Academic journal article World Review of Political Economy

Acceptance Speech for World Marxian Economics Award (Ii)

Academic journal article World Review of Political Economy

Acceptance Speech for World Marxian Economics Award (Ii)

Article excerpt

November 2, 2017

It's a great honor to receive the highest award of the Marxian economist in the world. My international academic exchange had started from 1995 especially with Chinese Marxists, and linked with the Japanese Marxist academy through the Japanese Association of Political Economy. At that time, the Chinese influence on the world was so weak and almost no Marxist economist in Japan paid enough attention to China, but I did not think so, and started to learn Chinese as my third foreign language. Without such efforts, I could not exchange my research with the Chinese Marxists closely. In my opinion, each country has its own special Marxism, and it's very important to improve our own Marxism. My new type of Marxian economics is neither an exception.

My research had started in the field of Marxian economic statistics when I was a graduate student of Kyoto University, and after graduating from the Graduate School of Kyoto University and serving at a university in Japan, I became the professor of Kyoto University to teach economic statistics. But during all my research days, I emphasized the basic theoretical framework to analyze the real economy in Marxian economics. Without Marxian theoretical framework, no research can be regarded as a Marxian economics.

Therefore, among my over 50 books and 300 articles, half of the research belongs to the theoretical field, and most of them are based on mathematical methodologies, for example, a Lenin type of mathematical model which expresses the uneven development of the world economy caused by the international capital movement to seek for the higher profit rate in the developing countries. By this research, I was awarded the first "Distinguished Achievement Award of World Political Economy of the 21st Century" in 2009.

However, my most important academic achievement is called the Marxian Optimal Growth Model to express the birth, growth and death of capitalism using a dynamic growth model. I proved the historical materialism by this model mathematically, while Professor Okishio proved surplus value theory (exploitation theory) mathematically. In this sense, my research is also regarded as belonging to the Japanese tradition of mathematical Marxism.

This theory was first shown in the academic world by an article written with my graduate student Yuuho Yamashita in 2002, but its own original basic theory had been made up before 2002 like many other mathematical models. In our case, it was a special understanding of feudalism and capitalism based on each technological condition: feudalism on the tools and capitalism on the machines.

Before the Industrial Revolution, we did not have machines but only tools, and in this situation, quality and quantity of products was determined not by the quality and quantity of tools but by the skill of the craftsmen, and therefore, the most important task of the societies became to improve skill. Furthermore, for this purpose, those societies should make special relation between craftsmen and masters as apprenticeship whose seniority system reflected the difference of skills between the senior craftsmen and younger craftsmen. This type of feudalistic human relation was crystallized as Confucianism in the East Asian societies.

Another necessary characteristic of those societies was the limitation of the sizes of crafts because too many craftsmen were not good to learn skill from their one master in one craft. Modern types of skill can be taught in a large classroom, but feudalistic skills could be learned only by imitating their master's way by close watching. Therefore, that society had to divide its market village by village to restrict its size of crafts by forming a special type of agreement among crafts. That was the guild system.

However, all these necessities were lost after the Industrial Revolution due to machines. Here, quality and quantity of products are determined by quality and quantity of machines, and workers became unskilled. …

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