Tag Archives: exchange

Intrinsic Value

(What follows is a draft. Citations and footnotes are incomplete.) Intrinsic Value [cite Kliman’s paper on Intrinsic Value as helping me to understand the importance of the concept.] Throughout the opening chapter of Capital Marx jousts with many intellectual opponents, … Continue reading

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Critique of Political Economy. Chapter 2 part 2- notes

2. Medium of Circulation Interesting that Marx has discussed all of these properties of money as measure of value, unit of account and so on, without getting into circulation. Thus, in Marx’s system, money arises out of the nature of … Continue reading

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Value Can’t Be Created in Exchange

After Law of Value 9: Abstract Labor I will conclude the trio of videos dealing with Marx’s method (not that I’ve conclusively said all there is to say on the topic, but all that I have to say for this … Continue reading

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Law of Value 6: Socially Necessary Labor time- another draft

Alone on his tropical island Robinson Crusoe can take as long as he wants to build a cabin for himself. It’s up to him. We don’t have that luxury when we produce for market exchange. When Wonder Bread makes bread they are competing in the market against Pepperidge Farm, Arnold and White Rose. If their workers are less productive, if they take longer to make bread, that doesn’t mean they can sell their bread for more money. The social value of bread is not set by individuals but by the average amount of time it takes to produce bread. This is called the “Socially Necessary Labor Time”. (SNLT) Continue reading

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Law of Value 4: Value

…And this is where any social theory must begin: with a study of the productive activity of people as they work to create the world they live in. Not only is this the best starting place for an analysis of society, it is also the best starting point for a radical social theory whose aim is to investigate the possibility of changing the world. If we realize that human society is not the result of some natural or divine eternal logic but merely the creation of our own labor then that means that we have the power to mold and shape that society as we see fit. In a capitalist society these creative powers take the form of an external world of value and capital that acts back upon society, shaping it against the will of its creators. Yet, in the end the world of capital is nothing but the product of our own creation. If we truly want to change the world it is not up to nature, God, fate or experts, but up to us. This is the radical challenge of the law of value. Continue reading

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Law of Value- Introduction

This video series will cover various topics in Marx’s theory of value: The difference between use-value, exchange value and value, the relation of supply, demand and price to value, abstract labor, exploitation, crisis, socially necessary labor time, and even what an understanding of value can tell us about changing the world. It is hoped that they can contribute to a better appreciation of the importance of value theory to radical movements today as they seek ideas with which to articulate their demands and strategies. Continue reading

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Das Kapital vol.3 Part 1 Chapter 2: The Rate of Profit

The summary which begins Chapter Two serves not only to remind us of some important details about the way in which value is produced but also ties together several details that will be essential for understanding our analysis of the law of value in the context of competing capitals. We are reminded first that surplus value is created in production but only realized in circulation. This is a crucial point as it really helps delineate the essential contours of Marx’s argument. The world of appearance is dominated by fetishism. We think that the coercive and tantalizing power of the market, that value, is manifest in commodities themselves as a result of their specific properties. We think that capital itself creates value. And we think that the process of exchange itself can create a profit. Continue reading

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