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Ghostwriting

Ghostwriting

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Published by: SKL on Jun 19, 2012
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GhostwritingAuthor(s): Gayatri Chakravorty SpivakReviewed work(s):Source:
Diacritics,
Vol. 25, No. 2 (Summer, 1995), pp. 64-84Published by:
Stable URL:
Accessed: 16/06/2012 04:54
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GHOSTWRITING
GAYATRI HAKRAVORTYPIVAK
If4CTh t9f5^r'TT
-firstlineof song allegedlywrittenbyamemberofthe CommunistPartyofIndiaforthecentenaryofKarl Marx's deathI firstpublishedapieceon DerridaorDiacritics-"Glas-Piece"--eighteenyears ago.Ittook meayeartowrite. It isapleasureowriteoneagain,insuchaugustcompany.I amwritingtatspeed,andnotonlybecause lifehasbecomeharder ntheinterveningyears.My relationshipo"deconstruction,"hateverthatmaybe,has become moreintimate,moreeveryday,moreofagiving-away,and in-habitofmind,akind of tic thatcomesin towarn n thethickof what is calledactivism,formulas hatguidein themidst ofthosewho havelittle ornothing.Ithas become a bit of apouvoir-savoirforme,thusdefeatingits ownpurpose,as itshould.So,Ithought,whynotmime thishappystate ofaffairs-"Glas-Piece" wasall aboutmiming-andwrite at ease? For "serious"reviews,consult AhmadorJameson-orLaclau,nthis issue.11Ihavealwayshadtroublewith DerridaonMarx.Afriendsaidmaybethat'sbecause I feelproprietorialboutMarx.Who knows?Maybe.Atanyrate,I have laid outmytrouble nprintsee"LimitsandOpeningsof Marx nDerrida,"Outside97-119]. Mymainproblemhas been Derrida'sseemingrefusal to honor thedifference betweencommercial andindustrialcapital.Derrida writes ofspeculativeinterestas excess andsurplusvalue:money begetsmoney.Therefore,nGiven Time[158-61;thequotedbits areon158n,160-61]andinSpectersofMarx[138-39;hereafterited asSM]he can chart acertaincontinuityfrom MarxbacktoAristotle andPlato("[a]ndof course Marx .
..
,"[t]hegenetic vocabulary..couldlead usback from Aristotle toPlato").Marx,onthe otherhand,eems to havethoughthat oexplainndustrialapitalismhroughhemoneycircuitis theabsurdandinterestedapriceof thebourgeois[Marx,Capital2:109-43].2Isitjustmy proprietorialeaction o think hatyoucan't catch atanyspecterofMarx fyoudon'tattendo theghost'ssignature?Who knows?Maybe.
1.I was amusedbyAhmad'sadmission that the"identification f'historicity'withopeningup'access' to 'themessianic' leaves me somewhatspeechless" [101].Irespecthisadmission,ratherthan thepompousverbiageonthe occasionof fantasmaticHeideggersandLevinasesthatone encountersnculturalcriticismtoday.2.Thepresuppositionthatcapitalismcan beexplained away bythemoneycircuit alone(althoughhe mentionscapitalelaborately, ofcourse,mostnoticeablyin TheOtherHeading)legitimizesthe"figur[ing]ofeconomicvalue...[by]typicalmeasures like ratiosofpricetoearningsorpricetobookvalue,"apopularizeddescriptionofthemethodfollowedbyWilliamH.Miller3dofLeggMasonSpecialInvestmentTrust,who callshimselfa"valuenvestor"Gould].AMarxiandescriptionofpricewouldbe the relativeorm ofvalueexpressedinthemoney orm.diacritics5.2:65-8465
iacritics/summer 1995
 
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