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Tag Archives: Labor and Capital

Karl Marx

MARX’S ‘CAPITAL’ FOR TODAY

Announcing a new series on
Marx’s Capital for Today:  A Reading of Volume One of Capital

Second & Fourth Mondays
June, July & August
6:30-9.00 pm
@ Chicago Public Library
Harold Washington Library Center
400 South State St. Chicago IL
Room 3N-6

Join us for a re-examination of Marx’s analysis of the logic of capital in light of today’s economic and social crises. The focus will be Volume One of Marx’s Capital, in which Marx developed some of his most creative philosophic conceptions. The suggested readings from Marx will be supplemented by selections from Marxism and Freedom, by Raya Dunayevskaya, founder of Marxist-Humanism in the U.S.

Capital is online at http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1867-c1

Marxism and Freedom is available from U.S. Marxist-Humanists.

Sponsored by the U.S. Marxist-Humanists
Email: arise@usmarxisthumanists.org
http://www.usmarxisthumanists.org
Phone: 773-561-3454
eg/2011/labor donated
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Schedule and Readings

June 13th   — The Commodity Form and the Dual Character of Labor

Marx called his analysis of the dual character of labor at the start of Capital his “unique contribution” to the critique of political economy. This meeting will discuss the difference between concrete labor and abstract labor and how it defines the nature of the social relations of modern capitalism.

Suggested readings:
Capital, chapter 1, sections 1 and 2 (pp. 125-137)
Marxism and Freedom, chapter 5 (pp. 81-91)

Leading the discussion: Peter Hudis, General Editor, The Complete Works of Rosa Luxemburg

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June 27th — The Forms of Value and the Function of Money

The discussion of the forms of value in section 3 of chapter 1 of Capital, which is the subject of this meeting, is of pivotal importance in disclosing capitalism’s drive to commodify human relations as well as the function of money in the modern world.

Suggesting reading:
Capital, chapter 1, section 3 (pp. 138-163).
Leading the discussion: Anton Evelynov, student activist

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July 11th — The Adventures of Commodity Fetishism

The section on “The Fetishism of the Commodity and its Secret” has been widely considered the philosophic core of Capital, in which Marx both pinpoints the reason for capitalism’s persistence and points to its possible transcendence. This meeting will focus on this famous section in light of ongoing debates in radical theory.

Suggesting readings:
Capital, chapter 1, section 4 (pp. 163-177)
Marxism and Freedom, chapter 6 (pp. 92-102).

Leading the discussion: Marilyn Nissim-Sabat, author, Neither Victim nor Survivor: Thinking Toward a New Humanity

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July 25th — What is Capital? Why is it the Defining Feature of Modern Society?

Part 2 of Capital, “The Transformation of Money into Capital,” which is the subject of this meeting, discloses the peculiar nature of capital as a social form and how it becomes the universal medium of  social relations in capitalist society.

Suggested readings:
Capital, chapters 4-6, (pp. 247-282)
Marxism and Freedom, chapter 7, section 1 (pp. 103-111).

Leading the discussion: Miguel A. Rodriguez, student at Loyola University; and Ali Reza, Committee in Solidarity with the People of Iran

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August 8th — The Domination of “Dead” over “Living Labor”

The subject of this meeting is Marx’s discussion of the relation between the labor process and the valorization process, on the one hand, and constant capital and variable capital, on the other. This relation discloses the law of motion inherent in all forms of capitalism—whether in its “free market” or statist variants.

Suggested readings:
Capital, chapters 7-8, (pp. 283-319)
Marxism and Freedom, chapter 7, section 2 (pp. 112-119).

Leading the discussion: J Turk, U. S. Marxist-Humanists

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August 22nd — The Working Day and the Quest for a New Society

Why have automated and computerized forms of labor, which at one time were heralded as leading to a dramatic shortening of the working day, led instead to an increase in the amount of time that many spend at work? To what extent do efforts to shorten the working day and transform conditions of labor point to a possible alternative to the capitalist mode of production? We will explore Marx’s discussion of these issues in the section of Capital on “The Working Day.”

Suggested Readings:
Capital, chapter 10, (pp. 340-416)
Marxism and Freedom, chapter 7, section 3 (pp. 120-125).

Leading the discussion: Eileen Grace, Hobgoblin Collective

 

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