Elmar Altvater

Elmar Altvater (24 August 1938 in Kamen, Province of Westphalia – 1 May 2018) was Professor of Political Science at the Otto-Suhr-Institut of the Free University of Berlin, before retiring on 30 September 2004. He continued to work at the Institute, and published articles and books.

As a student, Altvater studied economics and sociology in Munich, and attained a doctorate with a dissertation on "Environmental Problems in the Soviet Union". At the Otto-Suhr-Institut, he was active in socialist research groups, working with among others Klaus Busch, Wolfgang Schoeller and Frank Seelow, and he gained fame as one of Germany's most important Marxist philosophers, who strongly influenced the political and economic theory of the 1968 generation of radicals. His analysis, centered on the logic of capital accumulation crisis in state interventions is key to the Marxist theory of "state-derivationism." Altvater argues that the state performs four general maintenance functions particular capitalists cannot undertake: providing an initial legal system with property and contract law, regulating the class struggle between workers and owners of capital, enforcing terms of international trade and market expansion through military presence, and providing infrastructure.

In 1970, he co-founded the German journal ''PROKLA - Journal for Critical Social Science'' of which he remains an editor. In 1971 he became university professor in political economy at the Otto-Suhr-Institut. Apart from questions of development theory, the debt crisis, and the regulation of markets, he remains preoccupied with the effects of capitalist economies on the environment.

Altvater was a noted critic of "political economy" and author of numerous writings on globalization and critiques of capitalism. A standard work is his book ''The Limits of Globalization'' (1996), written with his companion Birgit Mahnkopf.

Altvater supported the German Greens for some time, but after the military intervention in Kosovo (which as a member of the governing coalition the party had to support) increasingly maintained a critical distance. He was a member of the Bundestag Commission of Inquiry ''The World Economy - Challenges and Answers (1999–2002)''. Altvater was a supporter of ATTAC (he was a member of its Scientific Advisory Board) and the World Social Forum.

Altvater has coined the term "Capitalocene", which is used by environmentalists as an alternative to the Anthropocene. Provided by Wikipedia
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Externe Effekte und zentrale Planung im Wirtschaftssystem des Sozialismus
Involved: Altvater, Elmar
Year: 1969
Publisher: Europ. Verl.-Anst., Europa-Verl. (Frankfurt am Main)
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Das hellblaue Bändchen zur Einführung in die Kritik der Politischen Ökonomie
Involved: Altvater, Elmar
Year: 2012
Publisher: VSA (Hamburg)
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Involved: Altvater, Elmar
Year: 1969
Publisher: Europ. Verl.-Anst, Europa-Verl. (Frankfurt am Main)
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Hommage für Theo Pinkus 1909 - 1991
Year: 1992
Publisher: Rotpunktverlag (Zürich)
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Eine radikale Kapitalismuskritik
Involved: Altvater, Elmar
Year: 2011
Publisher: Westfälisches Dampfboot (Münster)
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Eine radikale Kapitalismuskritik
Involved: Altvater, Elmar
Year: 2005
Publisher: Westfälisches Dampfboot (Münster)
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Kritik neuerer Staatsableitungen
Year: 1974
Publisher: Verl. fuer d. Studium d. Arbeiterbewegung (Berlin)
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Arbeit im Schatten, schmutziges Geld und informelle Politik
Year: 2002
Publisher: Westfälisches Dampfboot (Münster)
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Ökonomie und Politik in der Bundesrepublik
Year: 1979
Publisher: Olle & Wolter (Berlin)
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Wirtschaftspolitische Optionen der Gewerkschaften in Westeuropa
Year: 1983
Publisher: Westdt. Verl. (Opladen)
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Das hellblaue Bändchen zur Einführung in die »Dialektik der Natur« und die Kritik von Akkumulation und Wachstum
Involved: Altvater, Elmar
Year: 2015
Publisher: VSA (Hamburg)
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Ökonomie, Ökologie und Politik in der Weltgesellschaft
Year: 1996
Publisher: Westfälisches Dampfboot (Münster)
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Die Zukunft der Europäischen Union in der globalisierten Welt
Year: 2007
Publisher: Westfälisches Dampfboot (Münster)
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Ein Essay über die Regulation von Geld und Natur nach dem Scheitern des "real existierenden" Sozialismus
Involved: Altvater, Elmar
Year: 1991
Publisher: Verl. Westfäl. Dampfboot (Münster)
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Oder die Jahrhundertkrise von Wirtschaft und Finanzen, von Politik und Natur
Involved: Altvater, Elmar
Year: 2010
Publisher: Westfälisches Dampfboot (Münster)
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Ökonomie, Ökologie und Politik in der Weltgesellschaft
Year: 1997
Publisher: Westfälisches Dampfboot (Münster)
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Ökonomie, Ökologie und Politik in der Weltgesellschaft
Year: 1999
Publisher: Westfälisches Dampfboot (Münster)
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