Sports and Marxism. More on Ken's posts.

Zeynep Tufekcioglu zeynept at
Thu May 23 02:08:17 MDT 1996

Athlete's salaries seem in the same category of Van Gogh paintings to me.
(Of course the athlete's sell their labour-power, and in a painting the
labour is already crystallised).

I think Rahul mentioned it somewhere, but we should bring in a few points in
the discussion:

1- Theory of Rent. The scarcity, the unavailibility of replacement and
reproduction with a well defined and foreseeable method of production, all

2- Publicity. It takes money to make these folks the stars they are. That
adds to the cost of "maintaining" the commodity.

3- Crises. A baseball game is consumed, (buy your ticket and at the end of
the game, it's worthless but a memory), and can be reconsumed next week.
Corresponds to the increased need for a faster turn-over rate due to the
squeezed profitability.

This approach is applicable, I think, for other similar phenomena (like pop
stars). It may sound funny, if I were somewhere in the 23rd century, and
wanted to explain the economical crises of the end of the 20th century and
its reflections in the society to my fellows I think I could make my case
using Madonna's career as a pivot. I look at what's going on culturally, and
believe it or not, chapter's of Grundrisse and Capital vol.3 come to my mind!

Yours reductionistically,

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