这篇文章发表于 971 天前，可能其部分内容已经发生变化，如有疑问可询问作者。
David Harvey是个深受马克思主义影响的地理学家。某种机缘巧合下我看了篇他的文章，瞬间就着迷了。这里翻译的文章有《THE GEOGRAPHY OF CAPITALIST ACCUMULATION: A RECONSTRUCTION OF THE MARXIAN THEORY *》和《Globalization and the “Spatial Fix”》。共花了二十个小时左右机翻+手翻+整理，肯定有不少错误，但就这样了。
The spatial dimension to Marx’s theory of accumulation under the capitalist mode of production has for too long been ignored. This is, in part, Marx’s fault since his writings on the matter are fragmentary and often only sketchily developed. But careful scrutiny of his works reveals that Marx recognized that capital accumulation took place in a geographical context and that it in turn created specific kinds of geographical structures. Marx further develops a novel approach to location theory (in which dynamics are at the center of things) and shows that it is possible to connect, theoretically, the general processes of economic growth with an explicit understanding of an emergent structure of spatial relationships. And it further transpires that this locational analysis provides, in albeit a limited form, a crucial link between Marx’s theory of accumulation and the Marxian theory of imperialism – a link which many have sought but none have so far found with any certainty, in part, I shall argue, because the mediating factor of Marx’s location theory has been overlooked.
In this paper I shall try to demonstrate how the theory of accumulation relates to an understanding of spatial structure and how the particular form of locational analysis which Marx creates provides the missing link between the theory of accumulation and the theory of imperialism.
Marx’s theory of growth under capitalism places accumulation of capital at the center of things. Accumulation is the engine which powers growth under the capitalist mode of production. The capitalist system is therefore highly dynamic and inevitably expansionary; it forms a permanently revolutionary force which continuously and constantly reshapes the world we live in. A stationary state of simple reproduction is, for Marx, logically incompatible with the perpetuation of the capitalist mode of production. “The historical mission of the bourgeoisie,” is expressed in the formula “accumulation for accumulation’s sake, production for production’s sake” (Capital, l, p. 595). Yet this historical mission does not stem from the inherent greed of the capitalist; it arises, rather, out of forces entirely independent of the capitalist’s individual will:
Only as personified capital is the capitalist respectable. As such, he shares with the miser the passion for wealth as wealth. But that which in the miser is mere idiosyncrasy, is, in the capitalist, the effect of the social mechanism, of which he is but one of the wheels. Moreover, the development of Capitalist production makes it constantly necessary to keep increasing the amount of capital laid out in a given industrial undertaking, and competition makes the immanent laws of capitalist production to be felt by each individual capitalist, as external coercive laws. It compels him to keep constantly extending his capital, in order to preserve it, but extend it he cannot, except by means of progressive accumulation (Ibid., p. 592).
Economic growth under capitalism is, as Marx usually dubs it, a process of internal contradictions which frequently erupt as crises. Harmonious or balanced growth under capitalism is, in Marx’s view, purely accidental because of the spontaneous and chaotic nature of commodity production under competitive Capitalism (Capital, 2, p. 495). Marx’s analyses of this system of commodity production led him to the view that there were innumerable possibilities for crises to occur as well as certain tendencies inherent within capitalism which were bound to produce serious stresses within the accumulation process. We can understand these stresses more easily if we recognize that the progress of accumulation depends upon and presupposes:
(1) The existence of a surplus of labor – an industrial reserve army which can feed the expansion of production. Mechanisms must therefore exist to increase the supply of labor power by, for example, stimulating population growth, generating migration streams, drawing “latent elements” – labor power employed in non-capitalist situations, women and children, and the like – into the workforce, or by creating unemployment by the application of labor-saving innovations.
(2) The existence in the market place of requisite quantities of, or opportunities to obtain, means of production – machines, raw materials, physical infrastructures, and the like – to permit the expansion of production as capital is reinvested.
(3) The existence of a market to absorb the increasing quantities of commodities produced – If uses cannot be found for goods or if an effective demand (need backed by ability to pay) does not exist, then the conditions for capitalist accumulation disappear.
（1）存在剩余劳动力 – 这是一种能支持生产扩展的工业“预备役部队”。因此必须存在机制来增加劳动力的供应，例如，刺激人口增长、产生迁移流、吸引“潜在的元素（劳动力）” – 应用于非资本主义情形的劳动力、女性和儿童诸如此类进入劳动力市场，或通过在劳动节约的创新中创造失业。
（2）在市场中存在必要数量的生产资料或者获得生产资料的机会 – 机器、原材料、基础设施建设等等 – 以保证生产的扩展能作为资本再投入。
（3）存在一个市场能够吸收增加的商品数量 – 如果无法找到商品的利用价值，或者如果有效的需求（需要支付的能力）不存在，那么资本主义积累的条件消失了。
In each of these respects the progress of accumulation may encounter a serious barrier which, once reached, will likely precipitate a crisis of some sort. Since, in well-developed capitalist economies, the supply of labor power, the supply of means of production and of necessary infrastructures, and the structure of demand are all “produced” under the capitalist mode of production, Marx concludes that capitalism tends actively to produce some of the barriers to its own development. This means that crises are endemic to the capitalist accumulation process.
Crises can be manifest in a variety of ways, however, depending on the conditions of circulation and production at the time. We can see more clearly how this can be so by examining, briefly, how Marx looks at production, distribution, consumption and reinvestment as separate phases (or moments”) within the totality of the capitalist production process. He argues, for example, that:
not only is production immediately consumption and consumption immediately production, not only is production a means for Consumption and consumption the aim of production… but also, each of them… creates the other in completing itself and creates itself as the other (Grundrisse, p. 93).
If production and consumption are necessarily dialectically integrated with each other within production as a totality, then it follows that the crises which arise from structural barriers to accumulation can be manifest in each and any of the phases in the circulation and production of value.
Consider, for example, a typical realization crisis which arises because accumulation for accumulation’s sake means, inevitably, the “tendency to produce without regard to the limits of the market” (Theories-of Surplus Value, 2, p. 522). Capitalists constantly tend to expand the mass and total value of commodities on the market at the same time as they try to maximize their profits by keeping wages down which restricts the purchasing power of the masses (Ibid., p. 492; Capital, 3, p. 484). There is a contradiction here which periodically produces a realization crisis – a mass of commodities on the market with no purchasers in sight. This overproduction is relative only, of course, and it has nothing to do with absolute human needs – “it is only concerned with demand backed by ability to pay” (Theories of Surplus Value, 2, p. 506). Absolute overproduction in relation to all human wants and needs is, in Marx’s view, impossible under capitalism.
But such relative overproduction may appear also as underconsumption or as an overproduction of capital (a capital surplus). Marx regards these forms as manifestations of the same basic overaccumulation problem (Ibid., pp. 497-9). The fact that there is a surfeit of capital relative to opportunities to employ that capital means that there has been an overproduction of capital (in the form of an overproduction of commodities) at a preceeding stage and that capitalists are over-investing and underconsuming the surplus at the present stage. In all of these cases, overproduction:
is specifically conditioned by the general law of the production of capital: to produce to the limit set by the productive forces, that is to say, to exploit the maximum amount of labour with a given amount of capital, without any consideration for the actual limits of the market or the needs backed by ability to pay (Ibid., pp. 534-5).
是一般资本生产在特定情况下的产物：生产能力到达了生产力的极限，也就是说，以一定量的资本来利用最大数量的劳动力，却没有考虑到市场的实际限制或支付能力所支持的需求（同上，第534 - 5页）。
This same general law produces, periodically, a:
plethora of capital [which] arises from the same causes as those which call forth a relative overpopulation, and is, therefore, a phenomenon supplementing the latter, although they stand at opposite poles one pole, and unemployed worker population at the other (Capital, 3, p. 251).
The various manifestations of crisis in the capitalist system – chronic unemployment and underemployment, capital surpluses and lack of investment opportunities, falling rates of profit, lack of effective demand in the market, and so on, can therefore be traced back to the basic tendency to overaccumulate. Since there are no other equilibriating forces at work within the competitive anarchy of the capitalist economic system, crises have an important function – they enforce some kind of order and rationality onto capitalist economic development. This is not to say that crises are themselves orderly or logical – they merely create the conditions which force some kind of arbitrary rationalization of the capitalist production system. This rationalization extracts a social cost and has its tragic human consequences in the form of bankruptcies, financial collapse, forced devaluation of capital assets and personal savings, inflation, increasing concentration of economic and political power in a few hands, falling real wages, and unemployment. Forced periodic corrections to the course of capital accumulation can all too easily get out of hand, however, and spawn class struggles, revolutionary movements and the chaos which typically provides the breeding ground for fascism. The social reaction to crises can affect the way in which the crisis is resolved so that there is no necessary unique outcome to this forced rationalization process. All that has to happen is that appropriate conditions for renewed accumulation have to be created if the capitalist system is to be sustained.
资本主义制度危机的各种表现形式 – 长期失业和就业不足、资本盈余和缺乏投资机会、利润率下降、市场缺乏有效需求等等，可追溯到过度积累的基本趋势。由于在资本主义经济体制的竞争无政府状态下，没有其他平衡力量在起作用，危机就起着重要的作用——它们对资本主义经济发展强加了某种秩序和合理性。这并不是说危机本身是有序的或合乎逻辑的，它们只是创造了迫使资本主义生产系统某种任意合理化的条件。这种合理化会产生社会成本，并产生其悲惨的人类后果，其形式包括破产、金融崩溃、资本资产和个人储蓄被迫贬值、通货膨胀、经济和政治权力日益集中、实际工资下降和失业。然而，对资本积累过程的强制定期修正很容易失控，并引发阶级斗争、革命运动和混乱，这些通常为法西斯主义提供了滋生地。社会对危机的反应会影响危机的解决方式，因此这种被迫的合理化进程没有必要的独特结果。若要维持资本主义制度，就必须创造适当的条件来重新积累。
Periodic crises must in general have the effect of expanding the productive capacity and renewing the conditions of further accumulation. We can conceive of each crisis as shifting the accumulation process onto a new and higher plane. This “new plane” will likely exhibit certain combined characteristics of the following sorts:
(1) The productivity of labor will be much enhanced by the employment of more sophisticated machinery and equipment while older fixed capital equipment will, during the course of the crisis, have become much cheaper through a forced devaluation.
(2) The cost of labor will be much reduced because of the widespread unemployment during the crisis and, consequently, a larger surplus can be gained for further accumulation.
(3) The surplus capital which lacked opportunities for investment in the crisis will be drawn into new and high profit lines of production.
(4) An expanding effective demand for product – at first in the capital goods industry but subsequently in final consumption – will easily clear the market of all goods produced.
（4）扩大对产品的有效需求 – 首先是资本货物行业，但随后是在最终消费 – 将很容易清除所有生产的商品的市场。
It is, perhaps, useful to pick up on the last element and consider how a new plane of effective demand, which can increase the capacity to absorb products, can be constructed. Analysis suggests that it can be constructed out of a complex mix of four overlapping elements:
(1) The penetration of capital into new spheres of activity by (i) organizing preexisting forms of activity along capitalist lines (e.g., the transformation of peasant subsistence agriculture into corporate farming), or by (ii) expanding the points of interchange within the system of production and diversifying the division of labor (new specialist businesses emerge to take care of some aspect of production which was once all carried on within the same factory or firm).
(2) Creating new social wants and needs, developing entirely new product-lines (automobiles and electronic goods are excellent twentieth century examples) and organizing consumption so that it becomes “rational” with respect to the accumulation process (working class demands for good housing may, for example, be coopted into a public housing program which serves to stabilize the economy and expand the demand for construction products of a certain sort).
(3) Facilitating and encouraging the expansion of population at a rate consistent with long-run accumulation (this obviously is not a short-run solution but there appears to be a strong justification for Marx’s comment (Theories of Surplus Value, 2, p. 47; cf. Grundrisse, p. 764 and p. 771) that “an increasing population appears as the basis of accumulation as a continuous process” from the standpoint of expanding the labor supply and the market for products).
(4) Expanding geographically into new regions, increasing foreign trade, exporting capital and in general expanding towards the creation of what Marx called “the world market.”
In each of these respects, or by some combination of them, capitalism can create fresh room for accumulation. The first three items can be viewed really as a matter of intensification of social activity, of markets, of people within a particular spatial structure. The last item brings us, of course, to the question of spatial organization and geographical expansion as a necessary product of the accumulation process. In what follows we shall consider this last aspect in isolation from the others. But it is crucial to realize that in practice various trade-offs exist between intensification and spatial extension – a rapid rate of population growth and the easy creation of new social wants and needs within a country may render capital export and an expansion of foreign trade unnecessary for the expansion of accumulation. The more difficult, intensification becomes, the more important geographical extension is for sustaining capital accumulation. Bearing this in mind, we will proceed to examine the way in which the theory of accumulation relates to the production of spatial structures.
在每一个方面，或者通过它们的某种组合，资本主义可以为积累创造新的空间。前三个项目实际上可以被看作是一个在特定空间结构内强化社会活动、市场、人的问题。当然，最后一项给我们带来了空间组织问题和地理扩张作为积累过程的必要产物。接下来，我们将与其他方面分开考虑最后一个方面。但必须认识到在现实中，在集聚和空间扩展之间存在着各种权衡 – 人口快速增长和在一个国家内容易创造新的社会需要和需求，可能使资本输出和扩大对外贸易对扩大积累变得没有必要。越是困难，越是强化，越是重要的地域延伸，就是保持资本积累。考虑到这一点，我们将着手研究积累理论与空间结构产生的关系。
We will start from the proposition that the “circulation of capital realizes value while living labour creates value” (Grundrisse, p. 543). Circulation has two aspects; the actual physical movement of commodities from point of production to point of consumption and the actual or implicit costs that attach to the time taken up and to the social mediations (the chain of wholesalers, retailers, banking operations, and the like) which are necessary in order for the produced commodity to find its ultimate user. Marx regards the former as integral to the production process and therefore productive of value (Capital, 2. p. 150; Grundrisse, p. 533-4). The latter are regarded as necessary costs of circulation which are not, however, productive of value – they are to be regarded, therefore, as necessary deductions out of surplus, because the capitalist has to pay for them.
The transportation and communications industry which “sells change in location” (Capital, 2, p. 52) is directly productive of value because “economically considered, the spatial condition, the bringing of the product to market, belongs to the production process itself. The product is really finished only when it is on the market” (Grundrisse, pp. 533-4). However, the means of transportation and communication, because they are made up almost entirely of fixed capital, have their own peculiar laws of realization (Ibid., p. 523) – laws which stem from the fact that transportation is simultaneously produced and consumed at the moment of its use. Although the transport industry is potentially a source of surplus value, there are good reasons for capital not to engage in its production except under certain favorable circumstances. The state is often, therefore, very active in this sphere of production (Ibid., pp. 531-3).
The cost of transportation “is important insofar as the expansion of the market and the exchangeability of the product are connected with it” (Ibid., p. 534). Prices, both of raw materials and finished goods, are sensitive to the costs of transportation and the ability to draw in raw materials over long distances and to dispatch the finished product to a distant market is obviously affected by these costs. The costs of circulation “can be reduced by improved, cheaper and more rapid transportation” (Capital, 2, p. 142). One by-product of this is a cheapening of many elements of constant capital (raw material inputs) and the extension of the geographical market. Viewed from the standpoint of production as a totality, “the reduction of the costs of real circulation [in space] belongs to the development of the forces of production by capital” (Grundrisse, pp. 533-4).
Placed in the context of accumulatfon in general, improvements in transportation and communication are seen to be inevitable and necessary. “The revolution in the modes of production of industry and agriculture made necessary a revolution… in the means of communication and transport” so that they “became gradually adapted to the modes of production of mechanical industry, by the creation of a system of river steamers, railways, ocean steamers and telegraphs” (Capital, 1, p. 384). The imperative to accumulate consequently implies the imperative to overcome spatial barriers:
The more production comes to rest on exchange value, hence on exchange, the more important do the physical conditions of exchange – the means of communication and transport – become for the costs of circulation. Capital by its nature drives beyond every spatial barrier. Thus the creation of the physical conditions of exchange… becomes an extraordinary necessity for it (Grundrisse, p. 524).
生产越依赖于交换价值，因此在交换上，交换的物理条件 – 通信和运输手段 – 对流通成本而言更加重要。资本的性质超越了每一个空间障碍，从而创造了交换的物理条件……成为一个非同寻常的必要性 （《政治经济学批判》，第524页）。
The capitalist mode of production promotes the production of cheap and rapid forms of communication and transportation in order that “the direct product can be realized in distant markets in mass quantities” at the same time as new “spheres of realization for labour, driven by capital” can be opened up (loc. cit.). The reduction in realization and circulation costs helps to create, therefore, fresh room for capital accumulation. Put the other way around, capital accumulation is bound to be geographically expansionary and to be so by progressive reductions in the costs of communication and transportation.
The opening up of more distant markets, new sources of raw materials and of new opportunities for the employment of labor under the social relations of capitalism, has the effect, however, of increasing the turnover time of capital unless there are compensating improvements in the speed of circulation. The turnover time of a given capital is equal to the production time plus the circulation time (Capital, 2, p. 248). The longer the turnover time of a given capital, the smaller is its annual yield of surplus value. More distant markets tie capital up in the circulation process for longer time periods and therefore have the effect of reducing the realization of surplus value for a particular capital. By the same token, any reduction in circulation time increases surplus production and enhances the accumulation process. Speeding up “the velocity of circulation of capital” contributes to the accumulation process. Under these conditions “even spatial distance reduces itself to time: the important thing is not the market’s distance in space, but the speed… with which it can be reached” (Grundrisse, p. 538). There is thus a strong incentive to reduce the circulation time to a minimum for to do so is to minimize “the wandering period of commodities” (Capital, 2, p. 249). A dual need, both to reduce the cost and the time involved in movement, thus emanates from the imperative to accumulate:
“while capital must on one side strive to tear down every spatial barrier to intercourse, i.e., to exchange, and conquer the whole earth for its market, it strives on the other side to annihilate this space with time… The more developed the capital… the more does it strive simultaneously for an even greater extension of the market and for greater annihilation of space by time” (Grundrisse, p. 539).
Long distance trade, because it separates production and realization by a long time interval, may still be characterized by a long turnover period and a lack of continuity in the employment of capital. This kind of trade, and “overseas commerce in general” thus forms “one of the material bases,… one of the sources of the credit system” (Capital, 2, pp. 251-2). In the Grundrisse (p. 535) Marx develops this argument at greater length:
It is clear… that circulation appears as an essential process of capital. The production process cannot be begun anew before the transformation of the commidity into money. The constant continuity of this process, the unobstructed and fluid transition of value from one form into the other, or from one phase of the process into the next, appears as a fundamental condition for production based on capital to a much greater degree than for all earlier forms of production. [But] while the necessity of this continuity is given, its phases are separate in time and space… It thus appears as a matter of chance… whether or not its essential condition, the continuity of the different processes which constitute its process as a whole, is actually brought about. The suspension of this chance element by capital itself is credit.
The credit system allows of a geographical extension of the market by establishing continuity where there was none before. The necessity to annihilate space by time can in part be compensated for by an emerging system of credit.
The need to minimize circulation costs as well as turnover times promotes agglomeration of production within a few large urban centres which become, in effect, the workshops of capitalist production (Capital, 1, p. 352; Grundrisse, p. 587). The “annihilation of space by time” is here accomplished by a “rational” location of activities with respect to each other so as to minimize the costs of movement of intermediate products in particular. “Along with this concentration of masses of men and capital thus accelerated at certain points, there is the concentration of these masses of capital in the hands of the few” (Capital, 2, p. 250). The ability to economize on circulation costs depends, however, on the nature of the transportation relations established and here there appears to be a dynamic tendency towards concentration. Improvements in the means of transportation tend:
in the direction of the already existing market, that is to say, towards the great centres of production and population, towards ports of export, etc…. These particularly great traffic facilities and the resultant acceleration of the capital turnover … give rise to quicker concentration of both the centres of production and the markets” (CapitaZ, 2, p. 250).
This tendency towards agglomeration in large urban centers may be diminished or enhanced by special circumstances. On the one hand we find that “the territorial division of labour… confines special branches of flroduction to special districts of a country“ (Capikal, 1, p. 353). On the other hand, “all branches of production which by the nature of their product are dependent mainly on local consumption, such as breweries, are… developed to the greatest extent in the principle centres of population” (Capital, 2, p. 251).
The geographical rationalization of the processes of production is in part dependent upon the changing structure of transport facilities, the raw material and marketing demands of the industry and the inherent tendency towards agglomeration and concentration on the part of capital itself. The latter required a technological innovation to sustain it, however. Hence the importance of the steam engine which “permitted production to be concentrated in towns” and which “was of universal application, and, relatively speaking, little affected in its choice of residence by local circumstances” (Capital, 1, p. 378).
Innovations of this sort, which relatively speaking free production from local power sources and which permit the concentration of production in large urban agglomerations accomplish the same purpose as those transport innovations which serve to annihilate space with time. Geographical expansion and geographical concentration are both to be regarded as the product of the same striving to create new opportunities for capital accumulation. In general, it appears that the imperative to accumulate produces concentration of production and of capital at the same time as it creates an expansion of the market for realization. As a consequence, “flows in space” increase remarkably, while the “market expands spatially, and the periphery in relation to the centre… is circumscribed by a constantly expanding radius” (Theories of Surplus Value, 3, p. 288). Some sort of centre-periphery relation is bound to arise out of the tension between concentration and geographical expansion. We will examine certain aspects of this relation further in the section on foreign trade.
Since the structure of transport ftcilities does not remain constarit, we find “a shifting and relocation of places of production and of markets as a result of the changes in their relative positions caused by the transformation in transport facilities” (Capital, 2, p. 250). These transformations alter “the relative distances of places of production from the larger markets” and consequently bring about “the deterioration of old and the rise of new centres of production” (Ibid., p. 249).
The emergence of a distinct spatial structure with the rise of capitalism is not a contradiction-free process. In order to overcome spatial barriers and to annihilate space with time, spatial structures are created which themselves ultimately act as a barrier to further accumulation. These spatial structures are expressed, of course, in the fixed and immovable form of transport facilities, plant, and other means of production and consumption which cannot be moved without being destroyed. Once the mode of production of capital is brought into being, it “establishes its residence on the land itself and the seemingly solid presuppositions given by nature themselves [appear] in landed property as merely posited by industry” (Grundrisse, p. 740). Capital thus comes to represent itself in the form of a physical landscape created in its own image, created as use values to enhance the progressive accumulation of capital on an expanding scale. The geographical landscape which fixed and immobile capital comprises is both a crowning glory of past capital development and a prison which inhibits the further progress of accumulation because the very building of this landscape is antithetical to the “tearing down of spatial barriers” and ultimately even to the “annihilation of space by time.”
This contradiction is characteristic of the growing dependency of capitalism on fixed caoital of all kinds. With “fixed capital the value is imprisoned within a specific use value” (Grundrisse. p. 728) while the degree of fixity increases with durability, other things being equal (Capital, 2, p. 160). The necessary increase in the use of fixed capital of the immobile sort which the imperative to accumulate implies imposes a further imperative:
The value of fixed capital is reproduced only insofar as it is used up in the production process. Through disuse it loses its value without its value passing on to the product. Hence the greater the scale on which fixed capital develops… the more does the continuity of the production process or the constant flow of reproduction become an externally compelling condition for the mode of production founded on capital (Grundrisse, p, 703).
Capitalist development has to negotiate a knife-edge path between preserving the values of past capital investments in the built environment and destroying these investments in order to open up fresh room for accumulation (for a specific example of this see Harvey, 1975). As a consequence we can expect to witness a perpetual struggle in which capitalism builds a physical landscape appropriate to its own condition at a particular moment in time, only to have to destroy it, usually in the course of a crisis, at a subsequent point in time. Temporal crisis in fixed capital investment, often expressed as “long-waves” in economic development (see, e.g., Kuznets, 1961, Brinley Thomas, 1972) are therefore usually expressed as periodic re-shapings of the geographic environment to adapt it to the needs of further accumulation.
This contradiction has a further dimension. In part the drive to overcome spatial barriers and to annihilate space with time is designed to counteract what Marx saw as a pervasive tendency under capitalism for the profit rate to fall. The creation of built environments in the service of capitalism means “a growth of that portion of social wealth which, instead of serving as direct means of production, is invested in means of transportation and communication and in the fixed and circulating capital required for their operation” (Capital, 2, p. 251). Investment in the means of transportation is bound to increase the organic composition of social capital which tends to generate a fall in the rate of profit at the same time as its effects are supposed to increase the rate of profit. Again, capitalist development has to negotiate a knife-edge between these two contradictory tendencies.
The location theory in Marx is not much more specific than this (although there is much in the analysis of fixed and immovable capital investment which is of interest but which space precludes from considering here). The virtue of these fragmentary analyses lies not in their sophistication. It lies, rather, in the way in which they can be tightly integrated into the fundamental insights into the production of value and the dynamics of accumulation. In this the Marxian approach is fundamentally different to that typical of bourgeois economic analysis of locational phenomena. The latter typically specifies an optimal configuration under a specific set of conditions and presents a partial static equilibrium analysis. Dynamics are considered at the end of the analysis – usually as an afterthought – and the dynamics never get much beyond comparative statics. Consequently, it is generally acknowledged that bourgeois location theory has failed to develop a satisfactory dynamic representation of itself. The Marxian theory, on the other hand, commences with the dynamics of accumulation and seeks to derive out of this analysis certain necessities with respect to geographical structures. The landscape which capitalism creates is also seen as the locus of contradiction and tension, rather than as an expression of harmonious equilibrium. And crises in fixed capital investments are seen as synonymous in many respects with the dialectical transformation of geographical space. The contrast between the two theoretical stances is important. It suggests that the two theories are really concerned with quite different things. Bourgeois locational analysis is only adequate as an expression of optimal configurations under set conditions. The Marxian theory teaches us how to relate, theoretically, accumulation and the transformation of spatial structures and ultimately, of course, it provides us with the kind of theoretical and material understanding which will allow us to understand the reciprocal relationships between geography and history.
马克思的区位理论并没有比这更具体（尽管在对固定和固定资本投资的分析中有很多值得关注的地方，但空间在这里排除了这些）。这些支离破碎的分析的优点不在于其复杂程度。相反，关键在于如何将它们紧密地整合到对价值生产和积累动力的基本认识中。在这一点上，马克思主义的方法与典型的资产阶级对地点现象的经济分析方法有根本的不同。后者通常指定了在特定条件下的最优配置，并提出了局部静态平衡分析的方法。动力学是在分析的最后考虑的 – 通常是事后考虑的 – 而且动力学永远不会超出比较静态的范围。因此，人们普遍认为资产阶级区位理论未能发展出令人满意的对自身的动态表征（的理论）。另一方面，马克思主义的理论则从积累的动力出发，力图从这种分析中得出地理结构的某些必然性。资本主义创造的景观也被视为矛盾和紧张的中心，而不是和谐平衡的表现。固定资本投资中的危机在许多方面被看作是地理空间辩证转变的代名词。这两种理论关注的重点完全不同。这表明这两种理论所关注的是完全不同的事情。资产阶级的区位分析仅适用于作为在一定条件下最优配置的表达。马克思主义理论教会我们如何在理论上联系空间结构的积累和转化，当然，最终它为我们提供了一种理论和物质上的理解使我们能够理解地理和历史之间的相互关系。
Marx considers foreign trade from two rather different standpoints; first, as an attribute of the capitalist mode of production and second, as an historical phenomenon relating an evolving capitalist social formation with pre-capitalist societies and generating various intermediate social forms (such as colonies, plantation economies, dependent economies, and the like).
Marx invariably abstracts from questions of foreign trade in his analysis of the capitalist mode of production (Capital, 1, p. 581). He concedes, of course, that “capitalist production does not exist at all without foreign commerce” but suggests that consideration of the latter merely serves to “confuse without contributing any new element of the problem [of accumulation], or of its solution” (Capital, 2, p. 470). He also accepts that foreign trade may counteract the tendency to a falling rate of profit because it cheapens the elements of constant capital as well as necessities and so permits a rising surplus value to be appropriated. But since this raises the rate of accumulation, it merely hastens the fall in the rate of profit in the long run (Capital, 3, p. 237). The increase in foreign, which inevitably arises with the expansion of accumulation, merely “transfers the contradictions to a wider sphere and gives them greater latitude” (Capital, 2, p. 408).
Most of Marx’s comments on foreign trade relate to it as an historical phenomenon and are therefore peripheral to his main purpose in Capital. Foreign trade is treated as a pre-condition for capitalist accumulation as well as a consequence of the expansion of the market. Since consequences at one stage become pre-conditions at the next, the development of foreign trade and capitalist social formations are seen as integrally related. “Special factors” also arise in relation to foreign trade which can confuse, conceal and distort matters. The significance of such factors to actual historical situations is not denied – they are just not regarded as crucial for understanding the inner logic of the capitalist mode of production.
The theoretical and historical analyses intersect at certain points, however. Some of Marx’s statements on foreign trade can be interpreted as logical extensions of his theoretical views on how the accumulation process generates transportation relations and locational structures. These views are usually projected into a pre-existing structure of nation states, territories with different natural productive capacities and non-capitalist production systems.
Marx recognizes, for example, that “the productiveness of labour is fettered by physical conditions” (Capital, 1, p. 512). In agriculture he expects unequal returns on capital advanced to result from differences in both fertility and relative location (Capital 3, p. 650). Natural differences form, therefore, a “physical basis for the social division of labour” (Capital, 1, p. 514), although they present possibilities only (and not unmodifiable ones at that) because in the last instance the productiveness of labour “is a gift, not of Nature, but of a history embracing thousands of centuries” (Ibid., p. 512).
Capitalist production and circulation tends to transform these possibilities into an integrated geographical system of production and exchange which serves the purposes of capitalist accumulation. In the process certain countries may establish a monopoly over the production of particular commodities (Capital, 3, p. 119), while center-periphery relations will be produced on a global scale:
“A new and international division of labour, a division suited to the requirements of the chief centres of modern industry springs up, and converts one part of the globe into a chiefly agricultural field of production, for supplying the other part which remains a chiefly industrial field” (Capital, 1, p. 451).
Capitalists in the advanced countries may also gain a higher rate of profit by selling their goods above their value in competition with “commodities produced in other countries with inferior production facilities… in the same way that a manufacturer exploits a new invention before it has become general” (Capital, 3, p. 238). Relative productive advantages yield excess profits and if they are perpetuated in the form of a permanent “technology-gap” it follows (although Marx did not apparently make the point) that technology-rich regions always have the capacity to earn higher profits within a given line of production compared to technology-poor regions.
The international credit system also has a vital role to play in creating the world market and fashioning its structure:
“The entire credit system… rests on the necessity of expanding and leaping over the barrier to circulation and the sphere of exchange. This appears more colossally, classically, in the relations between people than in the relations between individuals. Thus, e.g., the English [are] forced to lend to foreign nations in order to have them as customers” (Grundrisse, p. 416; cf., Theories of Surplus Value, 3, p. 122).
Capital export – a theme which Lenin (1963, pp. 715-19) elaborates on as crucial to the theory of imperialism as the highest stage of capitalism – can, in Marx’s view, provide temporary opportunities for surplus capital. But capital export can take different forms as we will shortly see and be engaged in for quite different reasons.
资本输出 – 列宁（1963，第715-19页）详述的一个主题，对作为资本主义的最高阶段的帝国主义理论至关重要 – 在马克思看来，可以为剩余资本提供暂时性的机会。但是资本输出可以采取不同的形式，我们马上就会看到这些不同原因导致的形式。
The general drive to overcome all spatial barriers produces a variety of results in relation to non-capitalist forms of production and social organization:
“When an industrial people, producing on the foundation of capital, such as the English, e.g., exchange with the Chinese, and absorb value… by drawing the latter within the sphere of circulation of capital, then one sees right away that the Chinese do not therefore need to produce as capitalists” (Grundrisse, p. 729).
The interaction of capitalist and non-capitalist modes of production within the sphere of circulation creates strong interdependencies. The circulation of value within the capitalist system becomes dependent on the continued contribution of products and money from non-capitalist societies – “to this extent the capitalist mode of production is conditional on modes of production lying outside of its own stage of development” (Capital, 2, p. 110). This is a theme which Luxemburg (1968) develops at great length in her “The Accumulation of Capital” – she argues, in effect, that the fresh room for accumulation which capitalism must define can exist only in the form of pre-capitalist societies which provide untapped markets to absorb what is a perpetual tendency for the overproduction of commodities under capitalism. Once these societies are all brought into the capitalist network then, in her view, accumulation must cease.
在流通领域内，资本主义和非资本主义生产方式的相互作用产生了强烈的相互依赖性。在资本主义制度内的价值循环变得依赖于非资本主义社会的产品和货币的持续贡献 – “在这种程度上，资本主义的生产方式取决于其自身发展阶段之外的生产方式”（《资本论》第二卷，第110页）。这是卢森堡（1968）在她的《资本积累》一书中详细阐述的一个主题。资本主义必须定义的新的积累空间只能以前资本主义社会的形式存在，而这些社会提供未开发的市场，以吸收资本主义下商品生产过剩的永恒趋势。在她看来，一旦这些社会都被纳入资本主义网络，那么积累就必然停止。
Marx also argued that the historic tendency of capitalism is to destroy and absorb non-capitalist modes of production at the same time as it uses them to create fresh room for capital accumulation. Initially, the mere penetration of the money form has a disrupting influence – “where money is not the community, it must dissolve the community” and “draw new continents into the metabolism of circulation” (Grundrisse, pp. 224-5). In the early stages capital is accumulated out of this “metabolism of circulation” – indeed, such accumulation is an historical premise for the development of capitalist production. The towns accumulate use values and hence values from the countryside while merchant’s capital, as an historically prior form of organization to producer’s capital:
马克思还认为，资本主义的历史趋势是摧毁和吸收非资本主义的生产方式，但在同时利用非资本主义生产方式为资本积累创造新的空间。最初，仅仅渗透货币形式就产生了破坏性的影响 – “若金钱不是社区，它必须解散社区”和“将新大陆吸引到流通的新陈代谢中”（《政治经济学批判》，第224-5页）。在早期阶段，资本就是从这种“流通的新陈代谢”中积累出来的 – 事实上，这种积累是资本主义生产发展的历史前提。因此，城镇积累了使用价值与从农村来的价值，当商人的资本，作为一种历史上先于生产者资本的组织形式：
“appropriates an overwhelming portion of the surplus product partly as a mediator between commodities which still substantially produce for use value… and partly because under those earlier modes of production the principle owners of the surplus product with whom the merchant dealt, namely, the slave-owner, the feudal lord, and the state (for instance, the oriental despot) represent the consuming wealth and luxury which the merchant seeks to trap…. Merchant’s capital, when it holds a position of dominance, stands everywhere for a system of robbery, so that its development among the trading nations of old and modern times is always directly connected with plundering, piracy, kidnapping, slavery and colonial conquest…. The development of merchant’s capital gives rise everywhere to the tendency towards production of exchange values…. Commerce, therefore, has a more or less dissolving influence everywhere on the producing organization which it finds at hand and whose different forms are mainly carried on with a view to use value” (Capital, 3, pp. 331-2).
The resultant forms which emerge from such disruptions depend, however, upon the form of the pre-existing society and the extent of capitalist penetration. One effect, for example, is to create scarcities in the non-capitalist society where there were none before. Necessaries are thereby transformed into luxuries and this:
“determines the whole social pattern of backward nations… which are associated with a world market based on capitalist production. No matter how large the surplus product, they (the non-capitalist producers) extract from the surplus labour of their slaves in the simple form of cotton or corn, they can adhere to this simple undifferentiated labour because foreign trade enables them to convert these simple products into any kind of use value” (Theories of Surplus Value, 3, p. 243).
The creation of “underdevelopment” by means of a capitalist penetration which transforms non-capitalist societies from relatively self-sufficient organizations for the production of use-values to specialized and dependent units producing exchange values, is a theme which has been explored by contemporary writers such as Baran (1957) and Frank (1969). The latter, for example, coins the phrase “the development of underdevelopment” to call attention to the kinds of processes that Marx had in mind.
These forms of dependency are possible only after capitalist production had come to dominate merchant’s capital so that the latter now basically serves the purposes of the former. We then find:
“the cheapness of the articles produced by machinery, and the improved means of transport and communication furnish the weapons for conquering foreign markets. By ruining handicraft production in other countries, machinery forcibly converts them into fields for the supply of its raw material. In this way, East India was compelled to produce cotton, wool, hemp, jute and indigo for Great Britain” (Capital, 1, p. 451).
The manner of such a transformation is of interest and India provides a good example. Originally a field for “direct exploitation” – the direct appropriation of use values – India was transformed after 1815 into a market for British textile products:
这种转变的方式令人感兴趣，印度就是一个很好的例子。最初是一个“直接开发”领域 – 直接侵吞其使用价值 – 印度在1815年之后转变为英国纺织品市场：
“But the more the industrial interest became dependent on the Indian market, the more it felt the necessity of creating fresh productive powers in India, after having ruined her native industry. You cannot continue to inundate a country with your manufactures, unless you enable it to give you some produce in return” (On Colonialism, p. 52).
Capital export in this case served a different purpose from the mere loan of money to finance imports of manufactures. Capital was exported to India to promote commodity production which could, via foreign trade, provide the wherewithal to pay for the goods which were being imported from Britain. Britain had to build up commodity production for exchanges in India if it was to maintain India as an important market.
The same sort of logic, operating under rather different conditions, applies to the development of colonies through settlement. Marx insists here on drawing a distinction:
“There are the colonies proper, such as the United States, Australia, etc. Here the mass of the farming colonists, although they bring with them a larger or smaller amount of capital from the motherland, are not capitalists, nor do they carry on capitalist production. They are more or less peasants who work themselves and whose main object, in the first place, is to produce their own livelihood…. In the second type of colonies – plantations – where commercial speculations figure from the start and production is intended for the world market, the capitalist mode of production exists, although only in a formal sense, since the slavery of Negroes precludes free wage labour, which is the basis of capitalist production. But the business in which slaves are used is conducted by capitalists” (Theories of Surplus Value, 2, pp. 302-3).
“有适当的殖民地，如美国，澳大利亚等。在这里，大批农业殖民者虽然从祖国带来了或多或少的资本，但他们不是资本家，也不是资本主义的生产者。他们或多或少是自己工作的农民，他们的主要目标是在第一类地点为自己的生计而生产。在第二类殖民地 – 种植园 – 中，商业投机一开始就存在而且产品面向世界市场，资本主义的生产模式存在，尽管只是从形式上讲，因为黑人的奴役排除了自由工资劳动，而自由工资劳动是资本主义生产的基础。但奴隶的使用是由资本家安排的”（《剩余价值理论》第二卷，第302-3页）。
Colonies of the latter sort hold out the prospect for high profits because of the higher rates of exploitation, the lower price of necessaries and, usually, higher natural productivity. Capital may move into such colonies and in the process reduce the excess profit there, but in the process the average rate of profit will rise (Ibid., pp. 436-7). There exists here a positive inducement to the export of capital :
“If capital is sent abroad, this is not done because it absolutely could not be applied at home, but because it can be employed at a higher rate of profit in a foreign country” (Capital, 3, p. 256).
With complete mobility, of course, the profit rate will ultimately be equalized although at a higher average rate than before. But colonies of this second sort are still advantageous because they permit the importation of cheap raw materials on the basis of a higher rate of exploitation (which presumes, by the way, certain immobilities to labour power, such as that imposed by slavery).
Colonies of the first sort exist in a very different relation to the capitalist mode of production, however:
“There the capitalist regime everywhere comes into collision with the resistance of the producer, who, as owner of his own conditions of labour, employs that labour to enrich himself, instead of the capitalist. The contradiction of these two diametrically opposed economic systems, manifests itself here practically in a struggle between them. Where the capitalist has at his back the power of the mother-country, he tries to clear out of his way by force, the modes of production and appropriation, based on the independent labour of the producer” (Capital, 1, p. 765).
Colonies made up of small independent producers, trading some surplus into the market, are typically characterized by labor shortages and a high wage rate which is not attractive to the capitalist form of exploitation (this is particularly the case where there is an abundance of free land for settlement). Commodity production does not exist in the complete capitalist sense. Colonial forms of this sort may be, therefore, just as resistant to the penetration of the capitalist mode of production as traditional more long-established non-capitalist societies. But since such non-capitalist colonies are created by spin-offs of surplus population and small quantities of capital from the centres of accumulation, and since they also form markets for capitalist production, they are to be viewed as both the result of past accumulation and a precondition for further capital accumulation. The United States prior to the Civil War, for example, provided an important, largely non-capitalist market for the realization of commodities produced under capitalist social relations in Britain.
The final stage of capitalist penetration is that which comes with the organization of production along capitalist lines. In 1867 Marx noted how the United States was being transformed from an independent, largely non-capitalist, production system into a new centre for capital accumulation. “Capitalistic production advances there with giant strides, even though the lowering of wages and the dependence of the wage worker are yet far from being down to the European level” (Capital, 1, p. 773). Marx expected a similar transformation in India:*
“when you have once introduced machinery into the locomotion of a country, which possesses iron and coals, you are unable to withhold it from its fabrication. You cannot maintain a net of railways over an immense country without introducing all those industrial processes necessary to meet the immediate and current wants of railway locomotion, and out of which there must grow the application of machinery to those branches of industry not immediately connected with railways. The railways syetem will therefore become, in India, truly the forerunner of modern industry…(which) will dissolve the hereditary divisions of labour, upon which rest the Indian castes, those decisive impediments to Indian progress and Indian power…. The bourgeois period of history has to create the material basis of the new world… Bourgeois industry and commerce create these material conditions of a new world in the same way that geological revolutions have created the surface of the earth” (On Colonialism, pp. 85-7).
Such a transformation did not occur in India but it did in the United States. The failure to predict correctly in the Indian case has no bearing whatsoever on the validity of the Marxian theory of accumulation under the capitalist mode of production. All the theory says is that capitalism is bound to expand through both an intenslficatfon of relationships in the centres of capitalist production and a geographical extension of those relationships in space. The theory does not pretend to predict where, when and exactly how these intensifications and geographical extensions will occur – the latter are a matter for concrete historical analyses. Marx’s failure to predict correctly in the case of India was a failure of historical analysis, not of theory.
这种转变在印度没有发生，但在美国确实发生了。印度情况下未能正确预测，与资本主义生产模式下的马克思积累理论的有效性没有任何关系。所有的理论都表明，资本主义必然会通过资本主义生产中心关系的强化和这些关系在空间的地理延伸而扩张。该理论并不假装预测这些强化和地理扩展将发生在何处、何时以及具体如何发生 – 后者是具体历史分析的问题。马克思未能正确预测印度的情况是历史分析的失败，而不是理论的失败。
But it so happens that there are also good theoretical reasons for believing that the capitalist production system could not and connot become universal in its scope. For this to be the case would require the equalization of profits, through competition, on a global scale. To begin with, of course, there are all kinds of barriers to be overcome before such an equalization in profit rates could occur. We would have to presume the complete mobility of capital and labour (Capital 3, p. 196) and adequate institutional arrangements (free trade, universal money and credit system, “the abolition of all laws preventing the labourers from transferring from one sphere to production to another and from one locality to another,” and so on). Under capitalism, there are always tendencies pushing in these directions. For example:
“it is only foreign trade, the development of the market to a world market, which causes money to develop into world money and abstract labour into social labour. Abstract wealth, value, money, hence abstract labour, develop in the measure that concrete labour becomes a totality of different modes of labour embracing the world market. Capitalist production rests on the value or the transformation of the labour embodied in the product into social labour. But this is only possible on the basis of foreign trade and the world market. This is at once the pre-condition and the result of capitalist production” (Theories of Surplus Value, 3, p. 253).
The tendency of capitalism, therefore, is to establish a universal set of values, founded on “abstract social labour” as defined on a global scale. There is, in like manner, a tendency for capital export to equalize the rate of profit on a global scale. An accumulation process implies a tendency for the penetration of capitalist social relations into all aspects of production and exchange throughout the world.
But different organic compositions of capital between countries, different productivities of labour according to natural differences, the different definition of “necessities” according to natural and cultural situation, mean that these equalizations will not be accompanied by an eoualization in the rate of exploitation between countries (Capital, 3, pp. 150-1). It follows that “the favoured country recovers more labour in exchange for less labour, although this difference, this excess is pocketed, as in any exchange between capital and labour, by a certain class” (Ibid., p. 238). Marx then notes that:
“Here the law of value undergoes essential modification. The relationship between labour days of different countries may be similar to that existing between skilled, complex labour and unskilled, simple labour within a country. In this case the richer country exploits the poorer one, even where the latter gains by the exchange” (Theories of Surplus Value, 3, pp. 105-6).
These complexities do not derive from the failure of capitalist development to overcome the social and cultural barriers to its penetration (although these barriers can be exceedingly resistant). They stem, rather, from the inherent contradictory and hence imperfect character of the capitalist mode of production itself. They are to be interpreted, therefore, as global manifestations of the internal contradictions of capitalism. And underlying all of these manifestations is the fact that capitalism ultimately becomes the greatest barrier to its own development. Let us consider how this is manifest on the world stage.
Capitalism can escape its own contradiction only through expanding. Expansion is simultaneously intensification (of social wants and needs, of population totals, and the like) and geographical extension. Fresh room for accumufation must exist or be created if capitalism is to survive. If the capitalist mode of production dominated in every respect, in every sphere and in all parts of the world, there would be little or no room left for further accumulation (population growth and the creation of new social wants and needs would be the only options). Long before such a situation was reached the accumulation process would slow. Stagnation would set in attended by a whole gamut of economic and social problems. Internal checks within the capitalist mode of production would begin to be felt particularly in the sphere of competition:
“As long as capital is weak, it still itself relies on the crutches of past modes of production, or of those which will pass with its rise. As soon as it feels strong, it throws away the crutches and moves in accordance with its own laws. As soon as it begins to sense itself and becomes conscious of itself as a barrier to development, it seeks refuge in forms which, by restricting free competition, seem to make the rule of capital more perfect, but are at the same time the heralds of its dissolution and of the dissolution of the mode of production resting on it” (Grundrisse, p. 651).
Marx himself never proposed a theory of imperialism. In his comments on transportation relations, location theory and foreign trade he clearly indicates, however, that he has in mind some sort of general theory of capital accumulation on an expanding and intensifying geographical scale. We have, in the preceeding two sections, already sketched in some of the main features of that general theory, to the extent that Marx articulated it.
The theory of imperialism which has emerged post-Marx obviously has something to contribute towards an understanding of that general theory and therefore to an understanding of the ways in which capitalism creates fresh room for accumulation. The trouble is, however, that there is not one theory of imperialism, but a whole host of representations of the matter – Marxist, neo-Marxist, Keynesian, neo-classical and so on. And there are innumerable divergences and differences within each school (Barratt Brown, 1974, provides a general overview). I shall confine myself to some general comments.
The problem for the Marxists and neo-Marxists, it is generally argued, is to derive a theory of imperialism out of Marx. And it is generally agreed that no one has yet succeeded in doing so although many have tried. There is a fairly simple explanation for this state of affairs. Marx constructed a theory of accumulatifn for a capitalist mode of production in a “pure” state without reference to any particular historical situation. On this basis, as we have seen, he demonstrates the necessity for intensification and expansion as a concomitant of accumulation. The theory of imperialism, as it is usually conceived of in the literature is, by way of contrast, a theory of history. It is to be used to explain the historical development of capitalist social formations on the world stage. It has to address the way in which conflicting forces and class interests relate to each other in specific historical situations, determine outcomes through their interactions and thereby set the preconditions for the next stage in the evolution of capitalist social formations. Marx never constructed such a historical theory, although there is some evidence that he intended to do so in unwritten books on the State, Foreign Trade and the World Market (Marx-Engels Correspondence, pp. 112-3).
Marx’s theory of the capitalist mode of production plainly cannot be used as the basis for deriving an historically specific theory of imperialism in any direct manner. Yet, as we have seen in the preceeding section on foreign trade, Marx’s theoretical insights intersect with historical analyses at certain points. And the crucial mediating influence, which most of the writers on imperialism ignore, is the necessary tendency to overcome spatial barriers and to annihilate space with time – tendencies which Marx derives directly from the theory of accumulation. Marx’s theories of transportation relations, location and geographical concentration, expanding spheres of realization – in short the general theory of accumulation on an expanding and intensifying geographical scale – in fact comprise Marx’s own theory of imperialism (although he did not call it that). Since most writers ignore this general theory embedded in Marx it would appear that this provides us with the missing link between Marx’s theory of accumulation and the various theories of imperialism that have been put forward since.
马克思的资本主义生产方式理论显然不能作为直接得出帝国主义历史特定理论的基础。然而，正如我们在关于对外贸易的前奏部分所看到的那样，马克思的理论见解在某些方面与历史分析相交。而大多数论帝国主义的作家忽视的关键中介影响，是克服空间障碍、与时俱灭空间的必然趋势——马克思的倾向直接源于积累理论。马克思关于交通关系、地理位置和地理集中、扩大实现范围的理论 – 简言之，在不断扩大和加强的地理尺度上积累的一般理论 – 实际上包括马克思自己的帝国主义理论（尽管他不这样称呼它）。由于大多数作家忽视了马克思所蕴含的这一一般理论，这似乎为我们提供了马克思积累理论与此后提出的各种帝国主义理论之间的缺失联系。
But even here we cannot make direct derivations. Marx’s general theory tells us of the necessity to expand and intensify geographically. But it does not tell us exactly how, when or where. Looking at the intersection of these general arguments with concrete historical analyses, we will usually be able to identify the underlying logic dictated by capital accumulation at work. But the underlying logic does not, and indeed cannot uniquely determine outcomes. The latter have to be understood in terms of the balance of forces – economic, social, political, ideological, competitive, legal, military, and the like – through which interest groups and classes become conscious of the contradictory underlying logic and seek by their actions to “fight it out” to some sort of resolution (cf. A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy, p. 21). To specify the relationships between the Marxian theory of accumulation and the theory of imperialism as it is usually construed poses, therefore, a double difficulty. We have to specify how the “inner logic” of the capitalist mode of production, abstractly conceived, relates to the concrete realities, the phenomenal forms, of the historical process. And we also have to take account of the mediating influence of political, ideological, military and other structures which, although they must be generally organized so as to be coherent with the course of capital accumulation, are not uniquely determined by it.
Most analyses of imperialism usually start in fact from the analysis of actual historical situations. This is particularly true in the work of Third World writers, such as Fanon (1967), Amin (1973) and Frank (1969), whose starting point is the experience of domination and exploitation by the advanced capitalist countries. This experience is then projected into the Marxian framework for understanding exploitation in general. The consequence of this is a variety of representations of the Marxian theory of imperialism. Each representation may be accurate for its own place and time, but each ends up drawing upon just one or two facets of Marx’s own theory of capital accumulation for support. By implication, and sometimes quite explicitly, it is suggested that other facets of Marx’s theory of accumulation are either irrelevant or wrong.
Luxemburg (1968) is an excellent case in point. She begins her analysis with a concentrated criticism of Marx’s reproduction schemes in Volume 2 of Capital and, reacting very strongly to the idea implied there that capitalist accumulation can continue in perpetuity, she seeks to show that Marx had failed to demonstrate where the effective demand for commodities was to come from if accumulation was to be sustained. Luxemburg’s own solution is that the effective demand has to be found outside of the capitalist system in pre-capitalist economic formations. Imperialism is to be explained as “the political expression of the accumulation of capital in its competitive struggle for what still remains open of the non-capitalist environment” (Luxemburg, 1968, p. 446). As evidence, Luxemburg assembles descriptions of the violent penetration of non-capitalist societies, such as China, by capitalists in search of markets as well as descriptions of the various imperialist rivalries amongst the capitalist powers throughout the world.
Luxemburg’s argument is, in many respects, both compelling and brilliant. But her analysis amounts to a one-sided development out of Marx. The objection is not that she is wrong – indeed, we have already seen that capitalist development may become contingent upon other modes of production, that the penetration and disruption of non-capitalist societies are implied by the imperative to “tear down spatial barriers,” and that violence, making use of state power, can easily be resorted to. The objection is that Luxemburg sees the consequences of the imperative to accumulate solely in these terms. The other means whereby capitalism can create fresh room for accumulation are ignored.
卢森堡的论点在许多方面都是令人信服的和绝妙的。但她的分析相当于马克思的片面发展。反对意见并不是说她错了 – 事实上，我们已经看到资本主义的发展可能取决于其他生产方式，非资本主义社会的渗透和破坏意味着必须“拆除空间障碍”，而且这容易诉诸于国家权力产生的暴力。反对意见是，卢森堡认为必须仅仅以这些术语积累的后果。资本主义可以创造新的积累空间的另一种手段被忽视了。
Read as a theoretical treatise on what must happen if all other means for creating fresh room for accumulation are sealed off, Luxemburg’s work is a brilliant exposition. Read as a documentation of how the logic of capitalist accumulation underlies the penetration and disruption of non-capitalist societies, the work is compelling. But read as a derivation of the necessity for imperialism out of a correction of Marx’s errors in his specification of capitalist reproduction, Luxemburg’s work is both erroneous and misconceived. To put the criticism this way is not to say, however, that the processes to which Luxemburg draws attention may not become, at a certain stage in capitalist history, vital to the perpetuation of the capitalist order. Whether or not this turns out to be the case depends, however, upon the capacity of the capitalist system to create fresh room for accumulation by other means.
The representation of imperialism in the works of Baran (1957) and Frank (1969) can be considered in a similar way. Clearly implied in Marx’s location theory is the emergence of a general structure of center-periphery relations in production and exchange, while the tearing down of spatial barriers to exchange may create dependencr and “transform necessaries into luxuries for the economy newly brought into the metabolism of exchange. These kinds of relationships are examined in detail in the work of Baran and Frank and they can relatively easily be integrated into the Marxian frame when the logic of accumulation is projected into an actual historical situation. Baran and Frank are therefore on strong theoretical grounds when they claim that backwardness and underdevelopment can and must be produced and perpetuated by the penetration of capitalist social relations into non-capitalist economles. They may also be on strong factual grounds when they claim that this is the general relationship which exists between the Third World and the metropolitan centres of accumulation. But, as with the work of Luxemburg, the analysis has to be regarded as a single-faceted development out of Marx’s theory of accumulation. It would be both erroneous and misconceived to regard this development either as a correction to or a unique derivation out of Marx. Fresh room for accumulation can be created by a variety of strategems in actual historical situations. Whether or not a different structure of relations to that explored by Baran and Frank is possible depends not on the theory but on the possibilities contained in actual historical situations.
Lenin’s contribution to the Marxist theory of imperialism is, of course, fundamental. And in some respects it is the most interesting both with respect to its content and its method. Lenin did not attempt to derive the theory out of Marx. He regarded the phenomena of imperialism as something to be revealed by materialist historical analysis. Specifically, he was concerned to explain the 1914-18 war as an imperialist war “for the division of the world, for the partition and repartition of colonies and spheres of influence of finance capital, etc.” (Lenin, 1963, p. 673). The method is therefore historical and Lenin uses the term “imperialism” to describe the general characteristics of the phenomenal form assumed by capitalism during a particular stage of its development – specifically, during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. In this he relies very heavily on the work of a non-Marxist, Hobson (1938). Yet Lenin also seeks to uncover “the economic essence of imperialism” and to relate the understanding of the phenomenal appearance of imperialism to Marx’s theoretical insights into the nature of the capitalist mode of production.
当然，列宁对马克思帝国主义理论的贡献是根本的。在某些方面，它的内容和方法都是最有趣的。列宁没有试图从马克思中得出这一理论。他认为帝国主义现象是唯物史分析所揭示的。具体来说，他关心的是将1914-18年的战争解释为帝国主义战争，“为了世界的分裂，为了殖民地的划分和金融资本等领域的洗牌。”（列宁，1963年，第673页）。因此，这种方法具有历史意义，列宁使用“帝国主义”一词来描述资本主义在其发展的特定阶段 – 特别是十九世纪末和二十世纪初 – 所假定的惊人形式的一般特征。在这方面，他非常依赖非马克思主义者霍布森（1938年）的工作。然而列宁也试图揭示“帝国主义的经济本质”并用马克思的理论来理解资本主义生产模式的天性。
The phenomenal appearance of capitalism in the imperialist stage of its development is summarized in terms of five basic features:
(1) the concentration of production and capital has developed to such a high stage that it has created monopolies which play a decisive role in economic life; (2) the merging of bank capital with industrial capital, and the creation, on the basis of this “finance capital,” of a financial oligarchy; (3) the export of capital as distinguished from the export of commodities acquires exceptional importance; (4) the formation of international monopolist associations which share the world among themselves, and (5) the territorial division of the whole world among the big capitalist powers is completed (Lenin, 1963, p. 737).
The tendency towards concentration and centralization of capital is, in Marx’s analysis, integral to the general process of accumulation (Capital, 1, Chapter 25). The physical concentration of production to achieve economies of scale in a locational sense is also, in Marx’s theory, paralleled by a growing centralization of capital. Lenin also grounds the logic of capital export in Marx’s theory. He rebuts the argument that capitalism could ever achieve an equal development in all spheres of production or alleviate the misery of the mass of workers:
“If capitalism did these things it would not be capitalism; for both uneven development and a semi-starvation level of existence of the masses are fundamental and inevitable conditions and constitute the premises of this mode of production. As long as capitalism remains what it is, surplus capital will be utilized not for the purpose of raising the standard of living of the masses in a given country, for this would mean a decline in profits for the capitalists, but for the purpose of increasing profits by exporting capital abroad to the backward countries. In these backward countries profits are usually high, for capital is scarce, the price of land is relatively low, wages are low, raw materials are cheap… The export of capital influences and greatly accelerates the development of capitalism in those countries to which it is exported. While, therefore, the export of capital may tend to a certain extent to arrest development in the capital-exporting countries, it can only do so by expanding and deepening the further development of capitalism throughout the world” (Lenin, 1963, pp. 716-8).
Lenin is here emphasizing certain of the possibilities contained in the Marxian theory of capitalist accumulation when projected into an actual historical situation. Plainly, he is not excluding the development of capitalist production in new centres, although the carving up of the world into spheres of influence with centres of accumulation and spheres of realization is regarded as a “managed” rationalization, accomplished by finance capitalism through political manipulations, of the inevitable uneven development of capitalism. But Lenin also argues that imperialism “can and must be defined differently if we bear in mind not only the basic, purely economic concepts… but also the historical place of this stage of capitalism in relation to capitalism in general, or the relation between imperialism and the two main trends in the working class movement” (Ibid., p. 737). Imperialism thus has the effect of “exporting” some of the tensions created by the class struggle within the centres of accumulation to peripheral areas. The “superprofits” of imperialist exploitation make it “possible to bribe the labour leaders and the upper stratum of the labour aristocracy. And that is just what the capitalists of the “advanced” countries are doing” (Ibid., p. 677). This last aspect of imperialism has to be regarded as the joint outcome of the inevitable uneven development of capitalism on a world scale and a corresponding uneven development of the class struggle. Capital becomes mobile in order to escape the consequences of a class struggle waged at a particular place and time or else it repatriates superprofits to buy off its home labour force with material advancement. In either case a geographical expansion of development must occur.
Lenin blends concrete historical analysis, based on the principles of historical materialism, with some fundamental insights from Marx’s theory. An evaluation of Lenin’s theory must rest, therefore, on an assessment of his historical accuracy and a critical evaluation of the way in which the Marxian theory intersects with the historical materials. On the former score there are grounds for thinking that Lenin’s reliance on Hobson and Hilferding led him into some factual errors. In the latter respect, Lenin, like most other writers on imperialism, develops Marx’s general theory in a one-sided rather than an all-embracing manner. As a consequence the connection to the theory of capitalist accumulation is partially obscured from view.
The problem with the Marxist theory of imperialism in general, is that it has become a theory “unto itself,” divorced from Marx’s theory of capital accumulation. As a consequence, the argument over what imperialism is, has degenerated into an argument over which of several competing principles should be used to define it. markets? The attainment of cheaper raw materials? The searching out of a more easily exploited and a more docile labour force? Is it primitive accumulation at the expense of non-capitalist societies? Does it involve cheating through exchange? Is it the necessary export of capital to set up new centres of industrial accumulation? Is it the concentration of relative surplus value on a localized basis? Is it the manifestation of monopoly power, expressed through the political organization of a system of nation states? Is it finance capital operating through multinational corporations and government cooptation? Is it simply the international division of labour? Is it a particular combination of any of the above? Under Marx’s general theory all of the above are possible and none are to be excluded. It is, therefore, the task of careful historical analysis to discover which of these manifestations is dominant at a particular stage of development of capitalist social formations. Marx’s general theory does not pretend to predict particular forms and manifestations. All it does is to indicate the underlying imperative, contained within the capitalist system, to accumulate capital and to do it, of necessity, on an expanding and intensifying geographical scale.
This is not to say that a theoretical analysis of these various manifestations in relation to capital accumulation is impossible. Indeed, a great deal can be done here. And we can also place one bet. The survival of capitalism is predicted on the continued ability to accumulate, by whatever means is easiest. The path of capitalist accumulation will move to wherever the resistance is weakest. It is the task of historical and theoretical analyses to identify these points of least resistance, of greatest weakness. Lenin once advised all revolutionary movements to look for the weakest link in capitalism. Ironically, capitalism manages, by trial and error and persistant pressure, to discover the weakest links in the forces opposed to continued accumulation and by exploiting those links to open up fresh pasture for the bourgeoisie to accomplish its historical mission – the accumulation of capital.
Marx’s theory of capital accumulation on an expanding geographical scale is quite complex. We have delved into Marx to try to discover in his writings some of its basic components. But to be appreciated properly these components have to be seen in relation both one to each other and to the various models which Marx devised to understand capitalist production, exchange and realization as a totality. In a rather spendid passage in the Grundrisse (pp. 407-10), Marx provides a kind of “overview sketch” of his general theory:
The creation by capital of absolute surplus value … is conditional upon an expansion, specifically a constant expansion, of the sphere of circulation…. A precondition of production based on capital is therefore the production of a constantly widening sphere of circulation. Hence, just as capital has the tendency on one side to create ever more surplus labour, so it has the complementary tendency to create more points of exchange.
From this, of course, we can derive “the tendency to create the world market [which] is directly given in the concept of capital itself” and the need, initially at least, “to subjugate every moment of production itself to exchange and to suspend the production of direct use values not entering into exchange.” Marx then goes on to say that:
the production of relative surplus value… requires the production of new consumption; requires that consuming circle within circulation expands as did the productive circle previously. Firstly quantitative expansion of existing consumption; secondly, creation of new needs by propagating existing ones in a wide circle; thirdly, production of new needs and discovery and creation of new use values.
As a result of these expansionary tendencies, capitalism creates:
a system of general exploitation of the natural and human qualities …. Hence the great civilizing influence of capital; its production of a stage of society in comparison to which all earlier ones appear as mere local developments of humanity and as nature idolatory. For the first time, nature becomes purely an object for humankind, purely a matter of utility…. In accord with this tendency, capital drives beyond national barriers and prejudices as much as beyond nature worship, as well as all traditional, confined, encrusted satisfactions of present needs, and reproductions of old ways of life. It is destructive towards all of this, and constantly revolutionizes it, tearing down all the barriers which hem in the development of the forces of production, the expansion of needs, the allsided development of production, and the exploitation and exchange of natural and mental forces….
But… since every such barrier contradicts its character, its production moves in contradictions which are constantly overcome but just as constantly posited. Furthermore, the universality towards which it irresistably strives encounters barriers in its own nature, which will, at a certain stage of its development, allow it to be recognized as being itself the greatest barrier to this tendency, and hence will drive towards its own suspension.”
Marx’s sketch does not incorporate all of the elements which we have identified in this paper but it does convey a feeling for what he had in mind in constructing a theory of accumulation on an expanding geographical scale. Plainly, the drive to accumulate lies at the center of the theory. This drive is expressed primarily in the production process through the creation of absolute and relative surplus value. But the creation of value is contingent upon the ability to realize it through circulation. Failure to realize value means, quite simply, the negation of the value created potentially in production. Thus, if the sphere of circulation does not expand then accumulation comes to a halt. Capital, Marx never tires of emphasizing, is not a thing or a set of institutions; it is a process of circulation between production and realization. This process, which must expand, must accumulate, constantly re-shapes the work process and the social relationships within production as it constantly changes the dimensions and forms of circulation. Marx helps us to understand these processes theoretically. But ultimately we have to bring this theory to bear on existing situations within the structure of capitalist social relations at this point in history. We have to force an intersection between the theoretical abstractions, on the one hand, and the materialist investigations of actual historical configurations on the other. To construct and re-construct Marx’s theory of accumulation on an expanding geographical scale as a totality requires such an intersection. We have indeed to derive the theory of imperialism out of the Marxian theory of accumulation. But to do so we have to move carefully through the intermediate steps. In Marx’s own thought it appears that the crucial intermediate steps encompass a theory of location and an analysis of fixed and immobile investment; the necessary creation of a geographical landscape to facilitate accumulation through production and circulation. But the steps from the theory of accumulation to the theory of imperialism, or more generally to a theory of history, are not simple mechanical derivations because down this path we have to accomplish also that transformation from the general to the concrete which comprised the central thrust of Marx’s unfinished work. We have to learn, in short, to complete the project which Marx underscores at the beginning of Volume 3 of Capital – we have to bring a synthetic understanding of the processes of production and circulation under capitalism to bear on capitalist history and “thus approach step by step the form which they assume on the surface of society.”
Macro-economists, even those with interests in development, have a weak grasp of how to handle the production of space in their theories and models. The best they can usually do, is to see the world as partitioned into geographical entities (hence the importance of the state in their analyses and policies) each undergoing some kind of temporal process of development. The target of their thinking is how to understand different temporal trajectories (why and how national economies develop in the way they do and how to theorize and model these developments) and perhaps intervene so as to promote a healthier or more beneficial (usually defined as more profitable) pathway of development within that territorial entity.
This style of thinking, never wholly satisfactory, has become somewhat of a liability in the face of the complex processes lumped together under the umbrella term of “globalization”. If, for example, the state has become less relevant as a coherent and all-powerful entity in political-economic affairs (as many now maintain) then some other way to handle space has to be defined. And there are indeed some serious attempts within economics to confront that difficulty. Paul Krugman, for example, is attempting to build what is called a “new economic geography” which focuses on how selforganizing spatial principles of economic activity play an important role in political-economic life and how the principles of comparative geographical advantage might better be theorized both in terms of regional development and international trade. Jeffrey Sachs, on the other hand, wishes us to focus on regional complexes (defined in terms of some mix of environmental and cultural endowments) rather than states as more significant entities within which to understand how development occurs (the tropical regions differ from temperate with respect to endowments and environmental conditions and a state such as Brazil should be partitioned, he argues, between a “technology rich” and better endowed south and a “technology poor” and environmentally and culturally impoverished north). The material processes at work under contemporary conditions of globalization have, it seems, provoked some kind of conceptual shift among at least a subset of economists (thus do shifts in the economic basis demand conceptual and ideological shifts, as Marx long ago observed).
For geographers like myself, however, the production, reproduction and reconfiguration of space have always been central to understanding the political economy of capitalism. For us, the contemporary form of globalization is nothing more than yet another round in the capitalist production and reconstruction of space. It entails a further diminution in the friction of distance (what Marx referred to as “the annihilation of space through time” as a fundamental law of capitalist development) through yet another round of innovation in the technologies of transport and communications. It consequently entails a geographical restructuring of capitalist activity (deindustrialization here and reindustrialization there, for example) across the face of planet earth, the production of new forms of uneven geographical development, a recalibration and even recentering of global power (with far greater emphasis upon the Pacific and newly industrializing countries) and a shift in the geographical scale at which capitalism is organized (symbolized by the growth of supra-state organizational forms such as the European Union and a more prominent role for institutions of global governance such as the WTO, the IMF, the G8, the UN and the like). Contemporary globalization has been, we can argue, the product of these specific geographically grounded processes. The question is not, therefore, how globalization has affected geography but how these distinctive geographical processes of the production and reconfiguration of space have created the specific conditions of contemporary globalization.
In my own work, globalization has largely been interpreted in terms of a theory of “the spatial fix”. This term (and the theory it centers) is in need of clarification, however, since different interpretations have been offered leading to confusions if not serious errors. In part the differences reflect an ambiguity of language. In English, the word “fix” has multiple meanings. One meaning, as in “the pole was fixed in the hole”, refers to something being pinned down and secured in a particular locus. The idea is that something is secured in space: it cannot be moved or modified. Another, as in “fix a problem”, is to resolve a difficulty, take care of a problem. Again, the sense is that things are made secure, but by returning things to normal functioning again (as in “he fixed the car’s engine so that it ran smoothly”). This second meaning has a metaphorical derivative, as in “the drug addict needs a fix”, in which it is the burning desire to relieve a chronic or pervasive problem that is the focus of meaning. Once the “fix” is found or achieved then the problem is resolved and the desire evaporates. But, as in the case of the drug addict, it is implied that the resolution is temporary rather than permanent, since the craving soon returns. It is sometimes said, for example, that “technological fixes” have counteracted the Malthusian dilemma of population growth outrunning resources. The implication is that continuous technological progress and rising productivity are necessary conditions to prevent the dismal Malthusian scenario of mass starvation and social disruption becoming a reality.
在我自己的作品中，全球化在很大程度上被解释为“空间修复”（空间出路）理论。然而，这一术语（及其中心理论）需要澄清，因为不同的解释导致了混淆，如果不是严重的错误。在某种程度上，这些差异反映了语言的模糊性。在英语中，“fix”这个词有多种含义：其中一种意思，如“the pole was fixed in the hole”，指的是某物被固定在特定的位置上。这个概念是指某物被固定在空间中：它不能被移动或修改；另一种用法，如“fix a problem”，是解决一个困难，处理一个问题。同样，这意味着一切都是安全的，但要让一切恢复正常运转（比如“他修好了汽车的引擎，让它平稳运行”）。第二个意思有一个隐喻的衍生，如“the drug addict needs a fix（毒瘾需要治疗）”，其中缓解一个慢性或普遍问题的强烈愿望是意义的焦点。一旦找到或实现了“修复”，那么问题就解决了，愿望也就消失了。但是，就像吸毒成瘾的情况一样，这暗示着这种戒断是暂时的而不是永久的，因为这种渴望很快就会回来。例如，人们有时会说，“技术修复”抵消了人口增长超过资源消耗的马尔萨斯困境。这意味着持续的技术进步和不断提高的生产率是防止大规模饥饿和社会混乱成为现实的马尔萨斯（Malthusian）悲观设想的必要条件。
It was primarily in this last sense that I first deployed the term “spatial fix” to describe capitalism’s insatiable drive to resolve its inner crisis tendencies by geographical expansion and geographical restructuring. The parallel with the idea of a “technological fix” was deliberate. Capitalism, we might say, is addicted to geographical expansion much as it is addicted to technological change and endless expansion through economic growth. Globalization is the contemporary version of capitalism’s long-standing and never-ending search for a spatial fix to its crisis tendencies. Since there is a long history to these spatial fixes, there is a deep continuity (as I and many others have insisted) in the production of space under capitalist social relations and imperatives. There is, from this perspective, nothing particularly new or surprising about globalization since it has been going on since at least 1492 if not before.
While these disparate meanings of “to fix” appear contradictory, they are all internally related by the idea that something (a thing, a problem, a craving) can be pinned down and secured. In my own use of the term, the contradictory meanings can be played out to reveal something important about the geographical dynamics of capitalism and the crisis tendencies that attach thereto. In particular, I use it to focus on the particular problem of “fixity” (in the first sense of being secured in place) versus motion and mobility of capital. I note, for example, that capitalism has to fix space (in immoveable structures of transport and communication nets, as well as in built environments of factories, roads, houses, water supplies, and other physical infrastructures) in order to overcome space (achieve a liberty of movement through low transport and communication costs). This leads to one of the central contradictions of capital: that it has to build a fixed space (or “landscape”) necessary for its own functioning at a certain point in its history only to have to destroy that space (and devalue much of the capital invested therein) at a later point in order to make way for a new “spatial fix” (openings for fresh accumulation in new spaces and territories) at a later point in its history.
The idea of “the spatial fix” initially came out of attempts to reconstruct Marx’s theory of the geography of capitalist accumulation. In the first essay on this topic, published in Antipode in 1975, I showed that Marx’s fragmentary writings on the geography of capitalist accumulation could be consolidated into a reasonably consistent account that depicted the spatial as well as the temporal dynamics of capitalism. I later sought to deepen the argument through an examination of the relation between Hegel’s views on imperialism, von Thünen’s arguments concerning the frontier wage (a precursor to key formulations on marginal pricing in neoclassical economics) and Marx’s arguments on colonialism (most particularly the peculiarity of closing the first volume of Capital with a chapter on colonial land policies). It was in this article, entitled “The Spatial Fix: Hegel, von Thunen and Marx” that I first used the term “spatial fix” directly. It was later deployed as a fundamental concept in The Limits to Capital (1982) and in a summary essay on “The Geopolitics of Capitalism” (1985). (These earlier essays will all appear shortly in a volume entitled Spaces of Capital: Towards a Critical Geography to be published by Edinburgh University Press and Routledge (USA)).
“空间修复”的概念最初来源于对马克思资本积累地理学理论的重构。在1975年发表在《对地论》（Antipode）上的第一篇关于这一主题的文章中，我指出马克思关于资本主义积累地理学的零散著作可以整合成一种合理一致的描述，既描述了资本主义的空间动态，也描述了资本主义的时间动态。后来我试图通过仔细研究黑格尔对帝国主义的看法、冯·屠能对frontier wage（新古典经济学中边际定价关键公式的前身）的看法和马克思对殖民主义（特别是《资本论》第一卷的结尾有一章是关于殖民地土地政策的）的论证。正是在这篇题为《The Spatial Fix: Hegel, von Thunen and Marx》的文章中，我第一次直接使用了“空间修复”这个术语。后来它在《资本的极限》（1982）和《资本主义的地缘政治》（1985）的摘要短文中被作为一个基本概念使用。（这些早期的文章都会出现在爱丁堡大学出版社和劳特利奇（美国）出版的《资本空间：走向批判地理学》一书中。）
The primary result of these enquiries was to show that (a) capitalism could not survive without being geographically expansionary (and perpetually seeking out “spatial fixes” for its problems), (b) that major innovations in transport and communication technologies were necessary conditions for that expansion to occur (hence the emphasis in capitalism’s evolution on technologies that facilitated speed up and the progressive diminution of spatial barriers to movement of commodities, people, information and ideas over space) and (c) its modes of geographical expansion depended crucially upon whether it was the search for markets, fresh labor powers, resources (raw materials) or fresh opportunities to invest in new production facilities that was chiefly at stake.
这些调查的主要结果是：（a） 资本主义如果不在地理上扩张（并永远寻求解决其问题的“空间解决办法”），就无法生存；（b） 运输和通信技术的重大创新是实现这种扩张的必要条件（因此，资本主义的演变重点是促进加速和逐步消除商品、人员、信息和空间观念流动的空间障碍）和（c）其地理扩张模式至关重要，这取决于它寻找市场、新的劳动力力量、资源（原材料）或者投资有风险的生产设备的新机会。
On this latter point there is a strong connection between how the overaccumulation of capital (the central indicator of crisis in Marx’s theory) is manifest and how the spatial fix gets pursued. Overaccumulation, in its most virulent form (as occurred in the 1930s, for example) is registered as surpluses of labor and capital side by side with seemingly no way to put them together in productive, i.e. “profitable” as opposed to socially useful ways. If the crisis cannot be resolved, then the result is massive devaluation of both capital and labor (bankruptcies, idle factories and machines, unsold commodities, and unemployed laborers). Devaluation can sometimes lead to physical destruction (surplus commodities get burned and laborers die of starvation) and even war (the whole sequence of events that occurred in the 1930s and 1940s came close to such a scenario). But there are ways to stave off such an outcome. In practice, most crisis phases combine selective devaluations with strategies to alleviate the difficulties. One such strategy is to seek out some “spatial fix” to the problem. If, for example, a crisis of localized overaccumulation occurs within a particular region or territory then the export of capital and labor surpluses to some new territory to start up new production would make most sense (as, for example, in the migration of both labor and capital across the Atlantic from Britain to North America in the crisis years of the nineteenth century). If, on the other hand, overaccumulation is chiefly registered as lack of effective demand for commodities then opening up new markets in non-capitalist territories appears the best strategy (the China market has been a favorite “imagined” goal for North American capital whenever it has run into difficulties for a century or more, hence the current commercial interest in the USA for integrating China into the WTO). Surpluses of capital and shortages of labor (or rigidity in labor markets because of political and institutional barriers) can be “fixed” either by the movement of capital to areas of labor surpluses and/or weak labor organization (hence North American capital moving into the maquillas along the Mexican border) or importation of cheap labor (as with guest worker programs in Europe) into centers of capitalist development. Surpluses of wage labor and shortages of capital often generate strong migratory currents (legal and illegal, as with the movement of Mexicans into the USA).
The impulse of expansion in any or all of these modes can be interpreted in Hegelian terms as each being a specific manifestation of a general relation between an “inner dialectic” of crisis formation manifest as overaccumulation within a space (most virulently as surpluses of capital and labor side by side) and an “outer dialectic” of geographical (spatial) release of these surpluses. This was roughly how Hegel envisioned it in The Philosophy of Right. The effect is to allow capital accumulation on a world scale to continue its problematic temporal trajectory through continuous and sometimes disruptive geographical adjustments and reconfigurations. But the effect is also to project and replicate the contradictions of capital onto an ever-broadening geographical terrain. Closer analysis also show how a whole series of contradictions arise within the production of space. These need to be unravelled. Not only are the contradictions of capitalism worked through and embedded in the production of the geographical landscape, but these contradictions can and manifestly have at certain historical points been the locus of political-economic earthquakes that have shaken the prospects for further capital accumulation to their very core. We now turn to consider how this typically happens.
在任何或所有这些模式中扩张的冲动可以用黑格尔的术语解释，每一种都是危机形成的“内在辩证法”间一般关系的具体表现，表现为空间内的过度积累（最致命的是资本盈余和劳动力盈余并存）和这些盈余的地理 （空间） 释放的“外部辩证法”。这大致就是黑格尔在《法哲学》中所设想的。其效果是允许全球规模的资本积累，通过持续的、有时具有破坏性的地理调整和重新配置，继续行进在未定的暂时性轨迹上。但其效果还在于将资本矛盾投射和复制到日益扩大的地理区域。更进一步的分析也揭示了一系列的矛盾是如何在空间生产中产生的。这些问题需要解决。资本主义的矛盾不仅贯穿和嵌入在地理景观里面，而且这些矛盾在某些历史点上能够而且明显地成为政治-经济地震的中心，动摇了资本进一步积累的核心。我们现在开始考虑这种情况通常是如何发生的。
There are two dimensions to the problem that require separate treatment. Both, incidentally, track back to the complicated meanings of the word “fix”. The first concerns the difficulties posed by the circulation of fixed capital and the contradictions that attach thereto. The second deals more broadly with the whole problem of the territorial structures, spatial forms and uneven geographical development of capital accumulation. The category of fixed capital in Marxian theory refers to capital that is embedded in some asset or thing (such as machinery) which is not directly or even indirectly consumed in production (as are raw materials or energy inputs) but which gets used up (and worn out) over several production cycles. The lifetime of the fixed capital determines the rate at which it is used up (amortized) and the rate its value (e.g. that embodied in the machine) has to be transferred to the final product (e.g. the shirt). The lifetime is not only determined by rates of physical deterioration. Physically viable machinery can be replaced by new or less costly machines so that obsolescence through technological change plays a key role. Obsolescence can destroy the value remaining in existing fixed capital well before its physical lifetime is up (I still have an old Remington typewriter in my study, though I never use it). The devaluation of fixed capital is a serious problem for capitalists. It locates a potential crisis point for capital accumulation (hence the connection between business cycles and cycles of fixed capital investment and the importance of real-estate crashes in triggering crises, as, for example, in 1973). Note that the term “fixed” in this case refers to the way capital is locked up and committed to a particular physical form for a certain time-period. But a distinction must be drawn between fixed capital that is mobile and that which is not. Some fixed capital is embedded in the land (primarily in the form of the built environment or more broadly as ‘second nature’) and therefore fixed in place. This capital is “fixed” in a double sense (tied up in a particular object like a machine and pinned down in place). There is a relationship between the two forms. Aircrafts (a highly mobile form of fixed capital) require investments in immobile airport facilities if they are to function. The dialectic between fixity and motion then comes into play even within the category of fixed capital. While jumbo-jets can in principle fly anywhere, in practice they are confined to landing at fixed sites. In order for the capital invested in airport facilities to be realised, aircraft must fly in and out fully laden. In order for the capital invested in the aircraft to be paid off, the airports must encourage as much traffic as possible which means that the places they serve must be attractive sites for the convergence of commodities, people, ideas, information, cultural activities, and the like. Plainly there are multiple opportunities here for mismatches, localised crises (perhaps building into regional and even global crises) as well as abundant opportunities to absorb surplus capital in mutually reinforcing structures of investment (airlines need airports and vice versa). Much of what we call “globalization” has been produced through innumerable symbiotic and mutually reinforcing activities of this kind (airline expansion and airport building). The “spatial fix” (in the sense of geographical expansion to resolve problems of overaccumulation) is in part achieved through fixing investments spatially, embedding them in the land, to create an entirely new landscape (of airports and of cities, for example) for capital accumulation. Finance capital and its derivative forms of “fictitious capital” have a vital role to play in reallocating investments across space and time (an important topic in itself which I must lay aside since it would take too long to elaborate upon here, but see my Limits to Capital, particularly chapters 8, 9 and 10). Suffice it to remark that the much vaunted hypermobility of finance and fictitious capital exists in a dialectical relation with, among other things, fixed capital investments of both the mobile and immobile sort. On the immobile front, the infrastructures of urbanization are crucial, both as foci of investment to absorb surpluses of capital and labor (providing localized/regional forms of the “spatial fix” as through the dynamics of suburbanization or the building of airport complexes) and as the necessary fixed capital of an immobile sort to facilitate spatial movement and the temporal dynamics of continued capital accumulation.
In much of my own work, I have focussed upon the production of space through urbanization as a key site where the contradictions of capital are always at work. Many of these studies focus upon the tension between the two kinds of “fixes” – that which is perpetually seeking to resolve the crisis tendencies of capitalism (overaccumulation) through the production of space (consider, as an example, the key role of suburbanization in the United States after 1945 in absorbing surpluses of capital and labor); and that version of the fix which is about the tying up and the pinning down of large amounts of capital in place through the production of fixed and immobile capital in the built environment (e.g. the highways systems needed to facilitate suburbanization). Here, the two kinds of fixes both feed off each other to stimulate symbiotic forms of accumulation (suburbs need cars and vice versa) and collide to form a potentially serious contradiction. Globalization in its present guise has entailed, among other things, the pursuit of a whole series of spatial fixes to the crisis that erupted around 1973. Capital, most would agree, has since become much more global in all of its forms of production, commerce, merchanting, and finance. It has shifted rapidly (and often with considerable volatility) from one location to another. At the same time massive amounts of capital and labor have been invested in the sorts of immobile fixed capital we see in airports, commercial centers, office complexes, highways, suburbs, container terminals, and the like. Global flows have been in part guided by such investments but at the same time these investments are speculative developments that depend for their profitability upon a certain expansionary pattern of global flows of commodities, capital, and people. If the flows fail to materialize, then the fixed capital stands to be devalued and lost (the bankruptcy of Canary Wharf in London in the 1990s is a case in point, though, as often happens, the devaluation worked through in such a way as to provide profitable opportunities for the banks that ended up holding the physical asset). The production of space under capitalism proceeds under the shadow of this contradiction.
But there are also some more general arguments concerning the production of uneven geographical development that need to be integrated into this account. Capital is always in motion and much of that motion is spatial: commodity exchange (as opposed to the buying and selling of assets) always entails change of location and spatial movement. The market is spatialized (as Krugman now recognizes) and how that spatiality works has consequences for uneven geographical development. One of the laws of the market, for example, is that “there is nothing more unequal than the equal treatment of unequals”. The equality presupposed in market exchange produces spiraling inequalities between regions and spaces insofar as these regions and spaces possess differential endowments. The outcome is that rich regions grow richer and poor regions grow relatively poorer. The relaxation of state regulatory controls throughout the capitalist world (unevenly according to political circumstances) has produced a “neo-liberal” phase of capitalist development in which the inequalities of wealth and power have grown markedly.
But the end result of fierce competition, as Marx long ago observed, is monopoly or oligopoly as the strong drive out the weak in a Darwinian struggle for survival. While, therefore, the virtues of market competition are perpetually being extolled by the ruling classes, an astonishing trend towards monopoly and oligopoly has been taking place in all sorts of arenas, varying from mass media to airlines and even into traditional sectors such as autos. It is also said that the power of the state has been undermined when in fact the state has increasingly been restructured politically and economically as “an executive committee for the ruling class” as Marx long ago suggested. Here, too, the neoliberal phase of globalization has been characterized by a reconfiguration of state powers and the geographical concentration and centralization of political-economic powers within regional alliances of immense strength (with, of course, the USA very much leading the way). The geopolitical consequences are marked by a certain spatial fluidity but also by competitive fights between evolving territorial complexes.
The spatial fixes of recent globalization have therefore been occurring in a distinctive setting and have been shaped by the reconfiguration of institutional structures. This has entailed a transformation in spatial scale, so that global institutions like the IMF, the WTO and the World Bank have become much more powerful and significant, while supra-national arrangements such as the European Union, NAFTA and Mercosur have become more salient. The underlying addiction for spatial and technological fixes is being expressed through these rather more complex processes of uneven geographical development.
In conclusion, I want to re-emphasize the value of the geographical standpoint in understanding contemporary processes of globalization. Far too often in the literature (both popular and academic) we find places depicted as victims or victors of some ethereal process called globalization. A well-grounded historical-geographical materialism teaches us that globalization is the product of these distinctive processes of the production of space on the ground under capitalism. The question is not, therefore, what can an understanding of globalization tell us about geography but what can an understanding of geographical principles tell us about globalization, its successes and its failures, its specific forms of creative destruction, and the political discontents and resistances to which it gives rise. Above all, a better understanding of those geographical principles can surely help bring together the vast array of oppositional movements, currently geographically fragmented as well as unevenly developed, that offer hope for and aspire to some alternative.