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

From: Dogan Goecmen (Dogangoecmen@AOL.COM)
Date: Sat Nov 18 2006 - 11:16:29 EST

The complexity of these forms of transitions are well known, even to Marx.  
(See first parts of German Ideology) I probably do not this particular film. 
But  I know these sorts of films. Even birds use tools. I konw this. But the 
question  is this: do animals produce their tools they use or do they just take 
them from  nature as they happen to be out there?  Do they conserve and improve 
them  as the process of production proceeds?
In einer eMail vom 18.11.2006 16:43:06 Westeuropäische Normalzeit schreibt  

Quoting  Dogan Goecmen <Dogangoecmen@AOL.COM>:

> Paul, your  discusion is, then, just to remind us of these froms of
> transitions.  But this does not argue against Marx. It become, however,
> problematic  if
> you reject to recognise the qualitative difference between  animal  and 
> labour. This is an old discussion. Some  refer to the capacity of  thinking,
> others to language, other  again to morality. But all these discussions  end
> up in
>  asking what makes the difference between other animals and human   beings.
> Marx says humans work consciously, that is to say that they  plan before  
> work.

These transitions are, I  think, considerably more complex than one would
guess if one was just going  on what is in Capital, but then we have much
much more biological knowledge  available to us than Marx had. I am just
pointing out that the distinction  human/animal labour based on intentionality
is now regarded as untenable by  researchers into animal behaviour.

Ian Wright's old tutor Aron Sloman,  has a magnificent video of problem
solving ability and tool use among  caledonian crows.
Once you have watched it, you
will never again be so  confident about human particularity.

> Human labour according to  Marx comprises, then, : thinking, it is a
> conscious action; it  comprises language, it is a communicative action; it
> comprises
>  morality, it is an ethical action involving moral judgments, This is,   of
> course, not a God given capacity. It is a result of of a historical  process
> of
> tousands and tousand of years. Now, tell me, is  there any species of 
> (apart from human beings) which  plan the future, say, reproduction of
> subsistence and the means of  production in the next few years to come.

This sort of planning though,  is not specifically human, it is specifically
agricultural. It only exists  post the neolithic  revolution.

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