[OPE-L:2325] Priors and Givens

Alan Freeman (100042.617@compuserve.com)
Wed, 22 May 1996 16:23:30 -0700

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I came across this, which naturally interested me and may
sound slightly familiar in the light of current debates:

"Activity is said to occur in discrete time intervals, each
involving a "production period" followed by an "exchange
period", thus rendering product and factor markets
independent of each other. Regarding Marx specifically
we read that "the general profit rate, determined during
the production period, and introduced as a given into
the exchange period, is the equilibrium rate of return to

This is attributed to R.V. Eagly, 'The Structure of Classical
Economic Theory' (Oxford 1974)

The attribution is from Hollander, S. 'Marxian economics
as equilibrium theory' in HOPE 13:1 (1981). Hollander
also says (p122):

"It will be clear...that the nature of [Marx's] approach required
him to start from the postulation of a certain rate of
exploitation or of surplus value (or profit-wage ratio in
Ricardo's terms); since this was *prior* to the formation
of exchange-values or prices and was not derived from
them. In other words, this needed to be expressed in terms
of production, *before* bringing in circulation or exchange.

"There is some ambiguity attached to this kind of conception
because it is not always clear whether temporal priority
or causal priority or both are intended by the 'prior' solution
to distribution. But in at least one important formulation,
temporal as well as causal priority is explicitly attributed
both to Ricardo and to Marx." [The footnote cited at the
start of this post is appended to the text at this point of
Hollander's article. Emphases in original]

Can anyone tell me anything about R.V.Eagly or this work?
Hollander calls this an 'important formulation' but I can find
no references to it in the standard literature.