Thursday, June 26, 2014


  • Paul Heideman reviews, for Jacobin, Philip Mirowski's book, Never Let a Serious Crisis Go to Waste: How Neoliberalism Survived the Financial Meltdown.
  • Robert Skidelsky calls for a reform in how economics is taught.
  • Does anybody know the something about the Marxist "critique of value", as developed by certain German thinkers? Apparently, that is the theme of a blog and a book.


Anonymous said...

bob mcmanus

following the links I have read Amitra Nelson's "Marx's Concept of Money" Fairly heavy going, much of it dealt with an apparent contradiction between money as symbol and money as commodity. Not the kind of mathematical economics you do. She also co-wrote a follow-up "Life Without Money"

I'll paste a couple longish quotes from near the end of MCoM:

"The character and contradictions of alienated labour are projected via the commodity onto money (and finally capital). This means that ‘in money (exchange value) the objectification of the individual is not that of himself in his natural character but that of himself in a social determination (relationship),which is at that time external to him’. Exchange-value is ‘the universal mediator’
between private yet ‘socially determined’ interests, and in the simple exchange of
commodities money directly mediates exchange. The social bond is expressed in money;
social power is contained in one’s ‘pocket’. ‘It is itself the community,’ Marx writes of
money, ‘and cannot tolerate any other standing above it.’

Commodity fetishism in bourgeois society
is not a subjective or false interpretation of the social process, as Marx says the utopian
socialists (Owenites) suggest; it is not as if people merely imagine that all the powers of
labour are instead the attributes of capital. According to Marx labour is actually
objectified, embodied in products, alienated, appropriated as commodities; the reification
which occurs in thought in the religious realm occurs in fact as commodity fetishism in
the social process of commodity production and exchange."

Robert Vienneau said...

Thanks for the comment, Bob. I do not expect to get very far in this work. The idea of commodity fetishism as a "real illusion", created by capitalism, is an idea I like in Marx.