Re: [OPE] Reply to Geert Reuten[MESSAGE NOT SCANNED]

From: Paul Cockshott <>
Date: Mon Mar 09 2009 - 09:30:26 EDT

> > "This abstraction, human labour in general, exists in the form of
> average
> > labour which, IN A GIVEN SOCIETY, the average person can perform,
> > productive expenditure of a certain amount of human muscles, nerves,
> > brain, etc. It is simple labour [English economists call it
> "unskilled labour"]
> > which any average individual can be trained to do and which in one way
> > or another he has to perform. The characteristics of this average
> labour
> > are different in different countries and different historical
> epochs, but IN
> > ANY PARTICULAR SOCIETY it appears as something given." (my stress).
> Jurriaan:
> _If_ an author makes it clear from the outset of her/his presentation
> (page 1)
> that her/his subject is capitalism _then_ 'a given society' and 'any
> particular
> society' should be understood to refer to a given or particular
> _capitalist_ society.
> _If_ one has limited one's analysis in this way, _then_ such an
> additional qualifier
> would be unnecessary, redundant, and tiresome for the reader.
That would only be true if the book only refered to capitalism, but the
book by Marx you are discussing does at times refer to other sorts of
> So it is with other disciplines. If one wrote a book on 'sailing
> theory and practice'
> (C.A. Marchaj) then the author does not have to use, and should not
> use, expressions
> like 'sailing yacht' or 'sailboat'. Note in this case that,
> historically and logically,
> the development of sailing vessels is an outcome of a prior historical
> process which
> included propulsion by oar, paddle, and sweep and that most
> larger 'sailing' vessels
> have auxiliary motors. But, a discussion of rowing and motoring would
> have been
> digressive to the subject - even though historically and otherwise
> these topics can be
> related to each other. Such digressions are best put in the form of
> footnotes or
> appendixes (_Value-form and the State_ use a very interesting,
> readable, and consistent
> style for the former, imo).
> In solidarity, Jerry
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> _______________________________________________
> ope mailing list

ope mailing list
Received on Mon Mar 9 09:33:30 2009

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Tue Mar 31 2009 - 00:00:03 EDT