Re: [OPE] replacement cost and historical cost (again)

From: Dave Zachariah <>
Date: Mon Aug 31 2009 - 15:37:57 EDT

Ian Wright wrote:
> Quick question, which will help me in some current work. Very much
> appreciate any answers.
> (A) It seems to me that the only concept of (socially necessary)
> labor-value that Marx uses in Capital is replacement cost; that is,
> the SNLT of a commodity is the total labor required given current
> production techniques. So the labor-embodied in a commodity is a
> property of a commodity in the context of the current forces of
> production.
> (B) Some interpreters see another concept of SNLT; that is, the labor
> embodied in a commodity is the labor that *was* expended to make it,
> i.e. historical labor costs. So the labor-embodied in a commodity is a
> property of the commodity, regardless of context.
> Would it be controversial to state that Marx everywhere and always
> meant (A) and not (B)?

I do not think that it is controversial. As I recall he clearly, if not
explicitly, deals with case (A) in vol. 1, in the example of technically
backward producers.

//Dave Z
ope mailing list
Received on Mon Aug 31 15:39:51 2009

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