Re: [OPE-L] salto mortale

From: Rakesh Bhandari (bhandari@BERKELEY.EDU)
Date: Sun Mar 04 2007 - 13:13:40 EST

While I am doubtful about the idea of commodity fetishism, the theories of
capital and monetary fetishism are persuasive. Certainly the special
qualities of gold in the exchange process, viz. monopoly over direct
exchangeability, have often been understood in terms of the physical or
material properties of gold itself, though this is difficult too in that
the material properties of gold--lightness, divisibility, durability--do
make it suited to serve as the general equivalent. It seems to me that
Marx should have spoken more specifically of the theory of monetary
fetishism in the first part of Capital and highlighted the three or four
peculiarities of the equivalent form. In fact this comes out more clearly
I believe in the earlier editions of Capital I. I think John Torrance
would have been able to make greater sense of the theory of reification
(as he has it) if he had concentrated on money.
Now the question yet again is whether there is an intrinsic relation
between the way in which Marx theorizes value and money. Interesting piece
by Cartelier in the most recent Cambridge Journal of Economics.

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