Re: [OPE-L] marx's conception of labour

From: Dogan Goecmen (Dogangoecmen@AOL.COM)
Date: Fri Nov 17 2006 - 02:46:41 EST

Dear Paul,
I thank you very much for your comments. 
Abstraction as a methodological device is not a idealist hangover   Don't you 
prepare your lectures before you go out and actually lecture and don't  you 
plan your lectures step by step before you put it into practice? It is  
essential to dialectic approach. It is from cognitive and epistemological point  of 
view an absoluetly necessary criterion. It enables us to find out the  
distortion between essence and appearance or, if you like, general and  particular 
aspects of the issue in question. It enables us to find out where to  start and 
anticipate (oversee) the whole process and build (work)  consciously.  Without 
this abstraction we cannot find out that it can  be otherwise than as it 
In a classless society we have to build a houe in our heads (and building  on 
a paper means not more than that) before we can put it into practice. In a  
classless society we will have architects and manuel workers too. But this is 
no  longer a division of labour in its traditional (hierarchical) sense. 
Rather, it  is cooperation between people who have different expertise. In 
capitalist  society a manuel worker is nothing but a manuel worker and an architect is  
nothing but an architect. In cooperative society manuel worker will have  the 
oppoartunity to become an architect (and understand his/her work) and an  
architect will have the opportunity to become a manuel worker (and understand  
his/her work). But in practice labour has to be always a concret labour. 
Thank you for your kind comments
In einer eMail vom 16.11.2006 22:48:12 Westeuropäische Normalzeit schreibt  

I think, Dogan, that  the possibility of our building a house in our head 
before we build it in  reality is an idealist hangover in Marx. His section on 
the architect and the  bee has for 30 years struck me as one of the least 
satisfactory in the whole  of Das Kapital. 
One can have a  general intention to build a house, but nobody builds it in 
their head, least  of all an architect. An architect builds it on paper before 
building labourers  build it out of bricks. The whole of marx’s analysis there 
abstracts from  class relations, from the division of mental and manual 
labour, and from the  interaction between mental processes and the material tools 
of mental labour –  in the architects case, rulers pencils, paper  etc. 
For a detailed  elaboration of this critique see 
By the way I have  been reading Dogan’s book on Smith, have only got through 
first third so far,  but it opens up an entire new window on Smith for me. I 
had never paid much  attention to his Theory of Moral Sentiments  before. 
From:  OPE-L [mailto:OPE-L@SUS.CSUCHICO.EDU] On Behalf Of Dogan Goecmen
Sent: 16 November 2006 15:05
Subject: Re: [OPE-L] marx's conception of  labour
It refers to the  projected aims of the concret work to be done. To build a 
house it must have  been built in our heads and so on.



In einer eMail vom  16.11.2006 15:00:36 Westeuropäische Normalzeit schreibt  

>  I  present first the general aspects of Marx’s concept of  labour:
> ontological, teleological and sociological.  



What is the  teleological aspect of Marx's concept of labour?

In  solidarity, Jerry


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