Dr Morteza Samanpour

Research project: Marx's Capital, From Colonialism to Contemporary Capitalism: Historical Ontology and Social Temporalities of the Reproduction Process


This thesis reads Marx's Capital through the problems posed by the disjunctive temporal structure of contemporary capitalism and global colonialism. It critically reconstructs Capital's categorial framework and its underlying philosophical assumptions, aiming to grasp the uneven social temporalities of capitalist relations as actively differentiated within the global reproduction process. Chapter One interprets Marx's critical theory as a historically specific ontological inquiry into the constitutive relations of capital and their temporalities. In contradistinction to the value-form analysis, it claims that Marx's method has a processual character whereby the inner structure of capital is articulated in its temporal unity: the historical genesis sublated into present social relations that in turn bear historical tendencies that shape their future. This temporal-processual structure, it is argued, is indissociable from the practical dimensions of Marx's critique. Chapter Two pushes Capital beyond its methodological abstractions, investigating colonialism not as the historical presupposition but also the result of fully developed capital at the level of the world market. It claims that the colonial accumulation of capital through unwaged-labour is internally related and differentially subordinated to the reproduction of the (metropolitan) capital–wage-labour relationship. Colonialism is here identified as a temporal mode of domination rooted in the value-form. Chapter Three investigates the discoveries of the 1861–63 Manuscripts and their relevance for the mutually conditioning but differentiated interwoven circuits of accumulation within the reproduction of "total social capital" via the mechanism of competition. The transformations of core categories led Marx to grasp capital's social temporalities in multi-linear and non-teleological terms and thus pursue a different political-practical project. Special attention is paid to the shortcomings of temporal readings of Marx centred on formal subsumption and of Massimiliano Tomba's framework of the "synchronisation of plural temporalities". Chapter Four addresses distinctive temporal features of contemporary capitalism via the concept of the "contemporary" and its distinction from the "synchronicity of the non-synchronous". It focuses on the temporal differentials that are not simply "given" but posited by the reproductive requirements of globalised and financialised capital, analysing the complex historical-ontological mutations of credit-forms of value as the dominant mode of capital in the historical present.

  • Research degree: PhD
  • Title of project: Marx's Capital, From Colonialism to Contemporary Capitalism: Historical Ontology and Social Temporalities of the Reproduction Process
  • Research supervisors:



Areas of research interest

  • Marx's Critique of Political Economy
  • Philosophy as Critical Theory
  • Plural Social Temporalities and Historical Time
  • Social Ontology
  • Social Reproduction Theory
  • Value-Form Analysis
  • Colonialism and the Postcolonial Condition
  • Contemporary Capitalism
  • Financialization


  • BA in Mechanical Engineering (Azad University of Tehran)
  • MA in Philosophy and Contemporary Critical Theory (CRMEP, Kingston University)

Funding or awards received

  • TECHNE (PhD, full funded)
  • TECHEN (work-placement)