[OPE-L:4809] eigen-values

From: Gerald_A_Levy (Gerald_A_Levy@email.msn.com)
Date: Mon Jan 29 2001 - 16:35:14 EST

In [OPE-L:4808] Rakesh wrote:

> Just to play around with the analogy to quantum mechanics again (as I read
> through David Z Albert's Quantum Mechanics and Experience). Monetary
> measurement forces a collapse of commodities into one of two eigenstates:
> value or no value. That is, a commodity undergoes a change from one state
> another in the process of measurement. We can say that inventories can be
> represented by a superposition of these eigenstates!
> Of course there are at least two places where the analogy breaks down.

Andras Brody, in _Proportions, prices and planning_ (Akademiai  Kiado and
North-Holland, 1970), attempted to apply eigenvalue-eigenvector analysis
(in the resolution of matrices). In this,  he was heavily influenced by
Wassily Leontief  (who wrote a short "Preface" in which, among other things,
he lamented that Marx employed "esoteric Hegelian terminology").

Although  theories of money and rent are not considered ("neither do we
enter deeply into problems of technological change" - p. 9),  the
methodology employed is consistent with  that used by at least some of
the writers who have employed linear production theory and what Fred
and you have been calling the "standard interpretation".  (Fred: do you

Brody claimed that "the eigenequation can represent deterministic or
causal relations of the sort that the classical economists, Smith, Ricardo
and Marx, set up. It can also be used in a teleological and optimizing
approach such as that of the marginalist schools" (Ibid, p. 10).

Brody's book was widely read (for a mathematical academic text) and
was influential in the 1970's. Not too many Marxists have referred to
it lately, though. Indeed, I  can't recall his theories ever being discussed
in the close to 11,200  (!) posts on OPE-L.

In solidarity, Jerry

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