The poetics and politics of exchange in Roman agronomy
Oxford University Press
Reason for embargo
Currently under an indefinite embargo pending publication by the publisher. 12 month embargo to apply on publication
1. Introduction: Roman Economic Thought One of the central themes in Graeber’s Debt – established with his opening anecdote on how the claim “one has to pay one’s debts” becomes established as a self-evident truth – is the way that certain economic ideas, the language of the market and the assumption that this is a true and objective description of the world, become naturalised. This is the reason that history, including the history of classical antiquity, is so important for his argument; in a similar manner to Marx and Polanyi, Graeber shows both that modern assumptions about economic behaviour are not in fact universal or transhistorical, but are (partial) descriptions of the specific conditions of capitalism, and also that modern accounts of the past play an active role in making those assumptions appear universal and transhistorical, by representing other societies and their practices in a manner that obscures differences from our own. “Bourgeois relations,” Marx remarked, are established “as the inviolable laws on which society in the abstract is founded. This is more or less the conscious purpose of the whole proceeding.” [...]
This is the author accepted manuscript.
Forthcoming in Debt: The First 3,000 Years. Editors: Weisweiler J. Oxford University Press, New York 2018
Place of publication