[OPE-L:5658] [MIKE W] Re: Commodity Money

Gerald Levy (glevy@pratt.edu)
Mon, 27 Oct 1997 19:39:35 -0500 (EST)

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> (1) One of the tendencies under capitalism is a relentless drive towards
> commodification -- e.g. to transform into commodities objects that
> had not previously been represented by the value-form. Yet with the
> transformation from the money commodity to money in non-commodity
> form, we see the opposite movement. How can this be explained
> theoretically (rather than only historically)?

a) As Ale points out (and Paul C did long ago) it is not at all clear
that the commodity nature of money was historically prior.

b) The money objects remain (complex) commodities. The point is that
this is irrelevant to the fact that the money object bears the
functions of 'Money'.
> (2) From a systematic dialectical perspective [:-)], shouldn't one first
> investigate the case where money takes the commodity form before one
> relaxes this assumption

Systematic dialectics has nothing to do with relaxing assumptions.

> and explains how in the course of the reproduction of capital
> and accumulation the functions of money and
> credit are modified? I.e. wasn't there a reason, other than a
> historical one related to Marx's own time, for the ordering of
> different aspects of his theory of money?

a) Historical priority does not coincide with conceptual/logical

b) Marx's presentation in K1, Vol 1, Part I is, IMO, concerned to
connect Money to the SYSTEM of capitalist commodity circulation, not
to demonstrate that the Money object was necessarily (or
relevantly) a commodity.

c) Ale's clear and concise comments are relevant here.

(Jerry - sorry to be so epigrammatic but my colleagues are all going
sick and I'm picking up their teaching, my marriage is imploding -
and last weekend a fox got the family pet rabbit ... !)

"Books are Weapons"

Dr Michael Williams
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