This text was Ernest Mandel’s contribution to a colloquium on the occasion of the centenary of Marx’s Capital, organized by the institute of political science of the Goethe University Frankfurt and publisher Europäische Verlagsanstalt. The contributions and discussion were originally published in Kritik der politischen Ökonomie heute,100 Jahre Kapital (Frankfurt am Main, 1968).
Le socialiste, érudit et militant, Ernest Mandel est né il y a cent ans, le 5 avril 1923. "Internationaliste flamand d'origine juive", il était un militant et un érudit, écrivant certains des ouvrages les plus importants de la théorie marxiste de la seconde moitié du vingtième siècle.
Socialist scholar and activist Ernest Mandel was born one hundred years ago, on April 5, 1923. A 'Flemish internationalist of Jewish descent', he was a militant and scholar, writing some of the most significant works of Marxist theory of the second half of the twentieth century.
De socialistische wetenschapper en activist Ernest Mandel werd honderd jaar geleden, op 5 april 1923, geboren. Een 'Vlaams internationalist van Joodse afkomst', Mandel was schrijver van enkele van de belangrijkste werken van marxistische theorie in de tweede helft van de twintigste eeuw.
Any serious discussion in a Marxist organization has two aspects.i It is born of ongoing events and tends to respond to a need for action born from the same events. In this respect, any discussion which is not artificial is inevitably partly pragmatic. But the answer given and the method which determines it become part of the whole of Marxist theory, and in one way or another modify the ideas—and the action—of future generations of Marxists, and even the answers given by the same generation to future questions.
For eighty years, the theory of permanent revolution has been the object of a permanent debate inside the international labour and revolutionary movement.i A great number of articles and books have been devoted to the discussion. A significant number of revolutions and counter-revolutions have. occurred in the less developed countries of the world in which this theory could be tested in the light of real historical development.