Marx has been looking at some other modes of production (feudalism, clan-based society, Robinson Crusoe/an individual producer) so as to contrast these with capitalism and highlight how commodities, including the money commodity, take on their 'mysterious significance' and become fetishised. Marx is going to do something now that he does surprisingly little of: he's going … Continue reading 44. Socialism vs Capitalism. Socialism wins.
A pal asked me what was the point in 'explaining' bits of Marx to people... That's not really what I'm doing: I'm 'exploring' bits of Marx. This isn't meant to be an exhaustive explanation of Capital, that would be a much larger project of the sort that I'm not interested in (academia is SO bourgeois! … Continue reading 43. Serf’s Up! 🌊
Marx opens a can of Castaway on bourgeois economic's ass: "Since Robinson Crusoe’s experiences are a favourite theme with political economists, let us take a look at him on his island." Defoe's mid 18th century novel about the shipwrecked Crusoe was an interesting theoretical case to economists as the protagonist, supposedly removed from his native economic … Continue reading 42. Desert Island Duds.
Marx continues the last section of Chapter I of Capital by looking at how capitalism justifies itself ideologically and via its system of exchange value... "Man’s reflections on the forms of social life, and consequently, also, his scientific analysis of those forms, take a course directly opposite to that of their actual historical development. He … Continue reading 41. Capitalism Gets into Yer Head. 💰
In this last section of Chapter I of Capital, Marx continues to consider the dazzling, mysterious appearance of commodities, how they become 'fetishised'... "Value, therefore, does not stalk about with a label describing what it is. It is value, rather, that converts every product into a social hieroglyphic. Later on, we try to decipher the … Continue reading 40. Making The Subjugation Commodity.
Marx continues looking at the fetishisation of commodities with reference to labour, use value and market/exchange value... "This division of a product into a useful thing and a value becomes practically important, only when exchange has acquired such an extension that useful articles are produced for the purpose of being exchanged, and their character as … Continue reading 39. The Dirty Social Secret of Prices.
Marx continues to explore the fetishisation, the magical lustre of, commodities... "As a general rule, articles of utility become commodities, only because they are products of the labour of private individuals or groups of individuals who carry on their work independently of each other." In the capitalist mode of production, the division of labour into … Continue reading 38. Capitalism: Spare Parts Not Included.
Marx, in chapter I of Capital, is considering the fetishisation of commodities, or the special 'mystical' character that they take on... "Whence, then, arises the enigmatical character of the product of labour, so soon as it assumes the form of commodities? Clearly from this form itself. The equality of all sorts of human labour is … Continue reading 37. The God Factory.
Ooh, Capital chapter 1 moves on from exchange value to look at the fetishism of commodities, I really like this bit... When I say 'fetishism' and that I really like it I don't mean that I'm sitting here in a leather gimp suit rubbing Vaseline in to my nipples (I only do that on Thursdays), … Continue reading 36. Marxism in a Gimp Suit.
Marx continues to explore the advent of the money form and the commodity, gold, which became the socially accepted standard of expressing exchange values between commodities... D. The Money-Form 20 yards of linen = 1 coat = 10 lbs of tea = 40 lbs of coffee = 1 quarter of corn = 2 ounces of … Continue reading 35. Instead of Banknotes, How’d You Like To Go Shopping With Bath Towels…? 😜