Ceteris paribus

jones/bhandari djones at uclink.berkeley.edu
Sun Jul 30 18:25:07 MDT 1995

A question about Steve's last helpful posts (partially reproduced below):
how do we determine what is nested within what? how is the outermost level
arrived at or validated as the correct starting point? how do we know that
what is most outward remains so; in other words couldn't credit, once an
inner-level force, evolve into the defining entity of capitalism?  Actually
I am just throwing questions at you, hoping that you will elaborate your
original ideas on levels of analysis.  Thank you.  Rakesh

>The outer level of this schema is the commodity, since as
>Marx argues in Capital Ch. 1, the commodity is the
>defining entity of capitalism. It it at this level that
>(in my analysis of Marx!) Marx uncovers the existence and
>source of surplus value, and in doing this he ignores inner
>level forces--such things as credit, whether surplus value can
>in fact be realised, whether workers receive less (or more)
>than their value, etc.
>Inner levels include such things as the worker-capitalist
>relation (expressed in the concept of the wage), credit
>money, the realisation of surplus value, and so on. At
>each of these inner levels, the overall dialectic of the
>commodity must be taken as given.

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