19th Century: The man who predicted Bitcoin? … or much more …

Georg Simmel, a German sociologist born in the mid-nineteenth century, who sat chair and sowed the base of sociological studies that would make him a visionary.

Through studies such as his renowned, and not so well known, work entitled “The Philosophy of Money (1907)”, warned of the social conductivity towards electronic money and its derivatives; as the technology evolves … and maybe not so much the Man.

 

Another scholar in sociological matters explained and summed up very well, a few years ago, about Simmel:

And also arise, as a consequence of the growing monetarization, the relations that characterize modernity: punctuality, the quantification of benefits in contracts, the statistical mentality, the actuarial and accounting attitude, as well as the triumph of a calculating rationality of costs and benefits The same industrial society, Simmel shows, would not have been possible without the previous cultural transformation that monetarized taxes to treasure and power, the obols to the churches, the payments of the contracts, the dowries in the marriages and the buying and selling in the markets.

The historical process of increasing abstraction culminated in the suppression of the gold standard and its replacement by paper money and transnational finance without bullion of precious metals. This opened the doors, says Simmel visionary, to a further phase of even greater virtuality. Many decades of credit cards in plastic, not to mention electronic transactions, Simmel perceives transformations that nobody managed to glimpse in his time. Simmel represents the first intuition of a computerized society, with virtual currency, and even ‘postindustrial’ and ‘postmodern’ that we have. Only argued intuitions of the caliber of Marx’s with his observations on the future consequences of industrial automation in the Grundrisse, that of Tocqueville on the dysfunctions of the democracy of the future,

Have we reached the point pointed by Mr. Simmel? Because maybe it happened so long and our news is only an approach and Bitcoin, and other cryptocurrencies, become obsolete shortly … or know what the future will bring …


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