[OPE-L:1773] Re: Accumulation of capital in Ch. 24, V1

Paul Zarembka (ecopaulz@ubvms.cc.buffalo.edu)
Sun, 14 Apr 1996 05:43:39 -0700

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On Sat, 13 Apr 1996 glevy@acnet.pratt.edu wrote:

> ============================================================================
> "The employment of surplus-value as capital, or its reconversion into
> capital" (Penguin ed., p. 725)
> ============================================================================

My Pengium edition is yellowed and falling apart after only 15 years.
It's like they wanted Marx to rot out before the end of the century.
Anyway, Jerry, you cannot stop with the sentence you quote for in the
very next paragraph begins a long discussion explicating that s goes into
labor power and more means of production, and that in turn is the
definition I have offered (in response to Duncan). By stopping where you
stop you position yourself to write the following in the context of
denying (on April 13 in a posting number I forgot) that more labor power
and more means of production is NOT [your caps] required for accumulation
of capital:

> It *necessarily follows* , based on the above definition, that the
> accumulation of capital can be increased by:
> * increasing the magnitude of surplus value (holding the division of s
> into capital and revenue constant);
> or,
> * increasing the productive consumption of surplus value (holding the
> magnitude of surplus value constant).

It's not that the above is right or wrong, but rather insufficiently
precise and delimiting (it is not inconsistent the definition I offered).

> .. *but* the problem with definitions, though, is that they are both the
> results of prior analysis and the presuppositions of further analysis.
> Consequently, giving a definition *alone* does not tell us much.

Exactly correct. That is why the struggle over definition is really much
bigger than a mere struggle over a word or concept.

> -- The definition that I give above for the accumulation of capital is
> *necessarily based* on Marx's understanding of value. It is a *result* of
> that understanding.

I'm not sure on the above, and we may get to this relationship. For the
moment, I will simply say that it is the understanding of the capitalist
mode of production which conditions BOTH the definition of accumulation
of capital and of value, not the "understanding of value" resulting in the
definition of accumulation.

Paul Z.