introduction

Fred B. Moseley fmoseley at mhc.mtholyoke.edu
Fri Sep 23 17:03:40 MDT 1994



On Fri, 23 Sep 1994, Doug Henwood wrote:

> Date: Fri, 23 Sep 1994 13:34:20 -0400 (EDT)
> From: Doug Henwood <dhenwood at panix.com>
> To: marxism at world.std.com
> Subject: Re: introduction
>
> By these definitions, is a banker productive? The banker's manicurist? An
> advertising copywriter? A Hollywood image consultant?
>
> Doug


According to my interpretation, all these occupations would be unproductive
labor, except the bander's manucurist.  If the manicurist is self-employed,
then it is neither productive or unproductive labor; it falls outside the
distinction.  If the manicurist is employed in a capitalist firm, then this
would be productive labor.

I agree with Paul C. that Marx extended Smith's definition beyond wage-labor
outside capitalist firms (the government, personal servants, etc.) to
include wage-labor within capitist firms who perform functions related
to exchange.  Hence the other occupations which you mention would be
unproductive labor according to Marx's definition.

Fred


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