The Sublime Perversion of Capital: Marxist Theory and the Politics of History in Modern Japan
The Feudal Remnant and the Historical Outside
From the early 1920s onward, the so-called “debate on Japanese capitalism” (Nihon shihonshugi ronso) was the primary animating circuit around which the central opposition in Marxist theory between the Koza or Lectures faction and the Rono or Worker-farmer faction emerged. Subsequently, in the aftermath of the defeat and occupation of Japan, the Koza school reemerged as the hegemonic framework in Marxist historiography and Marxist theory. Essential to this school’s arguments was the tendency to identify so-called feudal remnants overlapping the contemporary mode of capitalist development. These theorists tended to identify the 1868 Meiji Restoration as an “incomplete” bourgeois...