What is State Capitalism?
|State capitalism is defined as capitalism in an environment wherein the capitalist enterprise is a component part of the state bureaucracy and the receivers of capitalist surplus value are state appointed bureaucrats. Many social theorists have classified the Soviet Union and CMEA nations, in general, as state capitalist social formations because most of the GDP in those economies was generated by capitalist enterprises that were within the state bureaucracy and officials in the state bureaucracy were the appropriators of enterprise surplus value. For the most recent and best developed analysis of state capitalism in the USSR, see Class Theory and History by Stephen A. Resnick and Richard D. Wolff. For a similar discussion of state capitalism in China, see Gabriel, Chinese Capitalism and the Modernist Vision. Also, see the following online publication, as another example, State Capitalism by Peter Binns.|
|State capitalism is often confused with communism: the social system that prevailed in many pre-colonial indigenous communities in Africa and the Americas and which is the underlying economic process of the kibbutz system in Israel. Although there are many variant forms of capitalism, state capitalism is given more weight in the social scientific literature because of the tendency to essentialize the state and state powers.|
---Stephen A. Resnick and Richard D. Wolff, Knowledge and Class (1987)