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DC Great Books Reading Group Message Board › Questions to consider for the next meeting

Questions to consider for the next meeting

user 7685235
Dayton, OH
Post #: 70
Continuing our study of Marxist economics, I thought that these questions may be helpful in directing our thoughts.

1) What are the 2 forms of the circulation of commodities that Marx mentions?

2) What is the type of circulation which occurs in pre-capitalistic economies? What are people concerned with in these economies?

3) What is the type of circulation which occurs in capitalism? What is the capitalist concerned with? Later this will tie into the idea of 'surplus value' and ultimately to exploitation.

4) What conditions are necessary for labor-power to become a commodity in the market?

5) Can you see how alienation is connected to labor-power commodification? Eg. In what way is the scenario similar to the idea of prostitution? Eg. What happens when you are forced to market your skills at your job? Do you control the products made?

6) Do you see parallels in what Marx says about the nature of labor to what was said in the Economic and Philosophic Manuscript of 1844 in terms of species being? How is man's labor different from that of animals? What does the human labor process do to nature that is metaphysically different from that of any other species?

7) Is the capitalist concerned with 'use-value' of an object or he/she concerned with something else? What is this something else?

8) What allows the capitalist to make profit? Eg. To what asymmetry is profit due to? Hint: Think in terms of use-value and exchange-value? Think in terms of your own job and what makes an employer want to keep you?

9) What is another name for this 'value' that is the result of the above asymmetry? Hint. See question 3. What does it represent metaphysically to Marx given our previous readings?

10) According to Marx, are social institutions responsible for the birth of the asymmetry? Can you see any relationship to G. W. Hegel's idea of the fostering of freedom by way of the correct social institutions?

Final question in our study:

11) Given what we have studied, do you think that Marx makes a good case regarding

a) Worker exploitation ?
b) Human alienation ?
c) Ontological capitalistic vices ?

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