The purpose of this article is to interrogate Marx’s analysis of the circulation of capital through the ‘new materialist’ communications and media theory of Friedrich Kittler. It explores the connections between Marx’s commodity fetish and how Kittler posits human beings as components of an information system alongside technologies and institutions. The article ask whether a ‘non-human’ Marxist theory is possible, i.e. if it is possible to remove the human being from its privileged position in Marx’s political economy. Specifically the paper argues that human beings are programmable human matter that serves to aid the communication of value through capital’s circuit. This stance necessitates adopting the point of view of capital and the fetish, bracketing the social and moving away from categories such as labour, production and class consciousness in favour of the value form, circulation and programmability.
Kjøsen, Atle Mikkola
"Human Material in the Communication of Capital,"
Vol. 2, Article 3.
Available at: https://scholarworks.umass.edu/cpo/vol2/iss1/3