[OPE-L:3119] Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: re:starting points

From: Ajit Sinha (ajitsinha@lbsnaa.ernet.in)
Date: Thu May 11 2000 - 08:30:37 EDT

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Rakesh Bhandari wrote:

> In reply to Fred, Ajit wrote in 3056
> . As you agree, the categories of
> >wage labor and capital do not appear in the analysis here. Thus the problematic
> >of value in the first chapter of CAPITAL has nothing to do with capitalist
> >exploitation. One has to look at the theoretical context for understanding the
> >concept of value.
> Well, Ajit my point will not be new to you since I made it a zillion times
> in a previous exchange: if we want to understand exploitation in and
> through the value form, we have to understand first what kind of labor
> produces value and surplus value.

This begs the question, why do you want to understand exploitation "in and through
value form"? Value is a theoretical category in Marx's theory. The question is what
context or the problematic gives rise to the need for developing the category of
value for Marx. Your very wanting has assumed most of what you need to establish.

> The general ontological determination of
> kinds has to come before the determination of quantities. If in the

> exchange relation commodities are only to count quantitatively, i.e. as to

> the extent of their *value*,


What is *value*?

> Rakesh:

> they have to be modes of expression of the
> same undifferentiated human labor.

On what ground you know that "they [value] have to be modes of expression of the
same undifferentiated human labor"? How do you arrive at this knowledge. You seem to
assume the things that are basically in contention. This "if" move is the serious
problem with your thinking. Theoretical problems are not solved by simply assuming
"if " it is so. In that case, one could have opened the can by assuming that we have
a can openner.

> Labor then has two characters. That is,
> in its concrete form the useful embodied labor may remain of the same
> quality, e.g., tailoring labor, and the use value thus remain unaltered
> even as a magnitude of value alters simply because coats now have more or
> less value than previously because more or less (abstract) labor is
> required to produce them than previously.

But you haven't told us what is *value* by the way. And since you claim above that
this is a quantitative concept, you need to tell us how do you measure it before you
start telling us about its rise or fall. Why not do some systematic thinking for a
change? Cheers, ajit sinha

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