Rereading Pashukanis: Discussion Notes

  • Antonio Negri University of Padua
Keywords: Evgeny Pashukanis, Marxist legal theory, Soviet Marxism, law, value-form, capitalism, the State, Italian Workerism


This article was published in Italian in 1973 and, together with an afterword written in 2016, has been offered by the author in re­ sponse to the theme of the current issue of Stasis. In this work, Negri insists on radical difference of Marxist juridical theory, de­ veloped by the most important Soviet legal theorist, Evgeny Pashukanis (1891–1937), and on the revolutionary foundations of his thought. In his analysis—against normalizing and institution­ al readings—Negri both meticulously and polemically recon­ structs these radical contents. He does so with impressive move­ ment from Marx’s analysis of value-form, the State and capitalist command, to Pashukanis’s analysis of relations of these elements to juridical forms and the genesis of law in bourgeois society. This substantial reading of Pashukanis, together with Negri’s own po­ litical thought that emerged in the 1970s and prefigured his later works on the juridical forms of the global “Empire,” is an impor­ tant contribution to political philosophy and Marxist legal theory, and is internationally available for the first time in English and in Russian. In his Postface, written forty years later, Negri resumes and updates his account in the view of current debates and litera­ture, and reconfirms “the greatness of Pashukanis’s work.”


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How to Cite
Negri, A. (2017). Rereading Pashukanis: Discussion Notes. Stasis, 5(2). Retrieved from