This question has perplexed the human mind for more than 2, years.
One of the basic ideas of Karl Marx that is constantly being denied by the bourgeois is his theory of value. This is understandable because from this very theory flow all the other conclusions of Marx, in particular that of the need to overthrow capitalism if we are to put an end to all the contradictions of this unjust system which condemns millions of human beings to abject poverty, mass unemployment, periodic economic crises and wars.
In this article divided into two parts Mick Brooks, using up to date facts and figures, shows how the Marxist Labour Theory of Value is still valid today.
It is fashionable these days for bourgeois economists and sociologists to refute the dialectical materialist method of analysis developed by Karl Marx.
This is understandable because from this very theory flow all the other conclusions of Marx, in particular that of the need to overthrow capitalism if we are to put to an end to all the contradictions of this unjust system which condemns millions of human beings to abject poverty, mass unemployment, periodic economic crises and wars.
Marx's view of history "Every child knows a nation which ceased to work, I will not say for a year, but even for a few weeks, would perish.
Every child knows, too, that the masses of products corresponding to the different needs required different and quantitatively determined masses of the total labour of society. That this necessity of the distribution of social labour in definite proportions cannot possibly be done away with by a particular form of social production but can only change the mode of its appearance, is self-evident.
No natural laws can be done away with. What can change in historically different circumstances is only the form in which these laws assert themselves.
And the form in which this proportional distribution of labour asserts itself, in the state of society where the interconnection of social labour is manifested in the private exchange of the individual products of labour, is precisely the exchange value of these products.
When looking at historical materialism, the Marxist theory of historical development as a whole, we ask the question: We find that humans differentiate themselves by transforming themselves and external nature.
The process by which people define and redefine themselves is the labour process. Sure, humans are thinking beings.
But why do they need to develop the capacity for thought? What are they thinking about? Usually they are thinking about survival, about where the next meal is coming from. Marxists argue that the way people organise themselves to gain their daily bread is the mode of production, the skeleton of any form of society.
And insofar as we can talk of an objective notion of progress in human history, it is given by the development of the productive forces, which in turn is achieved by raising the productivity of labour, the increase of our power over external nature.
The "magic" of the marketplace Now to the capitalist mode of production. Capitalism is mystifying to understand. The cause of our mystification is the market system.
Capitalism presents itself to us as a system of universal commodity production that is, where everything is produced for sale where even labour power is a commodity.
That is how Marx defined capitalism. We hear a lot about the "magic of the marketplace". Once in place, a system where everything is bought and sold strikes us as eternal and natural.
We need to remind ourselves that generalised commodity production is a late and recent development in social evolution. For hundreds of thousands of years humans made their living without the aid of markets. Secondly we need to understand what markets do.
They are a form of the social division of labour, as explained by Marx. But that is not how they appear to us.
A worker in Malaysia gets a job on a dredger, which is digging out tin ore from the river. After passing through dozens of sets of hands the tin ends up in Taiwan, where it is used to make solder to manufacture a transistor radio. Meanwhile a garment worker in Milan machines a piece of cloth that began life as raw cotton in the field of a peasant in Pakistan.
The peasant is very poor. All he has to listen to at night is the transistor radio.Some Post-Keynesian economists have been highly critical of the labor theory of value. Joan Robinson, who herself was considered an expert on the writings of Karl Marx, wrote that the labor theory of value was largely a tautology and "a typical example of the way metaphysical ideas operate".
Marx: Capitalism and Alienation. Karl Marx () grew up in Germany under the same conservative and oppressive conditions under which Kant and other German philosophers had to live. Marx’s Labor Theory of Value Labor theory of value: The value of any commodity is ultimately derived from the labor used to create it.
Use value: whether something is useful or not; produced to. In Defence of Marx's Labour Theory of Value “The man who found the way out of this blind alley was Karl Marx,” explained Engels.1 For Marx, who went on to develop and elaborate the theory of value, it was the means through which he discovered the laws of motion of capitalism and the secret of surplus value.
For this reason, the labour. 4.
Marx’s Labour Theory of Value. As an economist, Marx is generally situated in the continuity of the great classical school of Adam Smith and Ricardo. Marx argued that the theory could explain the value of all commodities, including the commodity that workers sell to capitalists for a wage. Marx called this commodity “labor power.” Labor power is the worker’s capacity to produce goods and services.