Re: [OPE-L] marx's conception of labour

From: Dogan Goecmen (Dogangoecmen@AOL.COM)
Date: Fri Nov 17 2006 - 06:22:41 EST

In einer eMail vom 17.11.2006 11:42:20 Westeuropäische Normalzeit schreibt  

My objection is not to the idea that there  exist material information 
structures prior to production which  themselves shape the process of production. 
These are necessary to all  production, my objection is, in Althusserian terms,  
to the idealist  closure that Marx caries out when he says that the building 
is 'in the head'  and at the same time conflates in the person of the 
architect, the social  division of labour necessary for the construction of large 
buildings. In doing  this he is giving a philosophical rather than a scientific 
answer to the  question - in this area he had still not broken from the 
speculative method.  One says this partly with the benefit of hindsight, however much 
Marx borrowed  from Babbage's 'Economy of Machinery' he does not seem to have 
paid much  attention to Babbage's analysis of the division of mental labour, 
still less  his work on the Analytical Engine. It took the work of Turing for 
one to see  that what passes for creative mental work, is almost always an 
interactive  process in which the means of intellectual production - paper, 
pencils, paint  etc play an indispensable role.
No  architect ever builds in the head. The profession of architect is as much 
 a form of manual labour as that of the bricklayer, the architect is just 
using  different tools.
If one is to understand contemporary  economies in which the production and 
distribution of materialised information  structures is an ever growing part of 
all activity, one has to break  with this 'in the head' illusion.

Just a short reply:
A bricklayer has to be as much as an architect as an achitect has to be a  
bricklayer. Otherwise they caanot build a house in cooperation. Whatever they  
may do it remains bodily activity. Marx does not say more than that. He talks  
about human beings - not about a particular  profession.

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