well as fraud regarding the quality of the commodity” (MARX, 2017c, p.386-387).

Therefore, Marx has to explain the production of surplus value without the capitalist having to resort to trickery or theft in the current sense of the word. Quite the contrary, surplus value is born as a product of exchange as a perfectly legal act, without abolishing the laws guarded by criminal law, as shown here.


The negative of capital accumulation

Marx begins the first chapter of Book I, opening the doors of the capitalist world with what is most familiar to all people: the commodity, as an elementary form in which the wealth of a society appears, in which all individuals mutually recognize each other as owners of things which they only give up in exchange for others of equal value. In such a world, everyone sees themselves as equal, as they relate to each other as owners of goods and exchange equivalent for equivalent. As owners, each one has only what is theirs and, thus, they feel free to exchange the products of their labors among themselves. It is the true Garden of Eden of man's birthright!

If in this earthly Paradise the purchase and sale of labor power, like any other type of commercial exchange, obey the principle of equivalence, how then can profit be explained and, consequently, the enrichment of capitalists? Wouldn't profit be a reward for the sweat that each capitalist shed, over several generations, to amass his valuable assets? Accepting such an assumption is the same as imagining that workers could also have accumulated their assets in the same way as those to whom they sell their labor power today supposedly did. It is not, therefore, using this type of argument, whose analogy with the myth of the biblical curse is clear, that Marx explains the origin of profit.

Nor is it supposing that the exchange between capital and labor does not obey the principle of equivalence. None of that! It is not by circumventing the principle that exchange is always an exchange of equal values ​​that the author of The capital demonstrates that wages are becoming more and more a miserable means of earning a living, compared with profits, which increase the more capitalists spend on buying means of production and labor power. Here are the conditions of the problem. hic Rhodus, Hic Salta!

The origin of profit appears to classical political economy (CPE) as a real enigma. This science, in the figure of its greatest exponents – Adam Smith and David Ricardo – was confronted with a problem that seemed to have no solution: how to explain the exchange between capital and labor without violating the principle of equivalence and, at the same time, from this equality, to demonstrate how surplus value, or, in its phenomenal expression, profit, originates.

Smith and Ricardo discovered that the production of surplus value is born from the exchange between capital and labor. However, they could not reconcile this exchange with the principle of equivalence. But that, as Marx would say, is a necessary consequence of the analytical method with which they undertook the critique of the economy (MARX, 1980c, p.1548).

Fit the author of The capital realize what classical political economy was never able to decipher: how from equality, from the exchange of equal values, inequality arises, that is: surplus value. It is from this aporia, in which Smith and Ricardo found themselves entangled, that Marx sets out to explain the origin of surplus value. Therefore, it does not oppose to that science a simply different theory. Quite the contrary, he shares with the classical economists the same assumption assumed by them, that is, that the right to property is based on one's own work. And it had to take advantage of this presupposition, because, in a world where all individuals only exist as owners of goods, each one will only be able to appropriate other people's things through the alienation of their own property. For this reason, says Marx, at the beginning: “this supposition had to be admitted, because only owners of commodities with equal rights were confronted with each other, but the means of appropriating the merchandise of others was only alienation [Veräußerung] of its own merchandise, and this could only be produced through work” (MARX, 2017a, p.659).

But, then, how to demonstrate that the exchange between capital and labor takes place according to the principle of equivalence and that this equality gives rise to inequality in the appropriation of social wealth? The answer found in Marx lies in his exposition of the internal dialectic of the accumulation process. This dialectic takes care of transforming that principle (equivalence) into its direct opposite; namely: the exchange of non-equivalence. And this happens, it is never too much to emphasize, without the laws of the exchange of commodities, that is, the aforementioned principle of equivalence, being annulled even for an instant.

Marx exposes this revolutionizing of the internal dialectic of commodity exchanges in Chapters XXI and XXII of Book I of The capital. Assuming the idea, so dear to liberal philosophy, that, in the remote past, the capitalist class acquired its property with the sweat of its own brow, Marx wonders what would happen when this heritage is used recurrently to pay workers' wages? Answer: at the end of a certain time, all this equity will consist of unpaid work for others. This is what the author of The capital using an example. Imagine that the capitalist class, after many generations of work, has accumulated a wealth of 1.000 units of money and that it can now dispose of it to hire wage workers.

Next, it assumes that this capital annually generates a surplus value of 200 units of money, destined for consumption by capitalists. What happens when this capital is recurrently used to hire workers? Simple! If each year a surplus value of 200 monetary units is generated, at the end of the fifth year, the total surplus value, produced and consumed entirely by the capitalist class, will be 1000 units. And what is more important: the capitalist class still has those 1000 units of capital to restart, the following year, the hiring of new workers.

Now, if from the fifth year onwards, all the patrimony of the capitalist class, which it supposedly amassed with the sweat of its own brow, was paid in full, how can it be maintained that all this happened without violating the principle of equivalence? All the more reason if one considers that from the sixth year onwards, the exchange between capital and labor became a non-exchange, since the entire patrimony of the capitalist class is now entirely made up of surplus value, that is to say , of unpaid work, of capitalized surplus value.

If the internal dialectic of the accumulation process transforms the exchange between capital and labor into a non-exchange, does this not nullify the principle of equivalence, which requires that every act of exchange be an exchange of equal values? No! Let Marx then explain how this apparent aporia is resolved. Granting him the floor, he shows that, “insofar as each single transaction continually obeys the law of commodity exchange, according to which the capitalist always buys labor power and the worker always sells it – and, we assume here, for its real value – it is evident that the law of appropriation or the law of private property, founded on the production and circulation of goods, is transformed, obeying its own internal and inevitable dialectic, into its direct opposite. The exchange of equivalents, which appeared to be the original operation, has been distorted to the point where the exchange is now effected only in appearance, since, in the first place, the very part of capital exchanged for labor power is nothing more than a part of the product of someone else's work, appropriated without equivalent; secondly, its producer, the worker, not only has to replace it, but has to do so with a new surplus. The exchange relationship between the capitalist and the worker thus becomes a mere appearance belonging to the circulation process, a mere form, foreign to the content itself and which only mystifies it. (MARX, 2017a, p.659).

Therefore, as a result of this continuous and uninterrupted process of accumulation, adds Marx, then, “property appears, [now], on the side of the capitalist, as the right to appropriate the unpaid work of others or its product; on the worker's side, as the impossibility of appropriating his own product. The split between property and work becomes a necessary consequence of a law that, apparently, had its origin in the identity of both”. (MARX, 2013a, p.659).

Thus, the base idea, at the same time so dear to the liberal conception of the world, that capitalist property is the result of personal work, falls to the ground. And all this takes place in consonance with the law of commodity exchange, which only requires equality between the values ​​exchanged, when each act of exchange is seen outside its connection with other acts of exchange. As to this, Marx leaves no doubt. After expounding the internal dialectic of commodity exchange, he demonstrates that the continuous and uninterrupted buying and selling of labor power in no way alters the general law of commodity production. “The amount of value advanced to pay the wages of the workers does not reappear in the product purely and simply, but is increased by a surplus value”.

This surplus-value, Marx then says, “does not result from having deceived the seller, since he actually received the value of his commodity, but from the consumption of that commodity by the buyer. The law of exchange only requires equality between the exchange values ​​of commodities that are reciprocally alienated (…) derived from them. But, despite this, it has the following result: (i) that the product belongs to the capitalist, and not to the worker; (ii) that the value of this product, in addition to the value of the advanced capital, includes a surplus value, which, although it cost the worker work and nothing to the capitalist, becomes the legitimate property of the latter; (iii) that the worker has kept his labor power and can sell it again whenever he finds a buyer. Simple reproduction is nothing more than the periodic repetition of this first operation; it turns, again and again, to transform money into capital. The law is therefore not violated; on the contrary, it only gets the opportunity to act lastingly (MARX, 2017a, p.660).

And so Marx unveils the secret of the production of surplus value; this appears not as the product of a theft, but as a perfectly legal exchange, in the sense of criminal law. Exploitation is not to be confused with theft, because in the production of goods, only the seller and the buyer confront each other independently, “their reciprocal relations come to an end when the contract concluded between them expires. If the deal is repeated, it is as a result of a new contract, which bears no relation to the previous one and in which only chance brings together the same buyer and the same seller again (MARX, 2017a, p.662).

Consequently, while in each act of exchange – taken individually – the laws of exchange are preserved, “the mode of appropriation can undergo a total revolution without the right of property adequate to the production of commodities being in any way affected. This same right remains in force both at the beginning, when the product belonged to the producer, and the latter, exchanging equivalent for equivalent, could only get rich through his own work, as well as in the capitalist period, when social wealth becomes, in ever-increasing proportion, greater, the property of those in a position to appropriate again and again the unpaid work of others” (MARX, 2017a, p.662).


Engels, editor of the second and third books of Capital

Marx announces in the preface to the first edition of The capital, in July 1867, that “the second volume of this writing will deal with the process of capital circulation (Book II) and the configurations of the global process (Book III); the third (Book IV) on the history of theory. All judgments based on scientific criticism are welcome. Faced with the prejudices of so-called public opinion, to which I have never made concessions, I take as my motto, as always, the motto of the great Florentine: I followed your corso, and I felt like saying le gentil!”[iii] (MARX, 2017a, p.81).

It is not difficult to infer from this that The capital is a work that articulates the intelligibility of the system of the capitalist mode of production from a conception of totality, as a unit of the production process and the process of circulation of goods. It is not for less Marx's reluctance not to publish The capital until he had the three books (I, II, III) in their complete version before his eyes. In a letter addressed to Engels, dated July 31, 1865, he confesses that there were still “three chapters to be written to finish the theoretical part (the first three books)”. Then he adds that “afterwards will come a fourth book, devoted to history and sources; resolved in the first three books; the latter will be above all a repetition in historical form”.

In that same letter, Marx justifies his resistance. He considers this difficulty to be the greatest advantage of his writings, as they “constitute an artistic whole and I cannot reach this result except thanks to my system of never giving impressions until I have them complete before me” (MARX, 2020, .p.186).

But this is not the only care alleged by Marx. In April 1879, a long time after that letter addressed to Engels, he wrote to Nikolai Frantsevich Danielson, informing him that he would not be able to publish the second volume of The capital as long as "the current regime (...) with its current rigor" continues in Germany. Marx is referring there to the exception laws against the social democrats, enacted by Bismarck in October 1878.

But this was not the main reason that prevented him from editing the second volume of The capital. Among other reasons, he claimed that he would not “publish the second volume before the current English industrial crisis reached its culmination” (MARX, 2020, p.331).

Marx died without seeing the three volumes of his The capital. His aesthetic care and his concern with the historical conditions of the time, in addition to his poor health and financial poverty, prevented him from completing his main work.

Engels was responsible for publishing books II and III of The capital. But this task would cost him more than twenty years of work. One of the possible reasons for this challenge, Engels confesses, in a letter addressed to August Bebel, dated August 30, 1883, that from then on he would dedicate himself to the publication of Book II. However, he is astounded by the material he finds. A veritable mountain of drafts, with hundreds of citations piled up, awaiting further work. In that letter he asserts that “you [Bebel] ask me how it was possible that he [Marx] hid from me, precisely from me, the state of the material? Very simple: if I had known, I would have harassed him day and night until the work was finished and in print. And [Marx] knew that better than anyone else; and he also knew that, in the worst case scenario, which occurred now, the manuscript could be edited by me according to his spirit – something, by the way, that he had already said to tussy” (MARX, 2020, p.368-369).

Ignorance of the spoils left by Marx would demand, on Engels' part, an excessive effort; almost superhuman. And he knew it. More than anyone, he was aware of the difficulties he would encounter in his publishing work. In the preface to Book II, he confesses that “Preparing for printing the second book of The capital, and so that, on the one hand, it appeared in a coherent and as finished form as possible and, on the other, as the exclusive work of the author, and not of the publisher, it was not an easy job”. He explains the reasons for this difficulty: “The large number of existing versions, most of them fragmentary, made the task difficult. Only one of these versions (Manuscript IV[a]) at most was revised and prepared for printing, but most of that too has become obsolete due to later reworkings. Some of the material, though finished in content, was not finished in form; it was written in the language in which Marx used to write his notes: in a careless style, full of colloquial, often sarcastic expressions, as well as technical English and French terms, and often sentences and even whole pages in English; ideas landed on paper as they developed in the author's brain. If a good part of the content was exposed in detail, another part, of equal importance, was only outlined; the facts that serve as an illustration of the material were assembled, but not in order, and much less elaborated; often at the end of a chapter, in the author's haste to move on to the next chapter, there would be but a few fragmentary sentences, to indicate the development there left incomplete; finally, there was the notorious handwriting, which sometimes even the author himself could not decipher” (MARX, 2017b, .p.79).

For the editing of book II, Engels used the manuscripts numbered from “I to IV by Marx himself. Of these, Manuscript I (150 pages), presumably written in 1865 or 1867, is the first separate but more or less fragmentary elaboration of Book II in its present composition. Also from this text nothing could be used. Manuscript III is, in part, a compilation of quotations and references to Marx's extract notebooks – most of them referring to the first section of Book II – and, in part, elaborations of specific points, above all a critique of Adam Smith's theses. on fixed capital and circulating capital and on the source of profit; moreover, it contains an exposition of the relation between the rate of surplus-value and the rate of profit, belonging to Book III. The references offered few new elements, and many versions for both Book II and III, made obsolete by later redactions, were mostly discarded (MARX, 2013b, p.81).

Of all this material, Engels clarifies that “Manuscript IV is a ready-to-print version of Section I and the first chapters of Section II of Book II, and we use it where appropriate. Although we know that this material was written before manuscript II, it could – due to its more finished form – be used with advantages for the corresponding part of this book; it was only necessary to supplement it with a few passages from manuscript II. The latter dates from 1870 and constitutes the only somewhat complete elaboration of Book II. The notes for the final draft, which I will mention below, expressly say: “The second version must be used as a base” (MARX, 20137, p.81).

Marx's struggle to finalize the writings on Books II and III is fought for successive periods interspersed between various illnesses that afflicted him and brief, very brief periods of recovery and health. By the end of the 1870s, Marx, says Engels, “already seemed clear that without a complete turnaround in his state of health he would never succeed in producing a fully satisfactory version of Books II and III. Indeed, manuscripts V to VIII often show the marks of a violent struggle against the illnesses that mortified him. The more difficult content of section I was again developed in manuscript V; the remainder of Section I and the entire Section II (with the exception of Chapter XVII) did not present major theoretical difficulties; on the other hand, Marx considered that section III, dedicated to the reproduction and circulation of social capital, was primarily in need of reworking.

In fact, in manuscript II, reproduction was studied, at first, without taking into account the monetary circulation that mediates it, and then taking it into account. This had to be eliminated, and the entire section had to be reworked to fit the author's expanded field of vision. And so came Manuscript VIII, a notebook of just seventy quarter pages; but the amount of material that Marx was able to compress into such a small space is demonstrated when comparing this manuscript with section III, printed, after eliminating the inserted fragments of manuscript II (MARX, 20137, p.82-83).

Here is the material that Engels used to publish Book II. For publishing book III, he had the first manuscript version of Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy, from the above-mentioned fragments of manuscript III, and from some occasional short annotations scattered throughout several notebooks of excerpts”. In addition, he used the following materials: “the aforementioned manuscript folio from 1864-1865, prepared to approximately the same degree of finish as Manuscript II of Book II, and an 1875 notebook, “The relation between the rate of surplus value and the rate of profit”, which approaches the subject mathematically ( in equations). The preparation of this book for printing is proceeding rapidly. To the extent that I can already make a judgment about this work, I believe that, with the exception of some very important sections, it will fundamentally present difficulties of a technical nature (MARX, 2013b, p.83).

In general, Engels' publishing work required him to intervene in the writing of the manuscripts on those points that seemed to him lacking elucidation. Only on pages of manuscripts where he did not find a corresponding element did he alter and complete independently. Its modifications, as Regina Roth's excellent research reveals, "include standardization and adjustment of concepts, notations, numerical examples, various transpositions, the inclusion of footnotes in the main text, the addition of titles, introductions and transitions, in addition to , formation and suppression of paragraphs, omissions, updates and dismissal of emphasis, statements of accounts, explanation, complement and translation of citations, as well as style modifications (MARX; ENGELS, 2003, pp.407-427).[iv]

*Francisco Teixeira He is a professor at the Regional University of Cariri (URCA). Author, among other books, of Thinking with Marx: A critical-commented reading of Capital (Rehearsal).

Rodrigo Cavalcante de Almeida is a professor at the Federal Institute of Ceará (IFCE).


[I] It is important to point out that even book I did not leave its author completely satisfied. He added an appendix, as late as 1867, to Section I, at Engels's request, with the aim of making the reading clearer for an audience unaccustomed to dialectics. He made substantial modifications for the 1872 second edition; he revised and modified the French translation which, after the modifications, gave this edition an autonomy that should be read as a separate work. In other words, if even Book I, which had Marx's final finishing for printing, underwent several alterations, what can one say about Books II and III which were edited by Engels and which, therefore, did not have the critical care of his author.

[ii] The tense was changed by us.

[iii] Take your course and let the rabble talk!

[iv] The second part of this text will be presented in another article, which begins with the alterations that Engels introduced in the manuscripts left by Marx for the publication of books II and III. Then, the authors will present Engels' reading of The capital, in order to submit it to criticism.

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