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

From: clyder@GN.APC.ORG
Date: Sat Nov 18 2006 - 15:44:32 EST

Quoting Dogan Goecmen <Dogangoecmen@AOL.COM>:

> The complexity of these forms of transitions are well known, even to Marx.
> (See first parts of German Ideology) I probably do not this particular film.
> But  I know these sorts of films. Even birds use tools. I konw this. But the
> question  is this: do animals produce their tools they use or do they just
> take
> them from  nature as they happen to be out there?  Do they conserve and
> improve
> them  as the process of production proceeds?

This is just what is so remarkable about the video of the crows.
They do just this.

The crows are confronted with a new problem, a milkbottle at the
bottom of which is a small paper basket containing nuts. The basket
has a tiny handle. Next to the bottle are a couple of pieces of wire
perhaps 300 mm long.

The crows examine the bottle and the wires for a while, and then
proceed to bend the tip of the wires into 'fish hooks', they then
insert the wires with the hooks into the bottle, pick up the little
basket using the hook and pull it out to get the nuts.

> Dogan
> In einer eMail vom 18.11.2006 16:43:06 Westeuropäische Normalzeit schreibt
> clyder@GN.APC.ORG:
> Quoting  Dogan Goecmen <Dogangoecmen@AOL.COM>:
> >
> > Paul, your  discusion is, then, just to remind us of these froms of
> > transitions.  But this does not argue against Marx. It become, however,
> > problematic  if
> > you reject to recognise the qualitative difference between  animal  and
> human
> >
> > labour. This is an old discussion. Some  refer to the capacity of
> thinking,
> > others to language, other  again to morality. But all these discussions
> end
> > up in
> >  asking what makes the difference between other animals and human
> beings.
> > Marx says humans work consciously, that is to say that they  plan before
> they
> >
> > work.
> These transitions are, I  think, considerably more complex than one would
> guess if one was just going  on what is in Capital, but then we have much
> much more biological knowledge  available to us than Marx had. I am just
> pointing out that the distinction  human/animal labour based on
> intentionality
> is now regarded as untenable by  researchers into animal behaviour.
> Ian Wright's old tutor Aron Sloman,  has a magnificent video of problem
> solving ability and tool use among  caledonian crows.
> Once you have watched it, you
> will never again be so  confident about human particularity.
> > Human labour according to  Marx comprises, then, : thinking, it is a
> > conscious action; it  comprises language, it is a communicative action; it
> > comprises
> >  morality, it is an ethical action involving moral judgments, This is,
> of
> > course, not a God given capacity. It is a result of of a historical
> process
> > of
> > tousands and tousand of years. Now, tell me, is  there any species of
> animals
> >
> > (apart from human beings) which  plan the future, say, reproduction of
> > subsistence and the means of  production in the next few years to come.
> This sort of planning though,  is not specifically human, it is specifically
> agricultural. It only exists  post the neolithic  revolution.
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