Capitalism’s power over us can feel mysterious, abstract. Not only is it baffling that a system rocked by crises can be so robust, but the terms used to describe it in Marxism can also be convoluted.
Søren Mau, a young communist philosopher from Denmark, has set out to solve both problems: cutting a clean path through the thickets of jargon to explain capitalism’s persistence and power.
In the process, he elucidates what Marx called ‘the mute compulsion of capitalism’: the power that works by constructing our material and social environments so that we are compelled to reproduce capitalist relations. But this power, says Søren, grows from the very stuff that makes us human in the first place.
Taking in everything from globe-spanning infrastructure to the vulnerability of the human body, Søren Mau tells Richard Hames how we got so stuck.