Is Globalization Inevitable in the Marxian Paradigm?

21 Pages Posted: 23 May 2011

Date Written: May 20, 2011


This paper examines Marx’s views on globalization and its supposed inevitability, and contends that they underwent a substantial evolution and revision after the publication of the Communist Manifesto. In the case of China, a prime example of the Asiatic mode of production, Marx even doubted whether globalization (capitalism) would ever be able to accomplish its historical mission of developing the forces of production and creating the material conditions for a higher mode of production, viz., Communism. While in the Russian case, he seriously entertained the notion that it could bypass the hardships and vicissitudes of capitalism and forge its own unique path to socialism. If accepted, this interpretation represents a serious challenge to the universality and validity of Marx’s materialist conception of history.

Keywords: Asiatic Mode of Production, Geographic Expansion of Capitalism (Globalization), Materialist Conception of History, Relative Backwardness, Underconsumptionist Tendencies

JEL Classification: B10, B14, B24

Suggested Citation

Ramirez, Miguel D., Is Globalization Inevitable in the Marxian Paradigm? (May 20, 2011). Yale Economics Department Working Paper No. 89, Available at SSRN: or

Miguel D. Ramirez (Contact Author)

Trinity College ( email )

300 Summit Street
Hartford, CT 06106
United States

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