Ohio State University, Mansfield Campus
"C.L.R. James and the Theory of State Capitalism"
in the United States between 1938 and 1953, the Trinidadian-born C.L.R.
James, writing primarily under the pseudonym "Johnson," developed
a theory of the Soviet Union and its satellite states as "state
capitalism." James also believed much of the West had moved toward
a war-Keynesian state capitalism. This paper will examine the social
and political reasoning of James's theory of state capitalism and will
argue that the theory, while vulnerable to grave criticism for its logical
defects, had the function of preserving James's socialist politics,
making him a forerunner of New Left suspicions of bureaucracy East and