[OPE-L:5096] Re: [A question for Charles] Re: productive and unproductive labor

From: charlie (charles1848@value.net)
Date: Fri Mar 02 2001 - 14:56:34 EST

>From Capitalism to Equality doesn't use the distinction
between productive and unproductive labor. It does examine the
economics of corporate bureaucracy and the sales effort (pp.
206-217). As far as I can see, the category of unproductive labor
is not needed to discover the historical limit of capitalism.

Marx straightened out Adam Smith's confused notion of productive
labor, but he did not change its historical range, early
capitalism in its struggle against still-existing feudal and
absolutist economic relations and circuits.

In the course of building a socialist economy, society will want
to reduce many activities that are widespread under capitalism
today. Perhaps a new distinction under the name of productive and
unproductive labor will be helpful. It certainly won't define
productive labor as labor that produces surplus value.


Charles Andrews
Web site for my book is at http://www.LaborRepublic.org

Gerald_A_Levy wrote:
> I've been looking through your book, _From Capitalism
> to Equality: An Inquiry into the Laws of Economic
> Change_ (Oakland, Needle Press, 2000) for a
> discussion of productive and unproductive labor.
> ... I didn't see any definitions of
> these categories or discussion of this topic...

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