Books and documents:
Agustí Chalaux de Subirà, Brauli Tamarit Tamarit.
Agustí Chalaux de Subirà.
Agustí Chalaux de Subirà.
Agustí Chalaux de Subirà.
Magdalena Grau, Agustí Chalaux.
A. Money systems until now.
Chapter 1. Limiting the matter being studied.
- Goals and method of this chapter.
- Historical context.
- Geo-political context.
1. Goals and method of this chapter.
The critical consideration on the money systems is the core of
this essay. But before starting we want to use this chapter to situate
the money systems within the global context where they will be studied
and to fix exactly their limits.
This job will help also to give the definitions of the main technical
wording which will be used in this essay. The more specialized terms will
be defined every time it becomes necessary.
2. Historical context.
Money systems appear under given historical conditions which we should
remember. Therefore, they must be considered as the results of a lasting
evolution, or better still, of a utilitarian evolution of mankind. All
living beings, among them man, need a number of commodities in order to
develop and better work out their existential process. These commodities
will be indicated as utilitarian commodities, so as to show that
they are useful to satisfy the material needs of human beings. As a definition,
all utilitarian commodities have a market value which is subjective,
that is depending from the subject who is their user.
The word utilitarianism will indicate any production and distribution
system of utilitarian commodities within every community under consideration.
In historic times, several sorts of utilitarianism have followed each
other in mankind, which we will describe shortly.
1. Pre-exchange utilitarianism: it is the most primitive utilitarian
system, and is determined by the fact that the production of utilitarian
goods by the human group under consideration is fully distributed within
the group itself, without any exchange, only a redistribution. The producer
subject -who usually is not one individual, but rather all the community-
is the end-user of the goods.
2. Exchange utilitarianism: from a given point of historical development,
human communities exchange the utilitarian goods produced, both within
themselves and with other communities. Therefore the goods obtain a new
value: the exchange value, which is subjective twice, because it
depends from the subjective evaluation of the two exchange agents. As a
synonym of «exchange utilitarianism» we will use the word market,
and as a synonym of «exchange utilitarian goods» we will currently
say «goods» or «merchandise».
2.1. Pre-currency exchange utilitarianism or non-money market:in
the first place, exchange of goods is effected intuitively, according to
the needs of the exchange agents, but without any reference to any objective
model of the exchange value, that is without any reference to any sort
of money units.
2.2. Money exchange utilitarianism or money market: starting
from a given historical moment -which probably we can locate at the beginning
of what is called «neolithic transformation»- exchange of goods
is effected according to some regulating conventions or standards of the
exchange value of the goods, which we will call money units. The
reference to a value standard finally transforms exchange into an objective
The conclusions to this might therefore be the following:
First: We will consider that money systems appear in a context
of a well advanced goods exchange (probably neolithic).
- Second: We will define money systems as instruments whose goal is to
objectivize the exchange value of the goods. Therefore, we will consider
that money units, as objective models to measure value, are the basic element
that defines any money system.
3. Geo-political context.
After establishing the utilitarian-historical background to place the
goal of this study, we must now consider its present conditions. We will
therefore speak about the geo-political context, a frame where all
money systems are developed.
At present, the words «state» and «nation» are
currently used to indicate geo-strategically organized societies. However,
if we analyze the etymological roots of the two words, it appears that
not only their use is questionable, but that it is even completely inappropriate.
State is only a small part of the total collectivity: that where
customary or written constitution has delegated political power.
Nation simply means, according to Latin etymology, «birth
group, group where people are born». A nation is a natural fact,
common to men and animals, which has nothing to do with political organization,
which is not only specifically human, but also appears at a much later
date, and is of a completely different vital order.
Instead of these words we will use the much more exact one of geo-political
society, defined as a collective being, fixed by history on a given
territory, which evolves according to the changing strategic and technical
circumstances, and which is provided with political ruling organs (State,
in historically more advanced societies) and judicial organs (Justice).
Any market is included within a given geo-political society, or is developed
among several geo-political societies.
In any geo-political society we can separate, analytically, the utilitarian
dimension and therefore talk about a utilitarian society. In this
utilitarian society we can recognize two groups.
The producing utilitarian society is a part (proportionally more
or less important, according to the degree of utilitarian and cultural
development of every society) which has specialized, along thousands of
years, in producing utilitarian goods.
The consumers' utilitarian society includes all the members of society,
as without utilitarian goods nobody can survive.
When we find ourselves in front of an exchange utilitarianism we can define
utilitarian society as a market; and when in a market money units are introduced,
we will then talk about money market1.
This money market -as a society specialized in the production and consumption
of utilitarian goods, using a money system- will be the social and political
context of money systems.
The domestic market, which is developed within a geo-political society,
is extended, in the world context of geo-political societies by the so-called
trade. This can be bilateral or multilateral, according to a more or
less uncertain modus vivendi or more permanent treaties.
On the domestic market rush the forces and conditionings of all legitimate
authorities which have jurisdiction on it: Constitution, law, State, Justice,
autonomous ethnic-territorial communities,... trade unions,... and finally
In foreign trade these influences come from the shared jurisdiction
of the two or more parties to the contract.
In this essay we will study the role that the money systems have had
historically within the exchange utilitarianisms which have followed each
other, and in present day within the domestic market and foreign trade
of every geo-political society.
must clearly state that we call money market a market with at least
one fully defined money unit. This meaning has nothing to do with today's
meaning, and we will use it as a technical word only and exactly as defined