The Enigma Of Capital And The Crises Of Capitalism By David Harvey Analysis

2019 Words 9 Pages
chose to review David Harvey’s book ‘The Enigma of Capital, and the Crises of Capitalism’. I selected to investigate this book for a couple of reasons. Firstly the title of the book arose my curiosity, the word ‘enigma’ meaning ‘a person or thing that is mysterious or difficult to understand’ added curiosity to the novel. Secondly I had never studied Capitalism before, so learning about something new intrigued me. The Quality of the book is backed by the fact that it has been translated into eleven languages. David Harvey is a renowned professor of anthropology, with many highly acclaimed publications such as ‘The Condition of Post-Modernity’. (Which, by the Independent was ranked in the top fifty most significant non-fiction compositions published since the Second World War). He also is the greatest cited geographer in the world. More recently, in 2007 he was voted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Harvey opens the book with an exceedingly apt metaphor ‘Capital is the lifeblood that flows through the body politic’, which sets in motion the idea of capital being a flow, rather than an actual thing. Capital is according to him, continuously in motion and ultimately a dynamic process. Understanding capital flow, and its peculiar ways is paramount in comprehending the
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Some of his statements are vague and open ended. He fails to clearly define the correlation between the ‘capital surplus absorption problem’ and the barriers of capital, which can lead to an economic crisis. This raises many questions for the reader. Does one see these barriers as a feature of the capital surplus absorption problem? Are the capital surplus problem and their barriers connected? The end of the book leaves the reader feeling lost and ultimately unsure. Harvey fails to determine the future of capitalism as a whole, if it will return to long-term growth or not. His views are varied which leaves the reader

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