Tag Archives: indirectly social

Abstract Labor and reading Marx

In the next few posts I will post a close reading of some important works by Marx that explore his concept of ‘abstract labor’. In a past post from last summer I wrote about some revelations I had from reading … Continue reading

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Law of Value 3: Das MudPie

If you spend any time reading about Marx’s theory of value on the internet you probably will come across some version of this asinine excuse for a critique called “the mudpie argument.” The basic style of the mudpie argument is similar to many advanced by those who know nothing about Marx’s theory of value: one constructs a ridiculous strawman argument that has nothing to do with Marx and then proceeds to knock it down with “devastating” brilliance, moral outrage, and a few clever asides about Stalinism. The MudPie argument goes something like this:

Marx claimed that labor is what gives all commodities value. But what if I make a mudpie? This is a product of labor yet nobody will buy it. It has no value. So Hah! Take that Karl Marx! Continue reading

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