[OPE-L:5454] Re: Re: the intensity of labor and surplus value (again)

From: Rakesh Narpat Bhandari (rakeshb@Stanford.EDU)
Date: Sat Apr 28 2001 - 14:02:34 EDT

>In response to this comment by Paul C,
>>>  The only three ways the rate of surplus value
>>>  can change are
>>>  1. changes in the length of the working day
>>>  2. cheapening or dearing of the wage bundle in
>>>  labour terms
>>>  3. changing the wage bundle in real terms
>Jerry writes
>>These are not the 'only' ways in which the
>>rate of surplus value can change: the rate of
>>surplus value will also change when there is
>>a change in the intensity of labor.
>But changing the intensity of labor leads directly to effect (2) above by
>altering the socially necessary labor time embodied in the wage bundle. It
>might also indirectly lead to effect (3) by changing the average caloric
>requirements of workers, or effect (1) by making it possible to extend the
>working day (because workers are expending *less* effort per hour) or
>making it necessary to reduce the working day (because workers are
>expending so much extra effort per hour that they're too exhausted to
>perform well in the marginal hours).  Bottom line, changes in labor
>intensity would necessarily show up in at least 1 of Paul's 3.  Gil

Jerry and Gil, you may be right abou this. Just a few questions for 
clarification: when we say lengthening of the working day, we mean 
only its extensive lengthening, not an intensive lengthening, 
correct? So what does number one mean?

If the working day is lengthened either intensively or extensively 
(let's  say that we count the former as an extensive lengthening) and 
more commodity thereby produced, then the unit values of those 
commodities aren't being reduced and there cannot therefore be any 
increase in relative surplus value, correct?

Yours, Rakesh

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