Investment in peasant economy: theoretical considerations

Vol. 15 No. 1 (1995)

Jan-Mar / 1995
Published January 1, 1995
PDF-Portuguese (Português (Brasil))
PDF-Portuguese (Português (Brasil))

How to Cite

Costa, Francisco de Assis. 1995. “Investment in Peasant Economy: Theoretical Considerations: ”. Brazilian Journal of Political Economy 15 (1):84-101.

Investment in peasant economy: theoretical considerations

Francisco de Assis Costa
Do Núcleo de Altos Estudos Amazônicos – NAEA da Universidade Federal do Pará, Belém/PA, Brasil.
Brazilian Journal of Political Economy, Vol. 15 No. 1 (1995), Jan-Mar / 1995, Pages 84-101


This paper presents a model based on Marx and Chayanov which explains investment
by the peasant production unit. The paper presents the basis of Marx’s pessimistic
view, and Chayanov’s approach to the peasants’ special propensity for investment. Based
on this discussion an analytical model is formulated which considers the Chayanovian potential
derived from a microeconomic perspective of the peasant, and the limits on peasant
investment in a capitalist system derived from a marxian macroeconomic perspective on the
specific characteristics of petty commodity production. Finally, the paper points to generalizations
which center on the contradictions between real restrictions determined by macro
variables and the subjective potential of the family production and consumption unit, the essential
focus of the interpretation of the diverse forms of the relationship peasant/capitalism.

JEL Classification: Q12; Q10; B51.

Keywords: Rural economics farm investment