General perspectives on the capitalist development state and class struggle in East Asia

This article presents the historical context of the emergence of capitalism, and then socialism and specifically Marxism, in Japan, China and Korea. It shows the profound influence in the region of the Prussian "late developer" model in both the economy and in the intelligentsia, which set the stage for the introduction of Marxism, first in Japan and then in Korea and China. Anarchism actually had more influence than Marxian socialism in the three countries until the early 1920's. But by importing a superficial, partial vision of Marx from pre-1914 European (and above all German) Social Democracy, the East Asian left was ultimately as statist as the German-influenced modernizers building the region's capitalism. The resulting century of statist "Marxism" was to have profound consequences.

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