Abstract: Some scholars have based on “rising from the abstract to the concrete”, “unity of history and logic”, “perceiving the essence through phenomena” and other methodological principles to prove that the start of Das Kapital must be and could only be commodities. Their arguments tend to fall into purely academic conceptual-philosophical discourse and ignore the open and practical spirit of historical materialism. As for textual studies, Das Kapital as a critique of political economy is still a great unfinished work in the changing capitalist society. Its narrative structure will continue to undergo changes and reinventions. Since there are also options for the critique of capital from the categories of “production in general”, “primitive accumulation of capital” , “capital itself” and other methodological terms, Das Kapital does not necessarily start its narrative from commodities. Das Kapital can be shaped into an “artistic entirety” as long as its beginning is conceived from the critique of the capitalist system and the resistance to capitalist oppression from a start of “certain inevitable link” in the logic of capital. More practically, to renew the contemporary critique of political economy means to analyze new problems and situations in the light of the latest developments in capitalism, but without repeating another start of exploration from commodities.
The Chinese version appeared in Social Sciences in Yunnan, 2022, (02).